Cardinals 19, 49ers 13

The 49ers lost to the Cardinals Sunday in Santa Clara, imploding their record to 3-8 and 0-5 in the NFC West. But, this is the new Niners and we’ve had to trade in our old adjectives, like mighty and powerful, to replace them with spunky and gritty. Awful has made some appearances, too, quite a few, in fact, but yesterday, the team was spunky and gritty. A down to the wire disappointment.

QB Blaine Gabbert had another solid outing, throwing for 318 yards, mostly to TEs and RBs, but only managed to put 13 points on the scoreboard. A whole lot of midfield success and not much in opponent territory. Epitomized by the 18 yard completion on fourth and 20 that ended the 49er chances. Still, this is the offense that OC Geep Chryst and HC Jim Tomsula envisaged at the start of the season. An offense poorly suited to Colin Kaepernick, but right up Gabbert’s alley.

The play-well-at-home, stink-on-the-road defense did a 180 degree turn on the previous week’s debacle in Seattle, harassing Cardinal QB Carson Palmer all day and shutting down his running game, too. The high-powered Arizona offense sputtered its way to a mere 19 points, instead of their usual 30 or 40.

After the game, the players refused to acknowledge a “moral” victory, while clearly doing just that in a relatively happy locker room, obviously relieved not to be embarrassed yet again. They also bitched and moaned about the referees, which technically doesn’t violate “winning with class” since it involved losing without it.

On the bright side, the team kept itself in contention for a top five pick in next year’s Draft. They also held off the hard-falling Rams for last place in the division. This gripping battle for most dysfunctional franchise could go down to the last game of the year, when the Rams visit Santa Clara. for a loser-takes-all battle.

Hang onto your hats, fellas, this season is going to dribble down to its last ugly moments and you don’t want to miss a single whiff, fumble, interception, dumb penalty, or the endlessly vacant stare of Jim Tomsula.

wordpress stats plugin

Tagged with: , , , , , ,
Posted in Post Game Spread

The Vultures Are Circling

The 49er players have now firmly taken a back seat to the 49er front office in terms of scrutiny and speculation. The rest of the season will be less and less about whether the team wins or loses games, and more and more about what to do with the mess at the top of the organization.

Or more precisely, what sort of spin job Jed York and Trent Baalke are going attempt to foist off on the fans. Because there really isn’t anything that can be done with the FO dysfunction. York won’t abdicate. Baalke won’t get fired. Paraag Marthe is not going anywhere. And who cares what happens to Jim Tomsula? All we can do is watch these morons squirm. Some of us will enjoy it, some of us will be outraged.

In the meantime, Arizona comes to town this Sunday, fresh off two last minute wins over Seattle and Cincinnati. Maybe they’ll be overconfident facing the lowly Niners. Not likely with Bruce Arians as their HC. They squoished us 47-7 in September, sending former QB Colin Kaepernick into a death spiral and fans expecting a decent season into shock therapy centers throughout the Bay Area.

It’s a home game, so the 49er defense should play much better this time around. Although that unit may have thrown in the towel. Run stopping was the one consistent forte of the defense, but Glenn Dorsey tore his ACL early in last week’s Seattle game, and the Seahawks proceeded to run wild for the rest of the game.

The 49er offense is feeling more pumped the past two games with Blaine Gabbert taking over from Kaepernick. And they have clearly played better. But, let’s face it, they still have only managed a 17 point effort against the Falcons and 13 points against the Seahawks. Not exactly a scary, HOF caliber unit.

A more efficient offense won’t save this season, but it may delude the York/Baalke team about next year’s needs. Not that they need anything much to trigger delusional thinking, since that is pretty much a way of life with these fellows.

If the defense turns in another shoddy effort this weekend and gets blown out at home, it could be the final nail in Tomsula’s coffin. If he was supposed to know anything — and our researchers have yet to uncover any evidence he does know anything — it was his boys on defense that didn’t consider him just another meathead D-line coach. If they’ve quit on him, it’s over for the Catawba College wannabe.

wordpress stats plugin

Tagged with: , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Game Previews

Seahawks 29, 49ers 13

The 49ers kept their road record perfect on Sunday in Seattle, losing 29-13 for their fifth consecutive road loss. Once again, it was the defense that led the way to defeat as Seahawks backup RB Thomas Rawls bulled through them for 209 yards on 30 carries. QB Russell Wilson was nearly perfect himself, completing 24 of 29 passes and throwing for 3 TDs.

