Thursday Night Football returns tonight with another riveting matchup: MIami Dolphins @ Carolina Panthers. One has to wonder if we'll get a better performance this week than we saw with the 49ers and Bears last week. Either way, it's a big game since the Carolina Panthers are involved. The Panthers are 3 point favorites, and a loss would be huge for draft pick purposes.
It's going to be an interesting one for the Dolphins, who placed Ronnie Brown on IR yesterday. Ricky Williams will get the start, but what is particularly interesting is the fact that Kory Sheets will be the #3 running back and might actually see a little bit of action, given the Dolphins heavy rushing attack. I'm sure that will be of particular intrigued to many folks here.
If you don't feel like discussing the game, you have a variety of options at your disposal. After the jump I've posted the Thursday injury report, followed by the post-practice transcript from Coach Singletary. Additionally, if you missed it, Florida Danny is back with a vengeance with the 49ers' team rankings from FO. All sorts of goodness is available here at Niners Nation today.
Out (Definitely Will Not Play)
CB Nate Clements (shoulder)
OT Joe Staley (knee)
Did not Participate in Practice
RB Michael Robinson (not injury related)
LB Takeo Spikes (shoulder)
Limited Participation in Practice
DE Justin Smith (back)
Full Participation in Practice
WR Isaac Bruce (ankle, elbow)
RB Glen Coffee (concussion)
WR Michael Crabtree (knee)
DT Demetric Evans (shoulder)
SS Michael Lewis (quadricep)
S Mark Roman (knee)
OT Adam Snyder (shoulder)
Did not Participate in Practice
LB Desmond Bishop (ankle)
DE Cullen Jenkins (ankle)
C Scott Wells (concussion)
Limited Participation in Practice
OT Allen Barbre (ankle)
DE Johnny Jolly (back)
LB Clay Matthews (jaw)
RB John Kuhn (hand)
Full Participation in Practice
LB Brandon Chillar (hand)
TE Jermichael Finley (knee)
LB Aaron Kampman (concussion)
OT Mark Tauscher (knee)
LB Brady Poppinga (quadricep)
CB Charles Woodson (hip)
LB Brad Jones (concussion)
Head Coach Mike Singletary
Post-Practice November 19, 2009
San Francisco 49ers
"Good afternoon. We had a good week of preparation this week. I am excited about the opportunity we have this weekend on Sunday going to Green Bay against a good opponent. It was a little different this week coming off of the Thursday night game - our guys getting a little rest here and there. Our guys that are banged up are trying to get a little more treatment, and having an extra day to prepare this week, all of that went really well for us because Green Bay, on offense and defense, they do some different things personnel-wise. On defense it is not a true 3-4, so it was good for us on both sides of the ball to have that extra day of preparation. Other than that, I just think Green Bay is a team that is well coached, they are a very disciplined team and they are playing well together as a team. My thought process going into the game is to make sure we do the same things. We are working towards being that team that we want to be that does not beat ourselves, that can be disciplined and that can play like a championship football team. That is what we inspire to be. I am excited about the opportunity at hand."
On the extra days of rest:
"You get one thing on the positive side, yes you get a few more guys a little more rested and a little more energy, but at the same time it breaks the routine. So you have to make sure guys get back in the routine, back into the football awareness with their thought process. You gain something, but you lose something and they kind of balance each other out after that first day getting back."
On whether there will just be walk-thrus the next two days:
"Yes, there will different kinds of walk-thru, but yes."
On whether he is done with installation this week:
"For the most part."
On the benefits of having installation done a day early:
"I think for us, it is just a matter of guys having that extra time. Whenever you are getting ready for a game, especially when you are getting ready for a game like this where they do some extra things that you might need a little extra time to prepare for, it just gives the guys that extra film time, extra time to visit with their position coach or coordinator, and just get a feel for any little thing that may be there that you can possibly solve and get ready to go forward."
On trying to stop the Packers offense:
"I think we just have to execute. You are exactly right, they have a good quarterback that can run around a little bit. They have good skill people that can run after the catch. But I think it is really important for us to be where we need to be and do a better job tackling and just executing overall as a defense."
