49ers key matchup No. 3: Iupati vs. Campbell

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49ers key matchup No. 3: Iupati vs. Campbell

This is the first part in a series that spotlights three 49ers-Cardinals matchups to watch Monday, 5:30 p.m. (ESPNCBS, Ch. 5), at University of Phoenix Stadium49ers LG Mike Iupati vs. Cardinals RDE Calais CampbellTale of the tape
Iupati (77): 6-foot-5, 331 pounds, third season, Idaho
Campbell (93): 6-foot-8, 300 pounds, fifth season, Miami (Fla.)Everything about Mike Iupati exudes confidence.As the 49ers were reviewing their many assignments and adjustments on a short week before facing the Seattle Seahawks, offensive coordinator Greg Roman could tell Iupati would be on top of his game.During a review meeting, Roman asks questions and the offensive linemen compete to be the first with the correct answers.
"We got a lot of guys who want to be the first guy with the answer, but he was hitting the buzzer first," Roman said. "That's very impressive."Iupati's classroom mastery of the scheme, assignments and adjustments carried over into the game with an exemplary performance -- perhaps the best game of his career -- in the 49ers' 13-6 victory over Seattle."We meet a long time," Iupati said, noting a typical meeting lasts a couple hours at a time.Does he ever doze off?"We're in the front of the room, so we always have to be alert. They can see us," he said.
Clearly, he has made significant strides, and that's made everybody sit up and take notice. Iupati says the game has slowed down for him in his third NFL season "From an assignment standpoint, Mike was playing very fast," Roman said of the 49ers' Oct 18 game against the Seahawks."You can tell when a guy is playing fast, he's off on the count, there's no indecision. When the defense does something a little different, there's not that moment of hesitation. He's playing extremely fast. And he's just dominating people, physically. He's got some physical tools that are rare, and they were on display."Iupati also demonstrates a lot more ease and confidence when speaking with the media, too.His main assignment Monday night against the Cardinals' 3-4 scheme will be defensive end Calais Campbell, who has 24 tackles, two sacks and five deflected passes for the Cardinals this season.Campbell made no secret of his feelings about the 49ers, saying this week he "hates the 49ers with a passion." He added, "I can't wait to go out there and stick it to them. Alex Smith, I've gotten down a few times so I know hes thinking about me a little bit."Campbell seemed to overstate his history of success against the 49ers. In seven career games against San Francisco, Campbell has two sacks.
Said Iupati, "Talk is cheap. That's all I have to say. We have much respect for their organization and team. We got to go do our thing."And doing their thing means running the football. The 49ers average 5.9 yards per rushing attempt this season. The Cardinals, who feature the league's seventh-ranked defense, is allowing 4.2 yards per rushing attempt.The 49ers' main run play is "power." That also happens to be Iupati's favorite play. While right guard Alex Boone and tackle Anthony Davis execute a double-team block, Iupati pulls and delivers a block that generally produces a sizable hole for Frank Gore."He's pulling for the front-side linebacker spot," Roman said. "He's gotten really good at it, adjusting to all the different looks. Mike is the backside. It involves him reading things on the run and adjusting inside or outside."Said Iupati, "That's my game. 'Power' is one of the most physical plays. . . It's smash-mouth football."

Brian Hoyer not living his life worried about 49ers possibly drafting a QB

Brian Hoyer not living his life worried about 49ers possibly drafting a QB

Brian Hoyer and Matt Barkley are the only two quarterbacks currently on the 49ers' roster.

Is Hoyer operating as if he will be the starter in 2017?

"Yeah for sure. I think that's what I was brought in to do at this point," Hoyer said on KNBR 680 on Wednesday morning. "And the thing that I've learned in this profession, and really in life, is not worry about things you can't control. I can't control who they draft with the second pick tomorrow and I'm not gonna live my life worrying about it."

The 49ers own the second overall pick in the draft and are reportedly strongly considering taking a QB with that selection.

Even if they do, it doesn't mean that player will start from Day 1.

Hoyer worked with 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan in Cleveland during the 2014 season -- he started a career-high 13 games with the Browns and threw for a career-best 3,326 yards.

"I'm gonna go out there and do what I think my job is at this point," Hoyer added. "And I'm gonna do that as long as I can until they tell me it's not my job anymore."

 

Tom Rathman to be inducted into 49ers Hall of Fame

Tom Rathman to be inducted into 49ers Hall of Fame

Former 49ers fullback Tom Rathman, who was not retained this season on Kyle Shanahan’s coaching staff, will be coming back to the organization in a permanent fashion.

Rathman, 54, who spent a total of 23 seasons as a player and coach, will be inducted into the 49ers Hall of Fame, CEO Jed York announced on Tuesday.

“Tom Rathman embodies everything this organization wants in its players, coaches and staff,” York said in a statement. “Throughout his more than two decades with our team, Tom set a tone for the 49ers both on and off the field. As a player, he was selfless, hard-working and dedicated to bringing his best every single day. Tom coached very much the same way.

"It was his mission to help every man he coached realize his full potential, as both a player and a man. Tom is family and we are so thrilled to induct him into the Edward J. DeBartolo Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame, where he will take his place among the all-time greats in our team’s history.”

Rathman discussed having a role on the 49ers’ coaching staff after the hiring of Shanahan. But Shanahan had already promised the position of running backs coach to Bobby Turner.

“It was all positive,” said Rathman told NBC Sports Bay Area in February. “I have no hard feelings. It’s just the nature of the business. Everybody just has to understand that. In pro football, coaches get fired and new guys come in and they bring their guys. I totally understand it. I don’t have a problem with it. Being in the business for 28 years, playing and coaching, you understand what it is. You can never take anything for granted.”

Rathman played for the 49ers from 1986 to ’93. He was a starter on two Super Bowl-winning teams and seven NFC West champions. Used mostly as a lead-blocker for Roger Craig, Rathman’s best season came in 1989, when he caught 73 passes for 616 yards.

After his playing career concluded with the Los Angeles Rams in 1994, Rathman entered into a career in coaching. He coached under Steve Mariucci from 1997 to 2002. He returned to coach with the 49ers in 2009, serving on the coaching staffs of head coaches Mike Singletary, Jim Harbaugh, Jim Tomsula and Chip Kelly.

“I’ve always considered myself a 49er and I always will consider myself a 49er," Rathman said in a statement. "I’ll take that brand with me wherever I go because that’s who I am. It feels great to be with the guys who are already in the 49ers Hall of Fame. Dating back to Joe Perry, it’s an honor to be associated with the likes of Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, Ronnie Lott, Roger Craig and Dwight Clark.

"That’s a lot of history right there. To be able to say that you’re in a fraternity with those guys so to speak, the 49ers Hall of Fame fraternity, says volumes. It’s pretty special.”