What it’s like as GM:
It’s busy, but it’s fun. There’s nothing better, you spend an offseason — like you said, it’s my first year — but you spend an offseason trying to put a team together, and being very conscious of a number of factors — what we’re looking for at each position, chemistry — you work real hard on that makeup, but there’s nothing better than seeing it come to fruition on the field. Kyle’s doing a tremendous job working these guys hard, and making ti really clear how we want them to play. WE’ve seen a lot of progress, we see a lot of areas where we need to get better. So, it’s what training camp’s all about.
What last week of practice has been like:
It’s been tough. I chuckle sometimes, because it doesn’t feel like training camp. My first day I’m saying, where’s the two-a-days? I understand these are part of CBA rules, but you’ve got to go through some grind, and you’ve got to embraces that grind. So you do it with things like, it’s interesting with each step you take, you take ‘em to a move-the-ball period that’s real football, and when guys start getting tired, they start making mental mistakes. And so Kyle’s done a great job putting them in those situations, because that’s how the game’s played. And we’re making progress. We’re pushing them hard, they’re responding very well.
On running wind sprints after practice Thursday:
It wasn’t punishment. We came out, we had a really good practice going, and then we got to the end of practice in a move-the-ball period, and you started seeing some of those mental errors. So it wasn’t punishment, it’s just the reality, we need to be in a little better shape, and we conditioned as a team. I think also helps a team grow together when you suffer a little bit together.
On if Solomon Thomas, Reuben Foster are living up to expectations:
They are. You know, Solomon, a little bit behind because of the rules and being a Stanford student he couldn’t take part in any of our offseason workouts. His first day of training camp was literally his first day out with us lining up. Little bit behind in terms of learning the scheme. But he’s a quick learner, and you see the explosive qualities. We think he can be a game-wrecker for years to come.
Reuben Foster, he’s lived up to it and some. He’s been all over the field, has had a great attitude. He’s got good players that are lining up in front of him right now. He hasn’t complained once. When he’s getting his opportunities, he’s doing what he’s always done, making plays. He’s got a special energy and magnetism around him. He’s always got a smile on himself, and he kinda lifts, even as a rookie, the spirits of everyone on the field.
Will Foster be an impact player right away:
It’s gonna be hard to keep him off the field, but we’re gonna make him earn it, too. And Kyle’s very cognizant of that, because I think Reuben will appreciate it more if he has to earn it. And he’s doing his best to do just that. There’s still some things he needs to clean up, he’s a rookie, some mental errors, but we sure like what he’s bringing.
On confidence about Foster’s shoulder:
Well, we have really good doctors here in San Francisco, and it was really never an issue. He had a surgery, they took care of it, and it was a consistent message. And I kept asking him, believe me, as I heard everybody else, and they never wavered in their belief. We trusted our doctors, and that hasn’t been an issue at all. He’s been out here since day one, he’s been very physical, he looks great, and we’re very pleased to have Reuben Foster a part of the 49ers for years to come.
On Brian Hoyer having confidence being the clear starter:
That’s the key word, confidence. He really is throwing the ball well. He’s embracing an opportunity. This is an opportunity he hasn’t had. I mean he’s been behind Tom Brady. He was in Cleveland going well, then this guy Johnny Manziel came around. And so it just seems like he’s never really had that opportunity. Now he’s the guy, for how long, I think he can answer that question by the way he performs. He’s really doing well in practice, playing with tremendous confidence. And it’s neat to see what that can do for a quarterback.
On dealing with making roster cuts:
Well, it’s not a fun part of the job, but you always — people I respect most in this business, just say hey, if you can always ask yourself, is this in the best interest of the 49ers? And then, I think there’s a way you can do it with class. I played for great coaches like Tony Dungy and Jon Gruden and Mike Shanahan, and I think the guys always appreciated when you’re up front, and tell them, and there’s no pretense, and there’s no sneaking around. You look them in the eye, and you say, hey, we’re sorry. And it’s not easy, it doesn’t make it any easier. But Kyle and I are both trying to do that. And I think players appreciate that.