On LB Takeo Spikes' status:
"Well, it is still going to be day-to-day. We are hopeful. With a guy like that, you are going to get him everything he needs and hopefully before the game he is ready to go. We will just have to wait and see."
On whether WR Michael Crabtree is becoming the go-to guy:
"You know what, as far as the numbers are concerned, whether Mike is No. 1, or the go-to guy, or whatever that is, I think the most important thing is that we are in sync as an offense. Who gets the ball more, I don't really care about that. I just think it is important that they really understand their routes and they really understand what we are trying to do in that particular offensive play and get the most out of the down. As far as the other things, getting more specific about who is the No. 1 receiver, the go-to receiver, I think that kind of stuff really gets teams in trouble. You start thinking more about, ‘I'm the go-to guy.' And we don't want that. We want the team concept and we are going to keep that concept going forward."
On whether the offense needs WR Michael Crabtree to become a go-to guy:
"I think that Mike Crabtree, as he gains more confidence and he gets better in the route running, I would think that he would get more balls, but at the same time I would think that [WR] Josh [Morgan], he would expect more balls. I would think that [WR] Jason Hill, he would expect more balls. I would think that [TE] Vernon [Davis], he would expect more balls. The better they get, the more mature they get, and the better they get at running their routes and understanding what they have to do, then it just depends on who's open and who the quarterback sees and what defenses the reads and all those kinds of things go into it."
On whether he addresses the team regarding the importance of this game from a playoff standpoint:
"No, you know what? As far as the importance of the game, I think this game is just as important as the first game we played at the beginning of the season. Every game is important to me. Every game has playoff implications, and I think it's important for us to be mindful of another opportunity that we have at hand and just try and make sure that our team is constantly coming together, constantly focused on getting better and being the best football team that we can be, and let everything else take care of itself."
On whether he ever talks about the playoffs with the team:
"Really, one of the things that I really try to strive with them is to just understand that it does us no good to talk about playoff implications, or whatever, if we don't take care of this week. I think the most important thing for us to do is just stay focused on this week. I know that right now, everybody is talking about the playoffs and all the other stuff, but if we don't take care of business, it doesn't do us any good if we're not continuing to get better, to talk about the playoffs."
On whether there is motivation to get back to .500:
"You have to think about it, but it's not something that I stress. The biggest thing that I stress and the coaches stress is really continuing to get better because, I think I said it before, there are some teams right now that are winning, but it doesn't mean they're getting better. And, when it gets hot, those teams, for whatever reason, are not going to perform their best. I'm going to stay focused on are we getting better? That's the most important thing to me. Are we getting better? And, I'll let all of the other stuff take care of itself. That's the question that we have to answer each week."
On whether he sees anything in Green Bay's offense that is similar to when Packers head coach Mike McCarthy was in San Francisco:
"No, I think, in all honesty, I just think that Mike McCarthy is a good coordinator. He did a good job when he was here with what he had to work with. I think he's there, and he has more control over what he's doing there and trying to develop what he wants. But, in my mind, what we're doing right now is the 49ers offense, and it's continuing to evolve. Mike has been there, and he's trying to establish what he feels is his offense. We're just going to go out of the defense and do the very best we can against a good football team."
On whether the 2005 season influenced his philosophy in young quarterbacks:
"The only thing that season did for me was really help me understand how important it is that you have great coaches and you have great talent. That's the only thing - when I think back on it - that's the only thing I think about in that season that I really learned. You really have to have great coaches, and you have to have great talent in order to win."
On why that season taught him that:
"If you had asked me about another season, I would have said the same thing. Any season that I've had here - great coaches, great talent. We need all the talent we can get. We need the best coaches we can find in order to win football games. That's the thing I've learned more so than anything else."
On how concerned he is about the match-up problems Packers DE Aaron Kampman presents:
"The only concern I have going into the game is that we execute. I have no other concern. There's not an individual. There's not a quarterback. The only thing I'm concerned about is the 49ers going in there and executing our offense and defense flawlessly and going from there. That's the only concern I have."