Early in this afternoon’s practice Jim Harbaugh spent 25 minutes with the quarterbacks, which basically meant with Colin Kaepernick as Alex Smith watched.

Harbaugh repeatedly showed Kaepernick what to do, commented on his footwork, demonstrated the correct footwork. Sometimes Harbaugh threw the ball. Harbaugh loves to throw the ball and he still delivers a pass with zip. You get the feeling he would like to be a quarterback himself and, in his heart, still is a quarterback. Sometimes, Kaepernick would drop back to throw and there was Harbaugh right with him, a foot or so behind Kaepernick, dropping back as well and throwing a phantom ball — Harbaugh being a shadow QB.

Not since Bill Walsh have the Niners had a QB oriented head coach. Harbaugh’s devotion to the quarterbacks is important but it raises a question worth pursuing down the line: If he is so quarterback-oriented, does he see enough of the rest and does he observe his coaches coach?

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  1. Stan

    I think he’s so pumped that he’s blind to how bad the team is ..and it’s leaking while heading to a iceberg.
    I can hear him telling Jed or Baalke “I can get this team to win with no big name free agents”..to make Jed feel smarter. But,when the losses come-and lobsided,the 49ers will pledge to sign big names,trade, NEXT YEAR…mark my word,it’s that predictable.

    July 30th, 2011 2:46 pm

  2. Tiburon Dave

    It’s gonna be a long two years…
    Every player on this roster knows he’s on a bad team…the question is the degree to which Coach Harbaugh gets key players to buy in for the long haul…specifically Willis and Vernon Davis…
    It appears so far he’s chosen a Lombardiesque “This is a Football” approach and cut players who are productive now but won’t be when they expect to compete in three years…
    Rah Rah only goes so far…it’s going to be interesting to see how many Dennis’s there really are out there who like this team enough to wait around…
    I don’t but what do I know?

    July 30th, 2011 3:50 pm

  3. Dennis

    Stan, you crack me up. You put a smile on my face just being you. Thank you.

    Tiburon Dave, where are you going to go? I have got over 50 years in with this team. Most of them pretty bad. I remember one year, just before Walsh came, they were playing someone (can’t remember who). The 49ers were on defense and it was 4th and 4 on the offenses 28 yard line in the 2nd quarter and they went for it! They went for it because they knew we were that bad. They made it too! For me that was the absolute bottom. I’ll wait.

    July 30th, 2011 4:21 pm

  4. Jack Orion

    Did he show Alex how to better throw out of bounds?

    July 30th, 2011 4:29 pm

  5. Norm

    My question is, are the 49ers going to hold one of those stupid high school prep rallies this year?

    July 30th, 2011 5:24 pm

  6. wolff1

    Harbaugh pretty much, says the team philosophy but Roman is the driving force in the O and the detailed guy, H coaches Qb’s more and that’s good. He doesn’t need to observe his coaches coach so much, they know heir jobs. If he makes the QB’s better and I mean, Smith will never be better, that’s good and enough. Team too slow to sign FA’s, they’ll wait for the first cuts and sign guys for peanuts, not a bad practice, but might be back stabbed. With Smith,we’re not going anywhere anyway.

    July 30th, 2011 6:19 pm

  7. Izzball

    Does he observe his coaches coaching? You mean like Singletary? Harbaugh’s success or failure will depend on his developing Kaepaernick so spend as much time as you want.

    July 30th, 2011 7:18 pm

  8. bw

    Andrew Luck, 2012.

    July 30th, 2011 7:37 pm

  9. Dan

    BW, while I would like to see Luck play for the Niners — and I’m a Cal alum — methinks the Redskins might have a better chance in those sweepstakes, given that they got rid of McNabb and have Rex Grossman and John Beck as quarterbacks.

    July 30th, 2011 8:57 pm

  10. Blind Tom

    Colin is going to be great, but maybe for another team…

    July 30th, 2011 9:04 pm

  11. Johnny Christo

    You are a crackpot when it comes to the 49ers, Lowell. Chide them all with your negative undertones all you want, but don’t try to say that this team will be as bad as you are predicting. There are actual, real-life coaches this year, and neither you nor any other so-called journalist worth a damn can hold a candle to the talent/character assessment abilities of Harbaugh & Co. With respect to talent, it’s obvious why: they are professionals who are proven winners. With respect to character, it’s more about you Lowell: you maintain the Singletary as a good man routine, and you will never admit your foolishness in this regard. Just sit back and watch the 49ers improve. They will be better than last year. Who’s gone? Clements? Baas? Spikes? Big futzing deal. None of them were worth re-signing in the long term anyway. It’s a great strategy to get busy with the young athletic freaks the team possesses (Mays, Culliver, Spillman, Walker, Davis) and pair that group with other up-and-coming youngsters who are gaining FA status but have yet to demand top-tier dollars. Who is the best CB in the league? Revis? Asomugha? No, not even close. It’s still Charles Woodson. Why? Because he is so smart. Why again? Because he has been generous enough with his talent and character to mentor the 2nd best CB in the NFL, an unheralded guy named Tramon Williams. Why did the Packers win the Superbowl last year? Was it because of OVERPRICED FAs or was it because they had a QB saavy HC who developed talent from within and valued high character…? That’s right Lowell. You are sounding like a bitter windbag, and it’s high time you started thinking before you hurl these innuendos about the 49ers into the ether. Thx.
    In other news, Lowell, I’ll be hopping the pond on the new Airbus A380 tomorrow. Great plane. You ought to seek out that particular airplane if you have the opportunity ever.

    July 30th, 2011 11:21 pm

  12. CohnZohn

    Johnny Christo, The Packers have Aaron Rodgers and the 49ers have the other guy. Have a nice trip, your pal, Windbag

    July 31st, 2011 7:35 am

  13. Stan

    OMG (said in a manly way) I saw Harbaugh interviewed by ESPN. I pray Lowell saw it. Scary. Harbaugh claims the Alex Smith was “Thrown under the bus by his own team”. And “By fans who post on blogs too”. I guess he means me. He went on like Alex was a martyer -NOT the greatly overpaid bust he is. And you can’t have the word bust without bus.
    Jim,didnt mention what my motivation would be other than I want the home team to win and Alex Smith has stunk for 7 years. We have all see here IF Smith truly had talent..it was there for him to show it..and he didnt. Just make that one pass..Smith chokes and chokes. A perpetual choking machine. Powered by no heart..amazing.

    July 31st, 2011 9:46 am

  14. Neal

    I am still in South Fla for a couple more days and all I have heard is that the Niner’s have done nothing, and have lost a few key player’s, I bet that Harbaugh is a better QB now then Smith is. Maybe we will find out.

    July 31st, 2011 10:48 am

  15. chris

    this is a transition year for the 49ers and a throw away…like Alex Smith throws away a pass out of bounds when he’s under pressure……..the 9ers will finish 6-10 at best……next year Smith will finally be gone, and they will make the big free agent signings and be at least an 8-8 team…….

    July 31st, 2011 11:09 am

  16. Johnny Christo

    Thx, LC. The Packers have McCarthy. That’s what you meant to say. The Niners have the ownership that let McCarthy get away before welcoming a steady stream of losers to coach the franchise. Coaching, talent, etc… what counts?

    July 31st, 2011 11:33 am

  17. Mike

    Wow, two days in and it’s time to give up? I’m going to wait and see whether Harbaugh can get something out of Smith. If he still throws the ball away whenever threatened, I’ll get on the wait ’til next year bus, but I have hopes he will be better. As for who they’ve lost so far, no big deal. There’s talent on this team, and the coaching should be a lot better.

    July 31st, 2011 2:17 pm

  18. NervousMark

    Stan, you are a beauty. I’m surprised Harbaugh didn’t mention you by name. “I guess he means me”?!?! You go Don Quixote!

    You are staggeringly clueless. I mean really, really, exceptionally, clueless. Even more clueless than Ignatius Reilly, which is really saying something.

    July 31st, 2011 8:07 pm

  19. NervousMark

    Do any of you doomsayers remember Bill Walsh’s first year? The 49ers were 2-14. What would you kneejerk fans said about that season? If you’re honest with yourselves, you’d admit you would’ve wanted Walsh run out of town.

    Let’s let them play, oh, I don’t know, one or, God forbid, two regular season games before declaring the 49ers garbage and Baalke and Harbaugh incompetent.

    July 31st, 2011 8:13 pm

  20. Johnny Christo

    Mike, nice post. But if Alex bails whenever threatened, CK7 will be brought in very quickly. Harbaugh found the steal of the draft in that guy. Check out his UN highlight reel on YouTube. He is an immediate high impact player who can improvise and escape, and who will have the strongest arm ever to play QB for the team.

    July 31st, 2011 11:29 pm

  21. Stan

    He meant me without a doubt N.M…. Probably.

    August 1st, 2011 12:05 pm

  22. Stan

    The Nazi’s said Einstein was clueless too. Me and ALbert know our..

    August 1st, 2011 12:06 pm

  23. jdubya123

    You guys are all crazy….truth is, we have no clue how good/bad this team could be. Clearly they have talented players, and even Alex Smith has talent even though most would disagree. But for years now in almost every single game the 49ers have been out smarted by the other team, guys with raw talent don’t seem to improve much, and clearly are completely predictable both on offense and defense….Coaching could make a huge difference…guess we’ll see

    August 1st, 2011 12:29 pm

  24. Mike

    Listen, I was never a huge Mooch fan, but to say Harbaugh was not a QB-focused coach is questionable at best… As I recall, he worked with this kid named Favre.

    August 1st, 2011 2:12 pm

  25. Stan

    Harbaugh just denied what my eyes saw and ears heard!..NO he didnt say Smith was thrown under the bus. Wow,Is Jim that..in denial? Any more comments like that and its weasley..

    August 2nd, 2011 11:45 am

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