Finding five wins on 49ers’ rugged 2016 schedule

Click here to read my Wednesday column.

  1. The 49ers could certainly win those games. However, it really depends on how Kelly uses his personnel and whether Hyde stays healty as you mentioned Grant.

    This might be nothing, but by then maybe we can tell if Baalke still has play and roster control. I remember in ’15 he was recommending the players who suited up and got the lion’s share of the playing time while also keeping his power run game alive.

    1. And I have long suspected that Baalke hires push over coaches like Tomsula or Kelly (who needed the 49ers to keep NFL employment) because he believes in strong defenses and power running. Interestingly, since Baalke has been GM, coaches with a flair for passing more than running have never been hired.

      1. And there was this incident last year:

        Will Trent Baalke Be the Owner, Too?

        Posted on December 23, 2015 by Tom Shannon

        “Trent Baalke’s apparently doing more than delivering players such as defensive backs Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt for the 49ers.

        Here’s Baalke’s employment history from Wikipedia:

        “1998–2000 New York Jets
        Personnel Scout
        2001–2004 Washington Redskins
        2001–2003 National Scout
        2004 College Scouting Coordinator
        2005–present San Francisco 49ers
        2005–2007 Western Region Scout
        2008–2009 Director of Player Personnel
        2010 VP of Player Personnel
        2011–present”

        Do you see defensive backs coach in there anywhere? Do you see coach of any type in there anywhere? And yet Baalke considers it to be his job to do it.

        The problem with teh 49ers isn’t retirements and it isn’t bad luck. It’s Baalke. He’s a megalomaniac, control freak…

        http://bearingthenews.com/blog/2015/12/23/will-trent-baalke-be-the-owner-too/

  2. In addition to those games I think they’ll also will beat The Cardinals and the Seahawks once.
    Hopefully even the Rams for Xmas.
    8-8 seems do-able

    1. Dee,

      What gives you this optimism? I would like to split games with the Hawks and Cards though I wonder if the team has the capacity to pull that off. I guess it all depends on how well the younger players develop.

  3. Apologies for repeating myself, but I think the 49ers will clearly improve, but will struggle to win five games. I’m excited about the new players I’m really looking forward to the season. But I’m not expecting many wins.

    The schedule isn’t hard, its sadistic. Its mostly based on a formula, so there’s not much the NFL can do about who we face. But the travel dates and game times are downright criminal. Flying 3000 miles for a 10am game after playing a 7:30pm the previous Monday for the 2nd year in a row (vs a Super Bowl team)? That’s the NFL assigning the 49ers a loss. The only silver lining is the 49ers will probably lose that game too.

    1. (I meant “…lose that game anyway”)

      The first four games are vs running teams Rams, Panthers, Seahawks, Cowboys. If Dorsey and Williams return early, they have a fighting chance for 6-7 wins. Unfortunately they will likely come on board just when the passing teams appear on the schedule… Saints, Cards, Pats.

      The timing could not be worse, but it doesn’t mean the 49ers don’t have options and bright spots.
      – Dial can play NT. I’d rather have him in his usual spot, be he isn’t chopped liver at NT.
      – Purcell could emerge. The oft injured Ramsey has talent, but can he stay healthy? Then there’s the massive UDFA from Bama…
      – Bowman will be in better form. Not saying the old Bowman, but ILB play should be a little better.
      – Maybe O’Neil has some 4-3 looks he can throw at them. His schemes could free up a safety to play lower.
      – DEs Buckner, TJE can be a nice rotational run stopping group while Dial occupies NT.

          1. That was an aberration and not indicative of what he’s capable of doing. Zone read offense + Kaepernick = #7tormcoming!

            1. “Zone read offense + Kaepernick = 7tormscoming!”

              Oh not this again. We heard that last offseason and we got a 7hitstorm instead.

              1. You yourself commented how well Kelly did with Foles, and how Gabbert hasn’t had a good team around him. You expect him to thrive with Chip on his shoulder, but Kaepernick to be 7hit. I’ve got news for you, Kaepernick is the first real Zone Read quarterback that Chip Kelly has had in the NFL. Good luck to both players, but may the best man win!

              2. True. The problem is that as a passer Kaepernick’s closer to Mike Vick than Foles or even Sanchez.

              3. True, but correct me if I’m wrong. Chip Kelly likes to throw downfield. Kaepernick’s passing strength lies in the medium to long range and Gabbert’s is in the dink and dunk range….

              4. I’m not arguing who Kelly is going to choose. I just don’t think we will see anything that resembles a positive “7torm” from your boy.

              5. Ok, so you believe Chip chooses Kaepernick wrongly and then the Blaine Train comes in to lead them out from the 7hitstorm. You could be right, but your prediction seems to me to be more of a leap of faith than mine. Regardless, I just want to win and last I checked, Kaepernick is still a 49er. I haven’t turned my back on him and he’s capable of setting records in this offense, if that makes him my boy, fine. If the Blaine Train ever leaves the station, I’ll be on board with no hard feelings….

            2. Razor, I agree. If Flaherty, who built playoff and SB O lines can rejuvenate the Niner O line, both the running and passing game will improve.

              I would like to see Kaep run the pistol, too.

              1. Seems to be a disconnect somewhere. Jack likes Chip Kelly but thinks he’ll choose the wrong quarterback. Why? Oregoniner loves Chip Kelly, but if he chooses Kaepernick, will he need 50 ways to leave his lover? These are questions inquiring minds want to know.; > )

              2. And the winner in this year’s Santa Clara QB sweepstakes is…..(drum roll please)…….Matt Hasselbeck!!… Just kidding but the current crop does not engender great confidence now does it no matter which door Kelly chooses he seems to have a dud.

