Harbaugh: “Why throw and not run? Those were the plays that were called.”

SANTA CLARA — Here is a transcript of Jim Harbaugh’s Monday press conference courtesy of the 49ers.

 

Is there a roster move involving LB Aldon Smith that takes place today?

“At the appropriate time, you’ll be apprised of that situation with an official announcement.”

 

How are you planning on filling his role on the field? What players are you looking at, candidates and what roles?

“We got a pretty good idea of what we’re gonna do and we’ll make that announcement.”

 

Is that going to be a one person job or do you see one guy in base and one guy in pass rush situations?

“Well, I think you know [LB] Dan Skuta, [LB] Ahmad Brooks, [LB] Corey Lemonier. I have confidence in those guys and know they’ll do a good job.”

 

TE/DT Demarcus Dobbs wouldn’t fit into that role?

“You know the guys we got. Especially in nickel downs he’ll play a role.”

 

What do you guys need to do to get more out of your receiving game and just get more production and efficiency out of the receivers?

“Well, you never lay it on one spot. If we’re talking offensively, I thought the effort was very good by our offensive unit. Precision needs to be better and that falls under everybody’s purview. So, we’ll try one more thing. As always, there’s another thing to try and you go back to work and see if you can’t improve and fix.”

 

Are receivers getting open though? It seems like there’s a lot of hesitation by QB Colin Kaepernick when he’s back there.

“Again, I’m not going to put it on one spot. Precision offensively needs to improve. We’ll all have a hand in working on improving that.”

 

Is WR Jon Baldwin up to speed yet in this offense where he might get a look this week?

“Yeah, that’s possible. He’s doing a good job. Had a real good week of practice last week. We’re all coming back today, back to work, working on fixing.”

 

Last week you said Colin might have been one of the best things on the offense, something like that, in the Seattle game. Would you say the same thing about him in this game?

“Just going to say the same thing I just said. We’re working on our precision. I think that’s the area that needs improvement and we all come under that. Players, coaches, everybody that has a hand in the offense. We’re not going to hang our heads. We’re going to keep working and we’ll try again.”

 

I know you don’t like comparing years, but you did make a quarterback switch in the middle of last year. Is maybe some of this just the kind of residual, you are still adjusting to a new quarterback? Has the offense changed in any dramatic way just generally with Kaepernick versus what you had with QB Alex Smith?

“Yeah. It’s evolving. Is there changes? Yes.”

 

Can some of the struggles be attributed to that?

“Football’s not easy. There are struggles. That’s one of the things you enjoy about the game, that there are struggles. We’ve got some adversity, there’s no question about it. And we’ll also have the rare opportunity of staring adversity in the face and whipping it. That’s our goal.”

 

You rely heavily on three older players; RB Frank Gore, WR Anquan Boldin and DT Justin Smith. Is it a mistake to rely so much on three older guys?

“They’re pretty darn good guys to rely on.”

 

So it’s not a mistake?

“No.”

 

Is there an update on Patrick Willis?

“He’s getting evaluated this morning.”

 

Last week you talked so much about, a little bit about, focusing some efforts on the penalties. What’s the step you take now, there were still some costly penalties yesterday that led to first downs?

“Yeah there were. There were first downs by penalty. And, again, in a game that we were really a touchdown away at 13-7, up until seven minutes left in the fourth quarter, and there was a key drive there. I think our defense, that’s noere. There were first downs by penalty. And, again, in a game that we were really a touchdown away at 13-7, up until seven minutes left in the fourth quarter, and there was a key drive there. I think our defense, that’s not something we want to be about. We don’t want to be giving first downs by penalty and we’ll keep working at it.”

 

Was there a reason, a physical reason, RB Frank Gore only carried three times in the second half?

“No.”

 

Why didn’t he carry more? He had three carries right off the bat, didn’t touch the ball again in the run game.

“Three carries?”

 

At the start of the second half after gouging them in the first half. Why didn’t he carry the ball more?

“It’s a discussion we’ve had in the past. Why throw and not run? Why more runs in the first half than the second? Those were the plays that were called.”

 

A day later, how do you feel about those decisions?

“You’re analyzing everything. We all have our fingerprints on it and you all work to improve the precision. That’s where we’re at.”

 

This team has not run a lot of read option much at all this season. Is that because of what defenses are doing or are you just saying it’s not something that you were going to employ very much this year, at least to start?

“Well, not a lot. We’ve run it. It’s part of our offense and will continue to be.”

 

Are defenses playing it differently?

“Yeah, I mean there’s different looks each game, but the precision in that part of the game, as well, needs improving.”

 

Is it a good thing you guys have a short week?

“It’s what we have. It’s when the game is scheduled and coaches, players, everybody is back working.”

 

What did you do last night?

“We came in, we’re working.”

 

Have you been home since the game?

“Took my wife home and then came in here, yeah.”

 

Do you have Frank Gore on like a pitch count, that he only touches the ball X-number of times as a runner in a game?

“No.”

 

It could be open-ended?

“Yes.”

 

You spoke about it specifically yesterday, but can you speak broadly what your confidence is that LB Aldon Smith is going to make it back and that he will beat this and become a stronger person and player on this team?

“It was addressed last night after the ballgame and we’re very supportive of Aldon, as we are of all our players, all of our coaches, our personnel. Always supportive in-house.”

 

Did he let you down? Did he let the team down?

“We’ve hashed through it. Now we’re taking steps to, and Aldon’s taking steps. We support him in that.”

 

Would you expect him back playing this year?

“There’s a process. We’re going to respect that process.”

 

Will he stay here in the Bay Area or will he go home to Missouri to be with one of his parents? Can you say?

