Alex Smith Press Conference: Let The Randy Moss Courtship Begin!

The 49ers ran through some press conferences today, but I wanted to make sure and get the Alex Smith and Randy Moss transcripts posted today. I've posted them together after the jump.. The best exchange between Alex Smith and the media had to be about his relationship thus far with Randy Moss:

Have you and Randy done anything special off the field, go to dinner, anything like that?

"You mean like a date? [laughter]

To build that chemistry?

"No one-on-one date. We're not there just yet. We're still more on the courting stage [laughter]. No, we've hung out a lot at OTA's and team functions and stuff. During the offseason we spent some time together, but we're not exclusive [laughter]."

I can already picture the candlelit dinner as they discuss the playbook. Maybe they're even both on the same side of a booth flipping through the playbook while giggling like school children. How cute....

But seriously, the offense will feature a while host of new weapons and there is plenty of work to be done in adjusting the scheme and game-plan to these new players:

This is your second season with Greg Roman. Will you be adding new things or going deeper into his playbook?

"A better question for him. The first thing I'd say is both, get better at what we're doing. Some things are going to stay the same, let's get better at them, more consistent. At the same time let's take steps in different directions. We've got a large catalog of film and things to look at from last year and really look at, ‘Hey what are we going to do better, do we need to scratch some things.' Things like that."

Roman chats with the media tomorrow and I would be a bit surprised if he actually provided details on new things or going deeper into the playbook. That's just the way the 49ers media interactions operate.

Randy Moss was asked about the offense and what could potentially happen with it, and he made the point that it's hard to tell what could come of this offense. The team has been working out in shorts thus far, so until they get into full pads and start taking some hits, we won't know exactly where the offense is. The various changes on offense mean timing has to be sorted out. Alex Smith and the wide receivers and running backs could work on it in OTAs to a certain extent, but it's nowhere near the same as training camp. The next two weeks leading up to the first preseason game are going to be huge for developing that timing.

QB Alex Smith
Press Conference - July 27, 2012
San Francisco 49ers

Listen to Audio I Media Center

[WR] Randy [Moss] was saying it's a work in progress, the offense, the passing game, and fitting in with you. Do you feel that way too?

"For sure, I guess I kind of always feel like it is. You've never arrived. You're never there and we certainly aren't there. You're constantly striving for perfection, striving to get better and with the NFL, with the way it is today, the team will never be exactly the same. Things are constantly changing. You're going to have new faces coming in, young and old and you adjust. It's a whole new identity. It's totally unique in itself, especially in the perimeter unit when you add new faces. It takes a little bit."

Have you and Randy done anything special off the field, go to dinner, anything like that?

"You mean like a date? [laughter]

To build that chemistry?

"No one-on-one date. We're not there just yet. We're still more on the courting stage [laughter]. No, we've hung out a lot at OTA's and team functions and stuff. During the offseason we spent some time together, but we're not exclusive [laughter]."

Is it intimidating at all to be a quarterback with Randy Moss?

"Yeah, for sure. At first it definitely can be. As a guy you grew up watching, a veteran that does so much, the great thing about being around Randy is he makes keeps it light. He makes it fun to play out there. So that vanished pretty quick. He's a great communicator out there. A guy that played that much, he sees things really well, communicates really well. So, it's really been great working with him. Honestly I've learned a lot."

Is your impression of him now different than what it was before?

"I guess I didn't have an impression before besides the player he was and the special player he was, didn't know what to think. I heard some from [Lions QB] Shaun [Hill]. Shaun Hill played with him and had nothing but good things to say. So other than that I didn't really have an impression."

At the end of last year, you talked about how this offense hasn't scratched the surface of what it could be. Do you have an idea of where that surface is now, is it even more know because of the player's you've added?

"I just think, no question, we've gotten better. Without a doubt, I mean naturally that part of it, I just think that this offseason we have gotten better. Not just in the sense that we have a year under our belt, but I really feel that personnel-wise we've gotten better. We've gotten more depth. But yeah, I think the next steps, the biggest one is consistency. Just doing that day-in and day-out, play after play after play, game-in and game-out. There's always going to be ups and downs, but just not the fluctuation that we had last year at times."

Is it going to look differently, schematically?

