49ers vs. Seahawks, five keys to the game

This is my Friday column.

The 49ers seemed dead after they lost to the Seahawks at home Week 7, but the Niners have a pulse.

With seven games left, they are three games out of a wild card spot, and they just beat one of the wild card contenders — the 6-3 Falcons. San Francisco also beat the 7-2 NFC-North-leading Vikings in the season opener.

Those are two impressive wins.

Sunday, the Niners will play the Seahawks again, this time in Seattle where the Seahawks’ record is 2-2. They’re vulnerable this season. The Niners can beat them.

Here are five things to watch for in this game.

1. Blaine Gabbert — is he for real?

Two weeks ago, Gabbert made his first start since Oct. 10, 2013. He didn’t play like a guy who had taken two years off — he played like a veteran who hadn’t missed a start in five years.

“He didn’t have the luxury of saying, ‘Hey, I’m going to ease into this thing,’” 49ers offensive coordinator Geep Chryst said Thursday afternoon. “So, full credit to Blaine for playing at game tempo, and allowing himself and his teammates to be successful because he was playing fast.”

Gabbert got the offense in and out of the huddle efficiently — no delay-of-game penalties. He also threw the ball quickly and avoided pressure — no sacks.

Is Gabbert a one-week wonder, or will he improve? Will he play better than Colin Kaepernick, who converted just one of 11 third downs against the Seahawks Week 7?

Hard for Gabbert to play worse.

2. The offensive line — can it protect Gabbert?

Against the Falcons, Gabbert faced pressure 15 of the 30 times he dropped back to pass. That’s 50 percent, an extraordinarily high rate of pressure.

Gabbert never got sacked. Sometimes he would scramble for first downs. Sometimes he would scramble and throw to a receiver. Sometimes he would throw the ball before a pass rusher hit him. He avoided pressure brilliantly.

How much pressure will he have to avoid Sunday? The Seahawks’ pass rush is better than the Falcons’. Seattle has 23 sacks this season — Atlanta has 10.

It could be a rough afternoon for the 49ers offensive linemen. It’s up to them to perform.

3. The running game — will the 49ers have one?

Starting tailback Carlos Hyde has a stress fracture in his left foot and probably won’t travel to Seattle.

So, running back Shaun Draughn probably will make his second start for the 49ers. Draughn was decent during his first start — he gained 96 yards from scrimmage. Can he match that performance Sunday?

Probably not. The Seahawks’ run defense is allowing just 3.6 yards per carry at home. It may dominate the 49ers’ offensive line and stop Draughn in the backfield. This is a real challenge for the 49ers.

4. NaVorro Bowman — is he really back?

NaVorro Bowman played his best game of the season against the Falcons. He was everywhere — five tackles, four quarterback hurries, two quarterback hits and one sack. He seemed quicker than he’d been since he tore his ACL and MCL in 2014.

Was his quickness an illusion, or is Bowman really back? He didn’t seem back just a few weeks ago when the Niners played the Seahawks. Marshawn Lynch, who’s having a terrible season, ran right down the Niners throats and Bowman couldn’t do anything about it.

Bowman also struggled in pass coverage during that game — he gave up four catches on four targets. Through nine games, he has given up 39 catches on 41 targets.

Will the Seahawks expose Bowman as a one-game wonder?

5. Marshawn Lynch — can the 49ers finally stop him?

Marshawn Lynch has played one good game this season — Week 7 against the Niners. He rushed 27 times for 122 yards and a touchdown.

Take away that game, and Lynch is averaging just 3.5 yards per carry. He’s getting old, slowing down and running behind the worst offensive line in the NFL.

So, why did he play so well against the Niners? Maybe it’s because the Niners didn’t practice before that game. Jim Tomsula had his players do three walkthroughs that week. The Niners weren’t prepared.

They should be prepared this time. They’re coming off a bye, so they’ve had two weeks to practice for Lynch and the Seahawks. The Niners should shut him down.