“There will be some official statements forthcoming on that.”

 

How do you think him being out is going to affect the team and their performance going forward?

“Well, like I mentioned, there’s adversity. There’s an opportunity to stare it in the face and whip it. That’s our approach.”

 

There are reports that he’s already on his way to a rehabilitation program. Can you confirm or comment on that at all?

“There will be official statements, reports shortly that will address that.”

 

How’s TE Vernon Davis’ hamstring?

“We’ll see.”

 

Is he getting evaluated today?

Is he getting evaluated today?

“Yes.”

 

Did CB Nnamdi Asomugha suffer a knee injury at the end of that game making a tackle on Colts RB Ahmad Bradshaw?

“Nnamdi’s also getting an MRI.”

 

Was RB LaMichael James healthy enough to play yesterday?

“He’s getting back. He’s getting back.”

 

When he’s fully healthy, will he be suiting up for games?

“We will make that evaluation.”

 

You and the organization took a fair amount of criticism allowing Aldon to play Sunday. Do you have any regrets about that decision?

“Not going to rehash the decision. We went over it last night. We did what we thought was in the best interest of the team and the best interest of the player long-term.”

 

I know LB Patrick Willis is getting evaluated. What’s your thought initially whether he can be ready in a couple of days?

“We’ll leave that to the evaluation and the treatment of the doctors and trainers.”

 

Is he having an MRI as well?

“Yes.”

 

This is a feelings question here. Do you feel like QB Colin Kaepernick is playing as confidently now as he did last year?

“I feel very confident in Colin, yes.”

 

Do you feel like he’s playing confident?

“Yes, I do.”

 

How does he feel about his level of play? Colin is a perfectionist and he’s hard on himself, but–?

“Yeah. We all want the precision to be better. We all strive for that and I’m confident we’ll get that done.”

7;m confident we’ll get that done.”

    1. Well we will see what this team is made of. I hope the back ups are ready to play and CK gets back to his groove.

      Oh and I hope JH doesn’t get out coached by Fisher…again

      1. Hah! But you know what, 23J? I can’t bet on my Niners this week; too much to get fixed that soon.
        The Duchess (my wife) wrangled another Autumn Vacation and I’m going to miss the next couple of games; I’m concerned about their record when we get back.

  1. Oh lord…This team is going backwards fast..Ever since Crabtree went down seems like things have been going downhill rapidly…Just not our year..J Smith seems like hes done as well..seems like we rarely blitz and luck was sitting there in the pocket having tea and crumpets..Our corners really suck and so do our reciever..So much for Patton emerging..Kap is looking like a giant clown right now..Hes got more commercials than touchdowns..He might end up as one of the greatest one year wonders ever..Very Matt Castleish…

  2. I agree Jim’s pressers are annoying.

    On another note I will be a dad sometime today or tomorrow. Somehow the 49ers problems don’t seem as big to me anymore.. ;-)

    Cheers!

      1. Maybe teach your sons to have other, higher priority interests than football…..certainly to have less attachment to outcomes (“It’s How You Play the Game”) I still question whether my own glory ball days were worth the lingering knee, ankle injuries, the concussion, the broken & relocated teeth….etc.

    1. Congrats to you new dads! Hope you got plenty of sleep the past couple of years, cause you ain’t gonna get much the next couple!

  3. not to diss Aldon S. because he’s an all-pro pass rusher in the making, but it will be interesting to see how Lemonier and others play – if I’m not mistaken, Lemonier is a bit more stout, which could help against the run. Aldon plays the run pretty well for a fairly skinny guy, but size helps.

  4. obviously, he has lost some of his luster and also gives off the vibe that he knows he currently does not have the star power as last year, and is battling internally with his fall.

  5. What a freaking bore of a interview, blah, blah and more blah. Also let’s hope they have a bad week of practice, maybe they will win a game, blah, blah and more blah. Although JH would say it was great.

  6. Good thing we have all those draft picks we can throw in Thursday…oh wait our draft picks were all projects…..doh!

  7. Michael Crabtree injured. Out for most/all of season
    Ian Williams promising season ended by cheap shot
    Chris Culliver injured. Out for season
    Vernon Davis injured
    Patrick Willis injured
    Aldon Smith NFI
    Mario Manningham injured
    Delaney Walker lost to free agency
    Dashon Goldson lost to free agency
    Isaac Sopoaga lost to free agency
    RJF lost to free agency
    Alex Smith traded
    Parys Haralson traded

    This list is not a criticism of 49er front office moves. Just outlining the challenges ahead.

    It starting to feel like the 82 season when the 49ers lost 8 starters and all the pundits were calling Bill Walsh’s offense a flash in the pan. With 13 quality players gone, its crazy to expect the play. St. Louis is going to be a bear. I’ll be rooting hard for the 49ers no matter what.

      1. I agree with you Brodie, though I wasn’t happy when they traded Parys Haralson. Aldon has already shown he gets the injury bug, but I guess they let Parys go cause of the salary cap.

      2. Much of my pre-season optimism was based on the shining reports about Ian Williams training camp and the return of Haralson. I hoped a 2011 defense + the more explosive 2012 offense would dominate the league.

        I was shocked as anyone about the Haralson trade.

    1. Reid is an upgrade on Goldson. Much better coverage skills and equal hitter. McDonald will get better, Patton will
      Improve…the rest, u r spot on, we’re screwed for first 8 games. We need to try and go 4-4 and get healthy after bye week. If we can, we could be like Gisnts when they made their wildcard run a few years ago.

