Alex Smith chatted with the media yesterday, and I realized I never got his press conference transcript posted. I'm making a slight change with how we post all this. Since I can create new hubs for different content, I've set up a hub for 49ers press conferences and conference calls. This will include all the transcripts I receive, as well as the embedded video I post for the various press conferences throughout the year.
I'll try and do more breakdown of the comments in separate posts, but the hub will provide a place where you can find everything that's been said in these press conferences. The front page of the hub will have a descriptive title, while the article page will simply say who was talking and when. I don't really know how this will work out, but I figure it's one more way to organize content.
Speaking of content organization, if you scroll just below the cover of the front page, you'll see the bar with team, community, sections and so forth. If you scroll your mouse over "Sections" you'll see some highlighted hubs. That will include the transcript hub, injury news and the current game hub. One more little tool to keep an eye on what's going on.
QB Alex Smith
Press Conference - October 25, 2012
San Francisco 49ers
Do you hate the Arizona Cardinals with a passion?
"Hate is a strong word. It is a strong word. They're a division opponent. Obviously there's a lot of history there. We play them twice a year. Great rivalry. Hate is a word I wouldn't use."
Every time you go there, it seems like it's a real competitive game, could go either way, comes down to the last few minutes. What do you think it is about just that setting and these teams?
"To be honest with you, I just feel it's the nature of division games. It's what makes the NFL great. When you know a team this well, you play them that often, twice a year, year-in and year-out, their personnel. The games, I just feel like naturally you rarely see blowouts, either way. The games always are coming down to the wire, just the way it is. They're always hard fought, there's just so much history there. The teams don't like each other, a little more personal in that sense, so tough."
Any more or less or the same as the Seahawks?
"Different. They all have their own feel, their own history, their own history of personnel. The history of [TE] Vernon [Davis] and [DT Darnell] Dockett going back and forth. So, Arizona's more specific. It's different than the rivalry with the Rams or the Seahawks. I don't know if any one of them was more or less though."
Back to the Seahawks game, there were a couple of national stories written about you and the confidence...
"How did they say it is?" [Laughing]
"Oh, okay. Alright." [Laughing]
Well, they said your confidence was shaken in that game. What's your reaction?
"I think people are just reading into a lot of different stuff and have no idea what's going on around here. My confidence is no different than it was a week ago, than it was a month ago, than it was a year ago. No different. Games change week-in, week-out. I think there are people that expect the same thing over and over again. That was a good defense we played on Thursday night. We played them on a short week. You look what they did versus a lot of good quarterbacks this year, look what they did against [Packers QB] Aaron [Rodgers]. They beat [Patriots QB] Tom Brady. Look what they did against [Cowboys QB Tony] Romo. I think people just, I don't know what to think. But, no. No different."
What about your finger? That also has been written about?
"Yeah, getting better, getting better every week. It's just something that you deal with. Not something that I think about a whole lot out there, try not to."
Is it able to improve given that you haven't had a game recently?
"Yeah, for sure. Definitely, it's a little extra time off with the Thursday game. Not having to do a ton with it, letting it rest over the weekend was nice."
Did you throw much last week, or how should I say this, since Thursday?
"Threw on Monday. So, Thursday to Monday was kind of the stretch I had there, which was nice."
How's the arm? Feels good?
"Yeah, feels great."
With the Cardinals so close in the division, do you think this is one of the bigger matchups with them in recent years?
"Every year is huge. So, no. I mean, they're all big. This one's the biggest because it's the one right in front of us. I know that's not what you guys want to hear, but it's the truth. This is the next big game. It's our second division game. These division games are so important."
But if they win though, they tie you guys in the division.
"Yeah, for sure. For us, it's a chance to get another division win and another win."
Do you see much difference in that defense than from last December, any tweaks?
"Same scheme, a lot of the same players, the addition of [CB William] Gay out there, outside. Obviously, some new stuff with the offseason and the year, but a lot of the similarities from last season. So, yeah, looking at last year's tape, but it's a fine line. You play the game, maybe they're going to do something different or they stay the same."
You didn't throw any passes to Vernon Davis last week. How important is it for you to get him involved in the offense early and often?
"He's a key for us. He's a great player, a guy that really gets us going at times and is a playmaker for us. He's a guy we're always trying to get involved. It's the truth. Always, he's a focal point for us. You never know how the game is going to unfold though. Our job's not to go out there and force things, but let it come to us and hopefully we can get him the ball."
What's it like to play behind this offensive line that you have this year?
"Yeah, they've been playing great, run and pass. Just been playing great. They really set the tone for us, more than anything I think, the way they go out there. Everything kind of starts with them. The last few weeks, really hats off to them the way they've been getting things done, especially last Thursday in the run game."