      1. Not safe, but they beat the Bear’s on the road last year with a much worse coaching staff. Its going to be a rough year. I think we’re that team that people might over look in their schedule and they may pick up a win when some winning team looks past us. Its going to be a rough season for sure and could be worse depending on injuries.

          1. Agreed and they shouldn’t have beat the Falcons either but they did. I think they’ll have a couple of those games. We were really a 3 win team last year. I think we’ll be better but the record won’t show it by much.

              1. You could also easily say they were a 7 win team posing as a 5 win team. They had both the Cardinals and Giants beat and gave those games away. It just depends on how you choose to view things.

  4. Assuming Hyde and Kaep stay healthy throughout the season I see home wins Vs. Rams, Cowboys, Cardinals, Tampa Bay, Jets, Saints. Road wins Vs Bills, Dolphins, Bears, Falcons.

    Season 10-5, Road 4-3, Home, 6-2, NFC West 3-3, AFC 3-1

  5. I expect both the Cowboys and the Saints to stomp us into the ground.

    If by some strange set of events the 49ers manage to win 5 games I believe these are the most likely victories:

    NYJ
    Rams x2
    Seattle @ Levis
    Chicago

      1. Cowboys are going to have a big year. The Saints not so much but Brees will still carve up our secondary.

      2. I agree, and the Cowboys have huge question marks with Romo’s health and the loss of 2 defenders due to suspensions.

        Saints have not stomped anybody since their SB season. Niner pass rush will make Breeze pedestrian, especially since their running game does not look scary.

    1. To start, I think Seattle takes a step back this season. They’ll be the 2nd best team in the Division but that’s saying nothing. The loss of Lynch will be noticed in that offense. Despite the rise of younger players none of the stayed or are healthy and even at their best none of them were going to replace Lynch. Without the fear of Marshawn gashing them up the middle defenses will be blitzing more often and forcing them to win with Wilson’s arm. He’s going to have a tough year. Plus that defense is getting a lot older then it is better these days.

      We seem to play Seattle tough at home even when we don’t have a good team. I think we’ll win by 3 or less.

      1. Wouldn’t that be great for the Hawks to regress? They’ve lost a lot of starters over the past 3 years.

        1. Every good/great team drops when they lose their star. We’re only a couple years away from the Patriots being a consecutive 4 win team, again. The Niner’s star happened to be their Coach. Wilson gets all the attention but Lynch carried that team, literally.

          1. Interestingly, Lynch could not carry them before Wilson got there (well, other than that playoff game against NO).

            It was only when Wilson arrived, and there was a legitimate pass threat, that Marshawn could really thrive in Seattle.

          2. I’ve seen reports (but can’t provide citations) that the Hawks feel that the team is now Wilson’s and not Lynch’s. The expectation is that they will pass more, but that is relative to what they have done in the past. Wilson to Graham is expected to be a bigger part of the offense (of course, that was true last offseason as well).

              1. I am not sure that’s true. Their coach is their star. Brady’s 1B there to him. When Bellichick leaves then they’ll be a 4 win team.

        1. Lynch played only seven games last year
          ——————————
          Exactly and they “only” won 10 games after winning an average of 12 the 3 seasons prior. They’re already on a down trend and they haven’t improved their team this year.

          “But Rawls was much better than Lynch last season. By a mile”

          The story of the nobody running back that comes in for the star and has a couple of huge games is replete throughout the history of the NFL. Injuries and the rigors of playing 16 games in a season, if they can stay healthy that long, will reveal their true colors.

          1. No arguments here.
            Injury is definitely a possibility, and so is getting worn out.

            My point thoughis the loss of Lynch might not be that huge for Seattle, because he was really bad last year and they still won 10 games.

            The defense on the other hand is getting weaker every year. If they regress there once again they might not get to 10 wins this year.

      2. Not saying Seattle won’t regress this season. I hope they do.

        But Rawls was much better than Lynch last season. By a mile.
        And Prosise is a great prospect, especially as a pass catching RB.

        I hope their defense regresses, because their running game may actually improve.

          1. I liked him here in Notre Dame, but he gets dinged easily. Last I heard, he’s missed a lot of offseason work due to a hip injury….

              1. Excellent? I think that is going too far. They are a decent pair of starting WRs, made to look a bit better than they are by having a good running game opening up the passing game and a QB that can extend plays.

              2. Excellent may be too much, but they are definitely better than decent.

                Russell might be the reason they look good, though.

          2. I really wanted either Prosise or Perkins in the draft. Hopefully they will need time to get up to NFL speed.

      3. This guy. I’ve been reading prediction after prediction from him, and one thing I can tell you is this, if coffee is for closers than he’s driking water.

      4. Good claim but there is no substance behind it. Rawls is better than Lynch. Rawls burned the Niners for 200 +yards last year behind an awful OL. Rawls put together a “5.65 yards per-carry average, and 2.68 yards after contact were both the best in the NFL.”

        In addition, they’ve added to their running game: Collins and Prosise are not exactly push overs.

    2. 3-4 Wins, our schedule is loaded with playoff contenders and proven teams….We are at the rebuilding stage and I don’t see us beating 5 teams..IJS

    1. You gotta admit beating Seattle was tough with a good team and coaching. Their roster is still better than ours. One can hope but you’re messing up my low expectations for the year

    2. I’m with you on that. Don’t think it is that impossible to beat them at Levi’s.

      I just believe it is much easier they get six wins than they beat Seattle.

      Hopefully they do both

  6. I see 8 winnable games on the schedule. I see 8 very hard to win games on the schedule. If the Niners win 6 out of 8 on the winnable games, they only have to go 2-6 on the hard games for the Niners to avoid a losing season.