  8. Harbaugh and company are going to need to step up the coaching this Thursday. The defense has kept us in games, but they also need to quit playing like the raiders with all those penalties. There were several times we could of had Indy 3 and out and we let them off the hook. The need a spark on offense, put Baldwin in to stretch the field. Gonna be really interested in what the tight ends do. Either way still gonna root for the team, hopefully they turn things around sooner than later.

  9. Colin (kiss the bicep) Kaepernick got schooled… x2

    1. Andrew Luck and the Colts ripped him a new one
    and, in addition
    2. the veteran QB showed him the classic NFL way to celebrate a touchdown….by emphatically spiking the football into the ground.

    Give it up on the ‘trademark’ … kiss my biceps stuff.
    Learn to play traditional winning (error-free) football.
    Until you do that, your creativity in the end zone will be a moot point.
    Whatsay you give the fans something big to celebrate: like a W…

    1. Alex Blah, Blah, Blah,

      I remember a time when spiking the ball was seen as showboating, or worse, and not acceptable to a lot of people. It’s all a matter of perception.

      Besides, do you know what led CK to start “Kaepernicking”?

  10. Chef Soft served a piece of Humble Pie. Adversity gurgled deep in their bowels forcing them to the porcelain. Et tu Freddie? Et tu……

  11. I can’t recall who mentioned it but I believe it was someone here regarding Fangio and his prior coordinator stops. His D got progressively worse year after year and it’s proving true in San Fran as well. The whole team just seems to be lacking confidence.

    1. The D has actually been playing pretty well considering the total lack of support by the O. I guess if they had shut out Seattle at home and held Luck to a field goal or two then we’d be 3-0 but good teams like that are going to score. Let’s face it if we average 5 points a game (like the last 2 games) we are going 1 -15. Roman is the guy on the hot seat. Funny that some people were worried we’d lose him to a HC job…maybe at a JC somewhere.
      What gets me is that after trying out a dozen guys that they couldn’t come up with a guy that can get open? WTF? Brady is playing with a bunch of no-names and he still gets it done. Manning makes average guys look like all pros so is it Kap or Roman? Hard to see on TV but it looks like guys are covered so I’m guessing its coaching because these are all guys with some talent. And what about A Collie? He was always able to get open…SMH.

  12. I cant stand reading Harbaugh interviews, that isn’t a dig on Grant but simply a statement about the quality of his answers. Stop trying to outsmart the reporters with your ridiculous responses and just give honest answers, if you need an example just listen to how your defensive coordinator does it.

    At some point I just wish someone would ask him, “why are you such a dic k during these interviews?”

  13. This is being overlooked but Andy Lee is not helping us very much. 2 years ago, we won the field position battle every game. This year and late last season, when Lee had a chance to pin a team deep, he continuously kicked the ball into the end zone. Yeah, he kicked a couple inside the 20 that were fair caught. However, he’s got to be a lot more consistent with that. These teams field goal kickers are too good. Just our luck, we’re about to face the guy with the strongest and most accurate from long distance with the Rams. Not pinning them deep and allowing them to get to our 35-40 yard line will mean points every time.

    1. Well we did have a running game back then that chewed up some clock and yardage. These 3 and outs when starting on the 10′yard line doesn’t help the kicking game either.

    1. But Crab, doesn’t it give you kind of a sick feeling in your stomach when we start talking about this team MAYBE slipping in as a wild card? That’s not at all what I had in mind for this season…

      1. But Crab, doesn’t it give you kind of a sick feeling in your stomach when we start talking about this team MAYBE slipping in as a wild card?

        That isn’t as bad of a scenario as you think Rusty. Most of the Super Bowl winners from the past decade made it there after getting into the playoffs as a wildcard team.

      2. Rusty – MidWest makes a very good point (many past Super Bowl champs have been wild card teams).
        To win NFC West….Niners must win Thursday. If we fall 3 games behind Seattle then we realistically will be shooting for wild card.

      3. Lot’s of ways to get ‘there’ Rusty. Just get in, and get hot. The Ravens floundered for 2\3 of the year last year. Got a boost from Suggs coming back, got hot and won it all.

      4. They also dumped their offensive coordinator midseason. Not that any commenters here would call for the 49ers to do that. That would be a ridiculous knee-jerk reaction to two bad games.

      5. Hasn’t there only been seven wild-card teams in the history of the SB to win it? And the only NFC teams to do that were the Packers and Giants?

  14. Coach Harbaw tries to homogenize responsibility for the loss.
    Nothing specific said about play calling, clock management and use of time outs, defensive or offensive adjustments at halftime (or lack of same). No word about how sternly he cautioned players after the first two games concerning avoiding blatant/costly penalties.
    “Never lay it [the win or the loss] on one spot.”
    Is that why some winning coaches award a game ball to a player?
    You may prefer to privately chastise the key offenders.
    However, in the wake of your second ‘consecutive’ loss as a head coach, to quote Ricky Ricardo: “you have some ‘splainin’ to do…”
    This “we all have a hand in it” stuff won’t cut it.
    Time to hold yourself and the entire coaching staff accountable.
    Take a minute to read this thread.

    Oh, yeah, one more thing. Which is easier/wiser?
    To start Colin and run with him for four quarters on Thursday, or make the bold move now and bring in Colt McCoy? Quite a few of the fans feel that Colin needs to”cool his heels” for awhile. Sitting him after a third loss in a row may be a case of too little too late. I’m just sayin’…..

    1. “Coach Harbaw tries to homogenize responsibility for the loss”—Yes! Well put.