The only bright spot for the 49ers was the offense. Not that it was bright necessarily, but that it existed. Seattle roared out to a twenty to nothing lead in the first half, but with two minutes left in the half, newly installed QB Blaine Gabbert led a 9 play, 92 yard drive in a minute and a half, ending with an actual TD to an actual Vance McDonald — the first TD of Vance’s three year career. Zounds!

In the second half, the offense pulled to within ten points, making a game that seemed destined for the slaughter house suddenly a bit of a nail biter. Seattle doused that fantasy by leading off the fourth quarter with a TD drive that put the game out of reach and the 49er offense back into its usual coma.

The loss ran the Niners’ record to 3-7 and kept them one game ahead of the Rams in the race for the NFC West basement. The game also showcased the season long Jekyll and Hyde performance of the defense. Tough at home and titty on the road. This must be a coaching issue. Fire them all!

A 3-7 type of record got Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary fired during the season. What’s Jed York waiting for? Nobody would complain about sending Jim Tomsula packing. It might be a huge ass embarrassment to York and GM Trent Baalke to shit can their personally anointed head coach, but isn’t 3-7 a huge ass embarrassment, too?

But York and his FO minions are too busy now generating leaks that disparage former QB Colin Kaepernick. It’s not enough for them to bench the guy, then put him on IR. No, they have to make him the scapegoat for the entire season. This is the same stunt they pulled last year on Jim Harbaugh. Nothing is their fault or Tomsula’s fault or Baalke’s fault. Some people bought into last year’s character assassination of Harbaugh, but it’s dubious that many will slop down an attempt to make this year’s failings all the fault of Kaepernick. After all, Kaepernick don’t play defense, do he?

Vance McDonald?!

Seattle won the game, but they can’t be feeling too good about themselves. Their defense allowed Blaine Gabbert(?!) to rack up 264 yards passing against them. You can’t go to a Super Bowl leaking that bad.

Next up, the 49ers face the NFC West leading Arizona Cardinals in a home game. Gabbert clearly outplayed Kaepernick versus Seattle, can he do the same against Arizona. It might not be too difficult, since the previous Cardinal game was the four pick disaster that seemed to ruin what little remaining confidence Kaepernick had.

wordpress stats plugin

Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Post Game Spread

So Near and Yet So Far

Let’s see: the 49ers have lost five in a row to the Seattle Seahawks. Of course, all those losses came with Colin Kaepernick at QB. This Sunday, Blaine Gabbert will be at the helm, attempting to end the string of losses. His chances of doing so are about as good as finding Elvis alive and well in a northern Minnesota cabin, but the 49ers are hard up for hope this year. And this is what we got until sometime Sunday afternoon.

Those of us who packed Hope away in a time capsule last February, or more recently in September or October, aren’t burdened with the idea that any such virtue is applicable to the current Santa Clara regime. There may even be a few of us who wouldn’t mind seeing a meteorite thunder down upon 4949 Centennial Blvd. during an upper management spin control meeting. And it might take just such an unlikely event to resuscitate the franchise.

In the mean time, all Gabbert has to do to keep his fingers around the starting job is produce ten points. Heck, eight would do. Kaepernick hasn’t gotten over seven in any of his past three games against Seattle, heaving up 3, 7, and 3.

The Seahawks are only one game ahead of the Niners at this point. But the Seahawks have a point differential of +20, while the Niners have one at -97. The 49ers 3-6 record accurately reflects their lousiness, but the Seahawks might be one the best 4-5 teams in NFL history.

IOW, the one game separating these two teams in the standings in no way describes how far apart they are in talent.

Seattle is having a year much like the Niners had last year. The wear and tear of three straight seasons ending in late January or early February, some personnel losses and injuries, some locker room testiness, etc. What they don’t have is an owner undermining their efforts. And what they won’t have is a complete gutting of the coaching staff and players after the season is over. GM Trent Baalke referred to “reloading” last February, and that’s what Seattle will do. And what Baalke didn’t.

wordpress stats plugin

Tagged with: , , , ,
Posted in Game Previews

Back to Work Week

After an intense week of delusional therapy, the 49ers resume their fall from grace this week by traveling to Seattle to be squashed like a bug before returning home to be thoroughly thrashed by the Arizona Cardinals.

