Putrid Parallels

The first week of the 2010 NFL season is in the books. Underdogs had quite a lift off. The Chiefs beat the Chargers, Texans over Colts, Redskins over Dallas. All these 2009 bottom dwellers were playing at home, although the Texans were not exactly bad last year, and all beat the division favorite team. The Rams came within an eyelash of beating the Cardinals.

So, the 49ers had some company in the egg laying department. Unless 2012 has come earlier than expected, these aberrations will soon be corrected and the bad teams will soon return to stinking it up, while the good teams return to winning football.

Do the 49ers belong in that group of “good” teams, though? They laid by far the biggest egg of the weekend, scoring the fewest points of any team in the league, and being the least competitive of any of the surprise losers.

The 2007 49ers season began with fans talking about a return to the playoffs. Much like this year, but with a bit more wishful thinking than solid expectations. It was Mike Nolan’s third year as HC, just as it is Mike Singletary’s third year now. Nolan relied on his defense to overcome an inept offense, but that defense eventually lost heart and could not save the day. Need I point out that Singletary follows the same formula?

The 2007 team started off 2-1, but did it despite an almost unwatchably poor offense, featuring one three and out after another. Then injuries to Alex Smith and Manny Lawson exposed the team’s woeful depth chart, and the season quickly disintegrated, leading to an implosion of player and fan confidence that ultimately cost Nolan his job.

This 2010 team now faces the very real possibility of duplicating that team wide 2007 melt down. It has the same ominous feel to it. Fans in the Bay Area are getting far too expert in recognizing this stench. And the aroma is in the air.

Singletary berated Smith and Michael Crabtree in the locker room immediately after the game. Smith contradicted his mechanical failure explanations of the late play calls, laying the blame on Jimmy Raye. Raye then gave a shot to Smith for not using available emergency plays. Excuses were trotted out that have become lame and tiresome. The “we’ll get it fixed” lament has become as irritating as fingernails on a blackboard. Singletary is beginning to lose credibility, just like Nolan did as the promises stayed right there in the promising arena and never became reality.

Excuse me for a moment, I have to go throw up.

Okay. Better now. The blogosphere went berserk on Monday. It was difficult to tell who was getting the most venom among Singletary, Smith, and Raye. Singletary said the team was contemplating moving Raye from the booth to the sideline, eliminating Mike Johnson as the middle man in relaying the play calls to Smith on the field. Also contemplated, a wrist band for Smith with the plays numbered so Raye would only have to call out a number rather than a ten word phrase. Did these problems not occur during the pre-season games? Why weren’t they fixed then?

What is obvious, yet unstated, about this contemplated change is that Raye and/or Johnson were not properly performing their duties. Singletary insists Raye will continue to be the play caller, much like Nolan insisted Jeff Hostler would continue to be the play caller in 2007. What’s unsettling is that the question is being asked of Singletary openly. That means everyone in the world can see there’s a problem with the play calling. Subtle insider coachspeak explanations no longer suffice to dilute the criticism. It’s definitely gotten to the “Even my wife/ten year old kid can see there’s a problem” time.

Singletary has been generally quick to pull non-performing players, but it is doubtful he will do that with Raye. His regime has now reached the stage of sink or swim with the guy he hired fresh out of the box in 2009, and his tenure as the 49er HC hangs in the balance. This offense should be potent. It is not.

This is an angry fan base right now. The wolves are at the door. Will the players continue to buy into what Singletary is selling? The next few weeks will give us that answer.

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16 comments on “Putrid Parallels
  1. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    I said after two weeks I would re-evaluate my 10-6 prediction after I see how the play calling has evolved. Well, it hasn’t. I don’t thnk I need a 2nd week to watch a non change. If Norris is in the game he is the very symbol of what is wrong with our offense and Raye is the architect. I doubt Sing will make a change and it will cost him his job, after all, Sing is the boss on the field and it all comes back to him. No amount of good QBing can save play calling from the 1980s. Fire Raye before it cost Sing his job too.

  2. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    My new prediction, 49ers go 8-8.

  3. ROBNo Gravatar says:

    the only good part about this disaster is that every one of our weaknesses were exploited by carroll (and our ex teamates including scott m. no doubt were a big help to pete c. there) …
    so now the problems we need to fix have been exposed and are soooo clear to see , there’s no way we can not be able to identify what needs fixing and get to work putting them right !
    the big question is , and in light of that debacle on sun … can we get the job done and fix these issues , or are we just going to repeat the same pattern over and over again for the rest of the year !?
    whether or not alex smith , jimmy raye and in the end mike singletary , keep their jobs will be determined by it !

    i hope you guys can follow this rather poorly worded little bit of personal therapy ! i think it has a good point to make !

