Desperate Hours

The 49ers may not be winning games this year, but they sure are making news. While the news might be fascinating to the national media and fans of other teams, it is not the kind of news any Niner fan wanted to be hearing this year.

In three short weeks, the Niners have gone from consensus best team in the NFC West to division doormat and laughingstock. Mike Singletary has gone from leader of men to follower of orders. His all powerful position in the 49er organization has been rudely and suddenly demolished. He is no longer The Man.

The firing Monday of OC Jimmy Raye was resoundingly cheered throughout the blogosphere. Instead of a vicious and surly mob howling at the gates of 4949 Centennial Blvd., there was dancing in the streets. And, most tellingly, in the 49er locker room. Most pointedly from Singletary’s Captain, Vernon Davis.

The team and the fans were one step away from quitting on this season. And a very small step indeed. Actually, the step had probably been taken, but has been retracted for the moment. There is now a desperate hope that Mike Johnson, the new OC, will put together an offense that resembles an NFL commodity and is somewhat pleasing to watch.

But this honeymoon will be a short one if the team continues to lose. Nobody will be blaming the OC for our troubles then, however. The blame will fall on the players and most specifically on Singletary himself. I imagine a loss to Atlanta this Sunday will be grudgingly accepted by the fan base, but that is it. That is how short this honeymoon will be.

Singletary is in a lose, lose situation in terms of his credibility as the 49er HC. If the team does not improve under Johnson, Singletary will get the entirety of blame and will be fired at season’s end. If, however, the team responds to Johnson’s game plans and leadership and begins winning, the praise will go to Johnson and it will be openly wondered why Singletary, the great reader of pulses, could not see, until ordered to look, what every fan has long seen and was the primary topic of concern during the off season. In addition, if leadership is coming from the OC, what value does Singletary provide to the Niners?

It is almost impossible to envision this team’s players continuing to hold Singletary in the god-like awe they have previously had for him. They know he has lost his power. His motivational speeches will be harder by far for them to buy into. He no longer has total control. He no longer has willing disciples.

If the players genuinely like Singletary, they can bring him along for the ride, enjoy having him for an HC, and even fight hard to help him keep his job. But he is no longer the one doing the driving. At Monday’s press conference, Singletary had the subdued, nearly resigned look that coaches get when they have no more answers, no more BS explanations, and know that only a miracle can save them.

For the moment, however, there is a rekindling of hope and excitement. Since this flame could be a quick fizzle out, best to enjoy it while it’s here. In that light, we will resume football operations and move along to some film review of Sunday’s debacle in Kansas City. The featured look is at the play that broke the 49ers back and opened the flood gates.

NoFear’s Somewhat Instant Replay

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Posted in Tuesday Morning Waterboy
22 comments on “Desperate Hours
  1. TonyNo Gravatar says:

    Skeebs…your post was a bit later than usual…wondered if you decided to wait for more “news to break” so your blog wont be as you say …outdated before ink was dry…or worst you thru in the towel 馃槈 After watching Monday Night football…i was thinking we had a pretty innovative OC that Sing dumped..Sing wanted smash mouth…wonder how things might have been with a second or third year under Martz…( btw..Martz didnt think much of Smith) Anyway.. Sing got his guy (Raye) well…i think Sing needs to leave the cooking to someone who can… if he doesnt….HARBAUGH next year … Jed listen to your uncle Eddie!!

  2. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    A couple of wins do amazing things. Let us see what this coordinator does. If he does great his pedigree says head coach soon. So if he does well it could be a short run. I hope he does well anyway. Go 49ers.

  3. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Not just Martz last night, Tony. There was our first OC under Nolan, Mike McCarthy, enjoying a great run as HC in GB.

  4. TonyNo Gravatar says: should have waited on the post..Sing on Murh+Mac in a few minutes..he’s announcing he’s firing himself

  5. TonyNo Gravatar says:

    wonder how many times he says “we need to work on things to get where want to be… we’re not where we want to be …but we need to work to where we need to be”

  6. TonyNo Gravatar says:

    Good point Skeebs….i feel much better now 馃檨

  7. TonyNo Gravatar says:

    How about the Packers QB …lets rub more salt in the the wound

  8. robNo Gravatar says:


    BINGO !



  9. bigtimNo Gravatar says:

    you didnt need to post those screen shots to know how bad the niners D played on Sun the lack of ability to stop any play was only obscured by the obvious ineptitude on offense.
    Murf and Mac tried unsuccessfully to bait sing into throwing Raye and Smith under the bus, only time and a couple more game will tell if sing throws himself in front of the bus.

  10. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Tim, you are correct. The Niners’ D has looked anything but good so far. Two blowouts and 25 pts to N.O. A real regression from last year, and maybe more responsible for the K.C. loss than the offense. Hopefully, it’s due to fading enthusiasm over the Raye offense, and they will get it going now.