At that point, the Niners record will be 3-8. Anybody who thinks they can then partially redeem the season by running the table for the last five games will be mailed a lifetime membership to Unca_Chuck’s blog, where reality is always a dollar short, a year late, and never more than a fleeting, accidental tourist.

It’s probably late enough in this desultory season to speculate on what sort of record it would take to get Jim Tomsula and his staff fired. Does he keep his job with five wins? Six? It’s not a question of whether he deserves to be fired — he should never have been hired in the first place. No, it’s purely a question of how much embarrassment to Jed York‘s ego would it take for York to essentially admit he screwed up.

Tomsula needs three more victories to hit six for the year. York could then point to a second half record of 4-4 as reason for optimism and reason to keep Tomsula. This would be complete horseshit, but I’m sure York would try foisting it off anyway.

It’s a dangerous game to play, though. A lot of fans bought into York’s hogwash from the end of last season, but how many of those would buy in again after this year’s fiasco? I mean, there’s got to be some blood on the highway after this season. Right? Who’s going to provide that necessity?

The Rams are 3-0 in the division, but 1-5 everywhere else. Not this year boys, sorry. The Seahawks pretty much need to go 6-1 to have a shot at the playoffs this year. And that depends on how far the Falcons fall or the two NFC North teams, the Packers and Vikings. Everyone else in the conference is just playing out the string or hoping, like the Seahawks, to run the table over the final seven games.

The refs screwed up the Ravens/Jaguars game and the NFL acknowledged the error. It should be a simple and fair matter, since it occurred on what should have been the last play of the game, to reverse the score and give the Ravens their victory. That can’t be done for only one reason: the gambling industry has already paid off the “winners.” So, while players in all pro sports are strictly monitored for ties to the gambling industry, the league itself is completely in bed with them. The gambling industry decides when a game is over. Period. And it doesn’t matter if the erroneous victory or loss affects the playoffs or a team’s entire season. Perhaps winnings should simply be delayed for one day to give the league the chance to do the right thing. Not that they would, but that they could.

wordpress stats plugin

Tagged with: , , , , ,
Posted in Vacant Observations
2015 Schedule
1. 9/14 vs MIN - W
2. 9-20 @ PIT - L
3. 9/27 @ ARI - L
4. 10-4 vs GB - L
5. 10/11 @ NYG - L
6. 10/18 vs BAL - W
7. 10/22 vs SEA - L
8. 11/1 @ STL - L
9. 11/8 vs ATL - W
10. 11/15 BYE
11. 11/22 @ SEA - L
12. 11/29 vs ARI - L
13. 12/6 @ CHI
14. 12/13 @ CLE
15. 12/20 vs CIN
16. 12/27 @ DET
17. 1/3 vs STL
The Harbaugh Scoreboard
49ers: 3-8
  [Not Harbaugh]
Michigan: 9-3
  [Harbaugh, Drevno]
Bears: 5-6
  [Fangio, Donatell]
Bills: 5-6
Cardinals: 9-2
Chargers: 3-8
  [Stevie Johnson]
Colts: 6-5
Redskins: 5-6
Raiders: 5-6
  [Crabtree, Seely]
Titans: 2-9
  [Walker, Cox]
2015 Prognostications
NJ49er: 7-9
Bakkentom: 3-13
Grumpy: 5-11
Winder: 10-6
Bythorn: 5-10-1
Phil Fan: 6-10
Spitblood: 2-14
RTFirefly: 5-11
Bullit: 6-9-1
Skeebers: 6-10
Rob: 9-7
Chuck: 11-5

2015 Draft Class
1 Arik Amstead, DE
2 Jaquiski Tartt, S
3 Eli Harold, OLB
4 Blake Bell, TE
4 Mike Davis, RB
4 DeAndre Smelter, WR
5 Bradley Pinion, P
6 Ian Silberman, OG
7 Trenton Brown, OT
7 Rory Anderson, TE