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Fangio fears complacency of San Fran defense

Vic Fangio AP

Last month, 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio saw no reason why the team’s defense shouldn’t improve in 2012.  Based on the preseason opener, he seems less optimistic.

Fangio fears that his players are letting the praise go to their heads, which resulted in less-than-acceptable performance by the rest of their bodies on Friday night against the Vikings.

“I think it’s a little bit of all the nice things that’s been said about them for their play last year,” Fangio said Monday, via the San Francisco Chronicle.  “They started off camp very well, pretty much dominating out here on the practice field, and I think we just got a little full of ourselves.”

Making the performance by the San Fran first-team defense against the Minnesota first-team offense is that Fangio was forced to watch it on video.

“I don’t like looking at it,” Fangio said.

The good news is that Fangio now has the ammunition necessary to get the attention of a defense that returns 10 of 11 starters, with rookie-year backup Aldon Smith replacing Parys Haralson at outside linebacker.

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29 Responses to “Fangio fears complacency of San Fran defense”
  1. hulkhogansays says: Aug 14, 2012 11:36 AM

    I’ve said it before and will say it again brother. The Niners were a classic fluke last season and are only outstanding at the Linebacker position. Everywhere else? Average/Below Average. Alex Smith as the starting QB is suppose to strike fear into the hearts of opposing NFL defenses? Uh, no brother. Back to reality for the Niners this year.

  2. time2speakup says: Aug 14, 2012 11:39 AM

    What made the Niners defense “other worldly” last year was primarily excellent atheletes and an intense hunger. Coaching helped. But chief among all the reasons was their mind-set. And here is where I identify with Fangio’s concern. The thing that this D cannot do is get to a space where they feel and believe that “… we’re so damn good, we can just turn it on and off when we need to.” Go there – and they’ll be just like every other team – and their butts will get handed to them. Oh, and THE key in this first game, Cowboy (Justin) did not see the field. But you can bet your pension that the guys have heard about it from him. Count on it.

  3. calwilliams06 says: Aug 14, 2012 11:50 AM

    Hmm, interesting one.

    Last year the Niners D. was remarkably healthy, which helps tremendously and it’s unlikely that they’ll be as healthy this season.

    However, it was their first year in Vic Fangio’s scheme, and Fangio’s first year with them, so there was a lot of learning going on.

    This year, with a year in the scheme under their belts, the greater understanding should off-set a potential increase in injuries.

    Unless of course the injury bug hits a certain Mr J. Smith.

  4. sb44champs says: Aug 14, 2012 11:57 AM

    They might be better with Alex Lifeson at QB!!!

  5. cali49er707 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:02 PM

    hulkhogansays says:
    Aug 14, 2012 11:36 AM
    I’ve said it before and will say it again brother. The Niners were a classic fluke last season and are only outstanding at the Linebacker position. Everywhere else? Average/Below Average. Alex Smith as the starting QB is suppose to strike fear into the hearts of opposing NFL defenses? Uh, no brother. Back to reality for the Niners this year.

    —————————— ——
    Your obviously one of the biggest bums on this site that consistently post the most uneducated comments ever. You being a pigskins fan should give you absolutely no room to talk you idiot!! Always posting how the pigskins & RG3 are superbowl bound this year & RG3 is headed to Canton already, your a moron! I don’t know if your the bigger idiot or the ones who actually thumb up your childish 7 year old like comments!!

  6. seatown12 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:02 PM

    Much ado about nothing imo… When the reg season starts their D should be fired up. I’d be WAY more concerned about Smith maintaining. Manningham & Moss could very easily screw up his check down game big time. Among other factors, Smith crashes back down to Earth way before the D imo…

  7. futbolagent says: Aug 14, 2012 12:03 PM

    This defense is the defense no other team wants to run up against in the playoffs. Especially at home. Especially after how last year ended.

    These coaches are great motivators. They know how to trigger their player’s A game. If the defense improves any from last year and Alex adds 10 TDs to last years total this year’s 49ers team will be the toughest out in the playoffs.

  8. smcgaels1997 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:16 PM

    Good coaches continue to use fuel to fire up their team…classic case of pushing his players

  9. hulkhogansays says: Aug 14, 2012 12:20 PM

    I’m not going to apologise that my team was blessed to land a legendary talent like Robert Griffin the 3rd brother. But I can certainly understand your frustration over having your starter be Alex Smith surrounded with Average/Below Average talent brother. Hey, at least the weather is better in SF than DC right.