    If Chip improves the coaching, he might factor in 2 more wins than last year. If Kaep is rejuvenated and healthy, he might improve the win total. If Hyde is healthy, he may account for a 2 game improvement. Totaled up, the 5-11 Niners may improve 5 games if those 3 factors are positive, and not negative. If things are clicking, 10-6 and a shot at the playoffs could be possible. However, 8-8 is optimistic, and 6-10 is realistic.

      1. Well, IF this is a brand new season, then anything is possible. Look at Leicester City. On paper, they were 5000-1 odds on longshots, and won. Look at Cleveland. Had not won anything for 54 years, down 1-3, and won the championship (Granted, they had help from the league, the refs and injuries).

        Chip is the key. If he can fix the offensive malaise, the Niners have a chance. The good thing is that with a healthy Kaep and Hyde, the fix might be easy, especially if Flaherty can make the O line non putrid.

        The sign of a good general is if he can defeat a superior force with an inferior force. Like the late Bum Phillips said- “Bryant can take his’n and beat your’n, and then he can turn around and take your’n, and beat his’n.”

  7. The easiest game on the schedule is the first game. Stop the run and blitz the rookie Goofy to death will lead the Niners to their first win. After that its anyone’s guess.

    This year seems similar to Harbaugh’s first year. No one expected much and yet it was a great year. There is no reason not to expect the same results from Kelly. QB dilemma, promising talent, bad record, poor coaching all proceeded Harbaugh and also proceeds Kelly.

    1. Why do people keep comparing this years team to the one Jim Harbaugh took over? Expectations were the only similarity. That 49ers team played in a weak division. That 49er team was the most talented team in that weak division as voted on by their divisional rivals. This team is considered the least talented team in the nfl and they play in a tough division.

  8. Fisher will not take chances with the rook who needs to bulk up before enduring an NFL pass rush. He will start Keenum, and give a big dose of Gurly.

    Hopefully, the Niner O line becomes stout, or it will be a looooong season.

        1. My source or Seb’s? Common sense and talent. Keenum will be carrying the clip board. God
          Is the exact measurements of one Alex Smith. He’ll be fine, haha.

          1. Way too many times, a team that struggles throws a newb QB into the starting job before he is ready, and he bombs, thus destroying his career.

            Goff looks like Twiggy. He needs a whole lotta bulking up.
            Fisher does not want to risk Goff when he has Gurly.

            1. The fact that they paid through the nose for the number one quarterback at the top of the draft board, clearly suggests to me that they believed him to be ready….

          2. History is about to repeat itself when Kaepernick and Gabbert(Alex Smith)compete against each other. We all know how that ended….

            1. We were talking about Goff, but Kaep did throw twice as few. Keenum is not that bad, and Goff is a rookie who many pundits declared to not be NFL ready until he gains strength and bulks up.

              If Fisher is desperate, Goff will start, but he may figure that his defense and Gurly can beat the Niners without risking Goff.

              1. Seb you can have your opinion and your unsubstantiated speculation. I don’t find it probable. Goff would have to be a complete bust to lose to Keenum.

              2. Well, at least you are allowing me to have an opinion, but perusing the other team’s blogs in our division, they are not wildly optimistic, even the Seahawk site.

                Rams did draft Goff, and I think he will be their starter for years, but bringing him along slowly may be the best way to help him succeed. Remember AS, another first pick, and how he did when they threw him into the meat grinder.

              3. Wilson, Fisher said that Keenum was the starter heading into TC, so nothing will be handed to Goff.

              4. Scooter, I just read that Goff threw 5 picks on the last day of OTAs. Therefore, since Kaep threw 2, he threw 2.5 times less.

              5. Seb, your maths teacher just gave a little sob of despair…

                Goff threw 2.5 times more INTs than Kaep. Kaep threw 2/5 the number of INTs as Goff. Kaep did not throw 2.5 times less INTs than Goff.

                2.5 times anything is always 2.5 times more than what you multiply it by, unless it is negative.

              6. Again Seb I never said anything would be handed to Goff. He’s far more talented than their other QB’s. Fisher did say he’ll play when he’s ready. He did allude that he would start sometime during the season. He could allow Keenum to start on the road. I think if Goff’s the guy everyone here was drooling over he’ll out play Keenum.

              7. Wilson, Keenum actually looked good his last games. If not for a blocked FG, he could have had a 4 win ending. His third win was a victory at the Clink, something the Niners have had a very hard time managing to do. It is hard to win a game up there.

                Keenum should practice handing off, because that is what he will do a lot.

              8. Scooter,

                I think you achieved something that nobody else has ever pulled off: you responded to Seb and he had no answer.

            2. If Keenum was that good they wouldn’t have drafted Goff and traded 6 picks away for him. Before those last 4 games Keenum’s completion % was in Vick/Sanchez territory at 56%. That’s terrible. He could start a few games but he’s not Goff unless he’s a bust. If he can’t beat Keenum then he might be.

              1. You are correct, Goff is valuable as the future QB, but Keenum was better than Foles, who was traded for in exchange for Sam Bradford, the original franchise QB.

                I expect Goff will start after week 4. Both the Seahawks and Cards play the Rams in the first 4 weeks.

                However, if Keenum is 3-1, they may hold off Goff.

              2. They also play the Hawks and Cardinals. The Rams stink. They could as easily go 1-3 or 2-2.

              3. True…That is why I said IF. However, a healthy Gurly makes them formidable, no matter who the QB, and that D line is impressive.

      1. My thoughts exactly. The amount of draft capital that Fisher expended on the chance that Goff is a franchise quarterback, suggests to me that he’s willing to take a chance on starting him….