"For us the goal is to always be really balanced. We don't want to be one-dimensional. We don't want to be predictable. That's not going to be us. We're constantly going to be doing things a little different and whatever it takes to win. However we field the best matchup that week, the best way to attack a scheme, those types of things. It's hard to put a finger on it."

Did you throw more in this last year than how many other years?

"Tough to say, I learned a lot last year, for sure, both from teammates and especially coaches. Learned a lot just going through those experiences as well, getting to the postseason, playing in those types of games. Certainly you kind of just have to go through that in order to grow in that aspect. But I've learned a lot from a lot of the people I've been around, coaches and players. Been fortunate to have been around a lot of great coaches. But anytime [QB coach] Geep [Chryst], G-Ro [offensive coordinator Greg Roman], certainly coach Harbaugh, I mean the guy played the position that long. I've got a lot of guys that I've tried to soak up information from and learned quite a bit last year."

You have some fast receivers on this team besides Moss. Is it challenging or different to throw the deep ball to him?

"Speed is a factor. The other thing certainly is his size and his ability to play the ball in the air. Those are things, I mean we talked about throwing together and learning. It is a process. I think that's part of it. Certain guys are better at different things. They have better strengths, different strengths. So, no question those are things you just continue to work on."

You said after the NFC Championship game, the best thing was to come back and light a fire. How long did that burn in your gut?

"I think that feeling is still there. As much as we all talk about pressing delete on last year, I mean obviously a lot of excitement going to the playoffs and the 13-3 and things like that and getting a playoff win. But I don't think that anyone is pressing delete on the taste in our mouth. Working that hard to get that close to your goal and not get there is definitely, I think even more bitter than some of the losing seasons that we've been a part, that I've been a part of. So, no question, that is still there. Whether or not it's a good thing, we'll see."

This is your second season with Greg Roman. Will you be adding new things or going deeper into his playbook?

"A better question for him. The first thing I'd say is both, get better at what we're doing. Some things are going to stay the same, let's get better at them, more consistent. At the same time let's take steps in different directions. We've got a large catalog of film and things to look at from last year and really look at, ‘Hey what are we going to do better, do we need to scratch some things.' Things like that."

How curious are you about the battle for the backup job behind you? You know those guys well, you've been at meeting with them. How's that going?

"Yeah, I've spent a lot of time, I mean we spend a ton of time together. They're all very, they're all good guys. We've got a great group in that quarterback room. I've said this before, this is by far this is the most talented group I've been a part of, as far as top to bottom and depth. Four guys that I really feel like can play at a high level. You just don't see that. And they all have different strengths, they're all extremely bright and they work extremely hard. That's the thing, so no question. I've got the best view in the house I feel like. But no question, I feel like those guys push me. All three of those guys push me every day they come out and they all have a great mentality. When they step in there, they all go after it and it's competitive and it's great to have in the quarterback room. I don't think you'd want it any other way."

You seem to have a lot of depth at wide receiver. Jim said you guys have five number one receivers, you have the rookies too. At some point in camp, do you just sort of have to narrow it down to really build a relationship, a chemistry, a rapport with only a couple of those guys?

"Luckily that's not my job. I do think that's a tough job, this year more than ever. A bunch of talented guys, a lot of depth. But no, for me I'm not thinking about that. I really step into the huddle and no matter who's in there I feel confident that those guys are going to know what they're going to do, they're going to win. I think that's the great thing about having this problem is that's what the season's going to be like. Last year was a great testament to that and how many guys we had to play outside. The next guy's in and he's got to go. That's the great aspect of football I think. And I think that'll happen obviously as touches goes and the reps just kind of work themselves out. As you move on towards camp and you move into the heart of camp that stuff kind of takes care of itself."

This is going to be your first full training camp with Michael Crabtree. What can you guys do with that full camp that you haven't been able to do in the past?

"He had such a great spring and summer. I think just keep doing what he's doing, what we're doing. I felt like he had a great offseason. And I think just continue to work hard. The guy does so many things, he can do so many things. You need a guy in that sense to just keep getting better. Just keep getting, like I said, more consistent and just continue to strive to get better."

How much did getting so close last year, is that motivation this year?