  10. kylehealy says: Aug 14, 2012 12:27 PM

    I’m not going to apologise that my team was blessed to land a legendary talent like Robert Griffin the 3rd brother. But I can certainly understand your frustration over having your starter be Alex Smith surrounded with Average/Below Average talent brother. Hey, at least the weather is better in SF than DC right.
    ————————————————————

    RG3 is a talent, no denying that, but he’s done nothing in the NFL to date rather than land a bunch of endorsements so don’t get ahead of yourself. Also, if you really think the surrounding offensive talent on the 49ers is average/below average, then that must make the Redskins supporting cast the worst in the NFL? I mean when was the last time the Redskins were actually relevant? Even now they’re still the 4th best team in their division.

  11. smcgaels1997 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:35 PM

    Legendary talent?! Wow..Vick was legendary too but look where that got him…and by the way your team acquired him because you were so close to getting him anyways because your lame ass team always picks in the top 5

  12. fanfromcan says: Aug 14, 2012 12:36 PM

    Yeah, Justin Smith, defensive all pro, runner up for defensive MVP, he’s not very good, average at best….moron.

  13. worldwidebleater says: Aug 14, 2012 12:49 PM

    I’ve been saying this since about week 10 last year. By the end of this season, the 49’ers are going to be so sick of Harbaugh and his tough guy act.

    They peaked last year. Lock it up.

  14. ninersfan82 says: Aug 14, 2012 12:55 PM

    Let the haters hate! At the end of the season we will see who is legitimate and who are the posers. I’m loving all these people saying last season was a fluke.
    All these people talking trash about Alex Smith and what he hasn’t done. How many other QB’s in the league are still starting QB’s and had 7 different offensive schemes in 6 years and still the unquestioned starter? I’ll answer that for all you haters. None!!!!!!!

  15. waxthat says: Aug 14, 2012 12:57 PM

    Good to hear Fangio publicly come out and say this. But come on, fanatics, the Niners D will be Top 3 this year and they’ll be back in the playoffs.

    This is all motivational coach speak.

  16. hulkhogansays says: Aug 14, 2012 12:59 PM

    It must eat you guys inside everytime you turn on your television and see Robert Griffin in a commercial. He’s there because he’s that good…and he’s going to continue to be in the spotlight because he and the rest of our team is legit. The Redskins are here to stay for the next decade, we aren’t a fluke. One more thing…let’s ask Josh Morgan who’s the better team…he ran away as soon as the Redskins called. The nerve of you guys to act like your team is even on my teams level…barely beat us last season with our injury filled lineup and Rex Grossman brother. Case closed.

  17. doresb21 says: Aug 14, 2012 1:14 PM

    Lord Fangio knows exactly what he is doing by saying this. Just like Harbaugh, everything he says to the media is calculated. Don’t get mad because our coaches are smarter than yours!

    Fangio coming out and saying this now is the reason why our defense will NOT become complacent and drop off from last year. Love it

  18. ilovefoolsball says: Aug 14, 2012 1:17 PM

    Last year was a great window of opportunity for the 9ers and they lit it slip away.
    There are so many factors that have to go in your favor to get to the Superbowl and they had all of them and it got them to a game away from the big game but it wasn’t enough.
    I promise you they will not repeat that same amount of success this year.
    They had minimal injuries to major players, Alex Smith played above his head, and most importantly, they were flying under the radar for most of the year.
    Now that teams have seen them in the playoffs and are taking that D seriously they will have a bullseye on their back and everyone will be bringing their A game to the Niners.
    Trust me Niner fans, have guarded optimism, I know you’re excited and pumped up after last year, but it’s the first year you were relevant in the last decade, there are going to be some growing pains and this year you’ll feel them.

  19. sixjak says: Aug 14, 2012 1:21 PM

    I’ve been saying this since about week 10 last year. By the end of this season, the 49′ers are going to be so sick of Harbaugh and his tough guy act.

    They peaked last year. Lock it up.

     _______

    Lemme guess, you’re either still butt hurt over the handshake or Whitner’s lights out hit.

