Jim Harbaugh Not in the Mood to Discuss Relationship with Pete Carroll, More than Happy to Talk About Kaepernick and the Pistol

Jim Harbaugh’s San Francisco 49ers are a Super Bowl favorite despite the fact they did something not many Super Bowl teams do, and that’s change quarterbacks willingly midway through the season. Colin Kaepernick is leading the offense now after Harbaugh made the switch, Wally Pipping the injured Smith, and the 49ers don’t look as though they’re going to regret that change any time soon. Jim Harbaugh joined The Wheelhouse on 95.7 The Game in San Francisco to discuss Colin Kaepernick’s emergence as the starting quarterback, the move he made midseason with Alex Smith out and his relationship with rival Pete Carroll. He also touched on Russell Wilson and “quarterback-driven runs.”

group of men playing football

On how he terms his relationship with Pete Carroll:


On if the media makes too much of their relationship:

“Probably. It’s not that newsworthy in my opinion.”

On the progression of Colin Kaepernick:

“I wouldn’t call it dramatic. Some people have termed it that but he’s acquitted himself very well every time he’s been in a game. And he was getting in ballgames early, go back to the New York Jets game and then ballgames after that. But we’ve always had a great amount of confidence in Colin.”

On if he sought counsel before making the decision to go from Alex Smith to Kaepernick:

“Those kinds of decisions there’s not that many places to go. As the head coach you have to make those decisions. Because you’re the one who thinks about it the most, you’re the one who watches it the most. There’s not many places to go for that decision. Nor would you want to go anywhere else really.”

On Kaepernick’s poise and personality:

“He’s had a lot of poise — I think that’s stuck out to everybody — beyond his years, beyond his experience. And you listen to Kaep talk. Kaep’s a guy of just the right amount of words. And those are the same things that he says.”

On Russell Wilson and the gun run:

“Seattle’s offense has changed quite a bit over the last three weeks where you’ve seen the quarterback-driven runs with Russell Wilson 30 of those type of plays in the last three weeks. So that’s an extra dimension, that’s another dimension that they’ve been bringing.”

On the pistol:

“The quarterback-driven runs where the quarterback is another ball carrier adds another blocker, adds another element to the running game. In normal football without quarterback-driven runs, it’s really 11 for the defense and 10 for the offense in terms of people that can block and can run with the ball. … But when you bring in the option attack now the quarterback becomes, in essence, another runner that can have 10 other blockers, or he can be pitching it to somebody — and because the defense has to account for the quarterback — he becomes a blocker. So it’s 11 on 11 again.

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