There were times during Sunday’s game against the Cardinals that 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh didn’t look like his fiery self.
As he watched his team lose its second straight game, Harbaugh appeared almost dazed as he stood on the sideline.
Yet the fourth-year head coach was back to normal Monday afternoon, speaking his own special language in explaining how his team will bounce back, beginning with Sunday’s game at Levi’s Stadium against the 3-0 Philadelphia Eagles.
Harbaugh, who has long drawn attention for his special rhetorical style, provided another entry in the book of Harbaughisms with his explanation of how his team will work to get back on the winning track.
When he was asked if any faith has been lost in the locker room, Harbaugh emphatically said no.
“You push up against something until it’s upright,” he said. “That is the process our team uses. I have total belief in everyone associated with our program, coaches, players, everybody involved. There are ebbs and flows to the season, and we’re in one of those right now.”
Harbaugh covered a lot of bases in his time with the media Monday afternoon, talking about the success of the passing scheme, the effort of his players, the state of injured players and how his team faced a similar 1-2 record last season. The 2013 team battled back to finish 12-4.
“We have been in this position before,” he said. “We have a week to get it fixed, Sunday at 1 o’clock.”
Harbaugh’s “push up against something until it’s upright” phrase now joins a long list of Harbaughisms, such as “iron sharpens iron,” players played with “gravel in their guts” and describing a defender as having “great contact courage.”
One phrase Harbaugh broke out in 2011 might be appropriate this week. After the 49ers lost to the Baltimore Ravens on the road, they rebounded with a 26-0 victory over the Rams at home. It would be a scenario the Niners could copy this Sunday with a win over the Eagles.
Said Harbaugh back then: “After a tough loss on the road, they responded like mighty men.”
How mighty this group is might be determined Sunday afternoon.