Harbaugh answers questions regarding Aldon Smith
Jim Harbaugh spoke with the media today and of course the majority of the questions had to deal with Aldon Smith’s arrest this morning. Here is the transcript.
Q: Can you fill us in on Aldon Smith’s status for Sunday?
Harbaugh: The task today was to go and have a great practice. The time spent Sunday will be for us to go get a win, beat the Colts. We’ll make those decisions.
Q: Have you spoken to Aldon about the incident this morning?
Q: Are you satisfied with what he had to say?
Harbaugh: I’m disappointed and I felt like he needs to go to work, face his teammates and soldier through it.
Q: Will the team discipline him or is that a league matter?
Harbaugh: That’s pretty exclusive to the league. Well, it is. They have exclusive rights to the consequences on there will be consequences. There always is, good or bad. We all have consequences.
Q: Last year Demcarcus Dobbs was in a similar incident and he didn’t make the trip with you guys to St. Louis. Why react to that situation that way and leave this one up in the air?
Harbaugh: I’m not really leaving it up in the air. There is nothing really up in the air about it. Demarcus wasn’t here when we left last year for St. Louis.
Q: If Aldon doesn’t play who is likely to fill his place?
Harbaugh: You know the guys we have on our team. Not to leave it up in the air. I expect Aldon, like today, he’ll be back to work and playing on Sunday.
Q: How do you as a coach try to convince players like Aldon to keep their head screwed on straight?
Harbaugh: Those things, not going to address what our policy is as it relates right now. These two things, we’ll deal with it.
Q: How did he seem at practice today? Did he seem focused?
Harbaugh: Yeah, he seemed like he had his wits about him.
Q: Just to be clear, did you say he would play on Sunday?
Harbaugh: I anticipate that, yes.
Q: Is there anyone in the organization you advise to talk to players when they’re in a situation like this?
Harbaugh: Yes, the organization does provide that. I’m not going to dissect it, exactly what the policies are and what the team has in place as it relates to his situation.
Q: You said you wanted him to get back to work. Was that his suggestion or your suggestion?
Harbaugh: I encouraged it.
Q: Will Aldon address his teammates?
Harbaugh: The conversations, what existed, what the details were, the specifics, we’re not publically sharing that right now.
Q: Did see if he was on his way to the facility when the incident happened?
Harbaugh: Again and again, we’re not going into the specifics and the details.
Q: You said the league has exclusivity over this whether or not to suspend him. You’re not expecting them to hand out a suspension last-minute before the game? As far as you know he’s going to be cleared to play on Sunday and any possible suspension will come after?
Harbaugh: I think it’s pretty clear what the policies are in the National Football League collective bargaining agreement. There is a process and we respect that.
Q: Doesn’t the team have discretion to its own discipline?
Harbaugh: There is a process there. When it comes to suspensions and fining and discipline there is exclusivity of the league.