    Keep dreaming, wishing, hoping…whatever it is you butthurt ppl do. The 9ers are a good team. Period.

  20. JSpicoli says: Aug 14, 2012 1:36 PM

    While most of you are busy slarving all over the niners becuase you are results oriented, and not paying attention, I’ll be going out on a limb and stating the niners had a horseshoe crammed up their keister last year, and played a really bad division.

    Now i know you all don’t want to hear that the Emporer has no clothes, but i’ll be here on this limb all year. The luck won’t continue and SEA is getting better.

    Niners 8-8, 9-7 tops. SEA wins the division.

  21. theborch909 says: Aug 14, 2012 1:43 PM

    People keep point out that the Niners play in a weak division. But never seam to explain how they wen 5-1 in the division and 8-2 out of it. I guess the NFL is a weak division as well since the Niners went 8-2.

  22. schmitty2 says: Aug 14, 2012 1:43 PM

    Given the fact they play the Pack and Lions in the first 2 weeks..any questions about the state of the defense will be quickly answered

  23. dahawn49er says: Aug 14, 2012 2:03 PM

    Your right the NFC west is a bad division. When your team win’s the NFC west with a 7-9, That suck’s and is a weak division. Now what club did that? The Seachickens? 13-3 win’s it hands down, And makes a statement.

  24. sureban says: Aug 14, 2012 2:24 PM

    “Making the performance by the San Fran first-team defense against the Minnesota first-team offense is that Fangio was forced to watch it on video.” No speak English?

  25. dahawn49er says: Aug 14, 2012 2:24 PM

    hulkhogansays, He should know his role and shut his mouth, It was good Josh Morgan went to the Redskins, 49ers updated and now have Manningham and Moss now, And you said, The nerve of you guys to act like your team is even on my teams level…barely beat us last season with our injury filled lineup and Rex Grossman brother. Case closed. barely beat your team that right, WE BEAT your team and went to the playoffs, What did you do that day hulkhogansays, Watch tv or go play with your HOG”s

  26. southpaw79 says: Aug 14, 2012 4:30 PM

    Wait a second. The Niners allowed 208 yards the whole game ( that is counting 52 yards on one play)! This was not a great performance for the Niners defense, but it was the best defensive performance of the preseason up until the Raiders/Cowboys stinker. If they were getting torched repeatedly or ran all over then I would understand, but one bad coverage on the 1st week of preseason is nothing to worry about. The coaches are just over playing this for motivation.

  27. bubba9er says: Aug 14, 2012 5:44 PM

    If you don’t find something to improve after the first week of pre season, you are either not looking, or you don’t deserve to be a coach. I think he has a valid point. When all you hear is how great you are, you may start to believe it and not work as hard to get there. I think there are enough leaders on that side of the ball that they will take responsibility and hold each other accountable for their effort and improve over last year. Good move Vic.

  28. 49er4life51 says: Aug 14, 2012 9:55 PM

    hulkhogansays says: Aug 14, 2012 12:59 PM

    It must eat you guys inside everytime you turn on your television and see Robert Griffin in a commercial. He’s there because he’s that good…and he’s going to continue to be in the spotlight because he and the rest of our team is legit. The Redskins are here to stay for the next decade, we aren’t a fluke. One more thing…let’s ask Josh Morgan who’s the better team…he ran away as soon as the Redskins called. The nerve of you guys to act like your team is even on my teams level…barely beat us last season with our injury filled lineup and Rex Grossman brother. Case closed.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Obviously you did not read the title of this article…Brother…Its a SF DEFENSIVE TEAM article, nothing was ever said about Alex Smith or the OFFENSE…Brother…Get over yourself and how much your in love with RG3, glad you love your team, but go post on your on teams blog they need this kind of dumb hype…Your lack of ffotball knowledge should keep you off this site…#URADUMMY Brother!!

  29. pop562 says: Aug 15, 2012 1:48 AM

    When the niners does great things, you will have the green eyed fans crawling out their rock to try to put them down. The niners always had the talent to be a great team since 2005…now they finally have a head coach and coaching staff that has a resume of great accomplishments. How is last year called luck when the niners had been improving each season…that’s not called luck, it’s called continuous improvement. All the pent up anger from the “haters” just makes me more proud of being a 49ers fan through the bad and good.

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