And if they do, they should win.

Grant Cohn writes sports columns and the “Inside the 49ers” blog for The Press Democrat’s website. You can reach him at grantcohn@gmail.com.

Stats courtesy of Pro Football Focus.

  1. I just hope this *** kicking won’t hurt gabberts future with the team. I don’t think it would be fair to him if this is really a game to game thing.
    1 very tough place t play
    2 they’ve owned us for 2 years now
    3 the o-line is still horrible
    4 coaching stinks
    5 game plans stink

    Seattle 27
    SF 6
    Hope I’m wrong

    1. It’s not going to be a blow-out. Niners will be in it a lot longer then the other game. They will lose because they’re not the better team, but they will be competitive.

      13-10 Seahawks

  2. Be bold. Start Tiller and Brown. Do not settle for field goals. Elevate Hayne.
    Run the no huddle with quick snaps to negate the crowd noise. Spread them wide with 4 receiver sets, and attack the edges. Rotate O line and WRs to tire out the defense. Put a man in motion to help read the defense and create mismatches. Continue to let Gabbert roll out.
    Play smart, consider time outs to be precious and keep the unforced errors to a minimum.
    Niners 24- 23

  3. spelling test for Colin Kaepernick:

    B-L-A-I-N-E G-A-B-B-E-R-T
    (who? the 49ers starting QB)

    so you went 1 for 11 on third down
    against the Seahawks… Wow..!!
    impress me some more why doncha.

  4. We need a ballhawking saftey. Maybe we can stop those bomb td passes Wilson always seems to throw at us. Eric Reid is not a ballhawk, he’s a saftey who plays in his system. He goes for hits instead of interceptions. Maybe ward can be that saftey, hell, our entire secondary needs to start learning to chase the ball not just try and knockout whoever is catching it!

      1. I understand that but when protecting it, maybe he should start putting his hands up to try and catch the ball instead of putting his hands and head down to try and knockout a guy out. Just my opinion

  5. Grant,
    Repeating a dubious claim, the team was not prepared to play because they had walkthroughs instead of full contact practices. We know walk throughs , specially in a short week,are a Walsh innovation that is practiced all through the NFL.
    Other wise a nice column .

  6. I take issue with the statement that Seattle has the worst OL in the league. Niner pride demands that I proclaim the Niner line is worse. Three guys starting that are pretty much the very worst at their positions, that is something of a great achievement that Baalke should be proud of.

    Having said that, it was so nice seeing a QB (Gabbert) that could take a step in the right direction to avoid the sack instead of Krapernick walking right into the sack. The only thing Krap can do is run downfield, but he is one of the worst in the league in the pocket. Watching Gabbert move around and get the ball out quickly made it crystal clear how many of those sacks are on Krapernick’s head. Now lets just hope Gabbert can repeat what we saw and that the receivers come to play and can hold on to well thrown passes.

    1. Seattle’s OLine looked pretty good against the Cardinals. They’ve been improving the last couple of games.

      Seahags 17
      Niners 10

    2. Krapernick? If you were trying to make a funny, you should have gone with Kraepernick. It still wouldn’t have been funny. It still would have been douchey, but at least you don’t look like a tool.

  7. observations –

    1. Gabbert has rapport with celek. probably due to the fact that they have spent time taking 2nd team reps together. Guess what – now you guys are starters.

    2. Why doesn’t bruce miller get 4-8 passes thrown his way per game?

    3. Start TSmith, Ellington and patton. Get patton and ellington involved in the short passing game .

    4. I am skeptical of bowman’s poor pass defense rating. I seem to recall that he was in coverage 40 yards downfield against Julio jones and Antonio brown and gave up long receptions to both. So , our ILB is covering literally the two best receivers in the league deep downfield – WTF. That is not say he has not had his poor performances – giants game, but to what extent is he victimized by mangenius schemes.

    5. hoping tart gets another good shot in on jimmy graham. I like JT.

