Go Ask Alice, I Think She’ll Know

The NFC West spun off its axis last week, with the Seahawks throwing in the towel, the Rams gearing up to defend against Jimmy Garoppolo, and the 49ers signing Richard (formerly Dickhead) Sherman, perhaps the most hated rival of the past seven years.

The Sherman signing is the sort of thumb-in-your-eye move Seattle has routinely applied to the Niners in the past. In that regard, signing him makes sense from a wound-your-enemy sort of view. Plus, sooner or later, the Niners will have the satisfaction of cutting him. If he can still play, good. If not, dumping him will be fun.

As for Seattle, unless they have a bunch of backup players who are excellent but unheard of, it appears they have decided they no longer have a team that can compete for a Super Bowl or even a division title, so they are discarding everything and starting over.

I doubt 49er fans will have much trouble getting a bang out of thumping their asses twice a year for the foreseeable future, but Seattle fans are probably asking themselves, “WTF? How did we suddenly become the 2015 49ers?”

We’ve now seen more activity in the two weeks leading up to Free Agency than we normally do when FA actually starts. Something is happening here, but we don’t know what it is, do we, Mr. Jones?

FA kicks off this Wednesday, March 14th. Time to load up on the popcorn and watch the 2018 NFL year roar into action.

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Posted in NFC West Gossip

Combine Week

The NFL Combine kicks off this week, which means GM John Lynch will have to come out of hiding and discuss/spin the Reuben Foster debacle.

Up to now, he’s been all smiles and good cheer. So this will be his first foray into damage control.

Trent Baalke collected an Executive of the Year award after his first draft, in 2011. But the only guy from that draft and the 2012 draft still with the Niners, or even still in the league, is Daniel Kilgore.

So it’s easy for what looks like a good draft to go south in a hurry. With Foster looking like a guy who’s too dumb to play in this league, it puts a lot of pressure on Solomon Thomas to perform at a much higher level than he showed his first year. Otherwise, the top two choices in last year’s draft are mostly a waste.

The best thing about the Combine is that when it’s over, the new league year and the start of FA are only a week away. Not to mention that the emptiness of February is gone for another year.

I got the flu this February, further marking it as a cursed set of days. Don’t know if any of you have gotten this year’s megawatt version, but it laid me low for two weeks. Just now crawling back to life.

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Posted in Mindless Drivel

Good News, Bad News

I suppose it’s time to crack open the door to the 2018 offseason. When we last viewed the 49ers, they were in the process of beating three playoff teams to close out the year on a five game winning streak.

All three of those teams had very little to play for, so the wins have an iffy nature to them. The first two wins of the streak were squeakers over the awful Bears and Texans.

Nevertheless, however you want to view the validity of these five games, it’s most certainly clear the 1-10 team that preceded them would not have won all five, or maybe even one or two.

Can one player drag an otherwise mediocre team to a Super Bowl? In this watered-down era of the NFL, maybe so.

At any rate, for the next seven months, Jimmy Garoppolo fever will be inflaming the hearts of 49er fans all over the country. And perhaps making the Seahawks, Rams, and Cardinals extremely sweaty.

If the Cardinals manage to land a decent QB this offseason, the NFC West will be a roaringly competitive division next year.

One thing’s for sure: Over the next seven months, Garoppolo will become the most hyped player in franchise history.

That’s the good news, of sorts. The bad news is the team may have to outscore everyone to have a winning season. The defense took a major hit over the weekend with the second arrest in a month for budding star linebacker Reuben Foster. The first arrest was for possession of weed. The latest, which occurred Sunday, was for domestic violence and possession of an assault rifle. He also failed a drug test at last year’s combine. He’s likely looking at a six to eight week suspension at the least for the 2018 season and an offender in both substance abuse and personal conduct.

Last year, CB Tramaine Brock got a DV arrest and was released within 24 hours. We’ll see today whether the 49ers reveal a double standard for star players versus expendable players like Brock. GM John Lynch could accuse himself of overreacting with Brock, since Brock’s charges were ultimately dismissed and he was also cleared by the NFL, thus enabling Lynch to take a wait and see approach with Foster.

On the silver lining side of things, at least Foster screwed up now, when the Niners have time to find a replacement in the draft or free agency, and not next summer, when they’d be SOL.