      No one is responsible…all of us are….hmmmm, what does that hell does that mean??? I don’t think he should single out players or groups of players, but these two losses are squarely on his shoulders. The team has been out-coached twice in a row. His press conferences remind me of Jim Mora Sr:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHipzGL4dwM

    2. “Quite a few of the fans feel that Colin needs to”cool his heels” for awhile.” Would you REALLY want Harbaugh to ever even consider what “Quite a few of the fans” want? My God, man, have you read some of the stuff written here?

  15. We missed Davis a lot more than most people anticipated. Macdonald and Celek are good backups, but neither is good enough that the opposing defenses need to account for them on every play. We need both Boldin and Davis on the field otherwise it will be a long season for Kap.

    Kyle Williams is a waste of roster spot. We should have cut him after the fumble in the NFC championship game. For some reason Harbaugh and Baalke seem mesmerized by his speed. What good is speed if he does not get separation and is afraid to go over the middle. He cannot even do a decent double move to get separation. He seems useless on screens. His only football move is the steak down the sideline and the only way he can get open is if the Defense blows the coverage.

    I believe Harbaugh needs to bench Williams and put in Baldwin as the starting wideout opposite Boldin. I would put Williams 4th on the depth chart behind Patton.

    Maybe Jacksonville is willing to give up on Justin Blackmon. I know he has been horrible so far, but maybe a change of scenery could get him going. Kansas City only needs to go 5-8 the rest of the way for us to get an extra second round pick next year. Baalke needs to roll the dice and make a move to get help and the WR position.

    1. DS is giddy! Target Rich Environment we used to call it. Zall good, CK is my guy and Niners are my boyz. I’ll be kayaking in my Niners jersey, LOL.

      1. Bro Tuna – I like the new avatar…
        Things can change quick in the NFL. Expect Niners and Kap to kill it the rest of the year. This will silence the wacko’s. Niners were stunned by Seattle and it carried over to Colts game. One win will end the funk… 16 game season not 3. We’ll laugh when we look back at this mess in Dec and Jan.

    1. 3 weeks ago not many people in this blog imagined that the Niners would lose to the Colts….so I guess anything is possible at this time.
      It might appear that the Niners are in a crisis, but to some keen observers, this was already on the way. The Niners have serious weaknesses in the secondary and in the WR position, and a concern at RB. Those things have accumulated over the past months to what we have today: a team in a downward spiral who might not win another game for 2-3 weeks.

      Yes, the Niners will lose to the Lambs on Thursday evening. I don’t see how the Niners can beat the mediocre Lambs. Their WR had a record day against the Niners last year…this time it won’t be any different.

  16. The reason why we will be back this season????
    Because its not a talent issue. It’s an identity issue. So for all of you fans that wanted to drop the Alex smith talk and now all of a sudden want to bring it back up. You are just asking for more fighting in the future. The two have had two different schedules. If you think smith would play any better here you’re Crazy. He’s the past, and when the season is all done we will see AGAIN that the right decision was made at qb. So lets move forward and watch this team shock everybody when they get on track and win the superbowl.

    It’s funny Harbaugh used the word adversity, because its been used in every post I’ve made since yesterday. It’s something they have not faced for the past two seasons. This is what champs work through. Lets see what they’ve got. Ill say this. 6-2 at the bye

      1. I’m not even going to read this trolls rant. I will bring up the crap I did see. Go back and tell me where I’ve been bringing up Alex smith. This comment was aimed squarely at hammer for his stat comparison with the two. If he and you want to continue to argue about a qb that got traded then join ds and hoff over at arrowhead addicts page. This isn’t the old days oneniner. Stay off my nuts

    1. you are still on this HATE Alex issue……..for someone that accuses others of bringing up Alex, you always seem to have a lot to get off your chest when it comes to the Chiefs QB……

      Alex is gone…..move on…. Talk about #7…

      ..what we do need is #7 to play like Alex sometimes in tough games, …last two games (even the SB) has brought to light #7 needs to improve on his “game management skills”……..

      #7 has fallen in love with that (Vick) mentality that allows him to showcase his athletic skills which is repeated daily on all NFL shows, the off season frenzy, that whole “I am a STAR” distraction has surprisingly managed to create a huge hole in #7 understanding he needs to rely on his teammates more.

      All I see is a QB not sure of what to do because he hasn’t spent time in the game plan……… He is First read and Panick……..throwing a 4 yrd pass on 3rd and 8!……….”I want to pass”- “I want to run” – “I want to pass while running to the sideline” – “I want to run” – Time runs out.

      The last two games he has shown a lack of discipline for the plays called……I just can’t see how JH/Roman would change the same offense that got them much victory.

      This was the risk of going young at QB on a SB contending team…….and no excuses about WR’s….Tom Brady does more with less and he is old…….

      #7 better bounces or GET HIS SHYTE together back quickly because we all approve of the talent he posses……

      LOSING is something I am sure you (ninermd) can’t troll with.

    2. Agreed. It is pointless to talk about it now. I do think CK has regressed but honestly not nearly as much as the coaching. Penalties and poor scheme and JH keeps talking “precision”. I think he needs to look at himself and Roman in the mirror (or two mirrors, as needed) and accept that they have not prepared the team or made advances in the offensive play calling this year — especially the passing game. We’re not fooling anyone.

      I predicted a 1-3 start, and an 11-5 record. Thought still on track for the 1-3, I didn’t think we’d look so bad losing in SEA and at home yesterday. Unprepared, poor game planning, in game bizarro adjustments, one step behind the opposition’s coaching. That falls on the HC. He doesn’t need to announce it to the press, but he needs to take ownership of this with the team, IMO. Hope he’s doing that and making some changes.

