Q: What do you want to do Sunday?
SMITH: “It’s not up to me. I mean, I’m here to play, so, I’m getting ready for it.”
Q: What have they told you?
SMITH: “Exactly that. No answers yet, just prepare to play and we’ll see what happens game day.”
Q: Does it put a little more shine on the game, since you’re going home to San Diego?
SMITH: “Yeah, it’s always different. I grew up there, I played high school football there, I played some college games, so yeah, (it's) always fun to go back there and play in that stadium, you know. I grew up going to games there.”
Q: One time you played there with San Francisco, it was not so good.
SMITH: “Yeah, I’ve played a lot of games there. I played a few games as a ‘Niner there. I played every preseason game down there, so (I) played there, quite a few times.”
Q: Coach Reid is seven of eight on challenges this year. Do you feel confident when he throws the flag?
SMITH: “I feel like they have a great set-up. I’m not totally sure on how it works, but I do feel like what they do have set up, they make quick decisions, decisive decisions and have been on top of it. So, no question. That’s a tough thing to manage in the middle of the game and I do feel like all the proactive stuff they’ve done to kind of set it up the way they have, I feel like they’ve done a great job.”
Q: It’s important that you have trust in each other. For example, he will ask guys on the sidelines if they saw a certain play.
SMITH: “I think so. I think he does a good job. It certainly gets emotional down there on the field and everybody feels like they make the play. Sometimes the camera can show otherwise. I think he does a great job of listening and taking all the information and then making a decision.”
Q: What are the pros and cons in getting a lot of playing time, a little playing time or none at all?
SMITH: “I think the general thing is if you play, the argument is yeah, you’re staying in rhythm, you’re keeping your timing, all that type of stuff. The speed of the game, you’re staying used to it. Certainly the negative would be an injury and vice versa. Not playing, certainly the benefit there is that you’re getting healthy and fresh. The downside, the argument against it, would be, you’re missing out on some game experience and maybe some rhythm and momentum, heading into playoffs, certainly those two things. I’ve never been in this position before and luckily, I’m not the one making that decision.”
Q: How was it with the 49ers? Did you have to win the last game to get into the playoffs?
SMITH: “Yeah, needed to win this week. So, never had an entire week like this, heading into a game that really can’t change anything.”
Q: How important is it to end the regular season on a high note?
SMITH: “I mean, you’re trying to win every single game you possibly can in this league. There are only 16 of them. These are such rare opportunities. Regardless of who is out there, we’re trying to go out there and win the game. This is a division game. This is a team that’s trying to get in the playoffs as well, so a chance for us to get a lot of things done.”
Q: Are there any conditions you would face that would make you wear a glove?
SMITH: “Yeah, I wouldn’t rule out anything. I’ve fooled around with it. I’ve worn it here in practice, here before on my off hand and fooled around with it on my throwing hand; it just depends. I haven’t had to make that decision yet. I’ve felt good enough in all of these games as far as temperature and conditions that felt good enough not to wear them. But no, I certainly wouldn’t say never. I’ve had more experiences with them this year than I have in a long time; you know playing out in California. I don’t want to say never. Certainly, a lot of guys are going to them, especially in cold weather."
Q: How important is it to have
SMITH: “I think it is important for everybody, not just Chase (Daniel). These opportunities don’t come along all the time. You don’t know when your next one is going to be. That’s our resume; our resume is what you go out there and show on film. Everybody has to go out there and try to show their best, regardless of the situation and regardless of the position. I don’t care if you’re a quarterback or what position you play, when you step out there on the field and everybody is watching, this is your resume. You’re trying to go out there and play to the best of your abilities and show what you can do. Whatever happens, the 11 guys on the field are going to be playing their tail off.”
Q: How much would Chase Daniel benefit from game time, and what have you seen from him from his scout team role?
SMITH: “I think Chase (Daniel) does a great job. He’s very professional and works extremely hard, preparing himself week in and week out. Like I said, I think everybody, if you don’t have a ton of game experience and then all the sudden, you do especially (in) regular season, that is a great opportunity. Like I said, not just Chase, if he does get in, anybody. Only so many guys get to do this and to be able to get that experience is invaluable.”
Q: It’s going to be a weird atmosphere for this game with the Chargers potentially needing to beat you to make it into the playoffs, right?
SMITH: “I mean I’m not thinking about that at all. That’s their deal. They have their own scenario. Certainly, they are going to try to win regardless, as well. Everybody wants to finish the season on a high note, (and it’s) a division game (with) a lot of rivalry there. I’m not thinking, necessarily about what their scenario entails; they need to win to try to get in.”
Q: When you look back on memories of your career, what will you tell people about Candlestick?
SMITH: “I got the chance to watch the game last night. It’s just such an iconic place, so many great memories and not just football, but all sports and the things in culture that have gone on there. It’s a pretty memorable place, such a unique place. I always felt like it had its own weather system there. It was a unique place to play. I don’t know what I would tell them, but I certainly think it’s an iconic place. It’s weird that it won’t be there anymore.”
Q: Talk about your memories of being a Chargers fan growing up.
SMITH: “I mean, when you’re a little kid, in the farthest off recesses of your hopes, you dream maybe you could be a quarterback someday, at least for me, and if you could ever get a chance to play in the NFL, then to have the opportunity to do it and go back there, I distinctly remember going to games and watching the Chargers play, watching Stan (Humphries) play, so to be able to do this is really, really special. And, to go back there and be able to play, obviously, makes it that much more special.”