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Jim Harbaugh: Randy Moss 'like a coach' for 49ers

Scanning through a few items from Jim Harbaugh's interview with KNBR-AM in San Francisco this week:

The 49ers coach has repeatedly praised Randy Moss for his speed and production on the field during practice, but we know Harbaugh prizes intelligent players, and this is where the 35-year-old wideout is scoring points: "In the classroom, he sits in the front row, he soaks up the knowledge and also gives the feedback, too," Harbaugh said. "He's a coach. He's like a coach. You know, like the way Alex Smith is now becoming. I mean Alex knows as much as anybody, as much as any of our offensive coaches do at this point. And Randy has picked it up so fast because he's seen so much football."

Harbaugh squeezed every drop out of his roster last season, forging San Francisco's offense into a battering, run-first attack. The team has used this offseason to stock up on pass-catchers by acquiring Moss, former New York Giants wideout Mario Manningham and rookie A.J. Jenkins. Smith also will throw to Michael Crabtree, a sometimes puzzling performer who earned high praise from his coach on Friday.

We all recall the mildly hurt feelings when Harbaugh and Co. snuck into the Peyton Manning derby. That's yesterday. Smith and his coach are in a good place here in May and Harbaugh is again the young man's champion: "Just to watch him mature physically in front of our eyes, even though he's 28 years old," Harbaugh said. "I think if you look at some of the pictures of him when he first came into the league as a young, skinny 20-year-old, and watch him develop and watch him -- maybe call it a late-bloomer physically, but he's really a man now. A real strong man."

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