Players weigh in on quarterback discussion


Players weigh in on quarterback discussion

SAN FRANCISCO -- The 49ers offense did not change Monday night. The play calls were the same. They just looked different with Colin Kaepernick at quarterback."Our offense isn't really going to change, no matter who is in there," Kaepernick said. "Our offense is our offense and we're going to run it."The 49ers exhibited about what is expected from them in the run-pass ratio in a 32-7 victory over the Chicago Bears. Kaepernick completed 16 of 23 passes for 243 yards and two touchdowns. He was also sacked twice. The 49ers ran the ball 29 times for 123 yards.RELATED: Maiocco's Instant Replay: 49ers 32, Bears 7
Kaepernick pushed the ball down the field more. He threw passes against tight coverage. He gave the receivers opportunities to make plays.
Coach Jim Harbaugh declined to state in the aftermath of the victory that Alex Smith was his quarterback. Smith must first gain medical clearance to return to game action after sustaining a concussion Nov. 11. His answer indicated that Harbaugh understands he has a difficult decision.
"We'll see," Harbaugh said. "I usually tend to go with the guy who's got the hot hand. And we've got two quarterbacks that have got a hot hand."Players in the 49ers locker room were careful not to pick sides in the newly minted quarterback debate."That's up to the coaches," tight end Vernon Davis said. "That's their decision. I'll let them decide and they always call the shots. So it's all up to them."Davis became part of the 49ers' offense again with Kaepernick throwing the ball around. Davis had six catches for 83 yards and said it felt as if "somebody took the handcuffs off me."Through the years, Davis has been one of Smith's biggest supporters."It's tough," Davis said. "Alex, he's a genuine guy. I've been here with him since Day One and always supported him. But, Colin, he's the same way. Very humble heart, soft spoken and he wants to be great. But I can't choose sides. I'm here to support either one of them."Here's what some other of the 49ers' offensive players had to say about the Kaepernick-Smith discussion:Michael Crabtree: "Both good quarterbacks. Like I said we just play receiver, go out there and make plays. Whoever is behind the center, we are going out there to make plays."Frank Gore: "We have two good quarterbacks. You need two good quarterbacks, when you see what happened in Pittsburgh, two guys go down who do a great job."Center Jonathan Goodwin: "He's always gotten reps in practice. He's had to learn the same game plan every week. Early in the week that's kind of what went on. He still got his normal reps in practice. There weren't any changes in the game plan made just because Colin was starting at quarterback. Hats off to him for studying and keeping up the pace the whole week and coming out and playing well."Left tackle Joe Staley: "I think right now we're in a situation where we have two great quarterbacks. We won tonight with Kaepernick and we've won a lot of games with Alex. And Alex has played great football for us. So it's not my spot to make decisions as far as that goes, who plays. I think we're in a great situation right now because we have two quarterbacks that we can play great football with." It was a great night for the 49ers' Class of 2011. Outside linebacker Aldon Smith, the 49ers' first-round pick, recorded 5.5 sacks. Kaepernick was the 49ers' second-round selection."Kaepernick played an amazing game," Aldon Smith said. "Before the game, I told him, 'Just don't worry about the cameras, go play the game,' and he put a good game together."

Former 49ers head coach Tomsula named Washington's D-line coach

Former 49ers head coach Tomsula named Washington's D-line coach

ASHBURN, Va. — Washington turned to internal candidates to fill two critical vacancies, promoting Matt Cavanaugh to offensive coordinator and Greg Manusky to defensive coordinator.

Cavanaugh was the team's quarterbacks coach and Manusky its outside linebackers coach last season. Washington announced the promotions Monday along with the hires of Kevin O'Connell as quarterbacks coach and Jim Tomsula as defensive line coach.

It has been an offseason of upheaval for the coaching staff after Washington fired defensive coordinator Joe Barry and a few assistants and offensive coordinator Sean McVay left to become head coach of the Los Angeles Rams.

In its efforts to replace Barry after ranking 28th defensively in consecutive seasons, Washington interviewed former Jacksonville Jaguars coach Gus Bradley, former Cleveland Browns coach Mike Pettine and former Buffalo Bills assistant Rob Ryan before opting for Manusky. The 50-year-old Manusky has been defensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers and 49ers and worked with Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan in San Francisco.

Known for his fiery personality and booming voice on the practice fields, Manusky had only been on coach Jay Gruden's staff for one season as outside linebackers coach. Middle linebacker Will Compton tweeted: "Congrats to Coach Manusky!" when players were informed of his promotion.

Cavanaugh was Washington's quarterbacks coach for the past two years as Kirk Cousins twice set the franchise record for passing yards in a season. Cousins' status for 2017 remains in doubt after playing last season on the franchise tag, but with McVay gone he'll have a familiar face as his offensive coordinator.

After 13 NFL seasons as a backup quarterback, the 60-year-old Cavanaugh was offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears from 1997-98 and Baltimore Ravens from 1999-2004. O'Connell, Washington's new quarterbacks coach, was an assistant in San Francisco under Chip Kelly last season.

Tomsula, who replaces Robb Akey as defensive line coach, also most recently worked with the 49ers as their head coach in 2015.

Falcons coach Quinn: Kyle Shanahan 'totally nailed that' vs Packers

Falcons coach Quinn: Kyle Shanahan 'totally nailed that' vs Packers

The Atlanta Falcons have provided the 49ers with a window from Friday afternoon through Saturday to meet with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, a source told

Falcons coach Dan Quinn has structured a normal work week to begin preparations to face the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 51, Quinn said at a press conference on Monday. The Falcons will have a day off on Saturday before the team travels to Houston on Sunday.

The 49ers are not allowed to officially hire Shanahan until after the Super Bowl on Feb. 5.

Shanahan is the presumptive 49ers coach -- the only candidate remaining among the six whom 49ers executives Jed York and Paraag Marathe interviewed. Shanahan's offense rolled up 493 total yards and converted 10 of 13 (77 percent) third-down opportunities en route to a 44-21 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday in the NFC Championship game.

“I’m really proud of him,” said Quinn, who was hired by the Falcons two years ago after he served as Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator in Super Bowl 49.

“It’s not easy to do when there’s a lot of speculation and things going on outside your world to stay dialed in. I think it’s one that should be commended. Being on point and going for it, he totally nailed that.”

Shanahan is also expected to be heavily involved in the 49ers’ search for a general manager. The two remaining candidates among the nine who previously interviewed are Minnesota assistant general manager George Paton and Arizona vice president of player personnel Terry McDonough.

The 49ers have left open the possibility of adding more GM candidates to the list, according to a source.