  4. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    The worst part about the team sucking is the main blogs become completely overrun with every two-bit brain in the world. And there are far too many of them under normal circumstances. Just unreadable screeches. Then you’ve got bad football and bad reading. A double punch in the stomach. Bad football still has some entertainment value, but bad reading does not.

  5. ROBNo Gravatar says:

    SORRY skeebs , i know you being you that really hurts !
    chuck’s blog is pretty hot right now ! give it a quick look !

  6. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Well, it’s not that big an accomplishment to take a 2-14 team and improve it to a 7-9 team, especially when you have a full 3.5 years to do it. Any NFL observer of consequence will tell you getting a 7-9 team to a 10-6 team is the hardest improvement to succeed at, and that is Singletary’s task.
    Singletary also has only had 1.5 years so far, so your tortured sarcastic comparison is a bit of a failure. As is your silly reference to Alex crying to the press. Nolan stabbed him in the back, in the press and in the locker room. Alex defended himself, and in the end Alex was right and Nolan lost credibility because of it.

  7. unca_chuckNo Gravatar says:

    Good for you, NoFear. I know yer baiting here. And you know I’m the master baiter. Still got your nose firmly planted in Mike Nolan’s ass. Does he get a reach-around?

    Yeah, 5-11 in Nolan’s 3rd year was spectacular. A spectacular failure. This season ain’t over yet, and it may go south in a hurry, but that doesn’t make Nolan look any better for the wear. All it does is make the front office look more foolish in its hiring practices.

    In fact, Singletary likely follows the same course Nolan does in becoming a DC somewhere else.

    Skeebs, yeah, the parallels to 2007 are uncanny. I really don’t think the team is as bad as it looked Sunday, but Jesus Christ, the schedule looks pretty tough from the get-go. The HAVE to beat KC and Philly before getting the Raiders. 3-5 at this point would be decent.

    By then, maybe they’d have figured shit out? Who knows? Like I said last year. Tenn retooled their offense in the bye week by benching Collins and starting V Young. These guys have had 2 years, and they can’t figure out how to get plays in.

    Over and over, same mistakes.

  8. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Looks like Jason Hill is back on the team and Tramaine Brock is headed to the PS.

  9. robNo Gravatar says:

    nofear , thanks for that !
    i needed a good laugh !

    oh wait … you were serious ?

  10. bigtimNo Gravatar says:

    it seems the biggest problem with the bloggosphere is the mon morning coaches trying to impose there will on the logical.
    with blatant exaggerations, like the one NF just posted, just to make some often times incoherent point.
    the skreeching is at a deafening pitch, until there squashed with reason,which is then battered by, your a alexsexual,its alexcuses, or any number of juvenile rantings offering no sound rebuttal just nonsense.
    the real problem is preparedness, and the ability to adapt on the fly, Rae doesn’t seem able or willing to make rapid course corrections, and Singletary is right there in lock step.
    this may be due to lack of confidence in the players ability but the over cautious approach is really not going to get it done open things up and let players play this over controlling may be good for your 5 year old( it wasn’t for mine) but is not a winning formula in the NFL.
    the players are good enough to adapt and over come the we are imposing our will on you concept.
    its just too much BS for the fans to believe,it will be interesting to see if the boo birds come out on Mon night

  11. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    NoFear, The coach killer is Jimmy Raye.

  12. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Nolan absolutely sucked as a coach. The best thing that happened to this team the last 5 years was Nolan getting fired. If Raye keeps calling the plays the next best thing will be Singletary getting fired.

  13. Mr FletchNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve been reading this blog over the off season, but this is my first posting.

    If you have not seen this article from Yahoo, check it out.


    The main thrust of the article is that (reportedly) Raye is in the habit of calling plays that aren’t actually in the play book.

    If true, it seems to me that keeping a coordinator that doesn’t know the correct names of his own plays is beyond foolish.

    Of course, much of the blogosphere’s attempt to place blame misses the point. There’s plenty of blame to go around. No need to ration it into one-person servings.

  14. SkeebersNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks, Fletch. And welcome to the board.

  15. BergerNo Gravatar says:

    Welcome aboard Fletch!

  16. bigtimNo Gravatar says:

    No fear I was simply using your analogous post as a example of what the masses have been smoking the computers over.
    I prefer to take a cautious approach since I am a outsider to the inner workings of the teams activities.
    Mr Fletch nice insight into the possible reasons for so much confusion in the offense and with Smiths obvious frustration with whats going on in the game, and the need for a interpreter like Johnson as a go between the coordinator and his quaterback

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 · 10:00 AMCIN
12/19 · 1:05 PM v ATL
12/23 · 5:20 PM v TEN
01/02 · 1:05 PM v HOU
01/09 · 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