    1. You mean like last year? ;) some guys are still bitter after getting behind that sweaty guy and declaring a 10 win season, especially a guy from the PNW. What’s your real prediction this year. 6-10 to 8-8 for me.

      1. Did I? Gee, thanks for remembering.

        I was obviously wrong about Tomsula. Kelly on the other hand has a bit of a track record, and if Tomsula could win 5 games I have little doubt that Kelly is capable of winning at least 3 more.

        1. My initial gut feeling for Tomsula was disaster, but you and Scooter convinced me to give him a chance. I agree with you Kelly has to be good for 3 more wins, but they won’t come in a 7hitstorm. How many will they lose before Gabbert comes in and makes good on those 8 victories?

          1. Very true. And if Kelly had coached the same number of games it likely would have been 2 better.

            The fact that Tomsula and his rag tag group could get 5 wins last year shows the talent that had.

            They’ll be at 8 or 10 wins.

              1. Yes. That was something new that the NFL implemented for all teams that changed coaches this year.

          2. He coached in the NFC East, the weakest division in the NFL, along with the AFC South. Tomsula coachedin a tough division.

  9. The 49ers will win at least 10 games!!! Grant while U point out the games that we could’ve lost how about the games that we should’ve won! (The refs ABSOLUTELY took the Arizona game in SF last year! Should’ve beat the Giants & if we get ANY “qb play” we beat GB! & all of a sudden we’re 8-8!). . . Like U say the Def played great at home at NOT SO GOOD on the road (sign of a young team!) . . I happen 2 think Chip Kelly is a Very Good coach (Notice I didn’t say GM). . . & if we get some Great coaching wins & confidence can take us a Long Way!!! (Remember ‘2011) I’m just saying this team is not as talented as the ‘2011 team BUT there is some GOOD YOUNG TALENT on the roster!!!

    1. Baalke has the right philosophical approach, and he’s got some young, talented players but he needs to be paired with an offensive minded coach, like Chip Kelly….

  10. There is ZERO chance at 8-10 wins with Gabbert at QB.. If Kaep gets his form back this team could get there. But that is a stretch. I’m predicting 7-9 with Kaep and 4-12 with Gabbert/Driskel.. This team will look a lot more like a competitive football team but the schedule is really tough. I have been wrong before and would love to be wrong again.

          1. Here is the thing that people seem to leave out with Gabbert. Last year he had ZERO pressure on him being the QB. Everyone loves the back up. Now that everyone seems to to believe he should be the QB now he suddenly has pressure to perform. As reports began to surface about Kaep being back starting to throw, Gabberts performance in OTAs began to change. His practices weren’t as clean. If this is truly a fair competition and the front office stays out of any decision regarding the QB position. I believe you will see Gabbert revert to his last 4 games. Not very impressive.

  11. I just don’t understand why nobody likes the 49ers after their 2011-2013 seasons. It’s basically the same team, minus Gore, Moss, Iupati, Davis, Davis, Walker, Crabtree, Boldin, Willis, Smith, and Smith.

    But to be fair, they do have that coach who never won anything and has no clue how to run an NFL offense.

    1. JC,

      Funny post, but isn’t this opinion a 180 for you (after maybe a couple of 360’s for good measure)?

      What happened?

      1. ExG

        Yeah; I mean, obviously they’re going 19-0 next year and anyone who says otherwise is a darned wet cardigan.

        In all frankness, I think people underestimate a few factors, embodied by our players: (1) mental and physical toughness will be demanded by Bowman; (2) winning culture will come from the Twin Towers; (3) balanced maturity will come from Staley, Smith, and Miller; and (4) explosiveness will come from the QB and WR positions (one hopes, without any realistic shot at knowing from whom, other than Smith).

        Most importantly, this is not a team that doesn’t understand a winning culture; sure, Tomsula, Jed, and Baalke are all fairly hapless, but many of these players (add Bethea and Brooks) have spent quite a bit of time as winners, whether under Harbaugh or, even more intriguingly, inside the systems of Harbaugh and Kelly (in college).

        Teams that win only 3-5 games typically do so because of some major systemic dysfunction, which occurs because there is a lack of leadership. Last year, the veterans on the team, from Kap to Boone to Boldin to Staley, all knew that Tomsula was entirely incapable of coaching and/or scheming, so by all appearances, they checked out. That will not happen this season.

        Jack, what say you? Chime in, I’d like to hear your thoughts on the importance of veteran leadership on both sides of the football field.

  12. My team general wish list for 2016: Fewer points against more points scored and improvement in most statistical measures. A visual sniff test will also apply- not only for on-field play but also coaches and the level of attention to the game displayed by all players on the sideline.

  13. My major concern was the O-line, and when Baalke re-signed DEVEY, I had a conniption fit. Thank goodness they woke up and canned his arse.

    Last season, I was appalled by the lack of discipline, which helped sustain the other team’s drives and doomed the Niner drives.

    Last season, the team was not ill prepared, they were unprepared. Lack of coaching allowed 8 different defenders to jump offsides in one game.

    2 pick sixes in a row on the first 2 consecutive pass attempts? Was the QB coach a real coach or a talking head?

    This season, Chip hopefully will solve the dysfunction, and they may actually look like a decent team again.

    1. Kaepernick’s mindset is to set records in this offense, and I wish him luck in that endeavor! Coach ’em up, Chipper!

    2. I agree with Devey getting canned but, Kap made those throws not the coach. Also teams have scouted Kap and have come to agree that he struggles outside the numbers…This makes it easy to bait him because he lacks touch, IQ and accuracy, all the things you don’t want from a starting NFL QB!

      1. When a QB coach tells a player to throw only 85% as hard as what he usually throws, that is obtuse, and leads to picks.

