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Tuesdays with McCarthy

Posted Sep 10, 2013

In this inaugural 2013 edition, the head coach discusses the run defense vs. San Francisco, turning the page quickly to Washington and the regular-season debut of the new-look Lambeau Field, among other topics.


Q. What were the reasons for the success of your run defense on Sunday?

It starts up front. Our big guys did a great job of playing with gap integrity. We flew to the ball and our pursuit was very good. The 49ers challenge you with a lot of formations and checks, and they have a dynamic runner in Frank Gore. Our run defense was excellent.

Q. Were the 49ers receivers winning the one-on-ones against coverage?

Anytime a team has that much production in the passing game, it’s a combination of creating space and creating time for the quarterback to make throws. The 49ers were able to accomplish that at a very high rate.

Q. Did your team play with an edge?

We definitely played with an edge. We had issues with the details and mental aspect of the game. Our problems in those areas led to the inconsistencies in our performance. We need to clean those areas up this week, and we have to be much better than we were in San Francisco. The two battles we really set out to win, turnover ratio and big plays, we didn’t win either one of them. They had more big plays than we did, and we had the two giveaways. We were able to overcome that in the second half, but we didn’t finish the fourth quarter.

Q. Who on the defensive line had an especially good game?

B.J. Raji and Mike Neal were the two best performers on the defensive line. I thought Mike was extremely active. B.J. was definitely in control of his gap and his man pretty much the whole day. Those two guys played very well.

Q. What did you tell your team after the game?

I told them we missed an opportunity. I talked about our performance lacking the necessary details to be successful. It goes back to the fundamentals, whether it’s tackling or run blocking. We started very well on defense, but we did not start well on offense and special teams too often put us in bad field position. I was encouraged by the offense’s four long drives, but we also had too many three-and-outs. Unfortunately, the 49ers passing-game production was too much to overcome.

Q. After the game you referred to increased opportunities for Jordy Nelson, based on how the 49ers were playing him. How were they playing him?

We saw a lot of two-man coverage. Jordy had a number of opportunities, and I called a number of other plays that just didn’t work out. It was important to get Jordy, Randall, James and Jermichael involved. They were winning their one-on-ones.

Q. Will you be able to turn the page quickly forward to the Redskins?

We already have. We had an afternoon team meeting on Monday, and everything that needs to be said is said in that meeting. It’s important for the head coach to speak to the team after he watches the film to make sure we’re all on the same page. After that, we moved on to Washington.

Q. What unique problems does RG3 present?

He’s a mobile quarterback that has the ability to stress the defense. He has the ability to make plays in space and he can make all the throws. In any Mike Shanahan offense, it starts with running the football, and we will be playing a different style of run team this week than we did this past week.

Q. Are the Redskins and 49ers similar? Does it help you in preparation?

In some ways. There’s some carryover for our offense against their defense. There are some similarities in their offensive formations, but their blocking schemes are different. We’ll be ready.

Q. What have you detected about the south end zone’s impact on noise in Lambeau Field?

Can’t wait to hear it on Sunday afternoon. It looks great. I know everybody feels very good about the quality of the construction and the facilities. I’m just really looking forward to it making a difference.


 
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