    6. Niners 17-9 , Carroll goes back to SC next year and begins to cheat again.

    1. Wow! Bold! I’m also surprisd you picked SF.
      Miller did have one sucky game, but I agree that he’s an equivilent factor to the TEs.

  8. Lynch is having a less than stellar season (by Lynch standards anyway). Hyde probably can’t play at all.

    Under performing running back with established backup > running back that can’t play at all with emergency backups.

    SeAdderall probably wins.

    That said, the Niners certainly can pull it off. This is a good opportunity for the defense to have a big game. The D is overdue for forced turnovers. If the 49ers win, it will be lack of TOs on offense, and a few TOs caused by the D.

    This is a great opportunity to assess some of the new players.
    I want to see how Tartt does vs Graham, and in run support.
    I want to see the agile Harold scoop up a scrambling Wilson.
    I’m curious to see if Armstead can disengage blocks and chase down Wilson when he escapes the pocket up the middle.
    I want to see Ellington use his shiftiness vs their big DBs.

    ‘m looking forward to the game.

    1. I think he’s got one, maybe two more years of diminishing productivity. But if they squeak into the Playoffs, he’ll be money later this year.

  9. I went to see an ugly uniform contest and a football game broke out.

    Jags vs Titans looks like the result of a drunk accidentally drinking a bottles of Windex and cheap shoe polish. Cops should make drivers watch tapes this game as a field sobriety test.

      1. There’s a sketchy website that (sometimes) lets me watch football games. I have just enough bandwidth to watch (when its working).

        When it comes to the 49ers, I can’t risk a spotty internet feed. I definitely drive into Healdsburg.

        Weather’s fantastic here on the ranch. Everything’s fresh after the rain.

        1. We had a great sunset in Petaluma today. Couple of spots I like in P Town are Dempsey’s BrewPub and Sauced BBQ House. But usually at home where I can cuss at high volume as needed.

          1. I miss the cussing when we had TV before the HDTV change. Public places aren’t the same, and once I establish a favorite, they go out of business. DeVine Pizza, Fireside Cafe, Flamez (Windsor)… The place I watch now often doesn’t even have the sound on.

            I try to worm a sibling into hosting a game. That’s what we do for playoffs and big games. Me and my brothers camped at the stick in 81 for three nights for playoff tickets vs NYGs. (OldCoach was in that crowd). I can curse all I want at my sibs places.

            1. It may be a while before the team is worth the distance, but the Duchess and I will invite you over sometime for a game down here. Small spot, but no small talk;

              1. Sounds great. As soon as the Niners are relevant, I’ll take you up on it.

                I can re-supply (Costco etc.) in Santa Rosa on the way up/down. Country living you know. I do that when I visit my ENT in Petaluma.

              2. Yup. Gotta take advantage. I lived on a mountain in SoCal for a bit, a one hour and 15:00 minute drive from “town”. We got efficient.
                I love ‘Country-Fried’, but the Duchess always wanted City services. We’ve got a city house with views of the Open Space; both happy.

            2. Brodie,
              If you have 4G/LTE on your phone or whatever you’re using for internet, try UStvNOW for games. You can sign up for the free plan and get the games on ABC, CBS and Fox.

              1. Thanks! I’m out in the sticks. Trees block satellite for TV. Cell phones don’t work (unless I hike up a hill). My Internet’s on a WISP. UStvNOW might work on that.

    1. First Jack now Grant picking the Niners to win in Seattle. Not sure what the reason is for that belief but hey hope you’re right.

      1. Some people just like to see change I guess? I don’t understand it either. A one point victory and suddenly we can win on the road(something we haven’t been able to do this year) against a team that the Cardinals needed 39 points to beat just this past week. We haven’t scored 30 points all year but I’m sure our 14 point average will be enough to get the job done, on the road against Seattle which just lost at home. They have no reason to come out fired up and motivated but again we have Tomsula to motivate our guys so that pretty much cancels that out right?