"I kind of answered with the other question. Certainly it's still there, you still have that taste. But, it's a brand new year. How can I say it? None of us are dwelling on what happened last year. You learn from it and move on. That's the great nature of the NFL I think. There are no easy games. Everybody's in it every year. Unlike any other professional sport, this is the sport I really feel like year-in and year-out, it's anybody's. Whoever can put it together. There's so much parody across the league as far as talent. So, you have to earn everything. You have to start over. And it really starts today."

WR Randy Moss
Press Conference - July 27, 2012
San Francisco 49ers

Listen to Audio I Media Center

"Let's go you all got a few questions, fire away."

Jim Harbaugh talked about the first discussion he had with you before you signed, about the things he wanted to see from you and you also volunteered some things you wanted to do. Just talk about what that discussion was like and what kind of vibe you got from that.

"Well the discussion was really between coach and player. I think I have been around the block a few times to really understand what he wants from me. We have a young team here and me being a veteran, like I said, I have been around the block a few times. Just trying to bring something positive as far as my leadership on and off the field here and hopefully it's been a good thing. So, just want to build from that."

You have been here three months now, what do you know about this team now that you didn't know coming in back in March?

"Well everything that I expect and everything that I watched last year from this team, there's really no surprise. These guys here love to work, they love to compete and by me signing here, is just something that me being around a great group of guys who are young and enthusiastic makes me feel kind of young too. I'm just enjoying myself, beautiful weather, nice organization, a great owner. Just being at the Pasta Bowl last night, just everything that they stand for as far as giving back to the community and helping kids out. I think that's been my motto my whole career. Giving back and just showing kids a better way of living and last night just raised me up, really as a person, just seeing how this organization functions their charity work."

To what degree do you, at this point in your career, are you aware of how many milestones that you have the potential to reach and to what degree are you chasing your place in history at this point?

"No, I just love to play football. All that other stuff, I will leave up to you all. I have been playing football since I was six years old. The love that I have for the game of football is going to always be in me. I just want to play football and that's really being here and coach Harbaugh and this organization accepting me and bringing me here was just, hopefully I can give something back in return and that's with my play and my presence on and off the field."

So the records that you have a chance of reaching, they don't really mean much to you?

"I'm really not an individual. I have never really been an individual. Through the course of my career, I guess there are a few records that I have broken, but I'm not about breaking records. They come and go. I just love the game of football, love being in the locker room. I love being around the guys and being here is just like I said, these guys are young, they are very enthusiastic and I don't really feel my age being around these guys. They love to have fun and coach Harbaugh is a player's coach. He's played the game before. I even watched coach Harbaugh growing up. When I first came into the league he was on his way out. So, just being able to be around these guys and coach Harbaugh, he came in fired up from day one yesterday. We like to have fun around here and like I said, I don't feel my age, I love having fun and I feel pretty good."

Jim [Harbaugh] said in March he had a great time going out and throwing the ball with you. He said he felt really good. What was he like throwing the ball and what kind of ball did he throw?

"It was actually funny because I just worked out for the New Orleans Saints and they brought, I think, Brian Brohm from Louisville in. So when I came here, I didn't really know who was going to be throwing me the ball so [Wide Receivers] coach Johny Mo [Morton] and coach Harbaugh said we aren't bringing anybody in, I'm throwing the ball. So it was kind of shocking to me just to see that the head coach can still wing the ball and he can still throw it. That was something that was impressive to me. Funny story, I was actually warming up when I got here and my first couple of routes I felt that I was into it loose and they said, ‘Ok Randy, now it's time to run.' I said, ‘It felt like I had been running.' So, like I said, he can still wing the ball and coach Harbaugh just loves to have fun. He still loves the game, too. Being a player's coach that he is, you can really see that he really loves the game.

Can you talk about your relationship with QB Alex Smith and how that's developed over a short period?

"Well the one thing, by the addition of not just me but bringing [WR Mario] Manningham in, we got a nice group of receivers here. I think that with Alex being the quarterback, we all have to get our timing down to know what routes we can run, to know when we are open, so it's a work in progress. Like I said, just being here, I look forward to going out and competing every day. I think I am accepting it as a challenge and like I said, I am just happy to be here. I feel pretty good physically and like I said, I can't really put into words about the team and how young they are and the enthusiasm they show in the locker room, in the lunch room, in the meeting rooms on the field, in pre-practice, weight room even. So it's just a feeling that I haven't really felt in a while, just being around a group of young guys and it makes me feel good that I can really not look at my age, and just feel young. So I have a little pep in my step. It really feels good being around the guys."

