The San Francisco 49ers are nearing the chance to prove themselves for a final time this season when they face off against the Kansas City Chiefs in the Super Bowl on Sunday, with kickoff slated for 3:30 P.M.
It’s been a wild week for the 49ers, who have been accustomed to poor practice field conditions, an inadvertent fire alarm, and the NFL honors, where Christian McCaffrey took home the NFL’s Offensive Player of the Year Award.
But, throughout all of the noise, one thing has remained steadfast: the 49ers’ practice intensity.
Left tackle Trent Williams pointed out Thursday’s practice as especially intense, which he didn’t even notice until others spoke about it.
“Yeah, it was super intense. I didn’t even notice it, you know what I’m saying, at first. Then, I overheard some guys saying it at the table,” Williams said, via 95.7 The Game. “I guess we were going pretty hard.”
“I think it’s just the same way with anybody. You get to this stage, we’re practicing with a purpose at this point. We know what’s at stake. We know we’ve got a chance to do. I’m pretty sure Kansas City practiced hard today, and this is what’s required to get to this spot.”
Head coach Kyle Shanahan re-iterated the sentiment, sharing how his team has stepped up to the challenge with their practice efforts.
“I think it’s been great,” Shanahan said on Thursday. “The first two days [of Super Bowl week] are always a challenge. Yesterday was really good, today was even better. Having these two days in a row where we can get as close to our routine as possible is great.”
Shanahan specifically praised quarterback Brock Purdy for his performance over the week, only amplifying the intensity heading into Sunday’s game.
“He’s had a hell of a week. Brock’s pumped up,” Shanahan said, via pool reporter Nicki Jhabvala.
Known for his desire to be perfect, Shanahan acknowledged that the 49ers have won all year long, despite not necessarily playing their ‘A’ game throughout.
But, in preparation for the big game, Shanahan is sticking to the team’s routines with the hopes of seeing as close to a perfect game as possible for the 49ers on Sunday.
“I don’t think we necessarily played our A-game all year,” Shanahan said Thursday. “I thought probably in all three phases it was maybe Dallas. We got there I think in the second half of the Philly game, [but] didn’t start out right that way. We’ve been able to win a lot of games and win a lot of them that weren’t very close.
In the playoffs, the element of perfection becomes much more difficult, but the process hasn’t changed for Shanahan and the 49ers, who have practiced with the same emphasis and intensity through every rep.
“Those two games in the playoffs definitely weren’t our best all around in all three phases. But you’re also going against some better teams, too,” Shanahan said. It always does get harder. But our team, we haven’t sat here and said, what do we got to do these last two weeks? This is what we do every single game, even games that people think we’re doing real good in. We don’t always look at it that way.”
“So we’re pretty hard on each other. There’s nothing new that we’re seeing like, ‘Oh, we got to fix this.’ Every single play, whether it’s practice, whether it’s walkthrough whether it’s the game, it’s always accounted for.”
The 49ers have seemed to prepare the right way, despite facing unforeseen circumstances with their playing fields.
Now, it comes down to whether that preparation can translate to the game Sunday against the league’s best quarterback.