Now that we’ve dispensed with the football part of the 49er 2010 NFL season, fans can begin to focus once again on what has become the staple of the San Francisco 49ers in the twenty-first century: booing. Another year, another piece of shit.
This year, the one that was supposed to be the best of this century, is instead developing into one of the ugliest of them all. At this point, you have to seriously wonder whether this team can beat anybody at all this season.
You have to give credit to Mike Singletary for developing a team. Unfortunately, it’s a team of losers. Whenever the team needs someone to step up and blow it, the team always responds. Need an interception, here you go. Need a fumble, no problem. Need a twenty-yard gain by an opposing QB for a first down, piece of cake. If the defense shows up, the offense doesn’t. If the offense shows up, the defense fails. Sadly, neither side of the ball has shown up this year. A complete and thorough team meltdown. Opposing teams know if they play hard to the end, they will either beat us or we will find a way to lose.
The Eagles did Sunday night what the 49ers have failed to do twice this season: preserve a victory by their defense rising to the occasion at the end of the game. The 49ers also failed to do what what Atlanta and the Saints both did: have the ball at the end of the game and win it.
The Candlestick crowd thundered boos down on Alex Smith Sunday night with ten years worth of disgusted gusto. Smith bore the brunt of it, but he was no more deserving than anyone else on the team. Frank Gore twice fumbled while smashing into the line carrying the ball in one hand like he was in open space. Brainless. An entire team of brainless players led by a brainless head coach.
Either Singletary is still demanding a Jimmy Raye offense, or there’s barely any difference between Raye and Mike Johnson. The focus is still Gore up the middle over and over again. The passing game never gets into a rhythm and is only used on third downs. The complaints about Singletary attempting to succeed with a stone age vision appear to be valid. A young team like the Niners needs help from its coaches and they are getting none. The offense is forced each game to beat its head against a wall until desperation time.
The offensive and defensive lines seem to be the biggest failures this year. There is no pass blocking, no run blocking, no pass rush, and we can’t even stop the run any more. The offensive line will probably get better in time, but the defensive line will not.
Singletary is beginning to lose the team. He benched Smith last night during a commercial break then put him back in when Smith told him off on the sideline a la Shaun Hill two years ago. After the game, the team stood solidly behind Smith, and not behind Singletary. Singletary’s vision is officially a failure. It demands that the offensive line absolutely control the game, and this line cannot do that. With two rookies starting, the O-line can barely hold its own.
But the defense is the biggest failure this year. Even Patrick Willis looks ordinary out there. Perhaps teams have figured out Greg Manusky and know how to beat him.
I don’t have any solutions to suggest at this point. But neither does Singletary. Two years ago, he was the king of the realm. Today, he is dog meat. I actually found myself Sunday hoping the Niners would lose. And keep losing. Losing long enough for Jed York to become convinced it’s time for a new regime. This one is going nowhere. There is talent on the team. Any new head coach should be excited to inherit this mess. And it is a mess. But the mess is Singletary’s making and it’s highly unlikely he can fix it.