    3. Good post. I don’t see 6-2, we may even be 4-4, but as we get healthy after bye, we will begin improving and come about November gaining that swagger back. Go back and look at the Giants wildcard run to SB a few years back. Injury plagued, terrible most of year and then got folks healthy and no one wanted to touch them come December and January. Every year teams peak too early and usually, just like the ravens and giants, you want peak at end. This may end up being a blessing in disguise.

  17. PFF gives Glenn Dorsey a +4.1 run defense grade through three games. That’s the highest run D grade on the 49ers. Second highest is Ahmad Brooks. Third highest is Aldon Smith. Fourth highest is Patrick Willis.

    PFF gives Justin Smith a -1.1 run D grade.

    1. I’d like to see J. Smith moved to LDE when they use nickel on 1st and 2nd downs, with Ahmad Brooks/ Lemonier RDE, and Dorsey and McDonald the tackles. It could help improve the run D in nickel. It may be at the expense of some pass rush, but still could be worth trying.

  18. And am I crazy? Does anyone else see the defense NOT tackling and trying to strip balls? My coach always said that’s lazy defense. Tackling has been a big issue for this defense this season. They were great at tackling for years. That’s another thing I see that points directly to coaching. This is a huge task getting this team back to basics for the coaches.

    1. sounds like excuses…..the blames is solely on the offense…

      sea game we were down 12 – 3 until sea scored 17 points in the 4th quarter…..where was the offense the first 3 quarters….

      colts game we were down 13-7 until colts scored 14 points in the 4th quarter…..where was the offense the first 3 quarters….

      …… If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck. ………its the offense to blame for both loses….

      1. Lol damn. Are you bored? Where did I say it’s the defenses fault they lost? I know you want to blame ck for everything to still defend your blue eyed hero in KC. But lets not get stupid and put words in my mouth. What you thought I just blamed everything on Alex smith? I’ve called out other scrubs in the past. I have been a 49er fan for more than 10 years dude.

        If you’ve read any of my posts you’d k ow who I’m calling out. But unless you see a smith name you don’t read. Have a beer and watch the raiders get punked. You’re all wound up again. It’s over! Move on.

  19. MD,
    Harbaugh seems to be playing the psychological game against opposing defenses. It’s as if he is convinced that every opponent has mapped out the ‘pistol offense’ and he is certain that having CK become a conventional drop-back QB will throw defenses off.

    Well, you are on point MD, it’s not our identity. B.Walsh would attack defenses with the same looks and sets, and dare the defense to stop them.
    By changing who we are, Harbaugh is essentially allowing the defense to dictate our play-calling.
    We need to stick with what our strengths are. Run & pound, and allow CK to be who he is.

    What happened to the ‘wham’ play? Where’s our ‘jumbo package’ been?
    Sure Delaney and Tukuafu are gone, but why abandon these plays altogether, especially when they were so successful?

    While it’s evident that Harbaugh is doing his best to protect CK, its become clear over the last two games that he is actually putting more pressure on him to carry the team on his back by being a drop-back QB.

    1. Careful now. Making sense could be called make excuses. IMO ck undercenter makes the offense better. It’s the way the O- line was brought in to play. Again I’m calling out coaching so far. The little things like tackling, blocking, penalties, play calling, are problems were having right now. I’m telling you guys I feel this is a good thing happening for us right now. We will NO longer be the spoiled ones without any adversity. This builds heart and character. Two things we’ve obviously lost right now.

      1. MD,

        You couldn’t be more right, it does make people look like fools when they ignore mitigating circumstances, largely beyond the QB’s control, and relentlessly and viciously bash the QB. Then, instead of listening to reason, they just continue to repeat the same debunked nonsense over and over again. I just don’t think Kaep deserves that.

      2. But yet I’ve stated that CK is horrible right now Ex. The difference now is. The defense has played bad, special teams are nothing to celebrate, we don’t know if we are a runnin team or passing team. Prior to 11 it was our defense and running game only that was solid. After that it was basically our passing game that was the weak link. It just so happens that a good guy was the problem and a lot of fans wouldn’t or couldn’t listen to reason. Because he was a good guy. A lot of differences this season. And their is NO excuse for the coaching staff. It was fine to bash Nolan, and sing. Nobody batted an eye or jumped on my back for slamming those guys. Hmmm

      3. Wrong about what Claude? Is Alex smith here? Did I say that if he didn’t get better than a game manager he’d be gone. Go on and do your rewind magic and pull that up. You buster. You mad bro? Because you were wrong. Screw Alex smith. Bitterness gets you nowhere balls.

      4. ninermd:

        Wrong about what Claude?

        So many things, but let’s stick to the topic at hand. You are wrong when you continue insist upon blaming the team’s struggles in 2009-10 on Alex Smith. His success in 2011-12 under Harbaugh and 2013 under Reid should make it clear that the problem wasn’t Smith, but rather Mike Singletary and/or Jimmy Raye. You were wrong then, and you are even more wrong now.

        Let me try it this way:

        Smith + Singletary/Raye = 8-12
        Smith + Harbaugh/Roman = 19-5-1
        Smith + Reid/Pederson = 3-0

        You shouldn’t have been chanting for David Carr; you should have been chanting for Jim Harbaugh.

        You are also comically wrong when you suggest that Smith was replaced because he was a game manager. Just because you don’t understand the value of game management doesn’t mean Harbaugh doesn’t. Besides, don’t you think the 49ers could use some quality game management right about now?

        You are so wrong that you don’t even realize that you were gonna win your bet last year about Smith. Had he not been injured, he would have finished in the Top 7.

        The one thing that gives me hope, however, is that you seem to be learning from your mistake, even if you won’t admit you made it. In 2013, you seem to have learned, finally, that it’s not always the QB’s fault when the offense struggles. As exgolfer noted, it’s good to see that you won’t trot out the same foolish nonsense for Kaepernick that you did for Smith.

