clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

49ers-Cowboys recap: Post-game comments from Jim Tomsula, Jarryd Hayne, NaVorro Bowman, others

The San Francisco 49ers got their first preseason win of the 2015. We've got some transcripts for Jim Tomsula, Colin Kaepernick, Jarryd Hayne, Mike Purcell, NaVorro Bowman, Dontae Johnson, Carlos Hyde and Quinton Patton. You can check out video of the press conferences here.

Head Coach Jim Tomsula
Press Conference - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

Opening comments:
"First thing, injuries: [TE] Vance McDonald, ankle, [DT] Tank Carradine, leg, and [S Craig] Dahl, back. I don't have details. I just got it from the training room right here. It doesn't sound like anything is earth shattering as I just came through. Those guys will be checked tonight and tomorrow morning and we'll have more for you later. Game today, there were some nice things that went on. Here's the clichés again, I hate clichés you know there's stuff we have to learn off of. The penalties in the second quarter, that group right there we've got to keep our hands inside and do things. I was, obviously you don't want any penalties, but there in the first quarter we had one that made it first-and-15. We got to the next play and got it back into a normal sequence. So, that was a positive in my mind, a positive off of a negative. We want to get to the next play. Then, halftime we did discuss the penalties and playing cleaner and you could tell there was a conscious effort. I think we had one penalty in the second half. Again, any penalties we're trying to eliminate, but there was a significant improvement."

LB NaVorro Bowman, a two-part question, why was it important for you to put him on the field and then what did you see in those three plays that he was out there?
"Again, I don't necessarily think it's, it didn't have anything to do with his ability to play. You've all seen him run around on the practice field. Just going through that whole psychological and physiological thing of getting ready for a game, getting out there, getting the sweat on, getting that first hit and doing those kind of things. I thought he responded great. I thought I was going to have to call timeout to get him off the field. I'm glad it was a three-and-out. I thought he did a nice job and obviously NaVorro is a really good football player."

Had they had gone on a 12-play drive, would he have--?
"No. I would have called timeout and got him off the field. He knew that before. I told him that."

Was there a number that you had in mind?
"Yeah, he wasn't going to go more than five plays. I just wanted to go through the process of that."

Can you tell us about RB Jarryd Hayne's second game and improvements you saw from Jarryd between his first and now the second game?
"Again, Jarryd to me since he's arrived here, again I want to separate his athletic ability. He's a professional athlete and we know that, coming in. He's also a professional athlete that's played in space. The things that I notice with Jarryd or as coaches we notice won't be as glaring to you because we have rewind buttons. But, seeing him in those tight areas and being able to make the cuts when everything is very condensed. That and then pass-protections and those kind of things. So, those improvements are continuous and he's done that from the day he's got here. But, I do want to temper those things. He's on a road. He's doing things and it is good, it really is, but we've still got a ways to go."

Everybody's jumping on that Hayne plane and you're trying to calm it?
"Yes ma'am I am trying to calm it, yes ma'am."

He's going to make it hard for you to leave him off the 53-man roster, would you agree with that?
"Zing. Obviously the guy is doing really well. He's making a great case for himself absolutely. And I think that's the story in itself. You've got a guy that's never played the game and he's come out to be in the conversation of making a 53-man roster on an NFL football team. When you've never played football, now there's the story. That just speaks for who he is. And having the guts to leave what he knew. This guy's got, he walked away from all that to come to this. That's what makes this thing special to me."

He did have a couple of opportunities in those kind of close-quarters runs today and seemed to make something out of nothing. Has he gotten--?
"That's what I'm saying, what he's getting better at, you saw that today. Last week there was a couple times where ugh, I watched the tape, he's going through practice and you saw it show up. He still has a long way to go. I want to make sure we say that."

QB Colin Kaepernick threw a pass to WR Torrey Smith deep in the endzone that was sort of knocked away. A two-parter; what did you see on that play and when do you expect those two to establish their chemistry together?
"As you've seen, that's a process and you try to speed it up. I do think we're very close, I do. We see it in practice and you've got a guy that can really run and a guy that can really throw. So, it is the timing and you phrased it the chemistry. But, I think we're getting there, I really do. I'm excited about that combination."

