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Alex Smith: "The focus is on Oakland"

The Chiefs QB explains the team's mindset in Week 15

Q: Is it different playing the Raiders as a member of the Chiefs, versus as a 49er?* *

SMITH: "This one is so unique, a division rivalry going back a long time. Certainly, I think anytime you kind of have a past like that, it makes it more intense."

Q: On the ability to clinch a playoff spot if the Chiefs win.

SMITH: "Yeah, a great situation. We put ourselves in a great situation. As far as the division goes, yeah some things are outside our control, but a chance to control our destiny to get into the playoffs and that's still a great place to be; we have to take advantage of it."

Q: Is that more motivation?

SMITH: "I don't know if that's more motivation, but it's definitely there. No question, it's definitely something we certainly talk about. I mean the playoffs are a chance to guarantee our entry and that's a big deal, a big accomplishment."

Q: Do you think at all about how you want to go into the playoffs?

SMITH: "I don't know. Not my decision. I think you certainly always want to execute and stay in rhythm and be playing well; absolutely, I think that does play into it. But, you know those are things that are further down the line, just focusing on this week."

Q: What's it like as a quarterback to see your returners taking it down for a touchdown?

SMITH: "Yeah, what's not to like? Anytime you can do that, those are such big plays in games, such big momentum changers and those guys out there making plays on special teams don't get a ton of attention. A lot of the focus is on offense and defense, but it's such a big impact on the game. To get two of them in a game is so unique; I'm really happy for those guys."

Q: Have you ever been in a game where you are taken out at the end, because it's a no-doubter?

SMITH: "Rarely. It doesn't happen often in the NFL. I don't care who you're playing, how down they are, it's just rare and so when they do happen, yeah, pretty fun."

Q: Is there something you can point to with this team being better on the road than at home?

SMITH: "I don't know; I certainly think you have to be able to play anywhere. I mean, we'd love to be able to play at home, with home-field advantage, but it's part of the game. You have to be able to play anywhere. I don't know if there's any one thing to point to. I think this team has done a great job with just staying focused all weeks, home and away. Coach does a really good job as far as schedule, you know, just keeping us consistent, when we do travel, so it's good to get into a routine, when we do travel on the road."

Q: Were there any 49er teams you were on that had that ability?

SMITH: "No, no, always struggled, for the most part. Especially a West Coast team, so many East Coast travel games and that was difficult. I do think, yeah maybe the central time zone helps in the sense that you're never traveling too far, the time changes aren't that bad. Maybe something that contributed to it."

Q: It's your first trip back to the Bay area, what goes through your mind with that?

SMITH: "Yeah, I mean it's a different part of the Bay. But yeah, it's a team that we played every preseason and few times during the regular season there and obviously, they're a division opponent now; it's a division game and that kind of outplays all of the stuff and with a chance to clinch."

Q: Does flying into the Bay Area kind of give you a chance to reflect on this season?

SMITH: "You know, to be honest, I haven't really even thought about it. I'm not even sure where we're flying into. So no, right now the focus is on getting ready to play Oakland and another game."

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