San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick met with the media on Wednesday, and he had a chance to address some recent criticisms that came from former quarterback Trent Dilfer. The former 49ers (among other teams) quarterback suggested Colin Kaepernick had become remedial in the passing game when his first option was taken away.
Kap spoke to that simply pointing out that Dilfer was not with the team to know what his progressions were from play to play. This raises the whole issue of how much analysis can be done without actually knowing the play-calling. Dilfer has opinions about quite a few things, and sometimes they bounce all over the place. However, while he had nowhere near the level of talent Kap has, he is one person who likely would know what to look for in assessing Kap.
Any outside opinion is going to be limited to some extent, but I don't think it can be completely ignored. Of course, we also have to factor in the wide receivers, the play-calling and so much more. It strikes me as simplified analysis to just say Kap is remedial when the first option isn't open. Nothing is that cut and dry.
You said on Sunday that you guys just need to execute better. What specifically do you need to execute better?
"The offense. It's things here, things there. We just have to execute better."
So much has been made about how you played last year versus how you're playing this year. How do you think you're playing this season?
"I don't think you can really compare it. There's different components this year and last year, so it's comparing apples and oranges. But, I'm trying to go out and win games. I'm doing everything I can to try to help this team win."
Do you think defenses are now seeing you for almost a full season and they're having more of a chance to come with schemes to combat your unique skillset?
"We're not seeing anything different than we did last year. There's a little wrinkle here, a little wrinkle there, but for the most part we're seeing the same thing."
New Orleans last year was one of your first starts. What's unique about that place and what are you looking for this week?
"It's a loud place to play. They're a very good team. They're playing well. We have to be ready for that."
How's that defense changed? What's the biggest wrinkle you see in that defense now in film?
"They have a different coordinator, so there's a lot of differences in it. But, it's something we should be ready for."
Is there anything you can point to that you say, ‘You know I'm not as good at this one thing that I need to be better at because of whatever,' to take yourself to the level you need to want to be?
"I don't think there's one thing you can point out. I think overall I'm trying to get better at everything I'm doing."
One thing this team is going to need to do against the Saints is sustain drives and converting third downs against Carolina was so hard. Overall, what did this offense struggle with just to convert those third and shorts and even some third and longs in certain situations?
"We were third and long almost the whole game last week. So, we have to stay out of those situations. That was the biggest factor."
Are you looking forward to maybe getting a little more out of the pocket or running a little bit more because we haven't seen you do as much of either of those things as in the past?
"I'm looking forward to doing anything I can to help this team win. That's all I'm worried about."
When you came up, WR Kyle Williams was one of the big-time targets on the practice squad. What were your thoughts on seeing him leave?
"That's out of my hands. He was a good friend. Sad to see him go."
You went to the Super Bowl last year, you're 6-3 this season. Why do you think people are questioning what you can do?
"That's a good question. You're going to have to ask them. I'm doing the same thing I was last year. Trying to prepare the same way. Making sure I'm ready to play."
Are you aware of the comments that ESPN NFL Analyst Trent Dilfer made sort of critiquing your game? I'm sure you are. What is your response to what he had to say about your ability to go through your progression?
"I didn't hear what he had to say, but he's not in the building with us so what he's saying really doesn't affect me at all. I'm worried about what this team thinks and what I'm doing in here with my teammates."
What kind of feedback have they given you? Your teammates.
"As far as what?"
Just in terms of support.
"I think the whole team knows we need to go out and win those games. That's the only thing we're worried about."
Do you play better angry and are you bruting and looking forward to getting back out there more so after a rough game versus a five-game win streak?
"You're always looking to get back on the field whether you win or lose. I won't say angry is the word, but we need to get out and we need to play better."
Dilfer said that you had trouble going through progressions. Take away your first read, then you have trouble going through the rest of your progressions. You've heard that before. It seems to be somewhat of a knock on your ability, your intelligence as a quarterback, your sophistication as a quarterback. I don't know, do you think that's a fair criticism of you?
"Well, I think you should ask him if he knows what my progression is first before he says that."
What have you seen from WR Michael Crabtree on the practice field?
"He's working. He's working to get back out there."
Do you see that as something that will happen soon? Does he appear to be rallying into game shape?
"That's not my call. He's going out there. He's working like he always does."
College football-wise, your alma mater is playing San Jose St. this weekend. Do you keep an eye on San Jose St. QB David Fales from back in the day?
"No, I'm worried about this team."