And what about the play, what did you see?
"The defender did a nice job. I thought the ball was put in a good spot and it was going to be a tough catch. He got it there and it was in a good place where we're either going to catch it or it's going to fall incomplete right down there. So, I thought he put in the right place. I thought there was a great effort to catch the ball. I thought it was a good play. I thought the defender did a nice job."

How is DL Mike Purcell in space?
"How about my man, pick-six. You've got to talk about that play too, you saw [DL] Arik Armstead come in and get in front of the quarterback and get his hands up, that's where all that length helps us. That obviously affected the throw and Michael did a nice job. Michael was there and he made the play. He made the play and he took off. That's the fastest I've seen him run, I'll tell you that."

Dallas Cowboys owner, president and general manager Jerry Jones just apologized for his comments this week about the playing surface. Your reaction to that and what did you think of the grass out there tonight? How did the field hold up in your eyes?
"I thought the field was great. The surface was great. You're on our practice fields every day, you see. I don't have any questions with our practice fields and I will tell you that our field guys and grounds crew does are phenomenal. I have a ton of respect for them and a ton of confidence in them. I think they do a great job. I can honestly tell you I have not looked at the field one time all week. I know they had to replace it and they would do it. The only thing I get is are we going to be good? And yeah we'll have it done. I thought it was a really fine playing surface."

Small sample size, but how did you think the offensive line did? Do you have any concerns with that at this point?
"We're not hiding anything. We're sorting out a couple of things, but I think those guys are doing a nice job, I really do. We had a few mistakes in there, but that first group I like the way it's going. When I say first group there's a few different guys involved in that first group in the middle there. But, I think they're doing a nice job. I think they're working really well together as you watch them. I'm not just talking tonight. I'm referencing a body of work. I like where that's heading. I like the guys involved in that competition."

What'd you think of RB Carlos Hyde today? In that first drive he had 27 yards rushing and caught a pass on third down to move the chains in the redzone.
"I'm excited for Carlos. Just the way he's come in and just how hard he works. Carlos Hyde's out there with a green beanie on running down giving us a look on kickoffs. He just works at it. He's obviously extremely talented."

We heard what you have to say on depth charts, but what prompted the move of CB Shareece Wright out of the starting lineup and CB Keith Reaser in?
"Well, that's why I tried to temper it from the beginning. That's going to keep changing. We're going to keep changing things around there and we're sorting through some things. We feel like we have some talented guys back there. Some youth, I know there's youth, but really like the way they're coming in. And [49ers secondary coach] Tim Lewis, just the way he's with that group and the way that whole thing's coming together and the coaching and the teaching, but also the players and the way they're responding to it is really good. All we're doing is trying to take a look and clarify some decisions."

QB Colin Kaepernick
Press Conference - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

We were just talking to head coach Jim Tomsula about that back shoulder throw to WR Torrey Smith and it seemed like it was a really good throw and just a good play by the Cowboys defender. Is that what you saw as well?

"Yeah, it's something we continue to work on. That's what the preseason is for, for us to be able to work on different things and try to take advantage of this time to fine tune everything before the season."

Frustrating you don't get to play more tonight? Were you thinking two series or--?

"I follow the path the coaches take us on. So, whatever is best for this team, that's what they'll try and do."

If you were the coach, how many series would you play?

"I mean, I wouldn't come off the field [laughs]."

What was your reaction when you saw the way LB NaVorro Bowman started the game with those three snaps and tackles?

"Expected. I think everyone here has seen how hard he's worked to get back and how hard he's been going in training camp to make sure he's been ready for this. And to see him step out there and be his old self, to me, it's what we've seen all training camp."

What do you seen in RB Jarryd Hayne? I know it's only the second game of the preseason but he's seems to be doing really well. Do you see the development improving with him each game and each practice?

"Yeah, he's constantly improving. He's building a very strong resume for himself in a very short amount of time. He's very calm on the field, very confident in what he's doing, and it shows."

Can you talk about just the atmosphere out there today? The energy inside the stadium, was it noticeable to you?

"Another football game for us. We're worried about going out, trying to execute good plays."