        1. Seb those comments were Logan talking to Gabbert about throwing 85% of his normal velocity at TC last year not CK.

            1. Seb, there’s no report of Logan talking with CK about this, just him reporting on BG. Doesn’t mean he didn’t talk to CK, there’s just no evidence he did. Why did he just mention BG and not both QB’s?

              1. Back at this? Wilson, if Logan did not mention this to Kaep, I would not be surprised. He probably excluded Kaep because he wanted him to fail. Under Logan’s tutelage, Kaep looked shell shocked.

      2. So BILAL 19 you don’t think teams have scouted Gabbert? Come on man this is the NFL they know he’ll sack himself rather than throw an INT, they can sit down on all his check down passes and they know on 3rd and long that he’ll throw short of the sticks.

        I think Kelly has not had this kind of athletic QB talent save for Vick. Kelly turned Sanchez, Foles and Vick into 60% passers. All those guys without Kelly were low 50% completion rate. Both Gabbert and Kaep are higher than that without Kelly. I think we could see a marked improvement in both of them.

        Gabbert is safe and releases the ball quickly and his ceiling for winning is lower. CK is a tease with his talent but has a higher ceiling and is willing to risk to win games. Lets see what happens after TC.

        1. “Kelly turned Sanchez, Foles and Vick into 60% passers.”

          No he didn’t. Vick completed only 54.6% of his passes in his 1 season with Kelly.

          1. Whoops I looked at the wrong season for Vick. His previous seasons were 59 and 60? He got worse under Kelly. The statement’s still true for Sanchez and Foles.

            1. Foles and Sanchez had already demonstrated the ability to be accurate at the collegiate level. Foles was at 66.8 while Sanchez was at 64.3.

              On the other hand, Vick had already proven to be inaccurate at that level with a 56.0%.

              All Kelly did was bring out what those two had already shown they could do. Same thing for Vick.

              Kaepernick’s collegiate completion percentage? 58.2

              As I said before, Kaepernick is closer to Vick than any of the other QB’s that Kelly has coached at the NFL level. Yes he can run, but he’s not very accurate.

              1. Jack you’re overlooking Fole’s and Sanchez’s NFL numbers apart form Kelly’s system and you can’t really compare collegiate numbers to the NFL because of the variety of systems and competition levels. Foles was 56% last year and Sanchez was 54-56% for his whole career without Kelly. I say both of these guys are closer to Vick apart from Kelly’s system than either Gabbert or CK. Those are awful NFL numbers. Kaepernick’s numbers are between 59-62% in the NFL. I never said he was accurate but his numbers are better than both those guys without Kelly. I’d like to see what he can do with Kelly’s offense.

              2. I’m not overlooking them Wilson. I know what their numbers were. The difference between them and Vick is they’d shown, even at the collegiate level that they had the ability to be accurate and yes Kelly was able to bring that out again. Vick never showed accuracy at any level and neither has Kaepernick.

                What’s that old saying? You can’t make chicken salad out of chicken 7hit. That’s kind of the point.

                Or for those who take offense to that, you can water a rock all you want but at the end of the day it’s still just a rock.

              3. Feels like you’re being selective Jack. This is all about opinion right? If CK doesn’t win the starting job or looks terrible you were right.

              4. Not about opinion at all. It’s what they’ve shown on the field.

                Yes, a couple of guys showed improvement under Kelly but they’d already shown the ability to do that. The one guy who didn’t show improvement had already shown that as well.

                There’s no data to back up the statement that Kaepernick will become more accurate under Kelly. He hasn’t done it in the NFL, he didn’t do it in college, and his high school team rarely threw the ball I believe.

                Kaepernick is a good runner, but that doesn’t work in the NFL long term.

                When the 49ers played up in Seattle in 2014 Pete Carroll was micd up. On the sidelines he told his defense, “stay in coverage, make him run, and come up and tackle him”

                That’s really all you need to know about what opponents think of Kaepernick.

              5. To take it a step further, Jack, Kap’s completion percentage average of 58.2% is skewed by the incredible year he had in 2010 (64.9%). His prior years were 53.8%, 54.3%, and 58.9%.

                That 2010 Nevada team was a special team, which helped his stats, as did the fact that Coach Ault had worked hard to tailor the offense to Kap’s strengths. Also, Kap had an NFL quality receiver in 2010 – Rishard Matthews (who is journeyman at best in the NFL, but he was still the best Kap ever had at Nevada) – which he did not have in his other years at Nevada. In other words, Kap’s completion percentage in college would likely be lower than 58.2% save for the incredible 2010 season that he and the Wolf Pack had.

                I have never wavered in being a fan of Kap, but I find myself having the same concerns Jack does regarding Kap in Kelly’s offense. I believe Gabbert is a better fit. I would not mind at all if Kap proves me wrong, but I am not really expecting it.

                I still think it would have been in the best interest of both Kap and the 49ers had they traded him to Denver.

              6. After that game jack that you mentioned, Earl Thomas stated that Kaep was the most dangerous and talented QB going… A QB is only as successful as the system he is in. Chips system is perfect for Kaep.. Last year was a joke on many levels. 2 years ago JH had one foot out the door which distracted the entire team. If they’re serious about the Niners winning games you see what Kaep can do. He has proven it at the highest level. One more shot.

