What Rattay has to say from the other Bay

After being shipped by the 49ers to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tim Rattay caught a redeye flight to Florida and arrived in time to participate in Wednesday's practice session with the Bucs. Here, Rattay discusses several topics while giving his takes on being caught off guard by Tuesday's trade, going to Tampa Bay and leaving the 49ers and his six years in San Francisco behind in his rear view mirror.

On what the last 24 hours have been like for him: Not a lot of sleep. I was on the golf course yesterday, second hole, and a guy came up and said my wife needed to talk to me. I got a phone call and coach (Mike) Nolan said they traded me here. So I just went home and started packing. I caught a 10:30-at-night flight, flew all night, got here about 8:40 and just got some clothes on and came out here.

On his reaction to the trade: I was excited. I was really fired up. Just to come to an organization like this, I was fired up. Obviously, they've got things going – great coach, great team – so I was fired up about the opportunity, definitely.

On how difficult it will be to absorb the Bucs' system: Just listening to some of the stuff out there, there are some similarities to what I went through with Mariucci when I was up first in San Francisco in 2000. So there are some similarities but there's obviously a lot of new terminology I've got to learn. Plays are similar, it's just learning how to say them, how to call stuff in the huddle. I'm just taking a crash course in that and learning as fast as I can.

On if he thinks defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin will be picking his brain on the 49ers: I'm not sure. I'm sure he'll ask some stuff but they obviously do a real good job on defense. I'm sure they don't need my help.

On being a teammate with fellow Louisiana Tech QB Luke McCown: It's good, it's good. It's good to have Luke here because I know him and he's already helped me out a lot being here. It will help a lot and I'm glad I can come here with Luke, definitely.

On his expectations with his new team: I'm just going to learn. I'm going to try to learn the offense as fast as possible and just get used to the guys here and get accustomed to here. Whatever happens happens after that.

On what he's been told by head coach Jon Gruden about his potential role: I really haven't talked to him. I talked to him on the phone for two minutes yesterday, and getting out here has been a rollercoaster. Like I said, my main thing is to learn the offense, get in there and study it and get the offense down. Whatever way they need me, I'll do whatever they want me to do.

On what Gruden said to him: He just said, ‘Welcome to the team," all that kind of stuff. I'm definitely looking forward to him. The success he's had with quarterbacks and stuff, I'm definitely looking forward to that.

On how tough it was in San Francisco after the 49ers drafted Alex Smith: I understood the situation. I still went in there and competed and won the job as a starter for the season opener. I was disappointed, obviously, when they decided to go with Alex because I obviously wanted to be there and be the starter there and continue to play with those guys. The situation happened where they decided to go with Alex and I came here. For me not being the starter there, I couldn't ask for a better situation than coming here.

On if it helps to know that the Bucs also tried to trade for him during the offseason: It's good to know. It's always good to go somewhere that the team wants you. He mentioned that to me, that they tried to get me, so that's good to know. Now I'm just eager to go out and prove myself and show (the 49ers) hopefully that they were wrong with what they did. I think it's good. I've been there five-and-a-half years in San Francisco, and this is kind of a way to go somewhere and prove myself somewhere else. I'm ready for the challenge and I'm glad to be somewhere different – new surroundings and all that stuff.

On getting a shot with a team that's in better shape than the one he left: Mainly I'm just really worried about learning the offense right now. That stuff will work out. My concern is now just calling the plays and figuring out how they do their audibles and all that kind of stuff. I've got a lot of work in terms of that coming up, so that's really what I'm focused on right now.

On if he'll be relaxing during the bye week: No, I'll be here studying. It kind of worked out better to have a bye week, obviously, so I could really crash-course it and get this stuff down so when we come back to work next week I'll be hopefully up to speed as much as I can be.

On if a trade was in the back of his mind or if he was caught off-guard: I was caught off guard, definitely. It was something that I wasn't expecting, but it happened, so make the most of it and I'm definitely happy here.

On how he would describe himself as a player: I don't know. I try to play smart, take chances when they're there, and when they're not there try to move the offense efficiently. I think that's the kind of the West Coast deal. That's what I learned when I first got to San Francisco and I'm sure that's kind of similar to what they want around here with the quarterbacks. Just be efficient and run the offense the way the offense is supposed to be run and not try to get too greedy with things.

On how much he was set back last year by injuries: I had a lot of injuries last year and it was frustrating. I was never really healthy. But that's just something you've got to deal with. You can't really sit there and say whatever. You've just got to deal with them and just fight through them. I'm healthy now and I feel good now, so that's in the past and it's in the past.


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