I’m still having trouble grasping why Jim Harbaugh took the job as the 49ers Head Coach. Niner fans and ownership do not believe this is a rebuilding year. He’ll be expected to compete right away for the division title, yet there’s no QB on the roster except David Carr. He’ll also have to teach the team his version of the West Coast offense, with a possibility there will be a lockout that prevents him from doing this in time to be operating smoothly when the 2011 season begins.
This is a recipe for a disastrous pro debut.
There’s a lot of talk about the QBs in this upcoming draft, but none of them are going to start for the 49ers this year. And if they do, the team is not going to win the division. Or very many games.
It’s possible Jed York has privately assured Harbaugh he has a grace period of one year to get things turned around. This is not something fans would want to hear, so they sure as hell won’t hear it.
Still, this all seems a bit risky for a coach who was the hottest HC candidate on the market a month ago and had other options. He could have stayed at Stanford or gone to Michigan, but it seems clear that the pro game was the only one he wanted to play.
So, what attracted him to the QB-less 49ers?
As strange as it sounds, I think it was the offensive line and the tight ends. The O-line has been maligned so long in Ninerland that considering them a foundation of the team’s future seems ludicrous. But this is a line full of young, first and second round draft choices. They are going to keep getting better. And we all know the game is won in the trenches. A good O-line can turn a pretty boy sixth round draft pick into an HOF QB [ha ha, couldn’t resist]. It might, in a worst case scenario, even make David Carr functional. This O-line took quite awhile to build, but it is, at last, built.
From what I have gleaned about Harbaugh’s offense at Stanford, it appears he likes to run the ball and feature the tight ends, and build the play-action passing game off of this. The Niners were built to do precisely this. It is assumed, by fans and Harbaugh, that he will have much better success running this kind of offense than previous tenants who attempted it. When the bar is so low an ant can’t get under it, this is a safe assumption to make.
It seems probable that Trent Baalke gave Harbaugh assurances that he would work a trade for at least a stop gap pro QB for this coming year. I’ve mentioned before that I think Josh Johnson, the second stringer in Tampa Bay, is not only the most coveted trade possibility, but the cheapest. He already knows Harbaugh’s system and could step right in and function immediately.
The main problem now is waiting for the trading period to commence with no idea when exactly that period is going to begin. This calls for Faith. People readily have faith in death and taxes, but not easily do they trust that goodness will come. It might be time to brush up on my mantra skills. Ohmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm……