Niners DT Smith expects battle with McKinnie Sunday

January 29, 2013 | WNST Staff

DEFENSIVE TACKLE JUSTIN SMITH

 

(on Linebacker Aldon Smith winning the MVP award) “He’s a tremendous player and he won our MVP, rightfully so. I don’t think [he was] too shocked. I think that’s how everybody felt that should have gone.”

 

(on Missouri players going to the NFL) “I think that’s just a testament of how that program has turned around. Somebody told me there were four or five Missouri guys playing in the NFC Championship game. I think it’s just a matter of the team turnaround. The program has been in place there for a while now and it’s just been helping dudes out.”

 

(on his triceps injury) “It feels alright. It’s coming along and I’ll be ready to get it fixed next week. It’s holding up alright.”

 

(on playing through pain during the game) “There are things to do about the pain so I really don’t feel the pain during the game. I think the brace definitely limits you.”

 

(on Missouri joining the SEC) “I think it will be good for them. That’s the conference everybody wants to play in. They think that’s the stepping stone to the NFL. I think anytime you can get in that conference, start recruiting and competing in that conference, it’ll be much better.”

 

(on dealing with a long season) “Nobody is 100% healthy. Just physically, you just get kind of worn down as the year goes on. But it is the last game and I think everybody is going to be [worn down]. Once you’re out there, you are worried about the then and no. You feel it on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday then you go on from there.”

 

(on playing better after getting hurt in the Atlanta game) “I think, as a whole we played better. We have one more week to go. They’re [Baltimore Ravens] built kind of exactly how we are. They’re going to try to run the ball and take shots. We have to make sure we stop them. They have an o-line that’s really good as well.”

 

(on synergy with Linebacker Aldon Smith) “I think it’s easy. Anytime you work with a great player, it makes it that much easier. We play well together, we work well together. Anytime you play with a tremendous player like that it makes it easy.”

 

(on Atlanta Falcons’ defensive coordinator Mike Nolan describing him as a top-five NFL player) “I mean, coming from a guy like Mike Nolan, that’s an honor just to hear him say that. He’s one of the most respected defensive coordinators in the league. He was the head coach that brought me in here. I have a ton of respect for him and I appreciate that.”

 

(on playing for Missouri) “I think anybody’s college years help shape them. I had a good experience there. I went there my freshman year and we went to a bowl game. Then the next two years weren’t so hot but that’s the way it happens sometimes. I learned a lot from the coaches there and have taken that with me.”

 

(on the competition in the Super Bowl) “I think both offenses are similar in what they want to do. Run the ball, take your shots. They want to establish the run, we want to establish the run. I think it’s going to be important we shut them down. That’s going to be tough to do but that’s what we have to do.”

 

(on if he thought the season was over when he got injured) “When I felt it pop, I didn’t know what to think because I’ve never felt that before, a tendon popping like that. I knew I was hurt. I came out, tried to go back in for the play and didn’t have anything. I’m surprised it got back as good as it did in those couple of weeks.”

 

(on San Francisco defensive line coach Jim Tomsula) “I think a lot of the things we do on the defensive front, a lot of teams really don’t shift with other teams as they’re shifting. I think he’s come in, taught us how to do that [in terms of] what to look for and really [what] play formations as opposed to just playing the defense. He’s knowledgeable with all that and he knows the 3-4 inside and out.”

 

-MORE-

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Super Bowl XLVII – Tuesday, January 29, 2013

 

QUOTES FROM SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS MEDIA DAY

 

MORE DEFENSIVE TACKLE JUSTIN SMITH

 

(on San Francisco Defensive Line Coach Jim Tomsula’s demeanor) “He’s a fiery guy. He’s not just a rah-rah  guy, there’s a lot more to him than that. He knows his stuff so you don’t have to yell and just jump around all the time. You can actually talk. He’ll give us some information, some input, how we’re going to shut it down and that’s what I appreciate about him.”

 

(on San Francisco Defensive Line Coach Jim Tomsula becoming a Defensive Coordinator) “I’m actually kind of shocked that he isn’t right now, honestly. The success this team has had, I think it’s pretty well known around the league how much he knows. He was the interim head coach here, but sometimes those things just take a little bit of time. That’s another one of the reasons it’d be nice to win the Super Bowl; players, staff included are trying to get cherry picks. We’ll try to keep this thing together as long as possible and hopefully we’ll being this one home.”

 

(on his surgery) “I think they just get in there and sew it back down. Reattach the tendon, sew it in and start my rehab.”

