Late last week, EA Sports released a short movie to promote the new Madden 16 video game. As has become the case, it was pretty crazy, and featured San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick in a pretty bizarre role. It was an action movie type of trailer, and it featured Kaepernick as Al Pacino's character from Scent of a Woman. That meant Kap pretended to be blind and used Pacino catch-phrases. Oh, and he randomly ate a piece of paper at one point.
Kap spoke with the media on Wednesday after the 49ers joint practice with the Denver Broncos, and he had a chance to talk about that, and a whole lot more. It turns out, EA contacted Pacino to get his approval for the portrayal.
How'd it go out there today?
"Good. Got some good reps in. Got to catch our wind too, so it was a good first day."
Was there an adjustment with the altitude?
"Yeah, always a little bit of adjustment but shouldn't be something that takes us too long to adjust to."
What's the main things you guys can get away from something like this working against another defense?
"Exactly that. You get different looks from a different defense. You get to go against different players who you don't know their tendencies. You don't what they're disguises look like yet, things like that. So, its an opportunity to come out and really hone in on what you want to get done."
How'd you feel about how the offense was clicking today?
"Pretty good day. Got back into our rhythm towards the end. Got things rolling. I think it was a little bit of an adjustment getting used to everything, but overall, a good day."
That was the same with the defense, they seemed to get into a rhythm as the day went on. Is that altitude related, just kind of getting your wind and things like that?
"Could be altitude related, could just be new environment, new situation, new offense, new defense we're going against. A lot of different variables, but we got back into our rhythm towards the end which is most important."
Did the pass to TE Garrett Celek kind of highlight the day for you?
"Yeah, that was good. I thought it was huge because the play before, he had jumped offsides, came back and made a huge play for our offense. So, I think mentally, just the focus he had to come back and make a big play like that is big for us."
Is there a benefit to having two of these practices to where you can go and watch the tape tonight and make the adjustments and then come back tomorrow and do it again?
"Very much so. It gives you an opportunity to clean up everything we did today, come back and try to correct those things tomorrowagainst the same defense. So, opportunity for us to grow a lot."
When you guys practiced against the Baltimore Ravens last year, everybody was in full pads and more hitting. Here, what was this like since you're not all decked out and not as, I don't want to say not as physical, but was it not as physical?
"I don't think it's a huge difference whether you have
pants pads on or not. You put the shoulder pads on, the linemen, the linebackers, the running backs, they're going. So, I think it was a good practice. Up speed, up tempo, still physical."
In the last few days, there's been a lot of discussion about the rules protecting quarterbacks when it's the read option. Is the league doing enough for the rules the right way to protect guys when you're maybe running the option, after maybe what happened with Baltimore Ravens LB Terrell Suggs-Philadelphia Eagles QB Sam Bradford hit last week?
"I actually didn't see that, but the rules are what they are. Not much we can do about them. We have to abide by them and do the best we can with them."
How can you protect yourself when you're in those situations from not getting hit?
"Well, thankfully, God blessed me with some legs that move pretty good and we also get to wear pads, so I should be alright."
Yeah, because you guys kind of put it on the radar last year when they were making the rules about if it's the read option, the quarterback is fair game. Did it change at all?
"Yeah, well, the quarterback is also still in the pocket. So, I mean, it's a little different when they see quarterbacks differently. When you have a [Denver Broncos QB] Peyton Manning or [New England Patriots QB] Tom Brady back there and they show a read option, they're not viewed the same as me or [Carolina Panthers QB] Cam Newtown or [Seattle Seahawks QB] Russell Wilson or [Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III] RG3. So, I think there's some skepticism there as far as my part but ultimately we have to abide by what the league says."
That doesn't seem fair, right?
"Life's never been fair so we do the best with what we've got."
When's the last time Peyton was running the read option? [Laughter]
"That's a good question. You'll have to ask him. He throws a lot of touchdowns though so I think he makes up for it."
Do you get a chance to talk with him, talk shop with him, before practice or anything?
"Didn't get to talk to him today. I'll catch up with him a little bit tomorrow before we head out."
You went to his camp, right, when you were in college?
What did you get out of that? Did you get to spent some time with him and New York Giants QB Eli Manning and pick up some tips?
"Yeah, got some tips from him and Eli. The biggest thing was just how they viewed the game. Different things they go through as far as watching film, what they're look for, what they're doing, things like that. So, something that helped me early on in my career."
Obviously, you were a Brett Favre guy, I think, growing up. Did you have any Peyton posters?
"Didn't have any Peyton posters, but always respected and admired his game."
What was the reaction among your teammates to your commercial that just came out?
"The few teammates that did see thought it was pretty funny. I think [senior manager of football communications] Dan [Beckler] and [vice president of communications] Bob [Lange] got more of a kick out of it than anybody."
When they pitched it to you and said we want you to play an Al Pacino character from a movie, what, 15 years ago, were you even familiar with Scent of a Woman and his character?
"I actually got to watch a lot of it before I got to do the par. So, I think the highlight for me as they told me when I got to do the part that they had called Al Pacino and had to get his approval for it, so I thought that was a great honor to have him OK it."
Did you get to catch up with Denver Broncos TE Virgil Green much out here so far?
"Yeah, I did get to see Virge for a little bit. Also got to see [Denver Broncos LB Brandon Marshall] B-Marsh for a little bit. Saw B-Marsh a little bit more on the other side of the ball, but I'll catch up more with them tomorrow. Today was a good work day to get things going."
For four years here with Virgil, nobody thought he could really catch, he was like a blocker only. You know better, right? That this was a guy that could be involved in the passing game?
"Yeah. He was someone in college, we used him as our everything guy. He would block, he would run the ball a little bit for us, he would catch passes. He can really do it all so to see him catching passes, saw he had a touchdown earlier in the preseason, it wasn't something that surprised me."
Have you heard back from Pacino as far as how you performed?
"No, I haven't gotten my reviews yet from him, but hopefully he approves."
How much practice did you need to get the right tone down?
"It took a little while to start but once we got rolling, for two days that's all I did so got pretty comfortable with it."
Have you heard that catchphrase on the practice field or in the game the other day, has anybody said that or screamed it out to you?
"Once again, more Bob and Dan walking through."