      5. Lol ill entertain you one last time Claude.

        It was singletarys and Nolan’s fault that smith couldn’t hit a receiver 20 yards down the field.

        It wasn’t there fault that he was the int king

        It wasn’t their fault he had happy feet an couldn’t and wouldn’t read defenses and throw the ball to open receivers.

        Harbaugh was smart. He kept Alex for “continuity” and to manage the game to feature the defense and running game. He did an excellent job. Then mr Harbaugh saw defenses like NY that shut down his one dimensional passing attack. And needed an arm that could stretch the field at times. I said it last year and I was right. That NY game was a measuring stick to see if smith could win a game with his arm. 3 int’s and a blowout loss. Don’t be mistaken. That was a failure and Harbaugh new he needed a new qb that can be more than a check down one dimensional player.
        Remember: starting qb’s don’t lose the FN job after 1 week with a concussion. I know you don’t want to see that, but it’s just a fact. You want to brag that the chiefs are 3-0… Who have they played? I saw two 3rd and longs last week and more 4 yard passes by smith on a sorry defense that couldn’t make tackles. Do you honesty think they beat the teams we’ve played so far with that? Lol time will tell. But I’m telling you. The chiefs would be 0-3.

        This is what I is what I was wrong about.
        I said last season that smith “knowing the playbook more” would be a top 5 qb in yards, td’s and least amount of INTs. There you got me Claude.
        But I also stated that if he wasn’t or he couldn’t become a downfield threat, he’d be benched! News flash Claude
        It damn sure wasn’t a concussion that lost him his job.

        So you can lump me in with the others who were right about smith all you want, and be as bitter all you want. But I had his back last season an he failed!!!!
        An I’ve been on here for a lot longer than you. So me calling out Nolan, singletary, kickers, cb’s qb’s wr’s and others doesnt register with you. Because you weren’t here. When are you going to learn that the qb gets the glory and the flack. That’s football. It’s been that way forever and will continue to be that way. Point is smith is gone and it wasn’t because of a concussion. Harbaugh wasn’t feeling a one dimensional qb who could only make check down reads with an average arm. So No Claude I wasn’t wrong at all.

      6. ninermd:

        I take it back. You haven’t learned anything. Not a single thing.

        And don’t kid yourself. Your ignorance is not entertaining.

      7. Learn what? How to whine because I was wrong. Don’t fool yourself Claude. You’re not as smart as you think you are. Now that you have no “rewind” posts to call me out. You resort to insults. Lol the first thing that someone that gets dropped on their head does.
        That’s all! Have a wonderful day Claude. I sincerely hope this Alex smith conversation is over with. For good. Ill let one lame, hammer and Ds hammer ck and still wished they had ol blue eyes back.
        Oh ps…. I think ck is playing like crap right now too.
        So fire away and call me a hater.

      8. Ninermd,
        It’s ridiculous, absurd arguments like the one you’re trying to make that caused me to stop frequenting this blog to much (that and my job, kids, etc.). I return to see nothing’s changed.

        Is it so hard to admit you were wrong about blaming Smith for the team’s suckiness? Claude hasn’t even mentioned that, aside from the worst aggregate coaching in the league during his first several years, Smith had to work behind the worst offensive line over that same period. Hell, even I could see that.

        Just admit you may have, just perhaps, unjustly hung too much blame on Smith unfairly, in hindsight. Clearly, he’s a fine QB. He showed that here, and he’s showing it again, in KC.

        Now…on to our current mess. My suggestion is, back to basics on offense. More traditional run formations, simple reads, let Kaep get his swagger back, then start adding in the wrinkles. Everybody has some bad spells, he’s hasn’t even got a full season as starter under his belt. Nobody needs to panic, yet.

      9. Claude,

        Thanks, but I don’t know what you could possibly be talking about (semi colon / closed parentheses), my post upthread is only about Kaep and was in no way a thinly veiled reference to the previous QB of the 49ers.

        MD,

        What’s your deal, buddy? Please find any post, just one, that gives any impression other than me being all in with CK. If anything, I’ve been out over my skis in my support of Kaep, expecting too much, too soon. I’m ok with that, it’s a fan’s right.

        Besides that, I was agreeing with you, those that are bashing Kaep should knock it off. The season is only three games old, and CK has only had 13 NFL starts, give the kid a break. Plus, for the most part, he’s got no receivers to throw to and he’s consistently being pressured in the pocket.

        As to your point about why no one has spoken up against bashing the coaches and other players, I can only say I agree with you again.

        Bashing the 49ers’ ownership, GM, coaching and players at this point in the season is a little like buying a great stock, but selling it right away if it hits a rough patch. The best thing to do is to hold the stock and wait for a rebound. Of course, that takes patience and, well, that seems to be in short supply around these parts……

        Naturally, this course doesn’t always pan out, but more often than not, if you buy quality, better days are around the corner.

        We’ll see soon enough if the 49ers are quality.

      10. MD,

        Just for the record, you brought up Smith, not me.

        But since you did, your saying that Smith is no good now, was never any good, and will never be any good, in the face of a mountain of evidence to the contrary, is like saying water isn’t wet or the sky isn’t blue.

        Sorry, they are, MD, they just are.

    2. AES,

      I have watched the last few games more times than I want to admit, damn that NFL rewind. Ck just out and out sucks in these last two games. He certainly does not look like some one who is going to redefine the QB position. I sure don’t know who he is supposed to be, but what is neede is a compentent QB if this team is to win again.