        Good grief. Like you I’m always glad to be wrong about a 49ers loss but I really don’t think I’m going to be wrong about this one.

    2. Grant, I think you are dreaming. We could beat them with a much better oline and a healthy Carlos Hyde. Instead it’s all on Gabbert. He’ll do better than Kaepernick would, but the hill is too steep. We are not ready for prime time.

    3. Bold predictions indeed. I’ll take a win, but realisticly I’m hoping for competence. Can they stay close and find a way to win at the end? Maybe, but predicting a win seems like a reach.
      So, Marshawn’s legs are gone? LOL! Grant said he’s in decline, so I was just interpreting there. There’s the injury and “the worst OL”, but he’s in decline; ok.
      I’m also remembering Grant and others complaining that Hitner wasn’t good in coverage. So they bring in a better cover SS, but he supposedly didn’t hit enough, although I seem to recall a number of whacks delivered by Bethea.
      I’d be delighted by a win, but I’m not betting the ranch on it.

        1. Dats right. And THAT’s what Jed’s bonehead moves threaten: hope. He can change coordinators, HC, GM, but if the guy he lets whisper in his ear is part of the problem, then the patient won’t be cured. I don’t know how fair and accurate the recent portrayals of Marathe have been, but I’ve developed a very unfavorable opinion based on what I’m reading.

          1. Warning: non football content to follow:
            Razor-just to amplify my feelings about Marathe:
            In Nam my squadron worked with some Green Beanies on a regular basis and we knew them well. They had a resident CIA spook at their FOB who was well connected in Saigon and had influence on the cross border recons they ran. Everybody hated and distrusted the guy and you could tell by their body language; they literally would never turn their back to the guy; they’d walk sideways to avoid it. They’d never let him be alone in the Ops hootch, he always ate alone, they’d only speak to him if they had to, and they taught us Jarheads to not engage even in small talk around him.
            That’s the association I make with Marathe. My take might be off base, but if I was in a room with him for less than a minute I’d probably know for sure.

            1. Your description sounds like he was with CORDS. If Marathe is cut from the same cloth as you imply, he figures to be Yorks’ strong suit….

  10. I think that the Seachikens will tear us apart especially in the air so i guess a big loss for us 37-13. A QB change alone doesnt help our team.

  11. When you play Seattle with a bad oline, obviously your only hope is your QB and defense. I think our defense is up to it, but Gabbert will be running for his life and his receivers will usually be covered. The question is, does Blaine have magic in him, like Wilson and other cagey QBs do. And Atlanta showed me there is a chance Blaine does. If not, maybe we kick a few field goals. But if he does, we have our QB of the future, whether we win or lose this game. Actually I hope we lose, for the better draft position.

    1. I am with you, hope Gabbert shows that he can be the future but will take a loss for draft pick position.
      I dont see him doing well, the noise in seattle is going to kill him

      1. andrew, the noise can be overcome, as Arizona proved. I am not thinking that we are Arizona. No way. Those guys have it going. I wish Arians coached here. I think the only way we can beat them is if Gabbert is successful at improvising, which would make the noise mostly a non-factor.

      2. Niners should do what GB did in last year’s NFCCG. They negated the crowd noise by running the no huddle with quick snaps. They did not let the crowd noise ratchet up to a crescendo like the Niners have previously done by waiting until there is one second on the play clock.
        I too, fear that Blaine will not survive, especially with Devey and Pears starting.

    2. If you think for a second that Blaine Gabbert even has a small chance to be our future QB going forward you are going to be disappointed. What you should be looking for is if this guy can be a future stop gap for the QB they will draft in the first 2 rnds of the draft. This is going to be ugly on Sunday. A lot of fans living in lala land. 180 yards 2 tds and 2 ints (should only been 1) against a badly overrated Falcons team. Seattle is going to destroy this guy. Kaep to start in 2 weeks I guarantee it.

