NEW ORLEANS – The 49ers touched down in New Orleans on Sunday and greeted the national media in the Big Easy before getting preparations underway for Super Bowl XLVII. Jim Harbaugh and a few of the team’s biggest leaders addressed reporters on Sunday night, discussing the franchise’s sixth Super Bowl run.
Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com broke down the trip for the 49ers and compared it to the two trips to Youngstown, Ohio, that the team has taken in the regular season since Harbaugh took over as coach.
“But the 49ers’ week-long stay at the site of Super Bowl XLVII is bringing back memories of the road trips the club has taken the past two years during the regular season,” Maiocco wrote. “Yes, there will be a lot more media and hype surrounding the 49ers’ game Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens, but it is also a time for the team to focus on football — just as they’ve done in Youngstown on week-long trips.”
The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate features more 49ers arrival news and more.
Tags: Colin Kaepernick, Dashon Goldson, Frank Gore, George Seifert, Jim Harbaugh, Joe Staley, John McVay, Justin Smith, Patrick Willis
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Patrick Willis’ potential role against the Green Bay Packers has already been discussed at great length this week. But to his credit, the six-time Pro Bowl linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers said he’s eager to carry out whatever responsibilities are asked of him from defensive coordinator Vic Fangio.
If the Packers elect to use four wide receivers at a time in Saturday night’s Divisional Playoff matchup, Willis could very well be on the sideline in the 49ers dime defense in favor of fellow Pro Bowl linebacker, NaVorro Bowman. San Francisco’s “Mike” linebacker, played by Bowman, covers the middle of the field in the 49ers dime defense.
However, the likelihood of the Packers throwing even more against the 49ers isn’t a guarantee. After all, Green Bay has evolved into more of a balanced offense ever since San Francisco opened up the 2012 regular season with a solid, 30-22 road victory at Lambeau Field. Furthermore, wide receiver Jordy Nelson was reportedly missing at Tuesday’s open portion of Green Bay’s practice. Nelson suffered a leg injury in Week 17 and later limped off the field late in Green Bay’s Wild Card win over Minnesota. Both teams will release the first injury reports of the week later today.
It’ll be interesting to see if the Packers test their improved running attack against the 49ers or utilize their numerous playmakers at the wide receiver position. Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com and Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee both examined the possibility of Willis being on the sideline in situational packages against Green Bay.
Regardless of the personnel Green Bay utilizes on Saturday, Willis will surely find ways to impact the game.
Tags: Anthony Dixon, Colin Kaepernick, Joe Staley, Navorro Bowman, Patrick Willis, Vernon Davis
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Frank Gore heads into his second postseason fresher and more determined than ever.
The Pro Bowl running back rushed 258 times in the 2012 regular season, 24 fewer attempts than his 2011 output.
Come Saturday night when the 49ers host the Green Bay Packers in the NFL Divisional Playoff round, the eight-year veteran will look to build on his solid postseason debut where Gore rushed 29 times for 163 yards and caught 13 passes for 83 yards in two postseason games.
Gore averaged 5.6 yards per carry in the 2011 postseason, a full yard more than his career average of 4.6.
Gore, San Francisco’s all-time leader in carries, rushing yards and rushing touchdowns, comes into greater focus thanks to a recent story from San Jose Mercury News beat writer Cam Inman who discussed Gore’s leadership and determination to win his first Super Bowl.
According to Inman, Gore bought his offensive linemen Breitling watches, an encore to last season’s Louis Vuitton travel bags.
Tags: Andy Lee, Colin Kaepernick, Frank Gore, Jim Harbaugh, Joe Staley, Justin Smith
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Thanks to a pair of Pro Bowl starters and a trio of Pro Bowl alternates on the offensive line, the San Francisco 49ers boast the league’s No. 4 rushing attack.
The 49ers running game excelled in 2012 thanks to the hard work of Joe Staley, Mike Iupati, Jonathan Goodwin, Alex Boone and Anthony Davis.
Those efforts were chronicled in our season finale Gameday magazine. The “Five Guys” on the offensive line came into greater focus thanks to team photographer Terrell Lloyd and team graphic designer Ben Mayberry, who used an outdoor setting to showcase the unique personalities on the offensive line.
Get to know those “Five Guys” in this story.
Tags: Alex Boone, Anthony Davis, Joe Staley, Jonathan Goodwin, Mike Iupati, Mike Solari, Tim Drevno
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Nine Niners made the 2013 Pro Bowl on Wednesday. However, it is now a goal for those members of the San Francisco 49ers to not play in the game.
