49ers 18, Seahawks 37: Grades


These are the grades for the 49ers’ 37-18 loss to the Seahawks.

QUARTERBACK: F. Blaine Gabbert couldn’t have played much worse. He completed only 56 percent of his passes, averaged a miniscule 4.8 yards per attempt and beaned a running back in the helmet with a one-yard pass to the flat. Gabbert couldn’t hit a receiver in stride if his life depended on it. The only thing he does well is scramble. The Niners’ would be better off with Trevone Boykin, the Seahawks’ rookie backup quarterback.

RUNNING BACKS: F. Carlos Hyde rushed for 24 yards on nine carries during the first half when the game still was a game. Then Chip Kelly padded Hyde’s stats by feeding him the ball down 34 points with ten minutes left in the fourth quarter. Hyde’s signature moment came on the first play of the game when he mistakenly lined up at wide receiver instead of running back, and Blaine Gabbert turned and tried to hand the ball to no one. The Niners must have practiced that play 20 times last week. How did Hyde forget where to go? Remarkable.

WIDE RECEIVERS: F. Torrey Smith, the Niners’ leading receiver, caught just three passes for 35 yards then left the game with an injured ankle. Quinton Patton, the best receiver Trent Baalke ever drafted, caught one pass for eight yards.

TIGHT ENDS: F. Vance McDonald left the game early with a hip injury, Blake Bell dropped a pass and Garrett Celek caught three for 25 yards. This group of tight ends is among the worst in the NFL.

OFFENSIVE LINE: B. Kept Gabbert clean (no sacks) and gave him more than enough time to throw. Struggled creating running lanes during the first half, but I blame Chip Kelly’s simplistic system more than this group of players.

DEFENSIVE LINE: F. Got pushed around by the worst offensive line in the league, and gave up two touchdowns and a career-high 106 rushing yards to Christine Michael who had started just three NFL games before this one.

LINEBACKERS: D. Ahmad Brooks was the 49ers’ best player. He recorded two pass breakups, two tackles for loss and a sack. The rest of the linebackers were terrible. Eli Harold committed a horse collar penalty on third-and-long which gave the Seahawks an automatic first down. Gerald Hodges jumped offside and gave the Seahawks a free play which turned into a 40-yard pass to Jimmy Graham, who also beat NaVorro Bowman for a touchdown catch earlier in the game.

SECONDARY: F. Eric Reid was the 49ers’ worst player on defense. He gave up a 59-yard catch to Doug Baldwin and let Jimmy Graham wrestle what would have been an interception out of his hands. Reid has poor range and is one of the most overrated players in the league. The Niners’ corners aren’t much better. Tramaine Brock was equally responsible for Baldwin’s 59-yard catch, and Jimmie Ward left the game in the first half after pulling a muscle running down the field to cover a kickoff.

SPECIAL TEAMS: F. Phil Dawson missed a 53-yard field goal by about 15 yards and the punt-coverage unit gave up a 62-yard return to Tyler Lockett.

COACHES: F-. Jim O’Neil is an awful defensive coordinator – even worse than Eric Mangini – but Chip Kelly was the Niners’ kryptonite in this game. His plan was to throw short of the sticks on third down and hope his receiver could pick up the first down after the catch. He said so after the game.

This plan was moronic. Why? Because Kelly’s starting quarterback is physically incapable of throwing a pass that leads a receiver to run after the catch. Kelly should have known this – everyone else does. The Niners’ offense actually might have been successful if Kelly had called third-down plays in which the primary receiver ran to the sticks or past them. Instead, the offense converted just 4-of-15 third downs, and at one point had converted 0-of-10.

Can someone point out one area in which the Niners have improved from last season? To me, they have gotten worse on offense, defense and special teams.

  1. Gabbert can’t succeed with a bunch of idiots at the skill positions. It looks to me like the black players are deliberately trying to undermine him. Chip better clean that up in a hurry, if they make it a race issue then the white players may not want to work for Kaepernick, and some of them WON’T.

    1. Nothing’s changed. We didn’t have a qb last season and we dong have one this season. Valle chose not to address our biggest issue. He could have gone after Wentz, Goff, Prescott, etc. he waited until 6th round for a qb, then cut him. He needs to be fired. We have the exact same weaknesses we have had for 3 – 4 years. Inexcusable.

    2. I mean obviously. Why would NFL players play hard for a white quarterback? It was one thing when Blaine had his golden locks, but the hair battle has been declared, and there has been a line in the fro. Moron.

      1. I’m voting for Trump and until today ignoring this insane blog. What sort of person would follow 49ers anymore. Why followers of Hillary of course. Go Trump. Make America Great again.

      2. Oh joy, more politics on a sports blog. -_- How about you guys just ignore the racist post of Robert and wait for Grant to remove it?

    1. pass protection definitely better, QB is complete garbage, he is no deep threat, everyone plays 49ers for the run because of this. It is a team sport and your worse player can’t be QB.

  2. The problem is not coaching though.
    There have been too many regimes for that.

    It’s Trent Baalke.

    Once he is gone you will have beeter plays and better coaches will be attracted to THE 49ers.

    As long as he us here this is the results you are going to get.

    It’s been proven with too many different coaching staffs now.

  3. Quinton Patton, the best receiver Trent Baalke ever drafted, caught one pass for eight yards.

    What was Baalke’s answer to, “What do you want on your tombstone”?

    Grant, I warned you about Michael and Graham! I think the offensive line is better than last year, if not by subtraction alone. OL – Devey/Pears= Better

    1. I kinda like that guy who plays for the Raiders … caught 8 passes today for over 100 yards … what’s his name … was a high first round pick … oh yeah, guy by the name of Crabtree … 49ers need a guy as good as him …

  4. “OFFENSIVE LINE: B. Kept Gabbert clean (no sacks) and gave him more than enough time to throw. Struggled creating running lanes during the first half, ”

    That was the plan by the Seahawks on defense: Keep on their lanes to stop the run, which they did, and to let Gabbert beat them with the pass. Hardly a function of good play by the O line. The D dictated the Niner’s game.

  5. 49ers lost to the Seahawks by 19 today and it wasn’t that close. Would Hv been a 34 point loss if not for garbage time TDs by Carlos Hyde. In 2014 when the 49ers lost to the Seahawks by 16 Jed York Tweeted an apology and sd the 49er performance was unacceptable. The team has actually dropped to an even lower level of unacceptable since that game. York fired Harbaugh after that season. When will York hold Trent Baalke accountable for this roster?


  6. During Kelly’s post game autopsies, I close my eyes and hear Coach Tomsula spouting all the same lame excuses about failing to execute. What a drag.

    1. Exactly. A reporter asks Nolan, Singletary or Tomsula “But coach, the opposing defense not only knows the next play, they know the EXACT play, a run and they bring 8 or nine players to the box and you run the play anyway and your running back gets stuffed. Why do you keep doing this?” Coach:” No no, you just don’t understand. We just gotta execute better.”

      Sigh. Starting to think maybe next year already.

  7. If Jed York had a brain for football (which we know he doesn’t) he would do whatever it takes to lure David Shaw over and let Shaw pick his GM. Unfortunately, this makes too much sense… Meanwhile the Niners will maintain status quo and continue to swirl around the NFL’s toilet bowl. Niners ownership values yes men over winning.

  8. Chip Kelly is going to pull a saban and bail mid season to a college program with some talent. This is a no win for him. Jed York should be embarrassed this is the product they put on the field.

        1. 80, no coaching legend could work with this roster. It’s the same in Cleveland and Miami. Hue Jackson and Adam Gase are alleged offensive guru’s. Those offense are equally bad. This is a talent issue, not coaching.

  9. The 49ers are falling apart and their team discipline is also. Which is reflected by team managements fearful reaction to players holding demonstrations on the field before the game.

    How long will this last ? When team ownership allows players to thumb their noses at more than half the fans with this demonstrations and then the team goes out & stinks the joint up with bad play ?

    We could have received a fourth round draft pick for Kapaernick. Now we would be lucky to get a seventh round pick for him. Why does the ownership put up with him when he is so bad that he is worse than Gabbert ?