    3. Well, you are on point MD, it’s not our identity. B.Walsh would attack defenses with the same looks and sets, and dare the defense to stop them.
      By changing who we are, Harbaugh is essentially allowing the defense to dictate our play-calling.

      That’s not at all what happened yesterday. Indy’s defense dictated that the 49ers run the ball. Instead of taking what the defense gave them by continuing to run the ball down (which also would have given rest to the defense), the 49ers stubbornly insisted on trying to pass in the second half, even though it wasn’t effective.

      By contrast, the 49ers let Green Bay’s defense dictate their play-calling in the first game (actually, I think the anticipated what Green Bay was going to do), and beat the Packers by taking what the defense gave them.

      1. CB,
        I don’t believe that Indy dictated that we run against them at all.
        We ran against them because we were finding success opening lanes for FG to run. Gore’ 61 yards in that one drive is exactly what I was alluding to when I said that we were going away from our strength when we stopped in the 2nd half. Obviously, when we’re down late in the game we had to pass. But my issue is why not stay with what proved successful for us when entering the 3rd QTR.

        By deferring to the pass, we closed the door on our run attack thereby nullifying what had been a successful weapon.
        By continuing to run early in the 2nd half, we would have imposed our will on the defense.
        That’s called dictating to me, as well as making a commitment to roll with our identity.

      2. Yet, if the 49ers had adopted that attitude during the Green Bay game, and insisted on running, they would have lost.

        In contrast to what Green Bay did in Game 1, Indy didn’t do anything yesterday to take away the run, at least not when SF was in the traditional formation. It did, however, do things to take away the pass. I’m still trying to figure out why the 49ers kept trying to pass, even though it wasn’t working, when the Colts were giving them the run.

      3. CB…do you think it is possible that given the way the Niners call plays (2 in the huddle & let CK pick the right one at the line of scrimmage based on what D he sees) that Kap’s ego got in the way trying to outshine Luck & Wilson and he decided to pass more vs run with Frank and be the game manager?

      4. @mauidave:

        I suppose anything’s possible, but nothing I have read about Kaepernick suggests that he would do that. He seems to be more about achieving teams goals (i.e., getting the win) than achieving personal ones.

  20. Most accurate QBs this season not counting drops, throw aways or spikes according to PFF:

    1. Rivers: 81.1
    2. P. Manning: 78.6
    3. Ryan Tannehill: 78.2
    4. Sam Bradford: 78.1
    5. Tony Romo: 78.0
    11. Alex Smith: 75.5
    13. Andrew Luck: 75.3
    15. Russell Wilson: 72.5
    23. Geno Smith: 69.2
    24. Colin Kaepernick: 68.9
    29. Brady: 66.1.

    1. Brady ranks 29, yet the Pats are 3-0 with a ‘meh’ defense, and without their top 2 receivers. I should print those stats out, and wipe my bum with them, then they’ll be more useful!

    2. Grant,

      Considering how different their relatve passer ratings are, aren’t you a bit surprised how close Wilson and Kaep are in accuracy percentage?

  21. It will be interesting to see how hot it gets in the kitchen for Harbaugh. He has this awkward way of dealing with the press that makes him come off as a jerk. I can just imagine some of those guys already have their Harbaugh hate pieces penned and ready to post. Also, think Harbaugh has worn out the refs where he’s not getting any calls and they are calling the 9ers tight. Some of those calls yesterday were ticky tack and it was definitely one-sided. I think Harbaugh can expect to see more and more of that if he doesn’t figure out how to handle refs.

    1. Well said Houston. I think the sideline theatrics have finally caught up to him. How he handles the first half of the season will be interesting. This team has never faced injuries and the adversity to come from the media.

    2. Definitely, Houson. He’s been making enemies since Day#1. Many will enjoy presiding over any slide in popularity. Long term, Harbs will be a winner. PR wise? Probably never, LOL!

    3. I was wondering about the same thing. We get flagged for what appears to be incidental contact while teams like the Ravens and Seahawks DBs are allowed to push grab and hold way past 5 yards.

      Looking back to the super bowl, do you think if it was the Ravens with 1st & goal and our DBs had the same coverage they had on Crabtree that the yellow hankies stay in the refs pocket?

  22. According the Brett Gering’s twitter account. 49er fans on twitter messaged Kap too tell him that they wanted Alex Smith back. In return, Kap favorited them! Bwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah

    Kap is a tad bit sensitive right now. Lol

    1. I would say those “fans” aren’t fans at all, but dicks that should go cheer the Chiefs. Seriously, I am sick to death of moron, know nothing Niner fans. It’s week 3 for god sakes. It’s a long season and teams that start hot rarely stay hot and the talented teams that struggle early usually end up the team no one wants to play come December.

      1. I agree but with all the talent we have there is no way we should be scoring only 10 points in 2 important games. Geez we look like the Jags, so I get peoples frustration.

  23. You can only lose so many of your best players and also have one with his head in the clouds like Smith until you have this years results.
    Its didn’t take two years for the 49ers,Raiders and Giants to undo the bay area golden age of sports in the 21st century.
    And I don’t like it.
    Sundays don’t mean much except for that religious thing now.

  24. And the end of the Dennis Allen,Reggie the GM era is about over too. Just a matter if time.
    Mark took advice alright…from all the wrong people.

    1. They got a pretty raw deal coming in Stan. The Raiders salary cap and poor drafting left the cupboard pretty bare. Davis is a fool if he cans McKenzie when the clouds are just starting to part. Next year he has the most cap space of any team in the league and a full allotment of draft picks. Davis needs to give McKenzie time to see it through.

      Allen on the other hand I’m not sure about. The team appears to be playing hard but he just doesn’t seem like a HC as far as leadership to me. They may have to dump him, but it will all depend on how the season plays out.