              7. Kaepernick’s accuracy could benefit from a more limber frame, which he noted was one of his goals moving forward, along with the visor for improved vision. Now his timing and field vision were never his strengths, and winning covered them up, along with a strong offensive line and running game, easy, defined reads and play action passing. He’s flawed. We’ve all known this, however, Colin Kaepernick is not RIP but he’s likely not a MVP either. He’s a LGM, or Lethal Game Manager. With an interception percentage of less than 2, and averaging more yards per carry than Cam Newton, he has an 88.4 career passer rating, which sits just above Joe Flacco’s and Eli Manning’s. He was also the most pressured quarterback in the league according to PFF, which calculated a ridiculous 43% pressure rate on drop backs. Against teams like the Cardinals, Packers, Seahawks and Rams which averaged 10 wins, his passer rating dropped below 70. Against teams like the Steelers, Giants, and Ravens which averaged 7 wins, his passer rating was over 100. Colin Kaepernick isn’t the most accurate quarterback that Chip Kelly has worked with since coming into the NFL, but he is the most talented. And for that reason, I think the combination of the two makes for a more compelling offensive vision….

              8. Nope. Thomas made those comments after the 2014 NFC Championship Game. The Carroll thing was near the end of the 2014 season when the 49ers finished 8-8.

                People are saying all the same things about Kaepernick and this offense that they were saying about Vick and the offense in Philly back in 2014.

                We all saw how well that turned out.

              9. Its your opinion that CK won’t/can’t improve, you can’t guarantee that nor can I guarantee he will. Also his NFL completion numbers are better than those other guys without Kelly. That’s a fact but you throw out CK’s NFL numbers in favor of collegiate numbers that favor your argument. He’s done it on the field as you say in the NFL without Kelly. His NFL numbers are better than his collegiate numbers, that’s improvement. You know more than I do about the NFL, I see things a little differently here than you do here. You may very well be right but I am not as convinced its as open and shut as you are saying.

                There is some proof, Foles failed without Kelly at the Rams. Sanchez may lose the starting job to a 6th rounder Simeon without Kelly in Denver and will return back to his 56% rate. I also think you can look at Oregon QB’s and see how the system props them up (Adams and Dixon). Mariotta is the exception in the NFL.

                JPN have you looked at Gabbert’s #’s in college and the NFL since you’re pointing out what one great year does? He’s a 55% guy in the NFL and a 60% guy in college because of a 63% year. Yes he was on a bad team, but he was part of that bad team’s failures.

              10. You are correct. I don’t know for a fact that Kaepernick will not show improvement.

                The evidence does not support the take that he will.

                The only thing that supports your take is hope and wanting that to be the case.

                I didn’t mention Karpernick’s NFL stats because I don’t see a sub 60% completion rate as accurate. And that completion rate is pumped up by a good first season when teams weren’t ready for him.

              11. Wilson,

                The answer to your query is that discussing Gabbert’s completion percentage is a non sequitur with respect to the internal inconsistency in Kap’s data set.

              12. JPN I know I am calling fire down on my head but you brought Gabbert into the discussion saying “I believe Gabbert to be a better fit.” If you’re posing that CK isn’t a good fit based on his one great year and inconsistent completion percentage how can you then suggest Gabbert is a better fit with very similar tendencies?

                Feels like a side step around the issue at hand. Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a QB that could actually play and we woudln’t have to go through all this minutia?

                Yes I hope CK will improve just like you guys hope BG isn’t the QB from the Jaguars next year.

              13. Just a quick note on the college numbers for Kaepernick and Gabbert.

                Kaepernick started 4 years compared to 2 for Gabbert. If you only compare the numbers from their sophomore and junior seasons you’ll find that Gabbert had the higher completion percentage each year.

              14. Wilson,

                Hmm… a couple of weeks back, Scooter accused me of swooping in to correct things, and now you makes reference to “calling fire down”. I am starting to think that other folks here do not realize what a nice and quiet guy I am. Now, twenty+ years ago there might have been swooping and fire… ;)

                ***

                The first part of my post was a deeper analysis of a stat Jack used to support his point, which had nothing to do directly with Gabbert; rather, it was Jack’s rebuttal to the position that Kelly would improve Kap’s accuracy commensurate with improvements seen in Foles and Sanchez under Kelly. I concur with Jack’s assessment that Kap’s history in college (and in the NFL) put his completion percentage trend closer to Vick than to Foles and Sanchez, and thus a better analogue at this point might be Vick than Foles and Sanchez, who both had better completion percentages in college than Kap and Vick (especially given that Kap’s average was impacted by a statistically anomalous year, which was the point of my analysis in the first part of the post).

                The second part of the post expressed my concurrence with Jack’s larger point and then my belief that Gabbert is a better fit (which is a separate and lesser assertion than Jack’s point to with which I was concurring). Further, the second paragraph is clearly more general in scope than the preceding paragraph, which is an analysis of one of Jack’s supporting points (as explained above). Thus, in the structure of my post, bringing in Gabbert’s college stats is not relevant as I did not use Kap’s college stats to support my belief, but rather to bolster Jack’s support for his main point regarding Kelly’s impact on Kap’s accuracy.

                The issue you raised, it seems to me, is a false inference that my comment forms a syllogism:

                Premise 1: Kelly’s ability to improve a QB’s accuracy is proportional to the QB completion accuracy in college.
                Premise 2: Gabbert was more accurate in college than Kap
                Conclusion: Therefore Gabbert is a better fit in Kelly’s offense.

                Now, even assuming both premises are true, this syllogism is still invalid as it is a non sequitur (affirming the consequent). This is why I would neither state nor imply such a syllogism. Rather, in the more general section of my post (that was not a consequent of the first part), I expressed a general belief.

                You took issue with the truth of the inferred second premise in your subsequent post. I did not address that premise either directly or indirectly in my post, thus your inference was an informal non sequitur with respect to the logical structure of my post.