    1. Time to fire Balke, he put together this ridiculously untalented offensive roster. Our tight ends and wide outs are a joke. McDonald has spent more time injured than healthy, time to kick him to the curb, along with Gabbert

    2. So Kap can play like he has the last two years?? There’s a real inducement to watch the 9ers………….

      Its Baalke……………

    3. Have you forgotten Kaepernick’s failed performance last year? Passes over thrown, in the dirt or receivers wide open but completely missed? The ugly fact is the niners qb’s are terrible 1, 2 & 3. No matter who goes in, Gabbert, Kaep or Ponder, they are in a world of hurt. Think about it. If their quarterback was at least decent and their number one receiver was really good, would we be having this discussion? This situation has nothing to so with Kelly and everything to do with Balke.

      2016, here we go again.

      1. Kaep was injured last season. I think he was injured when he got blown up along the side line in the Viking game. Kaep needed 3 surgeries to repair all the damage, so I am going to cut him some slack.

        Gabbert is fully healthy, and bounced passes, threw short of the sticks, threw before the RB was looking, and generally had a terrible day passing. Kaep, now that he is fully healthy, should do just fine, or at least better than Gabbert.

    4. Michael

      …Same old…same old…why don’t you check and see that Kaep is 1-6 against the Hawks…and they have got better…HE HASN’T. Let the season play out …Gabbert is doing fine…how many ‘drops did we have yesterday ? If you want to change something, get rid of the ‘old dead wood’ and get some draft choices for Kaep and AD.

      This when we’re i-2 ?

  10. This script was so written before the season starts. Gabbs is average. He will start, he will do exactly as he has done in the past (inaccurate), then Kaep (another average or below average) will get a chance, he will also be inaccurate) and on and on this tired tune plays. Here we go again.

    1. Guarantee if Kaep gets to start he will do much better with this O-Line than he has in the previous years standing behind devey pears and martin. Give Kaep time to throw and just watch. I don’t even like the guy, Gabbert is not average at all, maybe keep.

    1. He’s kicking back with his $4m a year for the next three years on the same beach the stapler guy from Office Space hangs out.

  11. On Baalke, and allow me the liberty, but of two options, that Baalke actually knows football and sells us Blaine Gabbert versus that Baalke is Keyser Soze, which is worse?

  12. Hyde previously mentioned he wanted Gabbert to keep the ball more often on option runs. Maybe he lined up at receiver on the first play to send a message to Blain. (2% serious)

      1. Also, don’t spend money at biggest hose job of all, Michael Mina’s. It’s the Gabbert of restaurants, i.e. below averae.

      2. Now your talking.

        Why do 9er fans put up with this sewage, week after week, year after year?
        If the coaches win, they get fired. If the coaches lose, they get fired.

        Everybody goes–except for Baalke.

  13. The only area of improvement has been the offensive line. But really this is not a coaching issue now. This is about a lack of talent at the most important positions:QB,RB, and WR.

    Give Chip at least one bonafide threat on offense then judge him. He’s been gifted 2 terrible QB’s, an average back and not one real quality WR.

    The coaching issue however is on the defensive side of the ball. O’Neill like Mangini is trying too hard to be the smartest guy in the NFL

  14. The team has played poorly in two games in a row. The offense looks similar to last year; horrible. They have to throw the ball more than 20 yards down the field 2-3 times a quarter. They have to loosen up the defenses or they are going nowhere.
    The defense needs improved play at every position, but most importantly pressure the QB.
    This has the making of a very long season.

    1. Good news is we’ll get to watch him put up dizzying numbers next week. Bad news, well, we’ll get to watch him put up dizzying numbers next week… :-P

    2. Limited starts, spent his first year and a half doing a lot of running. Took all/most of his snaps in the shotgun and was inconsistent at first in the pocket although he had improved considerably his senior season.

      I think if Dak had one more year as a starter in College he would have come out as a first round prospect. DUI right before the draft didn’t help his stock either. Might have been 2nd or 3rd if not for that. I never heard specifically of anyone dropping him down but you can’t get a DUI right before the draft and not have some teams drop you down, or off.

      1. All I know is that Baalke liked the prospect of an injured CB better then what he saw in Prescott and that pretty much leads us to where the team is at today.

  15. Man…That was the first time I have ever turned offa Miner game early ever.So many problems with this team.I wasn’t up or down on the Kelly hire but this team seems less prepared than even Tomsulas..I have and always will believe this is still on Baalke,even back in the Dark days we had players who would flash and make you believe we could get better but now….wow man this team looks horrible I see no talent at all…I really believe Baalke could follow a Mel kiper draft and have a better roster than this…so many first and second round picks that have absolutely no impact… makes it more frustrating watching guys like Dak and Wentz going right down the field while Buckner Garnett Redmond and the rest of Baalkes picks are invisible…

  16. Just want you think last year was bad…wait till next week…no Miner fans will be showing up to watch this train wreck…Bet Levis is full of Blue jerseys!

  17. The team wasn’t fired up for a game against the Hawks. Most of that is on coaching, but some of it is a lack of veteran leadership. Gone are Willis, Gore, and J Smith.

  18. So seriously, what’s on the coaches and what’s on the FO because of the personnel they’ve assembled?

    We’re so far under the cap and so weak on talent. I am starting to wonder if this really is a Baalke issue more than a coaching issue?

    1. It is most likely ownership which is limiting team payroll and constraining Baalke
      49ers are in for a long winter with the Dorks in charge

  19. 49reasons please tell me again how great our secondary is and at the same time remind me of how little I know about this team.

  20. Gotta give Kelly credit for sticking to his plan on offense by continuing to run the ball on 1st down repeatedly regardless of the score.

    1. Why do you say that Jack? I’d give him more credit if he realized his game plan wasn’t working and made an adjustment. Or maybe you said that tongue in cheek?

  21. Man Bennett can sure trash talk. Ouch!

    Eric Branch @Eric_Branch
    #Seahawks DE Michael Bennett on challenge of facing Blaine Gabbert: “There is no challenge. He threw for 100 yards.” #49ers

    Michael Bennett on Blaine Gabbert: “I think (Colin) Kaepernick gives them a better chance of winning but that’s just my opinion.”

    1. At some point Gabbert’s ineffectiveness will afford Kaepernick playing time. Kelly will wait until Kaep gives him the thumbs up so that he is insulated from criticism about Kaep’s health. The results won’t be much different in terms of wins and losses. Draft dreams will ensue.

  22. Prime he’s an opposing player who runs his mouth. I do believe Blaine’s not much of challenge, CK wouldn’t have faired any better and Bennett would have trashed him after the game as well.

    1. Good, I thought you were one of those moronic fans who think a guy who’s historically been as inaccurate and indecisive could come in and elevate this already poorly talented offensive personnel!
      Kap would have come in today and thrown at least 3 picks today. That’s his history. Gabberts is play safe and do nothing extraordinary. Kaps is try and be the hero and force things to the point of getting outside the game plan.
      I said Kap should have started the 2nd half to showcase himself for a trade. In retrospect, Joe Montana could have played today and it would not have mattered.

      1. The pass blocking was okay, run block not so much, everything else was crap. I wouldn’t let BG off the hook so easy, a better QB would have made some of those 3rd downs like Montana.

  23. The silver lining to a performance like this is that it’s one more nail in Baalke’s coffin. York will ship Mr. Aspberger out of here and Gamble can get us headed in the right direction. Despite the money out there to ex-coaches and the articles that will be written about Jed’s cheap family I suspect that Kelly will be gone after his second and Gamble’s first season.

    1. If the offense still looks like this after next season with Baalke gone Gamble can just lay this stinker on Trent and move on. Gamble didn’t carry the AGM title at the time of Kelly’s hiring so few if anyone will put it on Gamble when they move on from Chip.

      1. This offense already has Baalke written all over it! It’s clear Now Kelly was given zero choice in selecting any offensive personnel on last years draft.
        The worst mistake they made was choosing best player available. They needed offensive weapons, they got none!
        Philly’s offense was never this bad last year.

        1. It’s pretty clear that Baalke doesn’t actually take the best player available. The philosophy is fine, the execution leaves a lot to be desired.

          1. There is a lot about Baalke’s overall rafting philosophy that I agree with (perhaps except his ideas on offense that dates back to the Parcellosaurus era). To put it in another way: What we have here is a failure to execute …

  24. On Rotoworld:

    “49ers CB Jimmie Ward exited Week 3 against the Seahawks with a quad injury and will undergo an MRI on Monday.
    Ward went down with a non-contact injury. Coach Chip Kelly says he thinks it’s a muscle injury as opposed to a ligament issue in Ward’s knee. Ward is the 49ers’ base right corner and moves into the slot in sub-packages.”

