Gregg Williams transcript -- Saints-49ers playoff

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Gregg Williams transcript -- Saints-49ers playoff

Former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams spoke to the defense on Jan. 13, the night before New Orleans faced the 49ers in the NFC Divisional playoff at Candlestick Park. Documentary filmmaker Sean Pamphilon has provided an edited version of the audio on his Web site, the United States of Football.

The following is a partial transcript of Williams' remarks to the team, at a hotel near the San Francisco airport. It contains direct references to targeting Frank Gore, Alex Smith, Vernon Davis, Michael Crabtree, Kyle Williams and Kendall Hunter.
On competing:
"We don't (profanity) apologize for how we're going to play. You're here for a reason. You're here because we saw in you -- and we hope we picked the right person -- that won't apologize for competing the way we have to compete."

Focus on victory:
"There may be better athletes, but not defensive football players that have to go into war tomorrow and play the way we (profanity) play. A mind troubled by doubt cannot focus on victory."

Attacking the head:
"The NFL's a production business, don't ever forget about it. Where are we at right now? We've gotta tie at the top. We've got a lot of guys up at the top. Kill the head and the body will die. Kill the head and the body will die."

On Frank Gore:
"We've got to do everything in the world to make sure we kill Frank Gore's head. We wnt him running sideways. We want his head sidedways. Little 32, we want to knock the (profanity) out of him. He has no idea what he's in for. When he's on the sidelines we've gotta turn that (profanity) over, turn their coaches over, turn the spectators over. Go get that (profanity) on the sidelines."

On Alex Smith:
"It's a great game, it's a production business. We hit (profanity) (Alex) Smith right there. Remember me, I've got the first one, I've got the first one. Go lay that (profanity) out. We're gonna dominate the line of scrimmage and we're gonna kill the (profanity) head. Every single one of you, before you get off the pile, affect the head. Early, affect the head. Continue, touch and hit the head."

Shocking the 49ers:
"They're gonna come in, they're gonna be shocked with our contact. They're gonna be shocked with our speed. They're gonna be shocked with our strip."

On reaching the NFC Championship:
"Make 'em kick field goals, be the best defense in that stadium. Remember the walk-aways, and remember whatever it takes. Whatever it takes to get on that bus, drive back to the airport and get ready for the next one."

On Kyle Williams:
"Respect comes from fear. This is how you get respect in this league. We need to find out in the first two series of the game, the little wide receiver, No. 10, about his concussion. We need to (profanity) put a lick on him, right now. He needs to decide. He needs to (profanity) decide."

On Michael Crabtree:
"We need to decide whether Crabtree wants to be a fake-(profanity) prima donna or he wants to be a tough guy. We need to find it out. He becomes human when we (profanity) take out that outside ACL."
On Frank Gore and Vernon Davis:
"We need to decide how many times we can beat Frank Gore's head. We need to decide how many times we can bullrush and how many times we can (profanity) put Vernon Davis' ankle over the pile. We need to decide. And when they are fearing us they give us the ball."

On Alex Smith:
"Alex Smith, in the preseason game, when you guys avalanched that (profanity), had eyes that big. You all saw 'em. Another thing we always say in this room, is never apologize for the way we compete. If you're in this room, you understand that we don't apologize."

49ers specialists get drenched in preparations for inclement weather

49ers specialists get drenched in preparations for inclement weather

CHICAGO – The 49ers trained for the expected low-30s temperature and snow at Soldier Field with a week of workouts in the 80-degree heat of Florida.

However, the team’s specialists got some practice handling wet footballs during the 49ers’ final practice in Orlando, Fla.

Special-teams coordinator Derius Swinton and his assistant, Michael Clay, made a game of it. Long-snapper Kyle Nelson had to execute 10 perfect snaps to holder Bradley Pinion for field goals. Then, Pinion moved back to punt formation, where another 10 in a row were required.

But they had to be perfect while Swinton and Clay squirted water on the ball and at the hands of Nelson and Pinion, who also received a blast of water in his ear hole at one point.

“We always look up to see if there’s a chance of rain or snow, and we go, ‘Wet-ball drill,’ ” Nelson said. “They (Swinton and Clay) get to have fun, squirting water on us and use the water bottles.

“They make it as bad as possible.”

Nelson and Pinion teamed up to execute perfectly on all 20 field goals and punts.

“If I can do this, in a game it’s going to be even easier,” Nelson said. “They make it a lot harder in practice than it is in a game, so when we get to a game, everything is not as fast.”

The weather conditions on Sunday against the Chicago Bears will likely challenge Nelson, Pinion and kicker Phil Dawson as much as anyone. Dawson has been tracking the weather forecasts for more than a week to get mentally prepared for what he might face.

“Soldier Field is notorious for being a tough place to kick because of the wind and the field itself,” Dawson said this week on the 49ers Insider Podcast. “The footing is pretty poor. So when you add snow and moisture to the equation, it’s going to be one of those days.

“You need to have conversations with your coaches and let them know – be honest with them – about the difficulty. But you have to do that without it affecting your confidence to go out and get the job done.”

Said Nelson, “It takes more focus in bad weather. The snaps have to be a little more perfect. Bradley has to focus more on catching the ball, and Phil has to concentrate on the approach and be more cautious.”

Mark Helfrich provides insight into Chip Kelly's line of thinking

Mark Helfrich provides insight into Chip Kelly's line of thinking

Mark Helfrich had a strong indication he would be fired as Oregon’s head coach. And he said he told Chip Kelly recently he would have no hard feelings if Kelly left the 49ers to return to coach the Ducks.

Kelly this week said he is not interested in abandoning his job with the 49ers to coach in the college ranks. Helfrich suggested during a radio interview on Friday that Kelly told him the same thing privately.

When it was suggested that Kelly hated to recruit, Helfrich did not disagree.

"That's a fact," Helfrich said in an interview on ESPN Radio's Russillo and Kanell. "I don't know hated recruiting. . . a dislike. A strong dislike. But I think Chip has that challenge in his mind right now to make it right in the NFL.

"I had some of those conversations with him a couple weeks ago when it looked like this was going south. That was a very awkward converation, but (I) just wanted to let him know that to take our personal relationship out of it in every way, shape or form if he wanted to consider this.

"But, me, reading between the lines, I think he wants to make it right in the NFL. I think he wants to win at that level. He's had a rough go of it this year, but he'll get it right."

Kelly compiled a 46-7 record in four seasons in Eugene, Ore. He left after the 2012 season to accept the head-coaching job with the Philadelphia Eagles. Kelly was fired late last season and took the 49ers job two weeks later.

In Kelly’s first season with the 49ers, the club is 1-10. The 49ers are on a franchise-long 10-game losing streak entering Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears.

Helfrich was 37-16 in his four seasons at Oregon after his promotion from offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach. Kelly said he spoke with Helfrich the morning after he was fired.

“I just felt bad for Mark. I love him like a brother,” Kelly said. “He’s a tremendous person. He’s a hell of a football coach, but he’s an even better person. Just felt for him and the rest of the guys on that staff. It’s an unfortunate thing that goes on in this profession. We all know about it when we sign up, but when it happens you’re still taken aback by it.”

Kelly said he hoped his denial of any interest in the Oregon job would end all speculation about his future. When asked if intends to remain with the 49ers, Kelly said on Wednesday, “Yep. So we're all done with that, I hope."