Q: What were your overall impressions of this one?
Harbaugh: Real good impressions. I think the thing that stood out in our mind, just directly after our game, was
team really sucked it up. Sucked it up down the stretch. And probably the guy who typified it the most was [WR] Michael Crabtree. Just sucking it up, getting those big first downs, physical run after catch. And then a lot of guys. A lot of guys overcame some stuff and got the job done. And we knew it would
be a tough, close, aggressive, bell-ringing game. And it was.
Q: There was some skirmishes. There was some physicality. Did you go in knowing there would be some of that, expecting it with Detroit?
Harbaugh: Yeah, we expected a physical game, anticipated that. We got that. They're a physical team. But that's
good. It keeps us playing hard and fast and tough. And our guys are accustomed to that and aren't going
to shy away from that type of ball game.
Q: How solid of a job did your secondary and overall defense do on WR Calvin Johnson and keeping
him from making the big plays?
Harbaugh: Well, a guy like that and a quarterback the caliber of [Matthew] Stafford and the other playmakers they
have, you're not going to just shut them down to negative yards every single time. But, thought that
overall did a tremendous job. Let a couple, couple get out, the screen late and a few others. But,
eventually getting them stopped, keeping them out of the end zone for 58 minutes of the game. I thought
was very impressive as well.
Q: What went into that process of taking the field goal off the board in the second quarter?
Harbaugh: Just playing the percentages and the feel for it. Felt like we could punch it in there.
Q: Can you talk about how your nickel defense did against the run? It seemed like the Lions liked to
run the ball quite a bit against the nickel?
Harbaugh: "Yeah. And they did a pretty good job of it and our guys did a pretty good job of getting them shut
down. And we didn't let any big runs get out. And then you try to keep the big runs, the big passes from
happening and then eventually you get them shut on a series of downs and I our guys I thought did a real
good job of that.
Q: How often does QB Alex Smith call two plays in huddle and kill one at the line of
Harbaugh: I couldn't really say how often he does it. But, as long as we're talking about Alex, I felt that just
during the game and at the end of the game there that this was one of Alex's better, best performances.
He felt like there was a couple he could have made. But, I thought that he had a great night, putting the
ball on the money and getting it into the hands of our guys. I thought he played an excellent game both
throwing the football and getting us into right plays, as you point out.
Q: The handshake story was our story as you said. But how did you think it was? I saw you talk to
him a little bit before the game, how did you think that went? And the postgame handshake?
Harbaugh: "Good. I thought it went good. That's the thing, it's just about this matchup, two good teams. And I
think that that was the story, two good football teams going at it early in the season.
Q: Michael Crabtree had some good possession catches. Do you think he enjoys this kind of
game that's physical?
Harbaugh: I think he does, I really do. And I'm speaking for another guy here, but I think secretly he hopes it
comes down to that. I think he likes that physical part of the game because he thrives on it so well. And
he's a tough, tough guy that'll suck it up in a heartbeat and he did that for us tonight. And did it
throughout the game, but especially on that last drive. And there was multiple guys. Some big drives,
six-minute drive there at the end of the game. And a big drive early in the game that started fast. It was
good from that standpoint. Started the second half fast. Thought it was a good game for our offense.
Couple times we could have made some more plays and some chances we had. But I think overall,
pretty darn good.
Q: Your offense is missing some parts still. You had some inactives today. How much better can this
offense get once you have all these guys back working together and getting everybody healthy?
Harbaugh:Well, hopefully all of our phases continue to improve and that's what we've got to do. We've got to get
better and come back every single week. And prepare ourselves and win. That's the single most
important factor, but you certainly want to improve while you're doing it.
Q: After Kendall Hunter's fumble, the defense came and made that big defensive play on the
batted down pass and then kept them out of the end zone. That series, was that a big momentum
for you guys not to let them score after the fumble?
Harbaugh: Yeah, it was huge. We had the adversity of the turnover. And then keeping—they're never in until
they're in. And our defense takes that philosophy. And they do a heck of a job and kept them out of their
four field goals up until the last drive of the game. But, that was huge a number of times for our defense
to get those stops.
Q: Was Alex Smith's bloody nose indicative of the physicality of this game?
Harbaugh: Yeah, when he was sliding he got cut over the bridge of his nose and forearm to his head when he was
sliding. But, I think the story of this game, it was a physical game. It was a physical contest. I thought it
was a well-played game. And pretty clean for the most part. And good, competitive match. And our
guys sucked it up and finished it and that's what we're most pleased about.
Harbaugh: 'Team really sucked it up'
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