  25. I normally make 10ish interesting post game observations which everyone appreciates. Not today. What is the point. The niners are not a NFL caliber organization and the fish rots from the head down (as they like to say). That means his royal highness Kim Jong Jed is responsible . He is an embarrassment as a NFL owner. His lack of interest for our beloved team is palpable. I am no Jerry Jones fan, but I can clearly see the guy loves his team. We the people need to mobilize – immediately.

    Things will not change until Denise takes away her sons toy.

  26. – but Chip Kelly was the Niners’ kryptonite in this game. His plan was to throw short of the sticks on third down and hope his receiver could pick up the first down after the catch. He said so after the game.

    If Chip Kelly truly believes in that plan, he’s not the answer. Your chances of picking up a first down more than double when throwing at or past the sticks. Relying on YAC is a terrible strategy….

    1. But if you don’t have the personnel to get speration past the sticks, how does it make sense to throw it there?
      Patton has been invisible. Put a simple forearm or hand or Smith and he stops running. Kerley is not fast so who is left? Who on our team can match up with any teams #1 corner and you say I feel good about our chances?

    2. Maybe he is just saying that to protect his QB, that is all Blaine Gabbert has ever done. Worst 3rd down QB in the league, or just simply the worst QB in the league.. I bet Keenum passes him up after this display

  27. Defense allowed 2 100+ yd receivers and a 100+ yard rusher for the 2nd week and a row. It had been 971 games since the last time they’d even done that once.

    But yeah, let’s keep focusing on the offense and the QB.

    1. It all needs some help.. but consistent horrendous QB play going 3 and out non stop just puts your Defense back out there once again.

      1. The defense gave up 75 yards on the 2nd & 3rd plays of the game. That’s not on the offense. And they certainly weren’t winded when they gave up another TD on the next drive.

        Yes the offense stinks, but the defense was just as bad today.

      1. There are a handful of talented players on this roster. But not many. Certainly not enough. And not many (any?) truly dominant players, with too many below average starters.

        Coupled with highly questionable play design and calling = one hot mess.

    1. How about we trade our first to the Patriots next year for Tom Brady. NE feels it’s time to unload Brady in favor of Garropalo (I believe Grimey implied this first here on the blog). We also draft a QB in the 2nd round and have him learn from Brady for two years. What do you think of that plan? The wine I’m drinking is particularly mind expanding :)

          1. Might be a good bridge QB with some NFL experience?
            By next year we will need 3 new QB’s. Have to start with a vet, the future franchised QB, and a prospect.

    2. The 2013 Eagles were 1-3 to start the season and gave up 138 Pts over that stretch before turning it around and making the playoffs.

        1. My $.02 is that Kelly’s college system does not translate well to the NFL and he either re-invents himself while we suffer or he’s the next Nick Saban. How long it takes depends on how hard headed Chip is.

    3. Man, you know it’s bad when Scooter (one of the few men with reason in this blog) doesn’t even bothered to make a post-game analysis. Yikes :(

      1. My analysis was posted earlier – I just kept it simple at giving it an F grade all round. Why bother giving more effort than that? The team didn’t. :-P

        1. On the first drive the D looked like they had just gotten off the plane to Seattle and looking for direction to the luggage carousel.

  28. When you watch this offense,
    it is dull,
    it is flat,
    it is predictable.
    How do you evaluate your players when the system is morbund?
    York the Younger needs to go and he needs to take his FO with him.

  29. We don’t have a #1 QB, or Wide receiver or Tight end.
    We don’t have a # 1 pass rusher or Corner.
    The Niners draft for good players not great players and that is a serious failing.
    We need players the other teams have to game plan against. On offense we have no one.

    1. Excellent point and Baalke is to blame. He is terrible. Would he ever draft Sterling Shepard? Of course not, too small. Giants draft great wr every year. We can’t draft one. Kelvin Benjamin? Everyone knew we screwed up not taking him but Baalke keeps job. Wait until 6th rd to take a qb? Are you kidding me. Guys a clown.

  30. Unfortunately, the Cowgirls will probably drop another 30+ on the Niners…. Elliot and Prescott are gonna tear up this soft defense behind that OL of theirs. This team had the look of a quitter today and that was before the end of the first quarter. Not very encouraging…

  31. Serious question. We often use the word “coaching” when referring to how well a team played or didn’t play. But often I think many really mean “game planning”. My question: do some teams hire staff just for the purposes of game planning and not for actually coaching players. In other words, genius/savant types when it comes to game planning, but not the kind of people that necessarily interact well with people. I don’t see why this wouldn’t be a good strategy. Coaches are overworked as it is, so why not have people on staff whose sole purpose is to game plan for the next week and then present their findings to the coaching staff.

  32. $40 mil under the cap and this is easily the NFL’s least talented roster. Jed has to be loving that revenue sharing, he’s not obligated to do anything more than field a team. I’d say if he chose Baalke over Harbaugh then he deserves what he gets in abundance, starting with biplanes flying banners around the stadium etc. Starts at the top, good ownerships get good people and they get out of the way.

  33. The sad part of this loss is the Hawks were ripe for the picking. The defense play calling looked way out of wack. Its going to be real hard to find another victory this year. I am a huge supporter of Chip Kelly but he is going to have to do better then this in all 3 phases of the game. I have never seen a Kelly team so ill prepared to play.

    1. When Tom Cable is not busy beating up (or just choking) people around him, he’s a pretty good O like coach. He got his troops to hand Coach Azz the latter’s eponymous body part..

  34. UC
    If it is out of the ordinary for Kelly teams to be this ill prepared then it has to be management and or the players. That means the culture of the entire team needs to change. So will Jed be willing to spend more money? Will they change the approach to the draft and free agency?
    Sort of doubt it.

  35. Grant, the offensive line has improved.

    Everything else you said was spot on, though the LB grade might have been a touch low. Brooks had a great game and Eli Harold made some plays. Bow was good, but not as good as he can be. Otherwise, the defense was atrocious and perhaps the biggest disappointment, as I expected the offense to stumble.

    The read option in its current form doesn’t work. It wastes Hyde’s talent, and makes a team that is already predictable in its inability to throw down field even worse.

    The good news is we’re a game out of first in the division. The bad news is we won’t be there for long!

  36. Too bad Wentz turned out to be a bust. Looks like it was a good year to invest in a QB, or injured CB’s depending on how you like to build teams.

    1. Looks like it was a good year to invest in a QB

      Yep. I thought this was the best QB class in quite some time. So far so good…except Baalke didn’t invest in one until the 6th round and he’s now a Bengal.

      1. Good year to invest in Wentz or Prescott, anyway.

        Next year’s crop of QBs is looking better than this year’s. Lots of guys being discussed as first round prospects already.

        1. There will be others who excel once they get a chance to play.

          It’s possible next years could be better, but a number of them are underperforming right now, and I don’t see any as good in the pocket as Goff and Wentz were.

          1. Until we see them play we have no idea if any others will excel.

            We’ll see how the 2017 QBs look next year, but yeah, I think it is a better crop.

  37. Arrogance of Baalke just amazes me. Worst offensive talent evaluator in the league and thinks he’s outsmarting everyone by drafting guys coming off knee injuries. Really Trent? How many misses at QB, TE and WR? The list is endless. McDrop rated higher than Kelce, Reed and…his own Rice teammate Luke Wilson? Didn’t think Stefan Diggs was worth a 5th round pick? Didn’t think Prescott was worth a 4th round pick? All those TEs and WRs you passed on are thanking you cuz Gabs or Kaep would’ve ended their careers with some of their throws leading them into traffic. How much more can we take of this clown?

  38. At the Blaine Train’s current clip if Kaepernick isn’t starting by week 5 if nothing else one thing will be absolutely clear and that is he never really had a shot at starting week 1.

    If they lay another egg at home against the ‘girls and don’t make a switch then, it’s either going to happen after the bye or not at all.

  39. History tends to repeat itself. Niners won their first, lost their second and got blown out the third game.

    How Chip responds is critical. If he stays the course, then they are intentionally tanking to be rewarded with a high draft pick.

    Chip must change, and show that he is trying to win games. Right now, the Niners were unprepared, unfocused, lethargic and unimaginative.

    Chip must change his play selection, and include more roll outs and men in motion. They need to run more misdirection, reverses, sweeps, fly sweeps, counters and screens.

    I have seen enough. Gabbert is hurting the team when he goes 0 for 10 on third downs. He continues to be inaccurate and still throws short of the sticks. Any logical assessment will show that he is not going to get better. He cannot expect the defender to fall down or his defense to pitch a shut out to help him win.