Very heavy run plan today. Was that the plan going into the game or did it just happen?

"We just execute what's called. Whatever the game plan is, whatever is called in, that's what we're going to do and we're going to do it to the best of our ability."

How about the condition of the field up close?

"It was good. Didn't have any problems with it."

After a road game last week, was it fun to be back in front of home fans at Levi's® Stadium?

"Yeah, always good to be home. Don't have to get on airplanes and get to be in front of your home crowd. Always a good thing."

What did you think of what Torrey Smith did in the preseason? Where are you guys in the process of building a rapport?

"It's been coming along well. In practice, we have good reps together. In the game, the plays haven't taken us to him very much. So, we had one shot tonight, other than that, we keep working and hopefully we'll get more looks in the preseason."

LB NaVorro Bowman
Press Conference - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

We keep asking you if you feel like you're back. Do you feel like you're back?

"If I'd have played longer. It felt good though, it felt great. Early on in the warmups, I was a little emotional just being back out there, just seeing the fans and the crowd got me going. I missed it."

Did you want to be out there longer?

"I wanted to be out there longer, but it's early in the year. We have a long road ahead of us, and just want to be smart with it. I knew I had five plays so I wanted to make the best of it."

Why was last week not the right time and this week was?

"I don't know, I don't know. It just felt right to give the fans the first look of me because they do so much for us and we appreciate them. It's the preseason so we kind of had a choice and we wanted to give it back to them."

What did you see on that very first play?

"I don't know, I just wanted to make a play. We have a triangle that we read and it was one of those things where I felt like it was the right play to just shoot the gap and make a tackle for a loss."

Is it hard to keep the adrenaline in check? I know you're just out there for the three plays, but to be able to play with passion, but also to not overdo it?

"A little bit. The guys get excited for me also. I'm shaking because I just got out of the cold tub, so I'm shivering. But, my adrenaline was rushing and it just felt good just to hit someone else, to go out there and make some plays."

The brace on the left knee, have you adjusted to it? Do you feel like you can play like you can play with a brace on?

"I feel better without it, to be honest. To be safe, you want to wear it. I made a few adjustments with it to allow me to move my leg a little better, and I just wanted to make both sides happy, the trainers and me at the same time."

As many snaps as you've had in practice, was there any part of you that thought you had to do it on the field in a game before you could really feel like you were back?

"That was the main thing, just figure out when the right time was to go out there on the field. The guys can see it, me moving around and they all said I look great, so the greats started to add up and to choose to play today was, I just heard enough greats. I was moving around great, so I just wanted to go out there and cross that hurdle."

You guys threw that third down on that play, that last one before you guys stepped off the field?

"I was just baiting [Cowboys QB] Tony [Romo], making him think I was blitzing the A-gap, thinking he had that running back free out on the edge. It was just kind of like a bait, and I got him to throw the ball to him and make the play."

How much longer do you expect to wear the brace? Any way to know?

"I don't know. The right time will come. I still feel a little bit, but I just want to be safe."

Head Coach Jim Tomsula said he wanted to look into your eyes before the game to determine whether or not you would play. When he looked in your eyes before today, what do you think he saw?

"I think he saw that it's been a long road for me, and he knew that I wasn't going to want to come out of the game, so he kind of threatened me a little bit. I didn't want him to have to waste a timeout so I wanted to make the most of my opportunity and have him save a timeout too. So, I just think he saw a long road that I've been down. I put the work in and it was just time for me to go out there and play."

On that third down play, with the corner there, you celebrated a little. What was that moment like for you?

"It was huge. I could feel the meter just rising as I was making those plays back-to-back, and third down is the biggest down. I knew I was coming out, so I just wanted to celebrate with the fans for a little bit."

Despite being out for an entire year, you still look like you're able to pick up all the reads and all the plays and make everything. How do you keep your instincts game-ready for a situation to just come in here and automatically make those plays?

"Studying. Last year I had a whole year to just sit back and see it from a coach's view, and you just want to stay in it. You don't want to seem like you've got it all or you know it all. You always want to try to better yourself. I think that's what the greats do, they find ways to learn in different ways, not just as a player. That's what the year off gave me and I just wanted to show that I'm a student of the game, not just a player."