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Posted in Vacant Observations

As the Alex Turns

The first week of the 2018 offseason has passed quietly into history, taking with it all the nothingness of its existence. Although, to be fair, 1,063,462 persons around the globe croaked last week, so perhaps the week has significance to those who knew these departed souls. Or, in the case of Hell, perhaps the week was the last semi-pleasant moments for the bad apples for the rest of eternity.

Harsh stuff, this bad appling business. Somebody should warn Jed York before it’s too late. Or maybe not.

Alex Smith is back in the NFC, traded to Washington on Tuesday night. In the past seven years, Smith-led teams have missed the playoffs only once. He’s becoming a specialist in resurrecting franchises, then handing them off to young QBs. The first youngster was a spectacular failure. Will Patrick Mahomes fare better with Kansas City or flame out, too?

The NFC East will now have two teams led by older QBs and two by youngsters. It will be the Generation Gap division.

The NFC West will have Jimmy Garoppolo, Russell Wilson, Jared Goff, and … Kirk Cousins? If I’m Cousins, I’d think hard about signing with the Broncos. With their defense, he might finally make an SB run. Right over Kansas City, if the football gods have a quirk of amusement available.

The NFC South is set at QB, with Brees, Newton, Winston, and Ryan. And the North has Rodgers, Trubisky, and Stafford. Which leaves Minnesota and the Cardinals with the only QB vacancies in the NFC.

You can bet the media will re-launch their failed Pimping for Kaepernick campaign from last offseason regarding these two openings. Can’t wait to see the howls of protest when their boy is passed over yet again.

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Conference Title Games


And another tedious NFL season bites the dust. Next up, two weeks of shameless, overhyped, self-aggrandizing nausea.

Fortunately, this is a 49er site and we can legitimately ignore the whole pile of steaming hot crap.

Sorry, but apparently I’ve reached my horseshit limit for the 2017 season.

They say winning cures everything, so maybe next year we’ll find out if that’s true, or how much it’s true. Enough to make the NFL seem less than the tired act it has been the past two years? Enough to overlook that Jed York is still the owner?

Jimmy Garoppolo‘s performance over the last five games of the season made it abundantly clear what a really good QB can do for a team, taking a 1-10 disaster to five straight wins and making an unremarkable offensive line and group of wide receivers seem like a solid bunch. He’s got everyone in Santa Clara making plans for the playoffs next year.

Whether that happens or not, his ability to lift everyone on the offense is something Colin Kaepernick never came close to accomplishing. Nor did Alex Smith, Brian Hoyer, or anybody else since the York’s took over the team. Pretty much wiping out the central excuse for all of them — that they were victims of a poor team around them. In fact, it makes it clearer that the only one who lifted the 2011-2014 Niners to greatness was the HC, Jim Harbaugh.

It’s not yet clear whether current HC Kyle Shanahan will turn out to be a great HC. He’s a pretty good OC, but, like Garoppolo, the team has never played a BIG, pressure packed game yet. Maybe the answers to that challenge will come in 2018.

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Posted in FOS Speculation
2017 Schedule
Sept. 10: vs Carolina: L 3-23
Sept. 17: at Seattle: 9-12
Sept. 21: vs. L.A. Rams: L 39-41
Oct. 1: at Arizona: L 15-18
Oct. 8: at Indianapolis: L 23-26
Oct. 15: at Washington: L 24-26
Oct. 22: vs. Dallas: L 10-40
Oct. 29: at Philadelphia: L 10-33
Nov. 5: vs. Arizona: L 10-20
Nov. 12: vs. N.Y. Giants: W 31-21
Week 11 — Bye
Nov. 26: vs. Seattle: L 13-24
Dec. 3: at Chicago: W 15-14
Dec. 10: at Houston: W 26-16
Dec. 17: vs. Tennessee: W 25-23
Dec. 24: vs. Jacksonville: W 44-33
Dec. 31: at L.A. Rams: W 34-13
2017 Draft Class
1. DE Solomon Thomas
1. ILB Reuben Foster
3. CB Ahkello Witherspoon
3. QB C.J. Beathard
4. RB Joe Williams
5. TE George Kittle
5. WR Trent Taylor
6. DT D.J. Jones
6. LB Pita Taumoepenu
7. CB Adrian Colbert
2017 Prognostications
NJ49er: 6-10
Skeebers: 6-10
Bullit: 5-11
Mr Fletch: 5-11
RTFirefly: 5-11
Chuck: 9-7
Grumpy: 4-12
Rob: 9-7
Winder: 4-12