      1. Nice thing about archives is that you cannot erase them. We shall see.
        I am cautiously optimistic, because Seattle has not performed like a SB team this year. If the Niners improve, and the Seahawks regress, stranger things have happened. If the Texans can beat the previously undefeated Bengals, Niners may pull the upset.

  12. After their loss they will be nasty. They will blitz gabbert so you throw screens and slants.Stop lynch and we have a chance. My dream is blane gets knocked out and kap runs for victory–go 49ers

  13. How in the world will the 49ers attract quality coaches with the suits calling the plays.
    I wrote about this 1 year ago predating this article:


    November 19, 2015 at 12:48 pm

    I predated this article last summer with my own assessment of P. Marathe and noticing his constant presence in TV-Cutaways in the coaches booth, in addition to his Flag Challenge job in the booth, given to him by the York’s, and that Harbaugh, tiring of this, spoke purposely rude to J. York, knowing he would be fired. Harbaugh read the room correctly and knew he was never going to get power in personnel matters above Baalke or Maarathe.


    Marathe active game involvement is something that has been discussed in a limited manner, but has picked up a bit of steam more recently. Play calling and other football decisions – normally reserved the coaching staff – was a point of escalating tension under Nolan, Singletary and finally Jim Harbaugh’s coaching tenure. Marathe – an analytics guru and numbers cruncher – often

    1. Since the Suits In Silicon Valley invented the Earth they thought they would try NFL play calling…T-A-L-K A-B-O-U-T T-O-O M-A-N-Y E-G-O’-S steering the ship, no wonder it was run into the rocks this year….Nooobody could work in this environment!

  14. Grant

    Good article…I too believe that the niners are ready to play REAL football. I’m calling Niners 21….Hawks 17….SIC ‘EM BLAINE !

  15. Wow that must be some PF tear. He was able to move around and stand on the sidelines just fine during the game but now the injury is so bad that he’s not even been at the team meetings or practices all week and is staying home for the game. Some team mate. Sounds like someone is having a big ‘ol hissy fit.

    1. I’m glad he is staying home. Save this guy for next year instead of running him into a wall over and over. These next 2 weeks will be brutal to watch. 38-13 Seahawks. Gabbert picked 3 times.

    1. More excellent work by Neumann. Without wanting to diss the others, Neumann’s analysis is far superior to the rest of the crew at NN.

      This breakdown really shows how soft the 49ers have been over the middle, largely due to the LBs. As Neumann notes, the zone coverage is getting smashed, but its the inability of the LBs to cover the middle zones effectively that is causing a large part of the problem.

      It is also interesting (yet unsurprising) to see the 49ers have been most effective when blitzing, and least effective when rushing 3 men only (which thankfully is happening much less now!). An effective pass rush is key, and unfortunately they have rarely been effective rushing less than 5 people at a time. Its a big weakness for the D at the moment.

      What I find the strangest in this, is the similarity between Week 3 (Cards) and Week 9 (Falcons), based on these charts. Yet in week 3 they were demolished. It goes to show that these stats are great, but there are other elements not shown, such as how often the base D was used vs nickel/ dime. That week 3 matchup was a classic case of the 49ers matching up poorly against 3 WR sets. Or how important it is to be able to stop the run to create 2nd/ 3rd and long situations, and mask the deficiencies of the soft middle in coverage.

      It also doesn’t show how important it is having an effective offense that doesn’t give two pick-6s away in the first quarter…

  16. Gabbert looked like a guy who hasn’t played since the preseason. I know it’s been two weeks since we saw him play, but he did miss some throws. He had 2 INTs which could have been 3 if the third one wasn’t dropped. Albeit, one wasn’t his fault. He didn’t light it up on the field against a terrible Atlanta secondary.
    I would not expect Seattle to make the same mistakes ATL did. Wilson will have a big game on the ground against SF. This might actually be a good game for our pass rush. Since they can’t generate pressure, the edge rushers will merely need to keep Wilson in the pocket. This is not Wilson’s strength. If he escapes the pocket, it is going to be a long day for SF Fans.
    The comments here remind me of the comments after the Vikings game. This SF team is not a contender and isn’t even close to being one. 6 wins this season would be one heck of a feat.
    If this game is close it’s only because the referees keep it close. SF 3 Seattle 31