                If we were to discuss the truth of the inferred second premise, we would need to address the issue of Kap’s data set showing a statistical anomaly whereas Gabbert’s data set does not. To wit, there is not a clear trend in Gabbert’s more limited sample size, although it may be significant that his worst season completion percentage as a starting QB in college was equal to Kap’s second best season completion percentage and was higher than Kap’s two worst season completion percentages. Further, while Kap’s final season completion percentage is higher than Gabbert’s, this does not change the analysis that Kap’s trend was lower than Gabbert’s worst season completion percentage. The issue then is not that both had a higher completion percentage in their final college season that skews their numbers, but rather that Kap’s final season completion percentage is a statistical anomaly given the trend over four seasons, an analysis that is not applicable to Gabbert’s more limited data set.

                Now, we could include a discussion of Kap and Gabbert’s respective NFL data sets if we want to journey further down a rabbit hole not contemplated in my post. However, such a discussion is far removed both form my more general belief with respect to who better fits Kelly’s system and from Jack’s original point, which did not directly involve Gabbert but rather was that Foles and Sanchez both had 60%+ average completion percentages in college (which was better than their NFL average completion percentage), and thus Kelly had something to work with that he did not have in Vick, and possibly does not have in Kap, both of whom had lower than 60% average completion percentages in college and have NFL average completion percentage was much closer to their college completion percentages. Namely, Kelly was able to bring back an accuracy previously demonstrated rather than create a heretofore undemonstrated level of accuracy. The only caveat I might add to Jack’s point regarding Kap is to disagree with his comment that Kap did not show improvement with his accuracy in college. He did, even when taking into that account his senior season was anomalous. However, Kap’s trend looks more like Vick than like Sanchez and Foles, which supports Jack’s point regardless of whether he undervalues the improvement Kap did show.

                Now see, that was not fire. Well, maybe a spark or at most an ember. ;)

              15. Just a quick note on the college numbers for Kaepernick and Gabbert.

                Kaepernick started 4 years compared to 2 for Gabbert. If you only compare the numbers from their sophomore and junior seasons you’ll find that Gabbert had the higher completion percentage each year.

                Blaine Gabbert played in a pass heavy offense that put up huge stats. Funny thing is, there was a major drop in production when he took over from Chase Daniel and then James Franklin actually put up better numbers than Gabbert when he took over his first year as starter.

                Kap played in a system that was 50-50 pass to run and was a project coming out of College. He has outperformed Gabbert by a wide margin in the NFL which is really the only thing meaningful at this point anyway considering how long they have been pros at this point.

                I don’t know who is going to win this competition and I doubt we have our long term starter on the roster at this point, but trying to argue that Gabbert is a better QB fit in any system is a reach at this point imo.

              16. The discussion was about accuracy, and in college Gabbert was more accurate.

                Simple.

                Is he a better fit in Kelly’s offense? We’ll see.

              17. No it’s not simple at all. They had similar completion percentages in their final College seasons (Kap’s was better) and Kap was also better in the other categories such as YPA, TD passes and rating. I know you want to play the take away game, but coming out of College Kap was the better player from a stat perspective in their final seasons. He was on an upswing in fact while Gabbert was actually worse in every category his second year except completion percentage. The fact his YPA went down by a yard and a half, tells us the uptick in completion percentage was likely due to taking more check downs and dump offs much like he did here last season.

                As pros it’s no contest. Kap is superior across the board including completion percentage. There is really nothing to argue in Gabbert’s favor here.

              18. I’m not subtracting anything. The comment that I originally responded to dealt with completion percentage. That’s it.

                It’s better to compare the two at the same stage. Sophomore year Gabbert was more accurate. Junior year Gabbert was more accurate. Gabbert didn’t play as a senior but the trend in the data shows that if he had stayed for his senior year he again would have shown improvement this better accuracy.

            2. Wilson, Vick was a shell of his former self when in his early years, he was a legitimate threat and dynamic player.

              However, injuries and getting dogged made his later years regrettable.

              Kelly should be licking his lips and rubbing his hands together with glee because he now has 3 QBs who are big and fast. The accuracy issue will be decided during TC.

              1. Seb from 2010-2012 Vick was a 58-60% passer under Reid. That’s better than his younger self ever played.

              2. The whole notion of grading a QB just on passing completion percentage is skewed due to mitigating factors, because I want a QB to throw the ball away out of bounds past the sticks to avoid sacks. So what if his completion percentage goes down, if strategically, he did the right thing?

                Alex Smith would take a sack before throwing the ball away, and where did that get him? Concussed and losing his starting job.

                You must admit that before getting dogged into jail, Vick was a two headed threat and dynamic player.

            3. JPN, the fire comment was in jest. I was pointing out that I knew you were logically going to hand me my rear. You and Jack know your stuff and see things really well. You’re both articulate and present sound arguments.

              I understand Jack’s point and recognize what he’s saying there. I think the NFL stats are a greater indicator than the college stats. Thanks engaging.

              I do totally acknowledge that CK deserves some of the things you guys are saying about him. He may not work in Kelly’s system. He did have one 62% season in college, there might be a sliver there based on your arguments for Kelly to draw out. Its also possible that he’ll never get there.

              One thing I think I observed is that CK played best in a hurry up offense with quick reads. JH didn’t play that way much because he liked to burn up the clock. The longer he has to hold the ball the worse he gets. I think some of the pace could help his decision making. Or it could really exacerbate his flaws.

  14. I think I speak for all on here. These two weeks couldn’t come fast enough. Looking forward to watching all the camp battles. Looking forward to seeing what young player(s) take that next step. If Gabbert wins the job I will support him 100 percent until he no longer is the QB. I think a win win for the Niners would be for Driskel to make the 53.. Would be a HUGE step moving forward.

    1. We do not generally see eye to eye, but in this case, I hope he does.

      Driskel, with his ST contributions, could earn a spot, but I hope he is converted like Blake Bell, and become a TE.