    Kaep needs to play. If he flames out too, then they need to draft another QB. However, I think Kaep will do just fine, because he will not be asked to perform miracles, but just deliver the ball so the player can make yards after the catch. Gabbert is missing the easy throws. Kaep has shown that he could not only make the easy throws, but also present the threat to run every time. Kaep can throw well on the move, something RW and Carson Wentz showed this weekend.

    They should elevate Kaep, and make the QB position competitive.

    They should elevate Harris to improve the running game.

    They should elevate Garnett to improve the run blocking.

    They should elevate Skov to improve the run defense.

    Chip should elevate those 4 players if he wants to win.

    1. Additionally, since Ward went down, they should elevate Prince Iworah.

      Since Vance went down, they should elevate Hamm.

      Since Torrey went down, they should elevate Dres Anderson.

    2. Seb: You can’t turn donkeys into thoroughbreds. Gabbert is a donkey. You can’t reasonably expect him to turn into Joe Montana and bring this team to victory every Sunday.

      Desperate times call for desperate measures, eh? I don’t think the Niners should start CK. As much as I would like to see CK in the field and winning games –to the chagrin of the Cohns who have been exposed as charlatans–funny they still think themselves as professionals and journalists –I think Gabbert should ride this team to the top 3 pick in next year’s draft.

      The team lacks leadership and I believe CK can offer it, but it is still a bad team, and CK will bear the brunt of the criticism in these very same pages.

      1. You may be right, but if Chip plays Kaep, I will say he is at least trying to win. By not playing Kaep, he seems to be content to lose.

        Niners did not lose because of what the Cohns wrote, and right now, they seem to be spot on in their analysis.

        I thought that Chip was smart, but if he thinks Gabbert is better than Kaep, I will question his football acumen.

        I had reservations about the DC and OC, and have been proven correct.

          1. His plan was to throw short of the sticks on third down and hope his receiver could pick up the first down after the catch is an asinine plan. Might as well wave Gabbert’s white rag before every game….

          2. Ore, I will keep repeating the same things because they may help the Niners win. Since they ignore my advice and lose, maybe they are like some other posters who want the first pick in the draft.

            I want the Niners to win. You, like some others and the FO, may be content to have the Niners lose, and become losers.

  40. If you don’t have a quarterback you don’t have a team. Baalke waits until the sixth round to draft a qb. Why does he still have a job?

  41. It will be interesting to see how this team responds at home. Will they improve or will they continue to struggle?

    We all know that early prognosticators who believed the team capable of winning more than a handful of games were wildly optimistic. The so called Chip Kelly coaching miracle has yet to show any magic turnaround and I can already see those who seem to be giving Tomsula a better assessment. York is starting to get the criticism he so richly deserves and has for some time. I believe the team problems start there. They go down from the top.

    1. EC,

      I think the offense will play a lot better next week. They are better at home and the Dallas defense isn’t overly good. The 9er defense however is a huge question mark. They also are better at home but that Dallas Oline is going to be tough to deal with along with the mature beyond his years Dak Prescott and Zeke Elliot. The Cowboys may only have to throw the football 20 times max in this game if the Niners play the run the way they have the past two weeks.

      1. I imagine the D will improve some and the offense will as well, but Dallas has a formidable offensive line so the front 7 will really need to play superlative football in order to have any shot in the contest or at least Keep it competitive.

  42. Tim Kawakami’ article about putting this loss on Trent Baalke is not far from the truth. The seahags brought our team to rubble yesterday in many ways.
    And while I (along with our readers/bloggers) can state many facets that point to this loss TK’ article makes the most sense.

    We have had 4 years (since Seattle’ emergence as a divisional force) to improve our team and install the type players that rival the seahags but have whiffed in drafting on all positions.
    New coaching is not going to make us better then the seahags and cardinals of today. Drafting the right players will begin the process in greatly improving this team.

    The question remains; who can we trust to draft the right player?
    It certainly isn’t Trent Baalke.
    Even during the 49ers success run from the 2011-2013 seasons, the team was mostly made up of Donahue’ drafts and FA signings. Baalke has not been able to strike gold over his last 3 seasons in the draft.

    Jed York has to make a tough decision regarding TB if he wants this team to move forward, period!

    1. “..Jed York has to make a tough decision regarding TB if he wants this team to move forward, period!…”

      Jedster should make the tough decision
      to pressure his mommy to sell the team to
      Larry Ellison …

      Only then .. will there be hope

      1. Don’t we all wish. They won’t sell, this is the family’s cash cow and Kid York’s toy (even if it is a malfunctioning one). All they’ve done during their ownership is abused it and the Faithful while soaking up their riches.

    2. Correction: The 49er teams that were successful from 2011-2013 were built by Scott McLoughan. Terry Donahue left in 2005.

      Otherwise, your comment is spot on.

    3. As I mentioned above, get rid of Baalke and Kelly and do everything you can to lure David Shaw away from Stanford at season’s end… Let Shaw pick his GM and stay the F out of the way Jed. Unfortunately though this is a pipe dream — Jed and the Yorks are scared of strong, successful coaches (see Mariucci and Harbaugh – only two winning coaches employed by the Yorks during their lengthy ownership who they booted to the curb for ‘yes men’ scrubs).

      1. I’m not a big Shaw guy for an NFL job. I think he’s a good college coach but he doesn’t translate well to the NFL. Chip Kelly is 3 games in and he’s playing with both hands tied behind his back because of the roster he’s been dealt by Trent Baalke. Trent Baalke is 5 years in and we know all about him. Baalke is the guy who must go. I’m fairly certain he gets one more year from York no matter what happens this season. Which I find very very very depressing.

            1. Why the Brian Kelly love? I know a lot of people like him but he wouldn’t be on my list. I prefer the NFL Offensive Coordinator to NFL Head Coach route. If Jed York fired Baalke and Chip this morning I would promote Gamble to GM and my coaching list would be:

              Josh McDaniels
              Kyle Shanahan
              Mike Shula
              Darell Bevel

              If I had to go to the college level I would probably go:

              Paul Chryst
              Mark Dantonio
              Chris Petersen
              David Shaw
              Jim Mora
              Urban Meyer
              Brian Kelly

              In that order.

              1. Kelly is 55-23 in his first six seasons at Notre Dame after taking over a program that was just 16-21 in the three years before he arrived in South Bend. His 2015 team won 10 games despite being decimated by injuries, including losing starting quarterback Malik Zaire for almost the entire season. He won’t take any NFL job that doesn’t give him complete control over the roster, so the 49ers won’t be interested anyway. I like McDaniels but he’s going to take over for BB as soon as he retires, and Shula wouldn’t be too bad. As for your college list, I like Petersen over them all but Kelly….

              2. But but Jed said he would NEVER poach a coach from his alma mater….

                I agree, Myles would not be my choice, but since he was fired, he could have Roman as OC and Vangorder as DC……;p

              3. VanGorder should have been fired a couple years ago. If you were in the stands Saturday, you would have heard them chanting, “Fire VanGorder”!

            2. Razor

              Is Brian Kelly doing better this season than ‘Chip’ Kelly ?….Add to that Brian Kelly has better players than ‘chip’, and more of ’em

              1. I’ve got one name for you. VanGorder. He has been Brian Kelly’s kryptonite since he arrived. Brian Kelly will be a head coach in the NFL, if a team is willing to give him full autonomy….

      2. Kelly isn’t getting fired. The Yorks are already paying Tomsula not to Coach and they aren’t going eat 4 years of another one. Kelly is the HC of this team for at least another 2 seasons imo unless they completely bottom out and finish last a couple of years in a row.

  43. >>Can someone point out one area in which the Niners have improved from last season? To me, they have gotten worse on offense, defense and special teams.

    Even before the season started, didn’t everyone say these first 5 games were going to be murderers row? And now that the 49ers have been murdered 2 out of 3, everyone is running around like chickens with heads cut off (again: think back to even before the season started, everyone said these first 5 games were going to be murderers row). Yesterday was gawd-awful, probably worse than we could imagine pre-season, but I’ll reserve final judgement on this team’s potential, or lack of it, until we get well into the second quarter of the season.

    Myopic homer-ism? yeah, I’ve been accused before.

    1. Rib, maybe Chip should debate my blog posts. I said that he should go bold. Settling for field goals is a recipe for failure.

      I also said that Baalke has too much influence on the coaching. Before the game, he said that he wanted to keep Gabbert in the pocket and run the ball on first and second downs. I wanted them to roll out the QB, use Kaep, and do the unexpected by passing when they expect the run.

      I also said that the Seahawks will key on stopping Hyde and dare Gabbert to try and beat them with his arm. Too bad he was not up to the task.

      Finally, I previously mentioned the third down bomb. If confronted with third and long, the QB should buy time with his legs and then heave the ball down the field for essentially a jump ball. 4 things can happen. It could be caught, it could draw a foul, which are 2 good outcomes. It could fall incomplete, which just will make it punt time, or it could be intercepted, which will be like it is a 60 yard punt. RW performed that play to perfection with Baldwin and Graham.

      Hmmm, maybe Pete Carrol reads and debates my posts…..

    2. rib,

      Some viewed it that way, but many more convinced themselves that the Niners would be a lot more competitive than they have been. I agree with you that you can’t form a conclusion right now, but this is a bad team that has limited ability to get better because the roster just isn’t talented enough.

      1. >>many more convinced themselves that the Niners would be a lot more competitive than they have been

        rocket, that was me. Perhaps I’ll need to lower the bar to “competitive with medium and lower tier teams.” Is that an upgrade over last year? If we are the 32nd ranked team, *any* win is a feather in the cap, right?

        1. That wasn’t intended as a shot at you rib so please don’t take it that way. It was just an observation that the offseason and TC tends to be the time when hope springs eternal even though the odds are slim.

          They were ranked at or near the bottom in many categories on both offense and defense last year so improvement should have been expected. The discouraging thing is that last year’s problems are now this year’s problems even after the Coaching changes. We don’t really have any other choice but to stay patient and see if things improve over time.

  44. At least I forked out a bunch of cash right before the game to buy Sunday ticket and game pass. That way, I got to watch the ineptitude in real time (I live in San Diego), and now I can spend the rest of the week breaking down the ineptitude in excruciating detail! Money well spent.

    1. Same here, Gabriel. Now we can see the Niners getting clobbered in full HD ;) Upside is that there are lots of interesting games to choose from each week.

  45. It’s getting old to blame everything on TB. I think his biggest mistake is drafting injured players and thinking that he’ll be brilliant in a few years.His only bust in the 1st round was AJ.
    I don’t think he has complete control over who gets picked.
    Can anyone name five potential GM who will be more successful than TB?

    1. Dee Phiant,

      He deserves the Lions share of the blame imo. He may not be drafting all out busts, but he’s not drafting impact players either. What he’s put together is a team of mediocre talent that doesn’t have competent starters at key positions. He does have complete control over who gets picked. He’s made no secret of that and it’s a big reason why he’s had a tough time finding a HC the past two years. Baalke was thought of very highly when he took over and his first couple of drafts were solid, but since then he has been one of the worst GM’s in the game. You can’t sugar coat where this team is at now and how little they have received from his draft classes and FA signings the past few seasons.

      Trying to predict who would be better is a waste of time until he’s actually fired and we get an idea of who would even be interested in the job. My guess is they would just promote Gamble because that is how they operate. Wouldn’t be my first choice, but it would be safe and give them someone they are comfortable with which is a York staple of doing business.

      1. After the past two weeks rocket, all I can say is you were right about the edge player. Good lord, what a disaster the pass rush is. Pathetic.

        One of the issues the team has is despite having some young talent on D, they aren’t ready to be dominant players or make up for having mediocre players around them. But the young guys like Armstead, Buckner and Ward are being asked to do just that. This team needs a better mix of quality veterans to go with the young talent, let the young guys develop without the pressure of needing to be difference makers for the team. And yes, a quality edge rusher would help tremendously!

        On offense, its pretty obvious to everyone I think where the main issue is. Can’t avoid it, they need a QB. Also need receivers.

        Coaching wise, well, I’m not overly encouraged through 3 weeks, but hard to know how bad it is with the players on the roster. No D will look good if it can’t stop the run and can’t pressure the QB. And no offense will look good with a QB that can’t throw accurately.

        1. Tough to watch isn’t it? Lynch better come back motivated and in shape or we will see it continue for awhile. I really hope they use Buckner outside in more of a pass rushing role going forward. He’s getting beat up in base and it’s wasting his best quality.

          Good point on the lack of veteran help these kids have. Tough to come in and be the man from day one when you have no one to emulate.

          I think deep down everybody knew Gabbert would be limited, but the hope was the running game would be strong and he’d be good enough to make the simple plays that were there to be made. With the run game MIA Gabbert doesn’t stand a chance.

          1. I will add that I don’t think any rookie edge rushers would be making much of a difference. Baalke needed to add one of the top veteran edge players.

    1. Naw, he is just the third string QB. AJ Mcarron is ahead of him, and there was a reason why Driskel was the 13th QB taken in the 6th round.

      The misses on Brisett and Dak may come to haunt them.

  46. I tried to get Baalke to poach a Seahawk player to weaken them and get good intel, but Baalke ignored my comments. They should still poach a player, because the Seahawk PS players may be better than some Niner starters.

    Seahawks picked up Garrison Smith from the Niners, and I bet he spilled his guts, giving all sorts of good intel and juicy tidbits. Seems like the Seahawks knew exactly where to attack the defense. I wonder why……

  47. Gabbert was unimpressive to say the least, but at least he didn’t throw any ints. I can think of another QB on the roster who might not have matched that. So I say a D performance. And yes, I’m struggling to find a silver lining…and here’s what I’ve got: At least we’re only disgusted, disappointed fans. It could be worse: We could be 49er players. Imagine how THAT must feel!
    Relatively weak, I know, but it’s all I’ve got.

    1. I said the Niners should employ deceptive tactics.

      When Gabbert, on his first play from scrimmage, faked a hand off when he had an empty back field, the only person who was deceived was Gabbert thinking he fooled some one.

    2. Rusty,
      The problem with Gabbert is that although he may not make the big mistake, he also doesn’t make the big play, and worse; doesn’t inspire those around him.

      Sadly, we just don’t have any QB’s on our roster that can take this team to the next level.
      The 2017 draft can’t come soon enough!

      1. Can’t argue with you, A. I really wonder how Ponder would look…we have not too much to lose, based on what I’ve seen so far.

  48. Dee Phiant

    September 26, 2016 at 8:02 am

    Can anyone name five potential GM who will be more successful than TB?

    ……After hiring Tomsula, Jed compared him to Steve Kerr .

    A smart owner who cares more about his teams money making ability than the actual product is the only one who makes this statement.

    Who would have thought, that on the other side of the bay, Chris Cohan would assemble a Bob Myers, Jerry West and Steve Kerr organizational structure that no one knew would be capable of winning 3 NBA Championships in a row.

    No one talked about that—-However in hindsight, we all know that the shrewd owner, making no wild comparisons like Jed, above, who went silently about the business of assembling a team, never selling the fans swamp land dreams of Championship on one hand, and pick pocketing them with inferior talent and Cheap assistant coaches on the other, would actually be compared to the Show Time Lakers?

    Fans, it all starts at the top.

  49. It’s a very bad owner, who stays with a very bad GM who picks mediocre players at best combined with bad coaches who call bad plays. Our receivers are rarely open and any attempt on third fails as the plays called are always short of the sticks, no chance for success. Every team we play has third down success because at least they try for a throw past the sticks. It’s really very simple.

  50. “beaned a running back in the helmet with a one-yard pass to the flat.”

    As bad as that one looked the one that was more aggravating was the 3rd down throw to Draughn after the turnover. Gabbert waited too long to go to the flat, and by the time he did Draughn was already at the sidelines. Didn’t even give him a chance to get the 1st down.

  51. The reason Harbaugh is successful is in what he does with what he got. He doesn’t mold players to his system, he designs a system around the players he got. He looks for players’ strength and exploits that and inspires players to believe in themselves.
    Chip seems more like a mathematician, methodical but not inspiring.

    1. I think the 49er brain trust concluded that there were only two things that needed to change after last year. 1 – Fire the coaching staff and 2 – reverse the order they use their two top flight QBs. Last year Kap starts first eight and Gab the next. This year we go opposite. Pure genius if you ask me. Ponder that for a few minutes.

  52. I can’t dissagree with many of your grades Grant, although your evaluation of Eric Reid is way, way off the mark.

    Pro Football Focus graded Reid as one of the top defensive players on either team on CenturyLink Filed on Sunday. These are the 49ers top defensive grades on Sunday:

    *LB Nick Bellore- 81.8
    DI Mike Purcell- 81.3
    S Eric Reid- 79.2
    *LB Gerald Hodges- 77.4
    DI Arik Armstead- 76.8

    I highlighted both NICK BELLORE and GERALD HODGES, who both outplayed Bowman on Sunday. ILB is not the issue on so far defense this season. Bellore was my pick to replace Armstrong on Sunday, and my choice appears to be vindicated.

    As for ERIC REID, here is PFF’s take on Reid’s start to the 2016 season:

    REID BUILDS ON STRONG START: Given his pedigree as a mid-first-round pick out of LSU and how successful he was as a rookie in 2013, many figured that Eric Reid would be a star in the NFL for years to come. Years two and three brought some tepid results though as he floated right around average, in terms of overall grade and it no longer looked like a sure thing that he would be that shining star. Through three games though in 2016, Reid looks like he’s ready to enjoy the BREAKOUT SEASON 49ers fans have been hoping for. Reid finished Sunday’s game with an ABOVE-AVERAGE 79.2 overall grade, making three out of three weeks now in which he’s graded out as at least above-average. One thing that especially stood out in Seattle was that Reid tallied four more STOPS, bringing his season total to eight — a stop is a solo tackle that constitutes as a loss for the offense given the situation. During Reid’s rookie season he tallied 17 total Stops but from 2014-2015 he only managed 18 Stops… well this season he’s on pace to finish with 43 stops, it’s no coincidence that he also happens to be on pace for what would by-far-and-away be his best overall grade as well.

    I’m not sure where you came up with your assessment about Reid’s range, but you might want to re-evaluate the film Grant, as “stops” are a direct result of a safeties ability to get up to the line of scrimmage in a hurry, and make plays.

    Other than that, the rest of your grades are pretty well on the mark.

    1. Reid gave up 99 yards in coverage yesterday. He was a liability in centerfield. PFF’s grades are not reliable. I like some of their advanced stats though.

      1. Me too. I don’t know how they came to the conclusion that Reid played well yesterday. He wasn’t the worst Niner defender but he wasn’t good either.

      2. He made two glaring mistakes that I saw. On Baldwin’s long TD it looked like he should have been providing help to Brock over the top, but let Baldwin get by him too easily. And on Graham’s long catch he lost the cacth point (though did everything else right that play). I believe his PFF grade is a reflection they don’t dock a player enough points for big errors.

        I will say though, that even on Graham’s big catch, its a bit unfair to say this is a great example of how he’s overrated. He was trying to make a play for his team, did everything right, except Graham literally took the ball out of his hands (Reid was first to the ball). Its the same issue I raised last week. Losing the catch point. The 49ers DBs need to be stronger at the catch point.

    2. Throughout the York team ownership, I have kept a running list of weird 49er stats that no other, so called, NFL team could ever imagine happening to them…

      This stat is the latest: 49ers had no (ZERO) 3rd down conversions for the entire game.

      1. I still remember a game in which York ownership (seemingly always willing to give people 1st time coaching positions no one else would) hired OC, Jim Hosler, and he had – run yardage in the 1st half of a game.

    3. sorry, but for the most part, Reid stunk up the joint yesterday. bad plays on the deep ball several times. PFF needs to re-evalute who is doing their evaluations.

  53. Then there was the game in which the Hosler led offense threw for under 100 yds, not seen since the Vikings almost accomplished the same thing. However the Vikes had an excuse. They faced the Steel Curtain (Steelers) team in a Superbowl, in which almost every starter of that unit went to the Hall of Fame.

  54. The defense is horrible, one of the worst schemes I have ever seen. I believe the talent is there but the DC does not put them in position to win. You can’t win anything without a defense. And nope, the defense failures are ”’not”’ on the ineptness of the offense. I saw it in pre season the defense can not get off the field.

    I have seen enough of Gabbert, the pass protection was excellent and had all day to throw. Even tho I believe Kaep is not the answer I do think its his turn to see what he can or can’t do. Gabbert is not the reason why the Niners loss but he is not the QB that we need.

  55. It’s nearly time to end the BLAINE GABBERT experiment! I’ve been one of Blaine’s biggest defenders. Not that I have been impressed with Gabbert’s play as a 49er, but I felt like the 49ers OL was so poor last season, it really wasn’t fair to make a definitive evaluation of Blaine’s play in 2015. Coming into this season, I wanted to give Blaine a fair opportunity to absorb this offense, and get comfortable with the inside-zone read.

    Well, 3 game into the season and I am one more poor performance way from calling for Blaine’s benching. It’s bad enough that he’s playing such a tentative brand of football, but he can’t even hit the broad side of bus on even the easiest of throws. Blaine is simply unable to handle any kind of pressure, and he is always looking for the easiest throw, regardless of down and distance. He’s the most conservative NFL QB I have ever seen, and he appears to no longer even be looking to make plays down the field. It’s almost as if he is purposely playing himself out of the starting job.

    One more game guys. If Blaine plays poorly at home against the Cowboys on Sunday, it’s time to pull the plug and put an end to the Blaine Gabbert experiment! Honestly, if Colin isn’t physically ready to play, I’d rather watch Christian ponder play, as opposed to the girly style of football we are seeing from Blaine this season!

      1. Oh Seb, if only you only had a brain, you would add so much more to the blog.

        I have never said this forum isn’t appropriate for critiquing the 49ers. As fans, we owe it to ourselves to be honest, and critical, after a performance like yesterday.

        My sniveling crybaby comment has nothing to do with objectively criticizing the 49ers. My problem with some people of this forum is with their CONSTANT NEGATIVITY and utter inability to asses the 49ers without going out of their way to find things to complain about, even when they make things up that aren’t true and even go as far as to manufacture things to complain about, while never acknowledging any of the positives that coexist. It get’s old, and quite frankly, it get’s irritating!

        The 49ers were ill prepared on every level yesterday, so naturally there were very few positives to be found. And Blaine gabbert has now been given, IMO, a fair opportunity to prove himself, and he has failed.

        Does yesterday’s game mean the 49ers don’t have any young talent or building blocks in place to build a franchise around? Does yesterday’s game mean the 49ers secondary is void of talent, or that the twin towers aren’t foundational DL to build a quality defense around? Is this defense not going to improve when they get their most talented OLB (AaronLynch) back from suspension?

        The 49ers have holes. I have been saying that since day one! You cannot win games consistently in today’s league without talent at WR and QB! That’s a fact! It’s a passing league and, I don’t care who is the HC, if you have the league’s worst group of WR’s (after losing 2 of their top 3 WR’s in training camp and preseason) you’re going to struggle to win games.

        And I don’t care how much talent you have at DB, if you can’t put pressure on NFL QB’s, you’re going to give up big plays regardless of talent at Safety and CB.

          1. For sure in the 1st quarter that’s true. But after that you can tell how much better a job Schneider has done in giving Caroll quality players up and down the lineup. What has Baalke given Kelly to work with? Hope, promise, and a slap upside the head.
            Its night and day between the rosters and once again it was proven on the field. The start wasn’t good but that game just proved coaching would not have mattered. Its a talent driven league, who we kidding!

          2. I agree Grant. Yesterday’s performance was simply UNACCEPTABLE at every level, including coaching!

            I’m not about to make any excuses, or even take one lousy minute of my time to point out the rare positive takeaway from yesterday’s game because, frankly, my time is more valuable than that, and the 49ers deserve every ounce of criticism directed their way.

            I mean, if you can’t get your team lined up correctly on the very first offensive play from scrimmage, then something has gone terribly, terribly wrong.

            The last time I saw that from the 49ers was unfortunately their very first offensive play of Super Bowl XLVII. Kaepernick found Vernon Davis for a huge gain, but the play was wiped out by an illegal formation penalty. ILLEGAL FORMATION! Are you kidding me? And that set the tone for one of their most heartbreaking losses of my lifetime.

            Let’s be real about yesterday. The Seahawks own the 49ers at CenturyLink Field. That’s a fact. And the 49ers, once again, got outcoached yesterday, in every phase. The 49ers need to find a way to break that mental and physical blockage, if they are ever going to compete for the NFC West again. And it’s not going to happen with Blaine Gabbert at QB, and the 49ers current group of overmatched WR’s, regardless of coaching.

