Extreme Makeover

The 49ers have taken the term “cleaning house” to a level that would make an OCD housewife beam proudly. By the time Free Agency and the Draft have come and gone, the entire building will not have a clue who the person next to them is — including the ones handing out equipment and massaging their feet.

Next comes the slightly harder part — filling the house with better “furniture” than that which has been discarded. The Niners have dabbled at this game in each of the past two seasons (and fared quite poorly), so perhaps they’ve got the hang of it this time around.

Many fans seem to think so. They’ve bellied enthusiastically up to the bar of hope yet again. Ready to hurl their poison-tipped pom pom daggers at anyone who would raise a skeptical eyebrow. It’s possible Kyle Shanahan will turn out to be the next Bill Walsh, but it’s also as likely or more that he’ll turn out to be the next Norv Turner — good OC, not so good HC.

But, as John Madden so eloquently warned, it’s easier to replace a suit than a good HC. We may not know if Shanahan will be able to match Jim Harbaugh‘s knack for winning games, but the new suit(s) in the FO are clearly an upgrade over the departed Trent Baalke.

John Lynch may turn out to be another Matt Millen, but one thing he won’t be and that’s a brown-noser to owner Jed York. Baalke was nothing before he squeezed his way into York’s inner circle and he’ll likely be little at all now that he’s gone. But Lynch was successful before he came here and he’ll be successful if he should eventually leave. He doesn’t need York to define himself.

With $80 million in CAP space, and a new GM raring to prove his worth, we’ll at least have a busy FA period, with a lot of bodies moving hither and yon for our perusal. If we’re going to be bad, we can at least be entertaining while we’re at it. With Baalke, the offseason was always one long snooze fest. And who knows? We might even be good! Or at least get lucky once in awhile.




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Posted in Vacant Observations

Scaled Up Opportunities

The offseason is mercifully upon us and the 49ers have finally introduced their third attempt to replace the highly successful former HC Jim Harbaugh. And their second attempt to replace the highly successful former GM Scot McCloughan. At least neither of them is inheriting baggage above or below them — except of course the noodle at the top of the food chain. Hopefully, this douche will just shut up and pray for the next three years.

New HC Kyle Shanahan comes in fresh off a disastrous lesson in end-game management. Perhaps a phone call to Harbaugh would be enlightening for him. He’ll be first up on the griddle, since he controls the 53 man roster. We’ll give him some friendly advice in this regard.

Keepers:

  • Joe Staley
  • Deforest Buckner
  • Arik Armstead
  • Glenn Dorsey
  • Jimmie Ward
  • NaVorro Bowman
  • Trent Brown
  • Carlos Hyde

Rejects:

  • Marcus Martin
  • Tank Carradine
  • Eli Harold
  • Michael Wilhoite
  • Colin Kaepernick
  • Mike Davis
  • DuJuan Harris
  • Eric Reid

Assorted Bodies:
37 other entirely replaceable guys

That’s all the help you’re getting from the Outsider, Mr. Shanahan. The rest is up to you.

In a month or so, we’ll get a look at new GM John Lynch. Lynch has formidable cachet in the league, but has never been a scout or a general manager. Should be a fun and exciting couple of months coming along in his life. Lots of CAP room, lots of bodies to replace. We’ll be watching eagerly, Mr. Lynch. Good luck.




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Posted in FOS Speculation

Great Expectations

And away we go with another edition of the Jed York Follies!

The hiring of Kyle Shanahan as the new Head Coach won’t be booed in too many gin joints in all the towns in all the world. But, pulling John Lynch out of the broadcast booth to be the team’s new GM is one big WTF!

Both new hires are getting six year contracts, which seems mainly to stress how confident York wants everyone to think he is about his choices. He’d better be right, too, because six years from now all those PSLs are due for renewal … or the trash bin. If the 49ers aren’t back in the big leagues by then, the Yorks will finally get hit in their precious pocketbooks.

Both Shanahan and Lynch come into situations where it’s hard to be worse than the guys they replace. Which is a great situation for a couple of newbies to find out if they can cut the mustard. If not, they’ll at least have some serious financial security.

Chip Kelly came here after failing in Philly and then making 49er history with a 13 game losing streak. Shanahan is the OC of a Super Bowl team. Lynch will replace Trent Baalke, who was a six year disaster area. He also ducked the press like a man afraid of the light. Lynch may not turn out to be a good GM, but at least he’ll show up to answer questions. He can also throw darts at the draft board and probably do as well or better than Baalke.

Apparently, Lynch was Shanahan’s choice to be his GM. Maybe that was because he thought Lynch would do the best job, or maybe it was because he thought Lynch would be the weakest guy to have above him.

At the least, York has bought himself three years respite from an angry fan base and the year end humble pie he’s been eating for the past four years. With the franchise at ground zero, three years is the minimum needed to turn things around. By then, York will have finished paying off Kelly and Jim Tomsula, putting him in position to poison the well yet again, either because these hirings went bad or because they went too good and not enough credit is going to York.

It’s going to take some serious winning to restore the fan loyalty York has squandered. And for some, that loyalty will never return so long as York is the owner. The best thing for the Niners would be if York receded so far into the background we all have a chance to forget he’s even there. And the chances of that happening are slim and none.




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Posted in FOS Speculation

The Three Amigos

This year’s playoffs have been a lot like watching this year’s 49ers. Various versions of seeing a team get blown out of a game. Only two out of ten games have been nail biters. Some were over by the second quarter, others didn’t last very long after the second half kickoff.