      1. Hope:

        Use the wipers. It’s starting to rain.
        You’re drifting, so stay in your lane.
        Slow down! Yellow light!
        It’s a left — not a right!
        Backseat drivers — a car owner’s bane!

        Rosters by _eb and flow
        bloggers not about to glow
        instead, retreat into their
        usaual madness, that _eb
        will not take his losers and go.

        1. IF, by Rudyard Kipling.

          If you can keep your head when all about you
          are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
          If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
          But make allowance for their doubting too;
          If you can wait, and not be tired of waiting,
          OR BEING LIED ABOUT, DONT DEAL WITH LIES.
          OR BEING HATED, DONT GIVE WAY TO HATING.
          And yet dont look too good, Nor talk too wise:

          If you can dream, and not make dreams your master;
          If you can think, but not make thoughts your aim;
          If you can meet triumph and disaster
          and treat those two impostors just the same;
          IF YOU CAN BEAR TO HEAR THE TRUTH YOU’VE SPOKEN,
          TWISTED BY KNAVES TO MAKE A TRAP FOR FOOLS.
          Or watch thing the things you gave your life to, broken,
          And stoop to build ’em up with worn out tools:

          If you can make one heap of all your winnings
          and risk it on one turn of pitch and toss,
          And lose, and start again at your beginnings
          And never breathe a word about your loss;
          If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
          To serve your turn long after they are gone,
          And so hold on when there is nothing in you
          Except the Will that says to them: ‘Hold On!’

          If you can talk with crowds an keep your virtue,
          or walk with Kings, nor lose the common touch,
          IF NEITHER FOES NOR LOVING FRIENDS CAN HURT YOU,
          If all men count with you, but none too much;
          If you can fill the unforgiving minute
          With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
          Yours is the earth and everything that’s in it,
          And- which is more- you’ll be a man, my son!

    1. Thanks, Razor.

      TK might need a pick me up also after the York’ did not pay for their dinner, and the latest:

      49ers tried to sue him for reporting their profits.

  15. A quick scan for Eagles predictions prior to 2013 shows that 2 called for 6 win seasons and 2 called for 9 win seasons. We all know how that eventually turned out.

    The predictions are just that, predictable. The Eagles were coming off a 4 win season that followed up an 8 win season. Sound kind of familiar?

      1. Along with the core of that 4-12 team also I would assume.

        Regardless, that was a team that almost everyone thought would be below .500

  16. I have braced myself for a bump and bruises 2016 season already. Anything over 5 wins be considered a small victory.

    This season will be about rebuilding character, young talent and developing a strong foundational culture for the future. Kelly will get this team back to the post-season in his 3 year as HC. Add to this two more drafts custom fit for Chip’ scheme and perhaps we’ll all see that there is life after Jim Harbaugh.

    1. AES,

      Anything over 5 victories will be a major improvement, I think, not just a small victory. If the team makes .500 there will be talk of Coach of the Year and I’m sure there will be Rookie of the Year or some such award in the mix.

      Can the team do it? Yes! Will they? That is another matter entirely. There are so many unknown variables and the holes are many.

      If the O line congeals and plays solid and Hyde stays healthy and another back can spell and take some pressure off him then time of possession for the offense will be decent. If one of the QBs (take your pick they both have issues in my opinion) has an about face and becomes what we all wish them to become then the field will become a better place for our receivers. CK will need to be able to read and pass outside the numbers and develop touch. Gabbert will need to start looking downfield and not just dink and dunk. Both have happy feet. McDonald will need to actually catch passes, Patton will have to avoid dumb penalties and become consistent, Ellington will need to stay healthy, Rogers will need to be what the team hopes he is (Second coming of younger Boldin) and not another Canadian washout. The rookies will need to really step up and become major factors as will the second year players. Beadles will need to come into his own, Brown become limber and lose weight, Brooks rejuvenate, Bowman will need to cover better, an ILB will need to emerge, the CBs will need to really emerge. A lot of variables for the team to do really well but who knows, hope springs eternal.

      Then again, we could have a great first week and then Pittsburgh…like last year and the nightmare continue…

      1. East, good post. It is reasonable and well balanced, outlining critical factors in either winning or losing.

  17. Why I think the Niners will improve.

    Chip Kelly. Already, he has performed a miracle by retaining Kaep.

    The draft. Baalke was reigned in, and did not grab an ACL pick with the first or second pick. Looked like the coaches had a lot of say with the first 2 picks.

    The players. I firmly believe that the Niners do have enough talent to make every game competitive. I hope Baalke lets the coaches coach. I hope he stops meddling and micromanaging the roster.

    Flaherty. He built SB O lines before, and he could do it again.

    No Devey. Nuff said.

    No DJs. 85%? That was obtuse and led to 2 pick sixes.

    No Mangenius over thinking the defense. Instead of reading and relying on deciding what other players should be doing, the defense can just instinctually react.

    Hyde. Niner coaches need to sit him down and get him to start playing smart, or he will be bludgeoned again. Hyde needs to be confident, but act with more class by stopping the finger pointing.

    The main reason why I think the Niners can go 8-8 is Kaep. He will be healthy, he will have decent coaching that accentuates his strengths while disguising his weaknesses, and no Devey. Kaep, in a Chip Kelly offense, will take the league by storm, again.

  18. TomD

    July 15, 2016 at 9:07 am

    I hear some rumblings. Could it be the “Fool on the Hill,” head stuck in sand, day after day proclaiming 49er greatness, Cheerleading every 49er move, aka, _EB.

    He relates to this well

    Fool on the Hill, by The Beatles, performed by The Sergio Mendez Band:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEHckjjbE8I

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *