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Transcript | Mike McDaniel's Media Availability - December 7

Read the transcript from Head Coach Mike McDaniel's press conference on Wednesday, December 7, 2022.

(On the experience in Los Angeles) – "It's been awesome. Great facilities here at UCLA. They've been awesome in terms of having everything we need. As far as an experience, I've been like in one room – my office. And my hotel room. So it's been pretty normal from that standpoint, but I know guys have been out and about and it's been very enjoyable for the team."

(This may be a weird way to look at a loss, but could there be silver linings in terms of recalibrating?) – "Never. (laughter) No, I think, to me, that's the only way to approach anything. There's always going to be – in a football season, in life – there's always going to be things that don't work out the way that you want them to in the immediate present, so I think that's our goal any time that we're not fortunate enough to get a win. If you have a loss, the point is to make it purposeful. So those are all things that, I've been reiterating to the coaching staff and the players since the game occurred is that's the point. If you're going to have to go through that and if you're going to put all that effort, that intent, that emotional commitment into a game and then have it all for a loss; then you might as well make it purposeful. So that's what we hope to do."

(What are the keys for QB Tua Tagovailoa in practice this week in order for him to get back on track?) – "I think this is such a cool opportunity for each and every player that this is part of the NFL experience, is you can have some hot streaks where you're doing well more often than not, and then you can have a game that there's a lot more plays that you'd like to have back. From a football perspective, that's not – everything that went wrong wasn't a direct result of the quarterback. It never is exactly like that. However, we all know that he wants to play as well as he can and he thinks that he could have done better in that game. So that is life in the NFL and whether you have seven Super Bowl rings or you haven't been to a playoff game yet or you're a rookie, you're a 10-year vet, you're a five-year vet; you will always – player, coach, anybody involved – be going through that experience, so that it is not something that, hey, it doesn't happen to the best ones ever to do it. Every person has to go through that and so your objective is to get better from it, and that's the that's the world we live in."

[Question inaudible] – "No, I think win or loss, like I've told you guys before, I really believe in always progressing and trying to find things to do better at so that every win we've had, I felt that same way. And when you only have eight rushing attempts, you for sure look back and understand why you made those decisions and then how you're going to adjust that in the future. I think a lot of it did have to do with game flow in the moment. When we did hand the ball off, we did have some successful gains and we were doing some solid things, but you have to get in a rhythm in the run game and whether that's the amount of play calls or every place is tied to another so you convert on some of those third downs and we're probably not talking about as drastic of a ratio as well. So we'll get better from it. I know guys are hungry and can't wait for another opportunity to play football."

(What have you seen from the running backs in response to that? I believe in postgame that RB Jeff Wilson mentioned that he called for extra meeting time among running backs?) – "See that's a credit to them. It really is unfortunate that in a game that they were – it's a shame that they didn't get more opportunities to make plays. So I look at that as 100 percent on me to find more ways to involve them in the game and if that means we're not running the ball, that's not an excuse. They're very good receivers. But one of the themes that you'll hear from the entire team is they look at it the same way where, 'Okay, well, I do have (opportunities). On those (opportunities), how can we get better or what can we do to make sure that we get more opportunities?' So I think that's the way you want your team to work. Ultimate accountability, it's infectious, and I think they do an unbelievable job with that in that room and have all year."

(On T Terron Armstead) – "No, I think bottom line is he's a big part of our team that is one of the reasons we are where we're at when he's playing and what makes him special is even when he's not. But obviously, that will be awesome for the guys. We're going to progress – he won't be doing anything today, but I know he's working hard at it and it's one of those things that I expect him to either be out there on the field or be on the sideline for good reason because he would hurt our long-term goals with him. So we shall see. Again, no crystal ball. It doesn't travel. (laughter)"

(Is T Terron Armstead's pain threshold for a player you've ever seen the highest because it seems like…?) – "It's up there. It's up there. He's a tough dude that he gets himself on game day to places that – he has one of the most stark contrasts personalities of anybody on the team, from practice to there's just another level of focus and intensity. True competitor and because of that, he does everything he can to stay on the field when things aren't going his way."

(Did the Niners do anything I guess specifically or differently than other opponents in terms of taking QB Tua Tagovailoa's first read away?) – "No, I think they're a defense that's been together for a long time. And good defenses, you have smaller windows and I wouldn't say anything different. I think the way we look at it is you want to be able to do well against good defenses. That's the objective if you're trying to be great yourself. And they force you to truly execute and if you're not on, they make you pay, in which case they did this past game."

(Is T Eric Fisher out here and is it reasonable to think he can get up to speed to suit up and to be available on Sunday?) – "He is here. I'd be careful to predict anything. On one hand, we haven't had even one walkthrough and he hasn't played football in a minute. On the other hand, one of the reasons why we were so fortunate to get him is because we know that clock, he'll be up to speed fairly fast relative to most players just because of experience, his intelligence and commitment. And so I just don't know exactly how long that is so we'll see. We've got to get at least one walkthrough under our belt."

(Did WR Tyreek Hill have anything to say about T Eric Fisher coming here?) – "Only good things. He was fired up. Any time you have somebody that, those are the relationships that we're chasing each and every day, are those ones that you do something special and win a championship together. That bond is forever and you have a different place in your heart and that experience just you really know you can count on a player and it brings you together in a different way and I'm excited to have a connection from that Super Bowl team on our team this year."

(It's kind of a cool return for LB Jaelan Phillips. What have you learned about Jaelan since meeting him?) – "He's a very talented human being both physically and mentally. There's cool layers to his personality that he really is talented enough to do a lot of things in life. So I didn't really have any perspective on that and he's just coming into his own, really as a football player. He will continue and strive to get better each and every day, week, game and year. And he knows that he has room to grow, too. So I think the sky's the limit for that guy and he's really benefiting from a room of great veterans of talented, really well established, good players on our defense between (Bradley) Chubb and 'Mel' (Melvin Ingram) and (Andrew) Van Ginkel and (Emmanuel) Ogbah and all these guys. You're also learning that Jaelan can seize the opportunity when you have a lot of really good players in front of you each and every day in drill work and 'what can I gain from their game and apply it to mine?' He's a sponge for that."

(What's the plan for OL Liam Eichenberg? His return today, this week?) – "We'll get a little action from him today. It will be in a very limited manner. Most of the stuff will be on side, but he's done an unbelievable job getting himself really to where he's at from I mean, shoot, injury. It's to his credit that that type of injury that he's come back so fast and excited for him because he was playing his best football when he got injured. You hate to see that and get excited for a guy to get back in the swing of things."

(On LB Trey Flowers) – "Yeah, I don't foresee seeing him anytime soon, but I'm wishing him as fast of a recovery and he's doing well in the process."

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