Notebook: Thank goodness for the bye week

A mere 10 days after taking over as interim head coach of the 49ers, Mike Singletary was happy to have a chance to get away during the bye week. And now he's happy to be back with the team.

Singletary took over on Oct. 20 for fired coach Mike Nolan. Singletary's first game was a forgettable 34-13 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. The game will be remembered more for what happened at halftime and afterward.

At halftime, Singletary dropped his pants to his ankles to "dramatize" to his team that the 49ers were getting their butts kicked. After the game, he told his team that there were "cancers" in the locker room.

Then, when he spoke to the media, he blasted tight end Vernon Davis, whom he banished to the locker room during the game after an unnecessary-roughness penalty.

Thank goodness for the bye week.

"It certainly came at a great time," Singletary said. "I will say that it was very welcome. I'm very thankful to have had that first week prior to the bye to give me something to have and be able to reflect upon and look at throughout the rest of the season. I'm very thankful to have had that first week."

But that first week was certainly eventful for Singletary, who chalked it up to a learning experience.

"I learned that being an NFL head coach, you certainly have your share of media time," Singletary said, laughing. "I definitely learned that."

And did all the attention he has received surprise him?

"I guess there's not a whole lot going on elsewhere in the NFL," he said.

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Singletary said in recent interviews that he is disappointed his locker-room exploits became public knowledge.

Singletary gained national attention a week ago for his tirade directed at tight end Vernon Davis, saying that Davis was not a "team player." But long before he dressed-down Davis, Singletary dropped his pants during his halftime address to his team.

Singletary said he wanted to dramatize the point that the 49ers were getting their butts kicked at halftime of the team's 34-13 loss to the Seattle Seahawks in Oct. 26. So he unbuckled his belt and dropped his khakis to his ankles to expose his boxer shorts.

On a Chicago radio station, Singletary said he has no regrets from his first week on the job after he took over for fired Mike Nolan.

"As I look at it right now, I can't think of anything that I would do differently," Singletary said. "Even the locker room at halftime, when you have so much time for halftime, I could go in and throw chairs and tear up the locker room. But I chose to do something differently to get the point across and move on. It's unfortunate, and we will find out who's leaking this information out of the locker room, because what happens in the locker room should be sacred and stay there.

"The only point I was trying to make is, 'Guys, this is what is happening on the field. There are a lot of different words to express it. There are a lot of different things to try to get it across. I only have so much time. I'm just telling you this is what I see happening out there. We are getting our tails kicked and we need to find a different way and let's go out there and get it done. And that's it."

Singletary said he would like to pattern his coaching techniques after Vince Lombardi, Bill Parcells and Mike Ditka. He has also cited the cool manner in which Tony Dungy handles his business. The one lesson Singletary said he learned from his first game is that he needs to drop the volume during his post-game press conferences.

"I will tone it down a little bit," Singletary told the NFL Network.

Singletary later said it was no longer important to find out how the story leaked out to the media.

"I think for me the best thing is to just let it go," Singletary said. "I'm not going to really look at, ‘Who did it? Who said it?' Because it's kind of like someone that…something happened and you're never really going to know why. You're never really going to know exactly… It's not going to be one person so it really doesn't matter because I know that the most important thing right now is not to try and find that person.

"Because if it wasn't the locker room, it would have been somewhere else. If it's not this, it's going to be that. It's the nature of the job. The most important thing for me is to make sure that I focus on this football team and that's why I was so excited to get back because that's what I'm here for. I'm not here for anything else other than helping this football team be the best football team that we can be the second half of the season. And whoever did it, I'm a firm believer that whatever happens in life…whoever did it I feel bad for them because it'll always come back on the person that did it. I really believe that anything that happens to me it'll be for the better."

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The 49ers spent the bye week as a time to examine the roles of different players on the team. One of those players is inside linebacker Ahmad Brooks, who saw some practice time at defensive end.

"They're talking about putting me at defensive end to rush the passer," Brooks said. "It's not definite, but he said it would be the quickest way to get me on the field."

The 49ers have just 14 sacks in eight games. Brooks auditioned for a role as a third-down pass rusher.

"It gives us a chance to really put players in situations where maybe if it were a regular practice we wouldn't have that time to make those changes and implement certain situations to find out if that player can do this or do that," Singletary said.

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Singletary wants a team that will hit people in the mouth, he said. He wants the 49ers to employ a physical style of football. But are the 49ers capable of being a physical team?

"There's no doubt," Singletary said. "Yes, I'm looking at some of the film and some of the plays that our guys are making."

Singletary singled out the play of left guard David Baas, who made his first start of the season before the bye week. "I thought he did a great job," Singletary said. "He was hitting people in the mouth."

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The 49ers expect to have everybody except backup safety Dashon Goldson available for the Monday night game against the Cardinals.

Goldson is out a couple more weeks with a knee injury. Tackle Jonas Jennings, who has not played since Sept. 14 due to a shoulder dislocation, is expected to return to practice this week.


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