Let’s Play Two

Game day! The Divisional Round of the NFC Playoffs is at hand!

This round is so named because it used to actually be for division winners. This was before the playoffs were bastardized by the inclusion of “wildcard” teams. Teams that didn’t actually win anything during the regular season, but now get to fatten the coffers of the league and the TV networks. In baseball, “winning” the pennant means virtually nothing anymore. 162 games, your team comes out on top, big deal.

Of course, if the 49ers were a wildcard this year, I might not be wringing my hands over this issue, give or take my journalistic integrity on the morning that a column like this was due.

The San Francisco 49ers have accomplished the first part of their year long quest — getting back into the playoffs. They even once again secured the number two seed, defying the many “experts” who predicted they would fall back to the pack this year. Saturday night they begin the second, and hardest part of their quest — winning at least one more playoff game than last year — and preferably, TWO!

The Divisional Round game last year went into the books as one of the most electrifying wins in 49er history. It’s doubtful tonight’s game will top that in the drama department, but any kind of win will do just fine.

49er fever is sweeping through the Bay Area these days. The team handed out 49er caps to all the bridge toll booth workers, who presumably will be required to wear them all day today. This could be a tough assignment for a booth guy who’s a Raider fan. Which is a joke, really. If a Raider fan managed to get a toll booth job, he’d take your money, then stick a gun in your face and steal your car.

The team failed to win five times this year, and in four of those non-wins it was the defense that stubbed its toe. So it won’t take long for us to have a clue how the team will fare against Green Bay. If the defense is playing tough in the first quarter, the Packers should go home losers. If Aaron Rodgers puts up a couple of quick TDs, however, get ready for the offseason to begin early.

Long day ahead for all 49er fans, but especially so for the heavy drinkers amongst us. These lads have to somehow stay sober enough to see the TV screen at 5pm tonight. An even more heroic effort is needed for the East Coast fans who have to stay alive till 8pm. Good luck, fellas!

This will be the first big test of the Colin Kaepernick era. His success or failure will be tied directly to HC Jim Harbaugh’s credibility ratings. And, to more or less extent, the future of the franchise. I doubt Kaepernick will lay an egg, but the bar for him has been set pretty high by the QB that he replaced. An excellent, game winning performance is clearly a must. Not only this week, but next week, too.

All in all, another huge day in franchise history is upon us. May the fickle finger of fate flick that flirtatious football our way this year! Go Niners!

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39 comments on “Let’s Play Two
  1. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Rams reportedly hiring Rob Ryan as their DC.
    The other Ryan and the Jest are dysfunctional as ever in looking for an OC they are considering former Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, Bengals assistant Hue Jackson, and former Ravens offensive coordinator Cam Cameron. Marty seems the lesser of the evils.

  2. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Donte Whitner gives some insight on Justin Smith’s status from branch and SF Gate
    “It’s guesswork if Smith can play at something approximating the level that’s earned him Pro Bowl honors for the past four seasons. On Thursday, Whitner said Smith had squared off this week in non-contact practices against Leonard Davis and controlled the 355-pound guard.

    “I think he’ll be 95 percent,” Whitner said. “Leonard Davis is a large guy, and he’s not out there just pass-setting every play. He’s coming off and Justin has been testing himself and moving him around.”

    “Of course, practice conditions hardly mirror the mayhem Smith will face in the trenches Saturday.”

    Better news than I expected but I still think they should play Justin 60% of the time especially on the third downs. Fatigue becomes a factor with reagravating injuries.

  3. Del Mar DennisNo Gravatar says:

    I think someone must have filched Berger’s keyboard. Where’s the WOTD? I just thought of a sure-fire way to knock all the Packers to their knees today. Berger will sneak into their locker room and filch all of their athletic supporters. Then when the game starts, I’ll kick ’em all in the nuts!

  4. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Well played Mr Del! You filched the WOTD post! If I were to steal one their athletic supporters it would be one that looked like the Alabama QB’s girl friend. “If you can’t be an athlete, be an athletic supporter.”