Joe Staley, Mike Iupati, Frank Gore, Justin Smith, Patrick Willis, NaVorro Bowman, Aldon Smith, Dashon Goldson and Donte Whitner all would rather play in the Super Bowl than the league’s annual All-Star game.
Nonetheless, it was still remarkable for the 49ers to send nine players to the Pro Bowl for a second consecutive season. Furthermore, San Francisco led the NFL with nine Pro Bowl selections.
“The 49ers sent two-fifths of their starting offensive line and six members of their defense to the Pro Bowl,” noted ESPN.com’s Mike Sando.
Tags: A.J. Jenkins, Aldon Smith, Dashon Goldson, Donte Whitner, Frank Gore, Joe Staley, Justin Smith, Mario Manningham, Mike Iupati, Navorro Bowman, Patrick Willis
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Many 49ers are creatures of habit. For Michael Crabtree and Joe Staley, it’s all about looking good and feeling good on gameday. Abe Schwadron of TDDaily.com spoke to Crabtree and Staley about their pre-game rituals.
“For 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree, everything has to feel—and look—perfect,” Schwadron wrote. “‘Aw man, the preparation of getting dressed, the clothes, the fashion. You’re looking at your shoes, your socks, making sure your pants are right, your jersey, all of that stuff,’ says Crabtree, now in his fourth NFL season. ‘I’ve got to have my chewing gum, any chewing gum, but I really like Juicy Fruit. The trainers are on the sideline with the Juicy Fruit ready. You gotta have your music. Gotta have your gameday music, it’ll get you right.’”
The rest of today’s Morning Tailgate looks at Crabtree’s evolution as a receiver, similarities between the 49ers and Seahawks and more.
Tags: Joe Staley, Justin Smith, Michael Crabtree
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Colin Kaepernick is ready to bounce back.
After the St. Louis Rams handed Kaepernick his first NFL loss as the 49ers starting quarterback in Week 13, the second-year signal-caller has his first chance answer adversity on Sunday against Miami.
Humble and soft-spoken as usual, Kaepernick addressed a large media gathering in the 49ers locker room on Wednesday. Asked what it’s like to receive his fourth straight start, Kaepernick simply said, “It feels good.”
Tags: Colin Kaepernick, Joe Staley
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For the second time in an eight-week span, the San Francisco 49ers offensive line has been selected as the Week 12 Madden Most Valuable Protectors by Hall of Fame coach John Madden.
San Francisco’s line allowed no sacks in a 31-21 win over the New Orleans Saints. It was the first no-sack effort turned in by the line since a Week 5 win over Buffalo. Coincidentally, it was the last time the 49ers won Madden’s award.
Tags: Alex Boone, Anthony Davis, Joe Staley, Jonathan Goodwin, Mike Iupati
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Alex Smith didn’t speak to reporters on Saturday, but offensive coordinator Greg Roman gave a pretty good indication of how the San Francisco 49ers quarterback is progressing six days removed from his second concussions in as many seasons.
“He’s looked good,” Roman said. “He’s looked very sharp.”
Officially, Smith is listed as questionable for Monday night’s pivotal NFC showdown with the Chicago Bears. Roman said his quarterback will need to pass one more contact test in order to play on Monday night.
Tags: Alex Smith, Colin Kaepernick, Greg Roman, Joe Staley, Scott Tolzien
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You’ll be hard-pressed to find a mid-season awards list without members of the San Francisco 49ers.
Several 49ers were listed on mid-season awards released earlier in the week and continue to be named on recently released All-Pro teams from various media outlets.
ESPN.com’s respected NFL writer John Clayton took a break from rocking out to heavy metal music in his parents house and listed three 49ers among his mid-season All-Pro team, naming Anthony Davis, Mike Iupati and Patrick Willis on his first-team unit.
Davis and Iupati were also selected by NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah and ESPN.com’s Mike Sando’s All-NFC West team (along with several 49ers teammates). Sando listed four members of the 49ers offensive line on his first-team unit, with Jonathan Goodwin being left out. The 49ers center, however, received praise from Yahoo! Sports.
More on that in today’s Morning Tailgate.
Tags: Ahmad Brooks, Anthony Davis, Chris Culliver, Frank Gore, Joe Staley, Jonathan Goodwin, Leonard Davis, Mark Uyeyama, Mike Iupati, Patrick Willis
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