49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

September 5, 2012
Moss a question mark for reporters ... and for Packers


Randy Moss will be wearing No. 84 when he steps onto the field in Green Bay. But he might as well be wearing a giant question mark.

How much he'll play, whether he can still get deep, whether he's the Randy Moss of old or just an old Randy Moss are major questions hovering around Sunday's game. And Jim Harbaugh certainly was not eager to answer any of them today.

Harbaugh, who welcomed a baby boy Tuesday at 1:27 p.m., began his press conference as Mr. Vivacious but turned into Mr. Vague on three separate questions about Moss. Asked whether Moss showed his previous form during the 49ers' offseason, Harbaugh said. "Can I give that summation? How accurate would I be? I, uh, I wasn't on the same team as Randy at any time before this year. It's been good, and I've been very pleased to have Randy on our team, and look forward to a great week of preparation with Randy and all of the guys. I think that's the most relevant thing."

Of course, it's in Harbaugh's best interest to reveal as little as possible about the Mysterious Moss because it creates all sort of questions for his upcoming opponents.

Carlos Rogers played against Moss in 2007 when he was with the Redskins and Moss was a Patriot. Rogers said that Moss was the focus of the Redskins' defensive meeting room that week, and he expects that the same thing is happening in Green Bay. "Don't let him get deep," Rogers said. "I'm pretty sure that's what Green Bay is saying right now, 'Don't let Randy Moss get deep.'"

Alex Smith, meanwhile, noted that the 49ers' offense is based on multiple formations and multiple personnel groups. That already gives defenses plenty to do during the week. Moss is now a big part of that preparation.

"I mean a guy like Randy, the unique tool set that he has, creates a lot of problems," Smith said. "And I think he gives them a lot to think about. You know a guy (with) the big-play potential, the matchup problem that he is and the things he can do. I think that creates problems."

Harbaugh said his 8-lb., 8 oz. son came into the world 10 days ahead of schedule. "That's to be expected," he said. "The good ones come in early." He also said his wife, Sarah, deserves "a gold medal for timing." That is, it was far better that young Jack was born Tuesday than, say, Sunday.

Will Brandon Jacobs (knee) or Ted Ginn (ankle) be able to play Sunday? "Not sure," Harbaugh said to both queries. The 49ers and Packers will release their first injury report of the week later today.

Mario Manningham returned to team headquarters Monday after spending the previous week in Ohio to mourn the passing his grandfather. Harbaugh quoted former Marquette basketball coach Al McGuire: "Marriages are optional, but funerals are mandatory. That was the time that Mario needed, and we support it."

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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