  5. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    I can’t wait for NoFear to read the penultimate paragraph from Skeebers article. I do know I will enjoy reading his comment!

  6. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Del- It was 2 degrees with over an inch of snow on the ground when I awoke. I went back to bed.

  7. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Actually, I Lasorda’d and went back to bed. Seemed like the right thing to do.

  8. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    I’m predicting a GB win tonight. I don’t like our pass rush lately, Justin Smith, or no Justin Smith.

    We don’t rotate our D-line enough for my confidence that they can shut down Rodgers in the 4th quarter. We’ll be too tired.
     
    On offense, we run too much SCO. Since we haven’t ran more spread all year, are we expected to break it out today and suddenly be proficient at it? Not. The SCO will need to eating up yards, getting 1st downs and scoring for a 49er win. It is possible with GBs inability to stop the run, but I see pain for us fans.

  9. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    If I drink tonight it will begin about 4 ot 5. I didn’t drink yesterday and got 10 hours of sleep, I should be good to go!

  10. Del Mar DennisNo Gravatar says:

    “I doubt Kaepernick will lay an egg, but the bar for him has been set pretty high by the QB that he replaced.”
     
    The “high” bar set by Alex Smith:
    http://bjays.files.wordpress.com/2007/11/limbo_dancer148-48.jpg

  11. NoFear49erNo Gravatar says:

    If I hadn’t been reading Skeebers for so long I might take today’s last gasp attempt at Alex Smith puffery as clever satire. But having read Skeebers for so long I know he’s doing the legwork of a devoted life-long Smith supporter in an effort to set the table for an off-season-long “I told you so.”
     
    The Ann Killions are coming out, too. They’ve made a career of backing Smith against whoever they could cast as his detractor and certainly won’t pass up the chance to to add another one to the list.
     

  12. Del Mar DennisNo Gravatar says:

    7-0 Broncos. 90 punt return for Trindon Holliday.
    Alex Smith’s fault.

  13. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    If Packers win the toss they will defer.
    Favorite tactic is to try to score on the last possession of the half and take the opening kickoff of the second half to a score to totally demoralize their
    opponent with 14 or 10 unanswered points.

  14. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    NoFear- The Ann Killian part of the comment was brilliant! Nolan blamed her for the team’s ails and it was not forgotten. I’m blaming her for me being out of ales. I’m about to start drinking some Cape Cods, vodka/cranberry.
     
    Go Niners!

  15. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Anybody notice that Goldson was AP 1st team All-Pro?

  16. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Justin Smith made the team at two different positions. IIRC, he is only the 2nd person to ever do that. Who was the first person? It was Justin Smith, he did it last year!

  17. Del Mar DennisNo Gravatar says:

    Berger, it’s one thing having an AP 1st team All-Pro at safety. It’s another thing to have an AP 1st team All-Pro at quarterback. Did we sign Peyton Manning yet?

  18. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    When I lived in Phoenix I had just came from the sports bar to my favorite bar after watching a 49er game. A Packer fan asked me who won the Green Bay game. I told him “Gay Bay did.” He retorted, “Berger, of all the people to call my team Gay Bay.” I replied, “I’m not the one who named them the Packers!”

  19. robNo Gravatar says:

    my pick

    49ers 27 packers 17

  20. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Raiduhs are considering Martz for their OC job. Good luck with that.
    Seven step drops with a holy OL.
    Maybe Martz will change.

  21. robNo Gravatar says:

    NOFEAR

    i wouldn’t be surprised if we won tonight and end up going against your boi nolan and the falcons in the championship game !

  22. Del Mar DennisNo Gravatar says:

    Hey, Rob! You wanna know our secret weapon for tonight’s playoff game? Huey Lewis and the News is singing the National Anthem. 31-21 Huey and the Niners. Book it!

  23. NoFear49erNo Gravatar says:

    DeLuca, that would make two of my playoff predictions wrong.
     
