Here is the Jeff Tedford press conference from Tuesday afternoon, detailing the struggles with Zach Maynard, bad offensive line play, 3rd down and long, and negative press.
Tedford talked a little bit about Maynard.
"Week to week, it's all different. The consistency factor has to be there. You've watched him for two years – there's some real hot, and some cold."
I'm not sure how fans will feel about Tedford sticking with a quarterback who just goes as cold as he did hot. Isn't this a man who once valued consistency? Kevin Riley got yanked for hitting cold streaks the way Maynard did. The treatment here is very peculiar.
On Maynard's throwing ability.
"Zach's capable of making any throw on the field. I think we've all seen him make numerous throws. They just have to be in his read progression."
Ugh, the read progression. I don't get the sense Maynard has any idea what to do past his first read, and the second read generally tends to be find Keenan Allen if it's not the first read. If anything Maynard locks in on a target and misses wide open receivers way too often when he locks in.
It's become a habit rather than an irregularity. It needs to be fixed, soon.
On poor O-line protection
"It's running backs, tight ends, and five other guys up there. That guy [Arizona State defensive tackle] Will Sutton was a pretty good player. When we got one-on-one matchups on him, we held our own a lot of the times, but it sticks out now and then that he's going beat you one-on-one."
If that's the case, what about some area (zone) pass protection instead of putting ill-trained O-linemen into one-on-one situations against a beast like Sutton? Anything to get multiple guys on Sutton? Or is the rest of the O-line that ill-equipped that they also need double teams?
On negative plays
"It's not just one thing. We've had some negative gains when we run the ball. If we happen to throw a ball, it goes incomplete or is dropped on first or second down, and now we're in third and ten. We had a couple of those."
"It could be a holding call that brings you back, or something like that."
While some have suggested that the team could help Maynard out with a shorter passing game, Tedford explained that the team's constant third and longs make that difficult.
"If you're in third and four, you can throw quick passes. If you're in third and twelve, and you throw a four or five yard pass, you ask, what are you doing throwing that?"
Don't really disagree much about this (hard to control penalties and stuffed runs) but shouldn't the quicker passes come on 1st and 2nd down to set up 3rd and short? Seems like a bit of a simplification to categorize it down to 3rd and long. The battle is usually lost by then anyway.
On the losing streak
"We all look in the mirror about what we can do – coaches, players, everybody. We've been in the game – four of the games – in the fourth quarter. We've got to continue to improve and get over the hump in the fourth quarter. Of course we didn't envision being here. But now, the true character comes out."
"There'll be a lot of nay-sayers – not that there's anything wrong with that, but we have to bond together and work hard each day to get better. There are seven conference games left. We'll take them one game at time, and keep improving one week at a time."
"I told them today, tough times don't last, tough people do. We need to pull together; we need to make sure our true character shows, stay together, work hard. That's the only way to approach it."
On negative press (is that us? I think that's us now!)
"I know it's out there. I'm kind of in my cocoon here, so I try not to pay attention to it. That's not going to help me or the team, really, with me sitting around here thinking about that or focusing on that or wasting energy thinking that. We're going to work hard our hardest. I love this program. I love this place. We work very hard here; we continue to work very hard here."
"No one would be happy with where we are right now, so I don't blame anyone for being unhappy about it – I'm not happy with it either. But I can't sit around worrying about what other people are thinking. That's not going to change the way I conduct my day."
I wish he hadn't said cocoon.
If you can't listen to the video (over 22 minutes long), read most of the key inteview quotes over at Bear Insider.