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49ers reflect on the Seahawks '12th man' crowd

The 12th Man in Seattle has been well-known
The 12th Man in Seattle has been well-known
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The 49ers will be entering one of the toughest stadium environments at CenturyLink Field in Seattle on Sunday for the NFC Championship game. Here is a complication of the players' thoughts as they face the Seahawks crowd in Seattle:

Colin Kaepernick:

Kaepernick admitted that the building is louder than other venues, but doesn't expect it to be too rough. He said there aren't 12 players on the field, or else it's a penalty.

“We only have 11 on the field just like them.”


Head coach Jim Harbaugh:

Harbaugh expects the team to be ready on offense even though communication will not be easy in Seattle. He said playing in Seattle as the road team is what separates a good team from a great team.

"Well, there are tough things about communication in a loud stadium, on the road that the offense will strive to be very precise at. But tough, this is only for the tough. This kind of game, this kind of point in the season. And our guys are very happy about it. They’re very excited and very much looking forward to this being a lot of fun. This kind of game, I was thinking of the things I would trade to be able to compete as a player in these games, in this game. It's pretty significant."


Patrick Willis:

The 49ers inside linebacker expects to lay everything out on the field for Sunday. While he expects that the crowd will be noisy, it won't mean much in the big picture for this game.

"You hear them talk about [the noise] and I would be lying to you if I said that the crowd is not loud, but at the end of the day, it doesn't matter. We have to play to the best of our abilities and we have to play with everything we have. And if we do that, and God forbid we lose and we play our best football then maybe that's the way it's supposed to be. But I know for sure we're going to give it everything we have, and 12th man or no man in the stands, we just want to win.”


Joe Staley:

Staley said the team's technique to calling plays will need to be less verbal and more on a silent count. The team has been ready for this all season, according to the 49ers offensive tackle.

"Crowd noise is always a factor when you play them but we have played there before. We understand that. We understand the noise level and how to communicate non-verbally. It is something that also we have practiced throughout the whole entire season. We are very familiar with going silent count, is what we call it, on the road. That is something that we have not just practiced for one week, but we have practiced for the last three years."