Lovie Smith: 49ers QB will not change Bears approach

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Lovie Smith: 49ers QB will not change Bears approach

Quarterback Alex Smith was cleared to practice on Wednesday, which appears to be a solid indication that he will be available for the 49ers on Monday night against the Chicago Bears.After all, if there were any doubt of Smith's condition after sustaining a concussion on Sunday, he would not have been cleared so soon for football activity. Smith received clearance from the 49ers team physician, Dr. Daniel Garza, as well as the NFL-mandated opinion from an independent neurologist.RELATED: Alex Smith cleared to return to practice
The Bears have their own issue with a quarterback who sustained a concussion. Jay Cutler was removed from Sunday night's game against the Houston Texans with a concussion. Jason Campbell replaced him Cutler and completed 11 of 19 passes for 94 yards in a 13-6 loss.RELATED: Cutler not yet cleared
The Bears are scheduled to hold their first practice later Thursday. And coach Lovie Smith did not provide any clues to the Bay Area media during a conference call Thursday morning.Can you bring us up to date on the status of Jay Cutler?
"We haven't practiced yet, haven't gone out on the football field. So there's nothing more I can tell you except for, he's getting better, which is a good thing.Will Jason Campbell be getting all the reps today?
"We haven't gone on the practice field. Of course, I'm not going to talk about much of that. I'll give you a lot more information afterward, though."How did Campbell perform when he was forced into the game Sunday?
"Going all the way back, we felt like we needed to improve our backup quarterback position in the offseason. So we felt real good about being able to convince Jason to come here and be Jay's backup. We've been with him for a while. I just love the way he prepares off the field. He's a pro at all times. And he had an excellent training camp for us. He's been very good in the limited time we've given him and being able to go against a very good defense we have here every day. We feel like he's a starting quarterback in the NFL and we have as our backup. We feel very comfortable in him leading us."What about the other side. Do you have to prepare for both Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick or does it see as if Smith is going to play?
"We're going to prepare for the quarterback position for the 49ers. Whether it's Smith or Colin, it doesn't really . . . there's a difference, of course, between the two of them but the 49ers are a running football team. We have to start with that. We have to go with our game plan and we're not going to change much based on who the quarterback will be."That's interesting you say that because they have such different styles. You'd think you'd have to prepare for more running from Colin Kaepernick.
"Colin has been playing some anyway, so we've been preparing for that anyways. Again, we don't change what we do an awful lot based on change in the quarterback. Both of those quarterbacks have played some for them."

Harbaugh goes Biblical, responds to Jacobs' criticisms of his coaching

Harbaugh goes Biblical, responds to Jacobs' criticisms of his coaching

Former NFL running back Brandon Jacobs spent one season with the San Francisco 49ers in 2012 under head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Jacobs only played in two games and gained seven yards on five carries. The results were nothing like his 5,087 yards and 60 touchdowns over eight years with the Giants. 

Apparently being pushed to the bench as a 31-year-old veteran running back didn't sit well with Jacobs. 

“Going somewhere where they don’t have route conversions into certain coverages was just absurd,” Jacobs said Thursday on the Tiki and Tierney Show. “They’re just running routes in the defense, getting people killed. Size and strength is what they had, and that’s why they won.

"Let’s be real. They had great assistant coaches, but Jim didn’t know what he was doing. Jim had no idea. Jim is throwing slants into Cover-2 safeties, getting people hurt. That guy knew nothing, man."

On Saturday morning, Harbaugh responded to Jacobs with a tweet to him. 

Harbaugh went 44-19-1 in four seasons as the 49ers' head coach. He also added five playoff wins and a trip to the Super Bowl in the 2012-13 season, the one that Jacobs played for him.

Shanahan: Brooks earns place on 49ers' first-team defense

Shanahan: Brooks earns place on 49ers' first-team defense

SANTA CLARA – The eldest non-kicker on the 49ers’ roster is learning a new position this offseason.

But Ahmad Brooks has plenty of experience adapting to new positions during his 12-year NFL career. He has played inside linebacker, outside linebacker in a 3-4 and defensive end in pass-rush situations.

Now, Brooks has moved to the strong side linebacker position -- the “Sam” -- in the 49ers’ new 4-3 scheme under first-year defensive coordinator Robert Saleh.

“He’s getting them (first-team repetitions) because he deserves them,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said this week. “Watching how he played last year and then going into this offseason, you never know when a guy who has been around a bunch, if they’re going to feel that they need the offseason like other people do. And Ahmad’s been here every day and he’s needed it just like everyone has anytime you’re learning a new scheme.

“But anytime you have a veteran like that, you worry that, hey, maybe they won’t think that they do need it. But Ahmad has and he’s been here. He’s worked at everything. He’s in good shape. He’s done what we’ve asked in the weight room with Ray and he’s done everything with the position coaches and coordinator on defense. So, I think he’s learning it and he should because he’s putting the work in.”

Brooks, 33, has entered the past three offseasons with his place on the 49ers seemingly in jeopardy. But the 49ers have not been able to find a younger, better player to replace him. Brooks has tied for the team-lead in sacks in each of the past four seasons with 27 sacks over that span.

Eli Harold, Dekoda Watson and undrafted rookie Jimmie Gilbert were the other players who lined up at the Sam position during the first week of 49ers organized team activities.

Brooks and Aaron Lynch, starters at outside linebacker for the 49ers in the previous systems, have the steepest learning curves in the transition to a new defense. Lynch has moved to the team’s pass-rush defensive end position, known as the “Leo.”

“I think techniques are totally different,” Shanahan said. “How you want to take on blocks, how you want to play the run. Ahmad has been around a little longer than Aaron. So he’s probably had a little bit more crossover, some similar schemes.”