  17. I’d like to be optimistic but I’m not. The 49ers o-line is still garbage and the Seahawks d-line is starting to click. This will be a 5-7 sack game for the Seahawks and the 9ers rush game will have less than 80 yards. Seahawks offense is struggling a bit but their defense can score points. I’m afraid this one could get ugly. Not sure if it’s a Jed York tweeting “that was an embarrassment” ugly or if it is just going to be a physical beat down. Either way, this game seals the fate of Jim Tomsula and the rest of the 9er staff.

  18. It’s really quite surreal reading comments that are seriously discussing Blaine Gabbert in a positive light, most odd. It’s a sad reflection of how far our former golden boy Colin has fallen.

    But hey ho, Colin is history now, Blaine is the new greatest hope, It’s just a shame that because we are kind of sorta maybe on the very roughest fringes of the playoff race, the management wont discard the entire right hand side of the o-line and give the young-uns a chance. They gonna get Blaine killed

    Seahawks edge it 14-12.

  19. Seattle will show SF why undrafted F/A, 6th and 7th rounders have no business starting for an NFL offensive line.
    Next, the Hawks will take away the short passing game, knowing that the 49ers can not sustain blocks against a real NFL DL.

    1. I.e., the Hawks will predict the 49ers can not sustain blocks long enough for a downfield passing threat and flood the short passing zones.

  20. The 49ers announced that Hyde will not play in the team’s Week 11 clash with the NFC West rival Seattle Seahawks Sunday, according to Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle.

  21. 49ers offensive passing ranking*:

    2008 13th
    2009 22nd
    2010 18th
    2011 29th
    2012 23rd
    2013 30th
    2014 30th
    2015 30th

    What happened in 2011 that killed our passing offense? It wasn’t the offensive line because 2011,2012,2013 were the years it was considered the best in the league or at least one of. What changed in 2011 that made our average passing yards per game become the worst in the league?

      1. At first that idea starts to hold water but then leaks appear:

        Number of pass attempts:

        2008 509
        2009 528
        2010 500
        5011 451
        2012 436
        2013 417
        2014 487
        2015 on pace for over 500 attempts

        So, yes Rombaugh definitely called less passes but that doesn’t explain why their passing yards were able to jump in 2012 even though they threw only 436 times. What made the 2012 passing game so efficient?

        It also doesn’t explain in 2014 when we threw for nearly 500 attempts and were still listed 30th in the league. This year we’ll have over 500 attempts and are still listed 30th so far.

        1. I’m not so interested in the 2011 thru 2013 years. The defense and run game became strong enough to carry the team.

          The interesting part is that in 2014 when the run game and offensive line began to struggle and the team tried to go back to passing more the passing yards didn’t return.

          1. Also remember that the offensive lines in 2008 and 2009 and even 2010 were not great. Those were the Jonas Jennings days.

            1. Take that back Jennings was out after 2008. But we didn’t get Iupati and Davis until 2010 and AD was pretty bad his first year and a half.

        2. “What made the 2012 passing game so efficient?”

          Three deep threats in VD, Moss and Walker who kept the safeties honest, the read option, and a QB who was excellent at the intermediate throws.

          1. Neither Moss nor Walker were deep threats. Or at least used them. VD and Walker were both on the team when the numbers started to tank and of course one of the biggest arguments with VD is that he hasn’t been used as a deep threat.

            1. Neither Moss nor Walker were on the 2013 squad. Remember Crabtree was also injured for the first 11 games of the 2013 season.
              2012 pass catchers: Crabtree, Moss, some of Manningham, Williams, VD, Walker
              2013 pass catchers: Boldin, Williams, VD, and some of Crabtree…and yes, the Vance.

              IMO, the 2013 edition was a shell of the 2012 one whether the deep threat was real or not.

    1. Is this ranking based on:
      -YPA or
      -total passing yards per game

      2012 and parts of 2013, the YPA was probably the best in quite a while….so most likely this is total passing yards per game.

      We know oldJim wanted to run the fewest possible plays on offense per game. So, this ranking is not that surprising.

    2. 2011, week 4 vs the Bucs. Ahead several TDs, late in the 4th qtr. Sane teams would be killing the clock. What does Harbs do? A long pass to Josh Morgan. He broke his leg.

      That couldn’t have helped the 2011 passing offense. Later that season Harbaugh had first and ten formations with no wide receivers. Crabs and Ginn were nursing injuries. We literally ran out or wide receivers.

      As much as I like Harbaugh and appreciate what he accomplished, his late game decisions were often mindless.

      1. May I quibble semantics, Brodie?
        Not mindless imo, I don’t think JH is ever mindless. Ever. He’s too obsessive.
        Incomprehensible? Yes.
        Wrong? Sure, plenty of times.
        Stubborn? Check.
        Think how he was as a QB. He was the George Armstrong Custer of quarterbacks

        1. I beg to differ. JH was pretty mindless when he called for a TO in the SB and Kaep walked into the end zone. If he did not panic and had let the play run, the Niners would have won.
          I concede that JH is arrogant and full of hubris, but he also won a lot of games.

          1. Disagree. He wasn’t mindless. He was trying to control the situation by calling the TO to,put the moment into his own hands. He was, of course, wrong, but he mindfully called the Time Out. That’s why I used the term semantics, to emphasize the specific meaning. Being tactically and strategically wrong is not the same as being mindless.

        1. “Ok, what happened in 2014 and 2015 when they stared passing more?”

          Only 4 teams have attempted fewer passes per game than the 49ers.

          1. C’mon Jack you know that has nothing to do with the question or the point. It has nothing to do with how many passes they’ve thrown in relation to the league.

            1. “What changed in 2011 that made our average passing yards per game become the worst in the league?”

              This was your initial question, and since 2011 their attempts have been near the bottom of the league.

              “It has nothing to do with how many passes they’ve thrown in relation to the league.”

              It has everything to do with it. Maybe the answer doesn’t fit with whatever you think the reason should be?

              1. I also said this:

                “I’m not so interested in the 2011 thru 2013 years. The defense and run game became strong enough to carry the team.

                The interesting part is that in 2014 …team tried to go back to passing more the passing yards didn’t return.”

                You’re just as bad as Skeptic read all of the comments first Jack.

                “Number of pass attempts:

                2008 509
                2009 528
                2010 500
                5011 451
                2012 436
                2013 417
                2014 487
                2015 on pace for over 500 attempts”

                My comments had nothing to do with how many passes the team attempted compared to the rest of the league but compared to the team prior to 2011. When the team started passing closer to the number of times they did prior to 2011 the passing ranking didn’t return.

              2. Their number of pass attempts last year and this year are still low compared to the rest of the league, which is part of why their total yards ranking is low.

                This shouldn’t be so tough for a smart guy like you to figure out.

              3. I’m not looking for night and day differences but the increase in attempts has had zero effect. It might not be the change you thought I was looking for but an increase to 27 or 28th would fit that average for 2014 and this year we should be the same or even slightly better and we’re still flat.

                Will that number increase in the second half of this season if they don’t make any further changes at QB?

              4. It won’t change unless they start throwing the ball more or their yards per attempt takes a dramatic jump up.

                There’s no increase in overall yards ranking because although they’ve thrown it more than in years past it is still low compared to the rest of the league.

              5. I expect(ed) more of a delta in the numbers even though they are still relatively low in comparison to the league.

    3. In 2011 their overall pass yards ranked 29th, but in yards per attempt they were 16th. It’s simple, fewer pass attempts = fewer total yards.

      1. The Seahawks were not expecting to have their backs against the wall at this point in the season. However, they are a much more dangerous opponent because that is exactly where they find themselves. They have nothing to lose, which must be scary as hell for Gabbert and the 49ers.
        This is a simple case of the wrong place at the wrong time. Blaine Gabbert deserves to start after he unexpectedly led the 49ers to victory over the Atlanta Falcons. Unfortunately, that next start comes against a dangerous Seahawks team in the most inhospitable environment. A Kaepernick appearance is not out of the question. Gabbert, the best of luck to you.

      1. Left shoulder. I don’t think the 49ers are on the hook for the full $30M “career ending” injury part of his contract.

        1. Caplan says: Adam Caplan ‏@caplannfl 54s54 seconds ago
          With Kaepernick on IR, date to watch is 4/1, which is when his base salary of $11.9m becomes fully guaranteed.

    1. Branch is comfirming: Eric Branch ‏@Eric_Branch 8s8 seconds ago
      Wow. The #49ers have placed Colin Kaepernick on season-ending injured reserve. Promoted practice squad QB Dylan Thompson to active roster.

    2. Is this to shelve him to prevent injury so they can trade him? Or have they decided that he holds so little value to the team that they’re better off with an UFA as their back up? Or both I guess?

      1. I should have said to prevent further injury I guess. With that 4/1 date It’s hard to imagine how the trade goes down. I’m not sure if they have to wait for the new season year to begin before taking him off IR to then be able to trade him. If that’s the case then It’s a little bit harder to imagine a trade going down. Especially now that he’ll spend the rest of the year on the couch there’s far less likely of a chance someone is going to pay him to be a starter next year.

      2. Adam Schefter ‏@AdamSchefter 49s49 seconds ago
        Colin Kaepernick told 49ers on Friday he wants to have surgery on his non-throwing shoulder, per source. Thus, IR. Thus, season over.

  22. While it’s super-depressing, this is the correct move for the 49ers at this time. Remove all doubt from Gabbert’s mind and give him a chance to shine for a half-season; find out whether we need Goff, or if we can go for someone else.

    As much as I hate to admit it, the 49ers seem to have collected some serious talent on the defensive side. Armstead is going to be a force; and the secondary is gelling. If PWilly and ADavis hadn’t “retired,” we’d probably be 5-4 or 6-3 right now. We’ll get Davis back next year and pair him with Tiller, Busta Rhymes will be better than recent Vernon; this is a down season for sure, but the “reload” comment by Baalke might not be too far from the truth. They need a real coaching staff, and if you’ve read the BASG article, you’ll know they need to get rid of John York and Paraag.

    At some point, the rot at the top will be addressed. Hopefully sooner than later.

  23. DEC Management ‏@davidcanter 5m5 minutes ago
    @caplannfl you’re kidding right? He’ll never see that & be off roster within 2 weeks of SuperBowl

  24. Barrows reports it was a labral tear to his non-throwing shoulder. I just had surgery on my right labrum which was a complete tear from top to bottom. I’ve had that tear since my High School days. I can tell you this, being on his non-throwing shoulder if he wanted to or the team needed him to he could have still played with that and had surgery in the off season.

    1. I have yet to get mine Surgically repaired. And I fully agree. Throwing shoulder maybe at flare up times. He’s saving face IMO

      1. You do not throw a football for a living. Kaep masked that injury for many games, and that to me shows his toughness and dedication to the team.
        Calling him out for being injured just shows what a putz you are. IMO.

      2. For me it was on my throwing shoulder and I wasn’t able to throw with it. In my 20’s and 30’s I could but I would pay for it for a couple of days with intense soreness but as I got older I lost the strength and ability to throw any kind of ball off that shoulder unless I was ready for some extreme pain.

        1. As pointed out though, non throwing shoulder is different. There’s a good chance that if my injury was on my left instead of right side I might not have ever bothered getting it cleared up. It was only because it affected my primary arm that I had it done.

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