RB Jarryd Hayne
Press Conference - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

Jarryd, you've been pretty reserved in your assessment of yourself over the past few weeks. You must be happy with today, you must be feeling good now.

"Yeah, it's been good. Every time I get out there, I'm just trying to do as much as I can with what I have, and like I keep saying, learning the schemes, especially on special teams. Today was evident as a unit, we've worked so hard in the spring, of how far we've come. Every returner was making yards and getting good gains, and it aided me with my gains as well. It's the schemes we run and we stick to them and we can create big plays."

On the commentary, they were screaming for you. Surely, you must be feeling really excited now?

"No, not really, you know what I mean? I'm still a long way off from where I want to be. I want to be able to go into games confident that everything I do, I'm comfortable with. I'm still learning, it's only my second game, it's still very fresh. So for me, I'm just taking in as much as I can and wanting to get better every game. I think that's the way I look at it."

I don't know if you've had a chance to, or whether you even want to, but if you've had a chance to listen to any of the commentary, they're kind of going a little bit crazy. They're talking, saying "G'day" and talking about Vegemite and all sorts of crazy stuff. It must be kind of funny and pretty amazing and humbling to see that you've made such an impact, whether you're willing to admit it or not. People are kind of going crazy.

"Well, I guess, people had a lot of doubts and people are surprised by the way I'm going, but like I've always said, I've got confidence in my ability. I'm not over here thinking, or over here that I may be able to, I know and I've got confidence in my ability that if I keep learning the game and keep growing every week, that I can be an NFL player."

What's the adjustment like for you? Just coming from a rugby league into the NFL, what kind of adjustments do you make each game and what are your expectations each game for yourself?

"I think just feeling comfortable. Especially as a running back, we've got check downs, we've got protections, the defense is moving around, so just being able to read the defense. That's the key thing for us. When we get out there, we've got to read what fronts they have, who we think is coming. The out reads can go from a linebacker, to a safety, to a corner. We've got to look out for a lot of people and defenses like to move around and confuse us as well, and do things that with time and with games and with experience, that you get used to. I think, returning the football, probably, our returning scheme where we want to take the ball and where we think we can attack the defense, so just little things like that. I think from a special teams, from where we started to where we are now, we've come leaps and bounds, but like I keep saying, we've still got a lot to improve, and I just want to be crisper out there."

Obviously, if it touches your hand, it's a live ball. Did you ever consider just letting it go?

"No, because I thought it was going to head towards our end zone, so if I was going to drop it, it would have went back there anyway. I felt that I had a lot of momentum, so if I hadn't have caught it clean, I felt that it would have been within an area where I could still get a couple yards."

You couldn't see that whole run back? Your mask was smudged that run back, you couldn't see anything?

"No, when I was coming out it was. So, I went to run out, put the helmet on and it had been smudged, so I had to quickly try and wipe it off and get out there."

Do you still see the space the same as you did in rugby league? Does it still open up for you the same when you're running?

"Kinda. I think it's a bit more jaded, especially with the returns because they're still kind of scattered. So, I'm still getting used to reading my blockers and what not, but like I said, in special teams, we have schemes where we want to take the ball and where the blockers are meant to be, and for me, I can't read if the blockers are in the right position or not. I've just pretty much got to hope and rely on my ability."

Have you been introduced to getting teased for being tackled by the punter yet?

"As soon as I came off, the boys were into me, said I had to pay a fine and what not. I actually saw the replay and he actually grabbed my jersey, so I have to tighten the jersey a little bit."

RB Carlos Hyde
Postgame Quotes - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

Second preseason game, how do you think the offense is progressing after game two?

"I think we did a way better job than the first preseason game. Came out, coach called my number a few times. I tried to get things going. There was good blocking from my O-Line, from my receivers. I was able to pump off some good runs. I feel like on that first drive though, we have to score a touchdown. We came out moving the ball really well, so I felt like we had to score there."

So how are you feeling so far this season? I know it's early still.

"I feel good. I can't wait for the regular season. Really anxious, actually getting to play a full game and not just a little bit. I feel really good. I'm excited and looking forward to it."

