Opponent Opinions: QB Shaun Hill

The 49ers have played much better since Mike Singletary replaced Mike Nolan as head coach, but the improvement also has coincided with a switch at quarterback from J.T. O'Sullivan to Shaun Hill. With Hill under center, the 49ers are 3-2 and he has posted a passer rating of 96 or better in each of his last four starts.

Hill spoke to members of the South Florida media on Wednesday and addressed his performance as well as his thoughts on Sunday's game, among other things.

Here's a transcript of Hill's conference call.

On the importance of not turning the ball over as a quarterback: "No question that is huge. We have the ball in our hands every play and it's definitely on our shoulders to eliminate turnovers. Obviously the more turnovers you have the more they hurt your team, so that is definitely huge for a quarterback to have that be one of your main priorities."

On if wins and losses depend on the turnover battle: "No question. I think, and I may be wrong, that is one of the key stats, whenever you look at a game,whoever won the turnover battle, I think most of the time have in turn won the game."

On what Coach Singletary has done to turn the 49ers around in terms of attitude: "He has really unified the team, with just some of the things that he does, the team building things that he does. He obviously brings a lot of enthusiasm and just an unbelievable fire for the game. All those things I believe have helped us."

On the team building aspects that Coach Singletary has brought: "We added something to the stretch, every so often he will have a dinner waiting for us when we get done with our work day so the guys can sit around and eat together, it ‘s a real nice dinner. Things like that just to kind of bring the guys together."

On if a quarterback's arm strength is overrated when evaluating a player: "No question, in my mind it is definitely overrated. I think that Chad (Pennington) is a great example of that, he's been great for a long time in this league. He has been one of those guys that I have really enjoyed watching, I feel like he has been able to do it without the arm strength, and obviously I am not going to wow anyone with mine, but he has been kind of an inspiration for me in that respect, but I do feel like it's definitely overrated attribute."

On what he admires about Chad Pennington when he watches him: "The biggest thing that I admire about him is he wins. He has always won. No matter how you get it done, just as long as you win. That to me is the best way to judge a quarterback."

On Frank Gore's value to the offense: "Frank's the main guy on our offense. Obviously he is our main weapon. He's been playing really well over the last three years and he is so versatile, he runs the ball well, he is great out of the backfield to throw the ball to and he blocks well, so he is definitely a key for us on offense."

On grasping Mike Martz's offense: "I think that every week that I am playing the comfort level goes up. Obviously he does have a big playbook and expects a lot out of the quarterback, so it has taken a little while, but definitely every week that I am in this role, developing in the offense and feeling more comfortable in the offense, a lot quicker."

On if it's a fun offense to play in: "Oh yeah, yeah it is fun to play in definitely. Like I said there is a lot on your plate, but it is fun."

On if he thought that he would have had more of an opportunity to play this year after his performance at the end of last season: "I really didn't know, to be honest with you I really didn't know what to expect. Coming in here I heard that I was going to have an opportunity, I just tried to come in everyday and get better."

On the challenges that the Dolphins present on defense: "I think that they are one of the better groups we have seen for sure. Obviously they are getting after the passer well and they are covering guys well as well. They are a good group over there and we are definitely going to have to bring our ‘A game'."

On if it's challenging being a West Coast team preparing for East Coast games: "I think more than the long flight, I think that it is the time change and playing those early games. I'm from the Midwest, I stay in the Midwest before training camp, so I try to stay on the Midwest time zone, and obviously it would be the same for the east coast as far as what time the games start. So I try to keep my body's internal clock and try to keep that on the Central time zone, so these (trips across the country) aren't as big of a deal for me. So that is kind of the approach that I take. As a team it really helps us that we are able to fly in on Friday and try to get acclimated with the time change on Saturday."

On if that helped him when they played in Buffalo: "No question, no question. I didn't feel tired or sluggish or anything in the morning and I was ready to go."

On the play of the 49ers defense and the confidence it brings to the 49ers offense: "Our defense has played great, and obviously the Dolphins' offense has been playing well as well, so I think that it will be a good matchup, for sure, all the way around. Our defense has really kind of bailed us out at times and really been playing well lately."

On if he thinks he has proven enough to be considered the starter going into next season: "I am not sure, that is for all these other people to decide, all I can do is go out and keep playing one game at a time."

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