            That said, this team has also been snake bitten to start the season, once again! Losing Eric Rogers and Bruce Ellington has really handcuffed an offense that was already challenged when it comes to offensive playmakers. And losing their best TE who, IMO, hasn’t been a big enough focus in our game plan to begin with, along with their best cover ILB, while having to endure the suspension of their best pass rusher and OLB, has been a series of very tough blows.

            But, it’s one game. And if the 49ers can bounce back and beat the Cowboys at home on Sunday, they will have outperformed expectations going into the season despite being dealt the league’s toughest early schedule. They have made some positive strides this offseason, and have more talent than the national media has given them credit for.

            However, I have no illusions of grandeur when it comes to this team. The 49ers do not currently have a playoff roster. This is a young, inexperienced team in the midst of a rebuild, learning new concepts and entirely new systems. While they have building blocks in place on both the offense and defense, the 49ers desperately, and I mean d-e-s-p-e-r-a-t-e-l-y need a talented young “franchise” quarterback to develop an offense around. They also need a HUGE infusion of talent at the wide receiver position, and another dependable, pass-catching TE.

            If the 49ers can find a way to draft one of these talented young QB’s (by either losing most of their games this season, or making a big trade) and draft some offensive weapons, along with making a splash or two in free agency, this team can get back in playoff contention in a hurry (as soon as next season), and could conceivably have one of the most talented YOUNG rosters in the league as soon as the 2018 season rolls in!

    1. We want the storm now! Lets see what old wind can do? My guess is he gets the team closer to a top 5 pick overall. Sorry to be a downer but Id be okay losing outright if it meant we are going to get rid of Baalke and start the rebuild under Gamble and Kelly and bring in some legit offensive weapons. Hurt, whimper and cry for the next 13 games and then start over at QB, RB, WR, Corner, and ILB.

      We want Kap! We want Kap!

          1. Now that he sees the season is going down the toilet with Gabbert he’s ready to insert Kaepernick so that he can shift the blame to him. Such a loser.

              1. It wont matter Razor. There is no WR’s to throw to. All Kap will do is run and got knocked out or throw passes to the other team for pick 6’s.

              2. There is no WR’s to throw to.

                That excuse didn’t fly for Kaepernick, besides Kerley and Streater were supposed to bail out Baalke….

              3. But they didnt did they Razor? So whats your point? You telling me that we have a legit WR core able to compete in the NFL?

              4. The 49ers have no wide receiver that will violently attack the ball at it’s highest point, but you and a few others were high on Kerley after the Lambs got lambasted….

            1. Did I shift anything? Did I blame anyone other than Baalke? Maybe if you were to read the thread Big Pee Pee, you would be able to see what was going on. Instead you come on here with your lack of knowledge and pretend.
              I want Kap to lead us all the way to a tank season. You have a problem with that? Oh wait, you have a problem with everything!

              Kap lovers are just afraid to see what Ive said all along. He will come in and do worse and then they will finally see the storm for what he is, one trick pony!
              We want Kap! We want the 1st overall pick!

              1. He will come in and do worse

                All BS aside, Prime. I’m not sure how in the hell Kaepernick could be worse than Gabbert….

              2. He will do worse in the sense that his teammates will get frustrated by his improvisation of the offense. He will force the ball into tight windows and be picked off, he takes way more chances that will lead to more turnovers. So yes, he can do way worse because he is a terrible QB, more so than Gabbert!

              3. The Blaine Train is off the tracks somewhere near Moses Lake. Time to see what Kaepernick can do in this offense. Until that happens, no one knows for certain….

              4. Prime,
                Gabbert is destroying the season just fine by himself. Nobody is afraid to see anything. I don’t think Kaepernick will make a difference because I don’t think he’s very good. Three weeks ago you were yapping like an idiot about how “dinking and dunking” was a great way to win in the NFL. Now that reality has kicked in you’re hoping that Kaepernick plays because you know he’ll be saddled with the same talent around him and he’ll fail, just like Gabbert has. You are just a vile and pathetic person.

              5. Big Cry, dink and dunk works if you have guys that catch and run. And yes it does work, ask the Patriots who empoly that type of passing game religiously.
                You know you can call me names all you want, Ill always be smarter than you. Why? Because you are a baby, cry all the time about one thing or the other without reading the thread. Just pop off like a little child in a tizzy.

      1. Funny, last week when you thought I was saying Kaep should be the QB over Gabbert you said it was the dumbest thing you ever heard…

    2. The Blaine Train and the Kap-a- Knee both need to be sent out to pasture.

      Neither Gab or Kap is the answer. We are only 3 games in and it already feels like a long season. I say we should give Gab 8 games before making any changes at QB.
      Heck, if this team is still bad after 8 games let’s just ride it out and hope for a top 3 pick in 2017.

      Finishing as a middle of the pack team will not get us the impact players in the draft. Hate to say it, but we may be better off finishing the season as a top 3 poor team.
      Only a strong drafting position may be our future hope.

  56. I have a thought that Kaepernick is being held out early on to see if any other teams suddenly need a “starting” quarterback. In other words, the front office may being covertly hoping for a trade offer. This will take a burden off the salary cap and eliminate what must be a distraction, i.e., the national anthem shenanigan. It appears none of the three quarterbacks on the roster are separating themselves from the others. This may be proven if Kaepernick starts after the trading deadline.

  57. I have a thought that Kaepernick is being held out early on to see if any other teams suddenly need a “starting” quarterback. In other words, the front office may being covertly hoping for a trade offer. This will take a burden off the salary cap and eliminate what must be a distraction, i.e., the national anthem shenanigans. It appears none of the three quarterbacks on the roster are separating themselves from the others. This may be proven if Kaepernick starts after the trading deadline.

  58. I know the Yorks hired Baalke because he was really cheap. Well you have gotten what you paid for, garbage. It’s hard not to draft a quality qb or wr in 6 years at the helm. Teams with great qbs like New England and Green Bay still draft qbs in the first 3 rounds because they understand the importance of that position yet we have Gabbert and Kaep and nothing lol. The roster is the problem, Fire Trent Baalke immediately!

  59. Niners number 1 don’t have great Owner number 2 a Great GM number 3 great Head Coach number 4 a great QB they get a F – on all those Niners will be garbage for a long time those are not quick fixes

  60. Well, if I had been in a Pick’em League I would’ve suffered on the Steelers, Bucs, Cards, Panthers & Giants. I had the Seahawks, but with SF keeping it competitive.
    Silly Tuna

  61. “Sh*tty game plan. Sh*tty execution. Sh*tty all around.” … “When nothing works, you’ve got to change everything.” — NYJ head coach Bowles following yesterday’s 8 turnover effort.

    I hope Kelly is similarly succinct and self-aware.

    1. Chip did not seem so brash and bold, correcting the reporters and refusing to answer questions. Maybe some of that bravado has been beaten out of him.

      Chip better learn from his mistakes, or he will be doomed to repeat them.

      Chip should make honest assessments and quick adjustments while he still has time.

  62. Razor – Actually, I’d like to see Kaepernick under center to properly evaluate Chip Kelly’s offense….

    At first I thought Kaep and Kelly were a match in heaven, but the demand for the trade soured me on Kaep. Changing the QB is not going to help this team win, as it has serious problems with the defensive strategy. I don’t know if Kaep has enough talent to fairly evaluate Kellys offense. I am with you though lets put Kaep in and if he fails its time to go fishing in the Ponder. Kaep was the only suited up player that did not play in the game.

    1. Ponder might be the last man standing, come April 4th. Maybe he could be a bridge that’s not broken, until Kizer is safely across and onboard the Chip….

      1. The faster they promote Kaepernick, the faster we’ll see Ponder on the field. Although I’ve bashed CK in the past, I’d like to see what he has with the better pass protection. Hopefully they’ll make the change soon. I remember that, before the season started, Lowell Cohn said he thought Gabbert would last four games. Seems prophetic now.

        1. George, I hope Kaep plays, and leads the Niners to victories. Ponder sounds like a desperate last gasp move, and will only come if the Niners keep losing.

        2. Pretty easy to make that prediction George if you took a look at the schedule. Look at the 49ers schedule and where they had to travel to. But hey, for sure lets put Kap in anywhere in the schedule, it wont matter. This is a talent issue, not coaching. Kaepernick will just prove what he has been all long. Some fans have dreams of 2012. Well see!

          1. Prime, he might be more accurate with protection; that’s the only area in which he might exceed Gabbert, IMO. He’s not the answer, but in this offense Ponder might be. What do you think?