But we Niner fans had a psychological edge not possessed by the other disappointed fans throughout the league. Most of us enjoyed seeing the team get its butt kicked week in, week out. The team was a stand-in for owner Jed York. And the only way to hold the scoundrel accountable.

Now we await a brand new regime — a new HC and a new GM. Except that the new regime will still be underneath the same old failed regime. York, Paraag Marathe, and Brian Hampton. Hampton is the “Director of Football Administration & Analytics,” supposedly working underneath Tom Gamble, the (temporary) “Assistant General Manager.” But it has been Hampton, not Gamble, who has joined York and Marathe in conducting the latest “world wide” search for the new HC and GM.

The 49ers Web Site says this about Hampton: “In his current role, Hampton is responsible for contract negotiations, strategic planning and management of the club’s player compensation budget and salary cap. His various other daily football operations duties include overseeing the budgets for all football departments, compliance with league rules and scheduling. Hampton also manages the football R&D efforts, providing frequent analysis on special projects for the owner, head coach, general manager and president.”

That sounds a whole lot like a Marathe clone. The three amigos. Mr. Clueless and his two wannabe bean counters and butt lickers.

All three of these guys have “been around football” their whole lives. And none of them has ever played the game. Gamble is the only guy in the FO who’s a “football guy,” yet he’s the only one not participating in the HC/GM interviews.

For now, we await the results of Saturday’s last tango with Kyle Shanahan, the presumptive next HC, and the selection of his GM, presumably either Minnesota’s George Paton or Arizona’s Terry McDonough, unless the Colt’s Jim Irsay throws a fly into ointment and grabs one of the GM candidates, fittingly leaving the Amigos with the last remaining options for both HC and GM.

Still, whether Shanahan and his GM succeed in returning the 49ers to competitive status in the league, or not, depends more on whether the Amigos can keep their mitts off the merchandise, or not. Because these three bums have a long record of screwing things up.




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Posted in The Usual Suspects

Third Time’s The Charm?

According to YorkiLeaks, the next 49er HC will be Kyle Shanahan. The next GM will be one of the guys from Green Bay or the one from Arizona. Until somebody signs on the dotted line, however, there’s always the chance that master screw up Jed York could kabosh the whole thing.

For the moment, we’re going to assume that York needs a win so badly, he’ll lay low, lick boot, or grovel in any fashion necessary to make sure this scenario comes to fruition. If it doesn’t, York has painted himself into a corner with no Plan B and no exit strategy.

Last year, nobody wanted to work for the Niners. Hue Jackson even picked working for the Browns over coming to Santa Clara. Ouch. If anything, after a 2-14 year which included a 13 game losing streak, the Niner HC job should be even more undesirable. But it isn’t. And that can only be because Trent Baalke is no longer here. It was him that nobody wanted to work for.

Baalke’s legacy is brutal. Under his watch, the 49ers ran off Jim Harbaugh, the most successful HC since the Yorks took over the team at the turn of the century. He also let a Super Bowl roster deteriorate into a pile of garbage, full of players who were happy and content being losers. Arguably the worst roster in the league.

Baalke’s disastrous run did enable York to discover that a popular young owner can become a hated pariah in a mere two years flat. York acknowledges some of his own culpability, but until he restores Harbaugh to his rightful place in 49er lore, he will remain a spiteful little boy who is not man enough to ever be admired or trusted.

But that’s his problem. Good luck, kid. You’ve got a long way to go and not a whole lot folks who think you’ll ever get there. But you got lucky once, when Harbaugh chose to be the HC of the 49ers, and maybe you’ll get lucky again this year when Shanahan comes aboard. At the very least, just get away from the football side of the business and give the new regime a chance to bring some pride back to this franchise. The pride you pissed away.




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Posted in FOS Speculation
2016 Schedule
Sept. 12 vs Los Angeles: W 28-0
Sept. 18 @ Carolina: L 27-46
Sept. 25 @ Seattle: L 18-37
Oct. 2 vs Dallas: L 17-24
Oct. 6 vs Arizona: L 21-33
Oct. 16 @ Buffalo: L 16-45
Oct. 23 vs Tampa Bay: L 17-34
Oct. 30 BYE
Nov. 6 vs New Orleans: L 23-41
Nov. 13 @ Arizona: L 20-23
Nov. 20 vs New England: L 17-30
Nov. 27 @ Miami: L 24-31
Dec. 4 @ Chicago: L 6-26
Dec. 11 vs New York Jets: L 17-23
Dec. 18 @ Atlanta: L 13-41
Dec. 24 @ Los Angeles: W 22-21
Jan. 1 vs Seattle: L 23-25
 
2016 Draft Class
1. Deforest Buckner, DL
1. Joshua Garnett, OG
3. Will Redmond, CB
4. Rashard Robinson, CB
5. Ronald Blair, DE
5. John Theus, OT
5. Fahn Cooper, OT
6. Jeff Driskell, QB
6. Kelvin Taylor, RB
6. Aaron Burbridge, WR
7. Prince Charles Iworah, CB
 
2016 Prognostications
Closest To The Pin
  Grumpy: 3-13
  Spitblood: 3-13
  Winder: 3-13
Bakkentom: 0-16
Bullit: 5-11
Chuck: 8-8, 7-9, 9-7, 10-6
Mr Fletch: 4-12
NJ49er: 5-11
Phil Fan: 4-12
Rob: 9-7
RTFirefly: 7-9
Skeebers: 6-10

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