  11. robNo Gravatar says:

    the chefs had an excellent scheme there ! they had all of our guys picked up there so that play worked perfectly !

  12. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Fox has us at 27th in the power poll. What a joke. We should be 32nd.

  13. delmardennisNo Gravatar says:

    If the Niners played in the English Premier League, they’d be relegated to second division. We stink on ice.

  14. FranchiseNo Gravatar says:

    Recent Sing quote worth noting –
    “We’re going to make teams really think about defending the entire field.”
    Or should we assume he’s simply repeating what MJ told him. What a novel concept, if Sing will butt out of the gameplan.
    Can only go up from here – right?

  15. robNo Gravatar says:

    OMG !
    this is how teams think about defending the entire feild vs. us …

    ” ok should we defend the entire feild vs. sf ? ”


    “we’ll just load the box , take away vernon davis (seams) and … win ! ‘

    RIGHT !

  16. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    It starts win Moran Norris on the bench. I’ve said ad nauseum, you can not win if Moran Norris is the focal point of the offense.

  17. robNo Gravatar says:

    matt barrows said a lot of good things about mike johnson today that give me hope

    ” Works at Nevada, too … But, Like I wrote in today’s Bee, his objective will be to get everyone — Crabtree, Westrbook, Walker — involved in the offense so that defending the 49ers won’t be as simple as it’s been over the last year
    *What I’ll be looking for is improved play from Alex Smith. Johnson’s promotion is all about maximizing the QB position, which Raye failed to do. Look for some Norv Turner-style rollouts from Smith. Johnson’s forte is supposed to be that he can marry his attack to fit his players’ strengths. Task 1A will be doing just that with Smith
    *I think it’s possible to have big changes … Merely utilizing Brian Westbrook more will give the Falcons something to think about on defense
    *I think that will — should — be one of the changes. (getting norris out )The 49ers are far more effective/dangerous on offense when Delanie Walker (and byham )is in the game. Norris should be reserved for short — very short — yardage plays. …
    *Smith alluded to that yesterday … You have to read between the lines with him, but he implied that the 49ers haven’t done a great job at isolating players and finding mismatches. He said you can’t just pound it out against an opponent no matter what defense they’re in. You have to look at their scheme and figure out ways to exploit it. That is, there has to be some true game-planning — and half-time adjustments — from this point

  18. robNo Gravatar says:

    my barrows quotes above sound like they address the primary concerns about our offense ! i hope he’s right and gets these done … like using smith’s mobility to our advantage like i’ve been saying , and using walker and byham instead of norris , like berger wants !
    etc etc

  19. robNo Gravatar says:

    fear , thanks for the real football talk here ! beats the hell out of the silliness on the insider !

    imho our defense was biting on everything KC did at the snap to get us out of position !

  20. robNo Gravatar says:

    imo harralson had the best chance on that one … it looks like he has a back for a blocking matchup there ! maybe we should use brooks and even laboy a little more in longer yardage situations !

  21. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    This play should never work. Goldson blew it. He has regressed to looking like he did last year before the last 4 or 5 games. He wants big money, he’ll be lucky to be retained if he keeps this up. Smething tells me he’ll get better, I hope.

  22. robNo Gravatar says:

    brooks for harralson on 2nd and long ?

2021 Schedules
09/12: W 49ers 41, Lions 33
09/19: W 49ers 17, Eagles 11
09/26: L Packers 30, 49ers 28
10/03: L Seahawks 28, 49ers 21
10/10: L Cardinals 17, 49ers 10
10/17 BYE
10/24: L Colts 30, 49ers 18
10/31: W 49ers 33, Bears 22
11/07: L Cardinals 31, 49ers 17
11/15: W 49ers 31, Rams 10L
11/21: W 49ers 30, Jaguars 10
11/28: W 49ers 34, Vikings 26
12/05: L Seahawks 30, 49ers 23 12/12 路 10:00 AMCIN
12/19 路 1:05 PM v ATL
12/23 路 5:20 PM v TEN
01/02 路 1:05 PM v HOU
01/09 路 1:25 PM @ LAR

2021 Draft Class
1. QB Trey Lance, North Dakota State
2. OG Aaron Banks, Notre Dame
3. RB Trey Sermon, Ohio State
3. CB Ambry Thomas, Michigan
5. OG/OT Jaylon Moore, Western Michigan
5. CB Deommodore Lenoir, Oregon
5. S Talanoa Hufanga, USC
6. RB Elijah Mitchell, Louisiana
2021 Prognostications
Bullit: 12-5
Grumpy: 13-4
NJ49er: 11-6
Skeebers: 14-3
Winder: 12-5
Rob: 17-0
Spitblood: 0-17