A leaner, meaner Carlos Hyde this time around?

"Oh, yeah. I've lost a lot of weight. I weigh about 220 right now. I feel really good. Feel explosive, feel fast. I feel really good."

How about the new kid on the block? That was you last year, now this RB Jarryd Hayne guy. What's the story?

"That's my roommate right there. I'm really exciting to see his improvement from day one to now. He's definitely made a huge improvement. And that punt return, man, he's exciting to watch back there. I definitely thought he was going to take one back. I think he'll get one soon if he keeps running the way he's doing. Popped off another long run in the offense. He's definitely gotten a lot better and it's good to see."

CB Dontae Johnson
Postgame Quotes - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

You had an interception to close out the game. Tell me about the defense being so active against the passing game of the Cowboys?

"A big factor that we wanted to bring this week was creating turnovers. We didn't get any last week against Houston, so there was a lot of emphasis on that this week. Come in, create turnovers, and try to get the ball back for our offense to go score."

Your interception at the end of the game was very impressive. It was a 50-50 ball and you ripped it away. Is that a good feeling knowing you took the ball away that way?

"Yes, absolutely. Again, I credit all of that to the other ten players on the team that were out there on the field. They got pressure on the quarterback and forced him to get rid of it before he wanted to and I was fortunate enough to go make a play on the ball."

You mentioned the ten other players. They did a great job getting after it on the pass rush as well with multiple sacks on the quarterbacks. What was that like dropping back into coverage and seeing their quarterback didn't have a clear pocket to throw from?

"It was good. It allowed me to look at the quarterback and see if he had to make a quick decision. It allowed me to play a little faster. Again, the team worked their butts off this week and it showed this week. I'm definitely impressed with the way the defense played this week."

How did you feel about WR Quinton Patton's blocked punt and return for a touchdown?

"Honestly, I was in on the play, I don't know what happened. All of a sudden I saw him in the stands with the football and I was like, ‘Let's go celebrate'. Congratulations to him on that, he made a great play. A special teams play like that definitely helps us tremendously."

WR Quinton Patton
Postgame Quotes - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

You did what we're now calling the "Levi's® Leap." What was that all about?

"I don't know. I just jumped into the crowd. I've always wanted to do it. I just jumped into the crowd."

Was that spontaneous combustion or what? You didn't plan that?

"I didn't plan it, it just happened."

And you got greeted great by the fans. I don't know if you started a trend, but you were the first guy to do such a thing.

"I don't know. I'm not trying to start a trend. I'm just happy I made the play."

When you're catching the ball downfield from QB Colin Kaepernick and from QB Blaine Gabbert, how about the feel and the flow for you out there?

"It felt pretty good. We still have to get our timing down a little bit better. We've got to get some more depth in our routes but for the most part, we're doing alright."

Now, your first couple of years, you were nicked up here or there with the foot, leg injuries and the like. This is the first time you're really a full-go, isn't it?

"Yeah, you can say that, first time being a full-go. But, I was full-go all last year with the practice squad."

So you were just laying in wait?


What's different about the offense this year? Obviously, you have different personnel calling the plays and calling the shots. What's the big difference?

"I don't know if there's a big difference. It's just that we're more confident in the plays that we're running. It's not a big difference though, in the plays that we're calling. Same type of trick here or trick there, it's just we have more confidence in the base plays that we are running."

How about the evolution of Colin Kaepernick? He looks a little more comfortable, a little more composed.

"That's for you all to tell. I see Kap every day. He's a great quarterback and he's the best quarterback that I know."

NT Mike Purcell
Postgame Quotes - August 23, 2015
San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys

What was going through your mind when you saw that pass coming your way?

"Make a play. I ended up getting it in my hands and I took off running. The rest is kind of a blur, but I'll take it."

What was the toughest part of the play, the catch or the run?

"I don't know, probably the run. I had to make sure I didn't get caught. I didn't want to get caught by the quarterback or an offensive lineman."

How were your teammates on the sideline?

"They were ecstatic. I could hardly catch my breath. It took me a while to get to the bench and then when I got to the bench, I had to turn around and get right back out there."