 

(on wearing a brace during games) “I don’t like the brace. It’s just weird. It’s cumbersome but a lot of guys play with leg braces, elbow braces, shoulder braces, torn labrums, you know we have a lot of guys playing with torn stuff.”

 

(on the Ravens offensive line) “I mean they move them around. They flipped Michael Oher, they have Bryant McKinnie in there now. They moved their guard situation around with some injury. They have what’s working for them now. They’re running the ball effectively. They max it up, they take their shots deep. The reason they can do that is they’re running the ball effectively. They get that safety dropped in the box then you go over their heads. That’s a testament to their o-line. They’re built a lot like we are. They thrive behind their offensive line, same as we do.”

 

(on reaction to being hurt) “If you’re hurt, you’re hurt. It’s not like I had the flu or something like that and I couldn’t play the game. I knew I was hurt. I couldn’t do anything with it. I couldn’t do a pushup so I sure as hell wasn’t going to get out on the field and start getting mollywhopped. I’ve never been injured before so I always thought you could go with a sprained ankle, hairline fracture, stuff like that is no big deal. But with that one [his triceps injury] I knew I was going to be on the shelf for a little bit.”

 

(on whether the defense is establishing an identity even though it is an offense driven league)  “You know I think the main thing is just winning the championship. I don’t think we’re too concerned with stamping stuff and this and that. The main thing is get the win, play solid football and everybody play their role. We don’t have a bunch of guys looking for the credit or ‘Are we going to be known as this defense, that defense?’ I think it’s just a bunch of guys that are talented going out playing well together and we’re well coached.”

 

(on health focus of football related injuries) “For me personally, I played this game in high school and college. I think the game just teaches you too much. When this whole thing started happening about concussions and this and that, I don’t think anybody really felt that threatened about it. As it keeps building momentum, in my opinion, I would hate for the game to get fundamentally changed because of it [injuries]. It teaches you too much. I think it teaches a young kid in high school or middle school discipline, toughness, accountability, work ethic. I think there is too much to be had from the game than to worry about this and that. I think there are all types of occupations that are just as hazardous or more hazardous; they just don’t have the spotlight on them. I definitely would be all for my kids playing football if they choose to. I don’t really see the harm in it.”

 

(on Ray Lewis’ leadership and if players without long careers can be leaders) “Absolutely. Rah-rah doesn’t get you anywhere. I think everybody gravitates and looks for leaders that are great players. That’s why we have a ton of great leaders on our team. You lead by example. You lead by how you handle yourself during the week, how you work out, how you prepare, and how you play. That’s what we look for and that’s what I look for.”

 

-MORE-

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Super Bowl XLVII – Tuesday, January 29, 2013

 

QUOTES FROM SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS MEDIA DAY

 

MORE DEFENSIVE TACKLE JUSTIN SMITH

(on how attention to Aldon Smith affects him) “I think the correlation is anytime there’s success like that, especially with Aldon on that side, you draw attention. I think when they sit down the first thing an offensive coordinator or head coach is going to say is, ‘How do we slow 99 down?’ and that brings a lot of attention over there. Teams change their scheme up when they play us; that is pretty noticeable so that’s the main factor.”

 

(what he has to do to get pressure on Joe Flacco) “I think what they do is they can run the ball so effectively that they can max it up, max pro it. They run the same protection they run their counter plays out of and they throw it over your head because the safety is biting on the run. That’s the key. [I have to] stop the run. Stop the run, stop the run with a seven man box, try to not get in the eight man boxes, play a light box, and have the safeties deep. That’s going to be a tough job but that’s what we have to do to win the game.”

 

(on Baltimore Ravens Tackle Bryant McKinnie) “McKinnie has been a good player in this league for a long time. [He] came out as a high draft pick in ’02 and he’s played well. I think with the opportunity he sees with the Super Bowl and the run they’ve been on, when a great player wants to play, they can play. He’s out there playing really good football right now.”

 

(on Colin Kaepernick and the offensive line) “I think number one, it starts with the offensive line. What those guys have been able to do, the lanes they’ve been able to create and then you get Colin back there; I know from a defensive standpoint, he is a nightmare. He can take off run, you have to watch your pass rush lane, and then when you play him to where he can’t rush or run the ball, he’s going to throw it all over you. He’s just an all-around threat and a huge reason why we’re here.”

 

(on what a Super Bowl win would mean to him) “It’d be unreal. I mean, you play this game for so long, then you start thinking ‘When are we going to get there, when are we going to get the opportunity?’ To finally be here is pretty crazy. The main thing is you want to win the game. You never remember who lost the game.”

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