            1. I don’t think any of the 3 can do much. Even with a decent oline, there is no one that can run the ball effectively and no WR that can get separation and spread the defense. The QB is where it starts but after that it only gets worse. I am all for giving Kap and Ponder a look but I really believe it wont make a difference.

  63. Training camp star Arik Armstead only had 28 snaps. His shoulder has to be messed up, or a new in-game injury happened. He did leave for a while, be returned later.

  64. I’m not big on grades but if I was I would agree that what we saw yesterday was an F for the entire organization. I didn’t have much optimism that this team would win many games this year but I was hoping they would at least be competitive and in two out of the three this season, they haven’t been.

    Way too early for an autopsy as we have seen teams improve as the season has progressed before, but so far things are looking pretty much as expected if you weren’t drinking the Niner Kool Aid.

    The QB always seems to be the focus good or bad, but Gabbert is playing the way Gabbert plays, and it shouldn’t be a surprise that he isn’t able to lift the offense. He is a poor mans Alex Smith who won’t make the big mistake, but won’t make many plays either. He simply hands off and takes the check down to live for another series. You can win a few games playing that way if….you have a dominant defense. So far the defense has played one excellent game and two duds. It looks a lot like last year when we saw two very different teams depending on where the game was being played. The problems of playing on the road seem to have carried over even with a completely different Coaching staff. The bottom line is you can’t have success on defense if you can’t stop the run and get consistent pressure on the QB. So far they are 0-2 in these areas.

    A couple of things really stood out to me yesterday:

    Armstead is extremely strong, but too often he’s just using his brute strength to move guys back and putting himself completely out of the play. He has to learn how to disengage or he’s going nowhere. Buckner on the other hand was getting manhandled and pushed completely out of the play, and often by one guy. He struggled with double teams at Oregon, but to see him get handled that easily by one blocker as often as he did yesterday was alarming.

    This is not the Chip Kelly offense from Oregon or Philly. Those offenses ran at a break neck pace and took advantage of confusion on the defensive side. This Kelly offense is simply no huddle with little tempo and predictably it’s failing because the system is not a complex one. It is predicated on speed and wearing people down and we’ve seen none of that. I don’t know if it’s because the players have had a problem picking it up, or it’s conscious change Kelly made, but they need to start playing faster or this is going to be a really long season. Slow and predictable doesn’t work to well in the NFL.

    The offense should be better against the Cowboys next week. They are at home and the Dallas defense has not been very good so far. Their offense however is going to give the Niner D all they can handle. If they can’t stop the run next week they won’t get off the field and it won’t matter what the offense does. O’Neil has to sell out to the stop the run and hope the secondary can hold up because that is the only chance they have to win this game imo.

    1. “They are at home and the Dallas defense has not been very good so far.”

      Up till Sunday the Seahawks offense looked terrible. The Niners have a penchant of late making the weakness of the opposing team look like their strength.

      I will continue to be optimistic as I know no other way but…..

  65. It’s difficult for me to understand how two novices like Wentz and Prescott can look so smooth, confident, poised and read and throw with timing and accuracy, while some veterans we can think of can’t. The calls for the bullpen are earlier than I expected, but I’m not expecting much of an upgrade if they do.
    Cool under pressure, quick recognition and release. Good ball placement. Protecting the ball. Seems like a dream.

    1. BT I think its similar to the year CK and RGIII had in 2012/2013? They both played well that first season and their coaches played to their strengths. They had good teams around them. Lets see if the NFL catches up or if they continue to produce?

        1. CK and RGIII both passed well their first season and ran well too. It wasn’t an either or. From there it was downhill. These new QB’s could be the next crop of perennial starters or they could be the next flash in the pan. I don’t claim to know one way or the other but I have stopped predicting who’ll be the next great QB.

      1. Aren’t Wentz and Prescott more like classic drop back pocket passers? And not having success, like Kaep did, on a new scheme that took a little time for the league to figure out?

    2. It is amazing how a decent O line will help rookie QBs look so good. Brissett, too.

      Rams do not have such a stout O line, and Goff is the third string.

    3. We’ll see how things look as the season progresses and defenses get more and more familiar with the young guys and what the OC’s are doing to help them. It’s not all good though. Mariota is going backwards and really playing poorly so far. Not sure if that will happen with Wentz or Prescott, but this game tends to humble you eventually. Then it’s about how you are able to adapt.

  66. Isn’t this offensive line basically the same group that started the last few games a season ago? The only change being Beadles for Boone?

      1. Devey and Pears weren’t starting near the end of last season though. This is the same group.

        We keep hearing about how improved they are, but the only real difference is that the ball is coming out quicker and making them look better in pass pro than they are.

      1. Last year’s O line gave up 52 sacks, and only succeeded to get the first starting QB so injured he needed 3 surgeries.

        Brown only started 3 games. The O line did improve, but only after the season was doomed.

        This season, the O line does not suck.

        1. “This season, the O line does not suck.”

          With the exception of Beadles this same group played together the last 3 weeks of 2015. During that time they averaged 3.89 yards per carry. That number is down to 3.5 yards per carry through the first 3 weeks of this season.

          They are worse.

          1. That has nothing to do with the O line.. Gabbert has been sacked twice in 3 games. Brown and Tiller are better players then they were last year. There run blocking is suspect but that has ALOT to do with who is behind center and the skill position players we lack. The O line much better then last year. In fact I have never seen such a clean pocket playing up in Seattle like yesterday.

              1. This team lacks talent at Wr in a major way. Our TEs are average. Hyde is a very good back but we can’t see it consistently cause the QB takes little pressure off him. I believe Kaep can play better then what Gabbert has shown so far. With that said this is dumpster fire. We need major changes. Starts from the top if we want any chance to excel going forward. We need to find a new face of the franchise QB.. I know it’s easier said then done but we must do whatever it takes to get one. We have some young talent on this team. But we need to supplement it with some quality free agents as well. This team should have a high draft choice and a lot of money to spend in the off season. The new GM should be excited.

            1. The QB was the same, and Hyde was out at the end of last year.

              Of course the pocket is cleaner when they pass, the ball comes out a lot sooner.

              1. They stack the line cause they have ZERO respect for Gabbert. Just listen to Michael Bennetts comments after the game.

  67. Just saw another reason to fire Baalke. Just saw that Deandrew White and Ian Silberman were both picked up by the Patriots.

    Baalke is as clueless as they can be. He lets talent be poached from upcoming opponents, who give the opposition great intel.

    Baalke even tried to trade a player to a division rival, so he is not only hurting the team, he is helping the opposition.

    1. Patton is a special teamer, gunner, that’s pretty much his value. Letting Delanie Walker walk was foolish as was signing Torrey Smith.
      Alex Smith, well, that’s been beaten to death and Q was old.

      1. True, But this hypothetical unit would be good as a whole. Torrey needs a decent receiver like Crabtree to be effective. Boldin is more effective in the slot, Patton is bad, but I had to have 4 WRs. Alex Smith loves his TEs, and Delaney could run block as well. Chips’ system of short passes seem to be tailor made for Alex Smith.

        1. 80 appreciate the hypothetical but lets be honest, we need to draft the next triplets in order to be relevant again in the NFL. Watchin this offense, regardless of who is coachin it, is bush league!

          1. “but lets be honest, we need to draft the next triplets in order to be relevant again in the NFL.”

            Prime ran out of weed and had a moment of clarity. Some of us have been saying that for quite awhile now.

  68. O.K. Grant, I’ll bite off the challenge of one improvement for 2016, and I’ll toss in a bonus improvement for 2015:

    1) 2016: No kick returner bringing the ball out to the 18 yard line three times a game.
    2) 2015: Reduced delay of game penalties by 80% or so

    No other improvements were noted, unless you count non-football improvements, like 2015’s easier to spell head coach’s name and salary cap room; and 2016’s reduction in the number of players with a rap sheet.

  69. I thought this was funny.

    “Even if Kaepernick’s not 100-percent, do you see him at all getting a shot at some point?

    Chip Kelly:
    “Well, we’ll just see how we go offensively. I mean, if we score 65 touchdowns next week, then I don’t see him getting a shot.”

    So he’s saying there’s a chance?

  70. Hey Grant, how about setting up a new page pretending Baalke was fired and one of us was hired to fix the 49ers and we should state how we will go about it?

    1. That’d be simple for me. I would use a variation of the Terry Donahue approach, except instead of spending all my time in Southern California, I would spend it at the beach in Hawaii getting drunk like McCloughan. Of course, I would hire Seb first to have someone to blame when things didn’t work out.

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