49ers-Saints MNF: Ahmad Brooks and Travis LaBoy To Rotate

49ers defensive coordinator Greg Manusky spoke with the beat writers, discussing the blow-ups last week and the much anticipated New Orleans Saints offense this Monday. For those that were wondering, he did address the return of Ahmad Brooks:

On the plans to use LBs Ahmad Brooks and Travis LaBoy:

"I think they're getting some series where they'll be sprouted in a little bit at outside linebacker and defensive end. So, they'll be across the board and be put in certain situations to rush or in the end to drop."

On having Brooks at end and LaBoy at LB:

"I'm saying they're both going to be playing during the game."

It will be interesting to see if the return of Brooks is enough to establish a better pass rush than we saw last week. Brooks is such a naturally gifted pass rusher that one would hope that will overcome any rust he'll likely have given his extended absence. As important as it is for the secondary to improve their performance, a consistent pass rush on Monday would go a long way in attempting to contain the Saints passing attack.

I've posted the transcript after the jump. Coach Manusky goes into detail on a variety of subjects.

Defensive Coordinator Greg Manusky
Press Conference - September 17, 2010
San Francisco 49ers 

Listen to Audio I Media Center

On whether he watches the film that the Saints are watching to see how they will attack:

"I think the best thing you've got to do, what we do is we run the stuff that we run, if it meant we ran it in the Colts game or the Arizona game. Every team is different based upon protections, players, scheme, everything's different. You can't say, ‘Okay, I'm going to take the same gameplan that I had against X team and go into this game and say I'm going to do that.' It doesn't work. You've got to watch the film of what this team does, which is a very efficient te am, and then make your calls accordingly.'

On what went wrong in the secondary against Seattle:

"I think what we've got to do as a defense is I a lways want players to make plays. I don't want to go into a game and say, ‘Okay, let them catch it and then we'll tackle them.' I don't want that. I want players to be aggressive, go after balls and pick balls off in the secondary and amongst the linebackers as well. Going into that game we kind of knew it was going to be a quick game and that's what they did. He kind of pivoted on one and went up. [Safety] Michael Lew's [Lewis] got to make the tackle and then we'd be in a good position there. I want players to make plays though."

On whether getting good pressure on the quarterback goes hand-in-hand with playing aggressive in the secondary:

"Of course, it always goes hand-in-hand. You're expecting pressure, you expect the ball to come out somewhat hot and hope the pressure gets there. It all ties into balance. It does, it just ties into balance."

On whether he got the pressure he was looking for vs. Seattle:

"Well [LB] Travis [LaBoy] was there, he matched up on the back, he came flying threw and the quarterback released the ball. They get paid, they make plays too just like we do. That's what I tell the defense, hey, they play the game too."

On how he defines a bad gamble and what he teaches the guys to do:

"I don't know a bad gamble. I'm just saying if the ball's there, pick it off."

On whether there is such a thing as a bad gamble:

"Maybe in certain situations there might be. In a two-minute situation, I think there might be depending on if you're down or whatever. So, there are situations where I think you might have to gamble a little bit."

On what makes it so difficult to get to Saints QB Drew Brees:

"It's just like [Colts QB] Peyton [Manning], and all the good ones, and [Patriots QB Tom] Brady. They know where they're going with the ball. They're very talented, they understand the scheme. They've been in the scheme for a long time and they know exactly where the ball should go. That's what Breezie [Saints QB Drew Brees] does very well. I knew him when he was down in San Diego, did the same thing."

On Brees' efficiency and the 49ers red zone defense:

"I think that's always the difference and I told them this past week. I said the difference between winning and losing a game, I don't care where they get the ball, is the red zone. If you stop them we have a great chance to win. If we don't, bad things will happen."

On whether the three-step drop takes away some of the aggressiveness:

"No, they've got to play the game just like we do as coaches. You've got to play the calls, you've got to play the game. I was a player once, I'm going to make a play that's what I'm going to do. I wasn't particularly on defense per se, I was a couple games here or there, but I was a backup player. I knew on special teams I was going to make the play, and that's what I want our players to understand. Have the confidence to make a play, that's what it's about."

On whether there is an emphasis to have the coverage be tighter this season:

"No, it's just what it is. Play great run defense, let's go get some sacks, get after the quarterback, make some plays on the backend, turnovers, picks, fumbles, things of that nature."

On the plans to use LBs Ahmad Brooks and Travis LaBoy:

"I think they're getting some series where they'll be sprouted in a little bit at outside linebacker and defensive end. So, they'll be across the board and be put in certain situations to rush or in the end to drop."

On having Brooks at end and LaBoy at LB:

"I'm saying they're both going to be playing during the game."

On the number of snaps for the LBs:

"They're going to get some snaps. It depends on how the game's going and who's in there. I can't tell you right now he's going to get 20 snaps, he's going to get 50 snaps. I don't know that. We're going to roll them in, they've got to play a little special teams as well. So, it will be a good little man rotation between the four of them. Let's go, lets roll."

On whether LB Diyral Briggs will be inactive:

"Right now I have not spoken to [head coach Mike Singletary] Sing about that. So, we'll find out about that here tomorrow or the next day."

On how comfortable he is with having four CBs and getting William James back:

"That's Will, we're expecting him to get back pretty soon. They're a talented offense. We'll see what happens when the numbers come and who will be up and stuff. It is what it is. That's who we have on the roster and we have to roll with it."

On how well he knew Brees in San Diego:

"He was always a good guy. He knew his stuff, he played hard, he was a football player. Right from the get go, just loved his charisma, the way he handles himself. He's extended his career when he's been down there in New Orleans of course, but great guy. I love Breezie."

On the secondary issues vs. Seattle:

"I think 170 yards they had, 175 yards for Seattle. If we stop teams to 175 yards passing, I'm happy with that. In the red zone? No, I don't want them to score. For DBs to play and every offense is different. Some are quick hitting offenses, some are vertical threats. What we've got to do is we've got to cover them up. By asking to cover them up, cover them up."

On how Seattle caught the secondary off guard:

"Don't know all of the particulars of each drive. I kind of put the game behind me right now and we're moving forward to New Orleans. That was then, this is now."

On whether he was happy with CB Nate Clements:

"Yeah, he played pretty good at the nickel back position last week. I thought he made some plays, made the first play of the game which was great. He did okay."

On whether Brees can be beat physically or if he has to be beat mentally:

"I beat him in chess. Breezie is a talented quarterback. He knows where he's going with the ball. He's been in that system for a decent amount of time. He understands what [Saints head coach Sean] Payton wants and he goes with it. Do you have to beat him up mentally, physically? I'd like to hit the crap out of him. I'd love to, but he gets rid of the ball. He knows where the ball's going and he understands fire zone's, he understands cover four, single safety high, he understands everything. You've got to sit back and you've got to pick your poison and all of the sudden go after him a couple of times and get him pretty good. You've got to keep him thinking. Just like with Peyton, same thing, you've got to keep them thinking all of the time, Brady."

On NT Aubrayo Franklin:

"He did very well. Just technique wise and how he's played. He kind of picked up from last year where he kind of left off. He didn't need much because I think he was working when he was down in Atlanta working out down there and did some good things. For the most part he had a pretty good game, keeps on improving. There's little things that he needs to add to his repertoire, but he looked good for the first day."

On LB Patrick Willis on the injury report with a thumb and a knee and his status:

"Yeah, he's got a thumb. The thumb's fine."

On whether Willis' thumb is broken:

"Is it broken? No, I don't think it is. That would be news to me. His knee, Pat's a physical player, goes out there and gives it his all. Just protecting him a little bit. Sometimes it's good for Pat to watch instead of do it sometimes. He's fine, he'll be ready to go on Monday."

On whether Pat will take it easy during the week throughout the season to preserve him:

"Yeah."

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