    And leave just Alex Smith coming in at QB for the win to complete the fantasy.

  24. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Inactive lists announced:

    The 49ers’ other inactives are QB Scott Tolzien, S Trenton Robinson,Billy Cundiff, RB Jewel Hampton, G Joe Looney, DT Tony Jerod-Eddie and DT Ian Williams.

    For the Packers, receiver Donald Driver is active, while running back Alex Green heads up a list of inactives that also includes WR Jarrett Boykin, CB Davon House, LB Frank Zombo, TE D.J. Williams, DT Jordan Miller and DE Jerel Worthy.

  25. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Another one and done choke job by Peyton Manning. Sure glad we didn’t sign that guy!

  26. robNo Gravatar says:

    NFC CHAMPIONSHIP here we come !

  27. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Discount double choke!

  28. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    I never expected play calling like that. It was like Chris Ault was calling the Pistol offense. We were spreading the offense about 80 or more percent of the time.

  29. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Kaep’s pick six did not phase Renojim or I. We just said, no big, he’ll get it back. He always seems to recover.

  30. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Is it just me, or does it seem Goldson is everywhere?

  31. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    If any safety in footbal is better than Goldson, who is it?

  32. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Crabtree was once again impressive as heck!

  33. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    I can’t believe I am complimenting Greg Roman! He did a great job calling plays!

  34. robNo Gravatar says:

    hmmm
    in two more hours i will have been up for 24 hours straight !

    think maybe it would be a good idea for me to get some sleep ?

  35. robNo Gravatar says:

    oh , let me ask this again …

    where are we going ???

  36. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Great Win!!!
    Awesome play by CK, Gore, Crabtree and the Oline.
    Niner football is 16 more minutes
    of ball possession and keeping their offense on the sidelines.
    We need to close the deal especially if iot’s Petey asking “What’s your deal?”

  37. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    New post is up.

  38. bullitNo Gravatar says:

    Berger

    I still have issues with Goldson’s inconsistent play.
    He makes some fabulous plays, no question but in my book those are cancelled by his bonehead plays.
    On the first deep pass to Jones he was late in helping on the deep ball.
    He’s got to be smarter with the helmet to helmet hits. The zebras are looking for it especuially from Goldson and something like that will be very costly when a game is on the line.
    What he did yesterday was spear the runner who was almost down.
    Both Goldson and Whitner had below average games for them.

2018 Schedule
9-9, L: Vikings 24, 49ers 16
9-16, W: 49ers 30, Lions 27
9-23, L: Chiefs 38, 49ers 27
9-30, L: Chargers 29, 49ers 27
10-7, L: Cardinals 28, 49ers 18
10-15, L: Packers 33, 49ers 30

10-21: vs. Rams, 5:20 pm, Sun.
10-28: @ Cardinals, 1:25 pm, Sun.
11-1: vs. Raiders, 5:20 pm, Thur.
11-12: vs. Giants, 5:15 pm, Mon.
BYE
11-25: @ Tampa, 10:00 am, Sun.
12-2: @ Seattle, 5:20 pm, Sun.
12-9: vs. Broncos, 1:25 pm, Sun.
12-16: vs. Seattle, 1:25 pm, Sun.
12-23: vs. Bears, 1:05 pm, Sun.
12-30: @ Rams, 1:25 pm, Sun.
 
2018 Draft Class
1. OT Mike McGlinchey
2. WR Dante Pettis
3. LB Fred Warner
3. DB Tarvarius Moore
4. DE Kentavius Street
5. CB D.J. Reed
6. S Marcell Harris
7. DT Jullian Taylor
7. WR Richie James
 
2018 Prognostications
Bakkentom: 8-8
Bullit: 9-7
Grumpy: 8-8
Mr Fletch: 7-9
NJ49er: 9-7
Skeebers: 10-6
Winder: 8-8

Spitblood: 0-16
Rob!!!: 16-0

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