You have been on some dynamic offenses in New England and some teams that have won a lot. How does this offense compare and how ready is this team to replicate some of the teams you have been on?

"Well any football fan, anybody that knows football knows it's a work in progress. I really just can't come up and make a statement how good we are going to be because that's really undetermined. I think just going out and getting better every day because I don't really like living off the past, but it's hard to forget about the past once you start having success. I see the expectations we have for one another, as a whole unit, offense, defense and special teams. We set our own bar high. The good thing about it, like I said, we come to work. Everybody is attentive, everybody's taking notes, we're asking questions. So, just seeing how everybody approaches being a professional athlete here, knowing that this is a young group, the sky is the limit. I don't know how it's going to happen, but I think with our preparation and going out day to day, working in the classroom, working in the weight room and then coming and putting our results on the field. I don't really know to be honest with you, but like I said, we have our own expectations here. I think that as far as a whole unit, as far as a whole team, we don't want to let each other down and that really shows. We are just going to come out here day to day, starting today. You know, coach Harbaugh always says that we want to be better tomorrow than we were today. I think that's just things that we build on and my wide receivers coach Johny Mo [Morton], he's a hell of a coach. He's enthusiastic and he teaches the game the way it should be taught. That makes me feel good, as a receiver, that I have a coach that is teaching the game and coming out on the field, he teaches and coaches the game like it should be coached and taught. I don't really know, like I said we are just going to prepare everyday and hopefully the results that you see on the field will be good results and we will just go from there."

A lot of your teammates that have spoken have just raved about you, your interactions with them, how you've helped them. Is that part of your job, too? Teaching the game to not only the wide receivers, but to the defensive backs and other guys on the team?

"Well, when I first came into this league, it was more of I didn't really understand really everything that goes on with the NFL. And now that I'm matured physically and mentally, my philosophy is I do not like what the NFL does for me, I want to know what I can do to make the NFL better. And if that's coming out here teaching the young guys and showing my professionalism and being a leader on and off the field, that's what I want to do because I think that if we get that type of mindset it'll make it a better league. And the league has blessed me and my family and I'm very fortunate to be in a position that I'm in, but like I said, I like what I can do for the league, not what the league can do for me. Money comes and goes, but as far as trying to make this a better league, we're having young players come in, just being able to teach the game and understand how to take care of your body, how to approach the game day to day, week to week. And the good thing is they took the two-a-day practices out, so I just think that's something that's going to have everybody fresher come later in the season. But, I look forward to the challenge, I really do."

Do you have a sense of what your level of play will be? Is it from like you were three or four years ago? Where are you do you think physically?

"Well, I'll let you judge that, but for right now I'm just going to come out here and just try to get better day to day. I don't really worry about that. Like I said, I think that the coaching staff, the equipment managers and the trainers, and of course the guys in the locker room, we love to have fun. And I think that by me being 35 years of age, I don't really feel 35. So, you're asking me is my level of play going to be up or down, I don't really know. I look forward to seeing what's going to happen though."

Did the offseason workouts that you did though, did it feel like you were shaking off rust or that you were like, surprisingly fresh by not playing last year?

"Well, the work that we all put ourselves through, I wasn't the only one feeling like that. Coach Harbaugh put our team through a hell of an offseason. You can ask any of the guys, we worked this offseason. Nobody was on the sidelines, taking plays off, or taking days off. We all worked. And that's the good thing that I like because I do enjoy the game of football. Like I said, I've been playing football since I was six years old. And the love that I have for the game, I just want to be able to let that show because I do love the game of football. And like I said, hopefully that we just get better each day. Just to see how we go out and from the running game to the passing game, with the receivers coming out working out with the quarterbacks and the tight ends trying to get our passing and our timing down. So, it's a work in progress and like I said, I'm up for the challenge and we're just going to see what happens day to day."

You talked about giving back to the game and it not necessarily being about you, the money. Did being away from football for a year, I guess, give you more of an appreciation for it?

"No, because the reason I walked away from the game wasn't really to do with the game. One thing that I have learned that people don't like the truth, so I'll just wait until my book comes out just to see why I did walk away from the game for a year. Like I said, I'm just here now. I'm thanking the 49ers organization for bringing me here and hopefully I'll give them something back in return."

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