  25. This team truly is facing adversity right now! Just a few plays here and there would have changed the whole picture but this is the reality and the team needs to step up! Offense is hurting due to lack of depth (Crabtree, Manningham, and VD are out with injuries and D. Walker lost due to free agency!)

    Culliver was lost And then Williams our run suffer is lost for the season followed by Willis and now Aldon Smith! Trading Haralson and Cam Johnson now appears to be a big mistake. Crossing my fingers that we get a W Thursday so we have a chance to make get back on track! GO NINERS

    1. We will win Thursday Chicago. I have no doubt about this game. We will win convincingly. If we don’t. We won’t be going anywhere near the Super Bowl.

  26. Here is a prediction. A lot of people are going to look pretty stupid come mid-November. We will survive for a month and then suddenly pieces will start coming together. Teams go through spurts and ideally you start heating up towards end of year. When teams really do great things is when everyone writes them off and get a chip on their shoulder, get healthy, get on track and start hammering opponents. Mark my words, this is going to be a special, one to remember!

  27. Coach Harbaw is busy obsessing on his new vocabulary word…
    precision (used way, way, too many times in this press conference).
    In the meantime, the Oakland Raiders (a 1-2 team, just like us) are scoring an average of 19 points per game. Our game 2 and 3 total was 10 points.
    Really!!!
    Oakland has a credible differential (for/against) of 57/67.
    They managed to hang with the Colts, losing 17-21.
    Tonight they dropped one to the Broncos, 21-37.
    Instead of hiding behind a bunch of rhetoric (precision my #$$),
    Mister Harbaw needs to explain the Niners’ scoring differential:
    44/84…. Ouch…!!! By the end of the week,
    Oakland will be 2-2 and we will be 1-3.

  28. Has anyone one seen Kaps swag? Seems like it might be hiding under the bed next to his Dolphins hat…I wonder if he has time for another photo shoot between now and Thursdays game?

  29. One thing no one has really talked about is our inability to get off the field on 3rd downs. I would love to know what teams conversion % against us is. It must be one of the highest in the league. Also, where is Brooks. I get that J Smith is older and a year slower, but we paid Brooks a ton and he is a very average pass rusher.

  30. A little perspective to keep us optimistic:

    @billbarnwell: This time last year: Pats, Colts, Broncos, Redskins, Packers all 1-2. Cardinals 3-0. Eagles, Jets, Chargers 2-1.

  31. Moments after his final drive on Sunday ended with an interception in the red zone, Colin Kaepernick walked to the sideline, ripped off his helmet and unleashed a torrent of four-letter words.

    Note to Mister Harbaw: Instead of driving your wife home after the game Sunday, and then coming back in to work… what? … all night?
    You will teach the Colin Kaepernicks of this world (see above) more by remaining home with your family after the game. You have young children. Assuring the stability of your second marriage will prepare you to be a better coach, a better man, on Monday morning. Xs and Os are one thing; emotional maturity is another. Right now Kaep needs more of the latter than the former. P.S. Recommend that you start Colt McCoy on Thursday.

  32. Cease and desist from all moaning and whining, Niner Fans! As Ronnie Lottt would scream:” This is Rams week”!! Here’s hoping that the Niners will take out all their frustrations on the Rams.

  33. As long as the team is winning, I kind of get a kick out of Harbaugh’s thumbing his nose at the beat reporters. After a loss, I’d like to get the sense that he has a clue about what to do to fix that mess. That was irritating.

  34. Those fans that took an objective look at the schedule and didn’t fall into Kaep mania expected a 2-2 start. I still expect that start. We then fall into the easiest section of our schedule, and should go 6-2 over the next 8 games, putting us at 8-4. Buy when there is blood on the streets; niners are the value play right now. One would hope Kaep can find a rapport with a receiver other than Boldin over that time period.

  35. I believe I could do a better job at devising a game plan and calling plays in game than Roman and his merry assistants have these last two…

  36. We are no longer #2 on the power ratings. In fact, we are a distant third.

    Denver, 5-1
    Seattle, 6-1
    Niners, 8-1

    Plus four others are right behind (with something called momentum…).
    Note: the deck will get reshuffled Friday morning…
    Keep an eye on the Packers, Texans, Patriots, Saints.

    1. And that is a GOOD thing, the favorite hasn’t won the SB in a looong time. The last 6 years the winner of the SB had 14-1 odds at best and that was last years Ravens. The Giants, Steelers and Saints were all 20-1, the 2007 Giants were 30-1.

      So by your theory, we must be going the right direction. Thanks for the pep-up!

      1. MD, Jordan, or anyone else,

        Please feel free to repost any comment of mine that could remotely be considered pro Alex Smith and anti Kaep trolling.

        Of course, why should anyone expect anything different from you guys, you’ve never let facts get in your way before. Shoot, why start now?

      2. Ex,

        I didn’t call you out but you never paid your debt when you lost your bet to me last year. I think it was a week off the blog and somehow you caught amnesia. No biggie though.

      3. Says the guy who welched on a promise to leave the blog forever. And on a promise to pay $100.

        That you would say anything to anyone about welching on a bet is mind-boggling. That’s just begging for people to remind you of your own lack of character. Are you a masochist?

  37. I know most of the attention on ex Stanford players went to Andrew Luck, but Delano Howell played a heck of a game for the Colts defense. Not bad for an undrafted rookie.

  38. Those giving Kaepernick a pass by saying the wide receivers weren’t open need to watch the coaches film. The first half is almost all on him.

    1. I’ve seen it Hammer and you are right. Same thing happened at times in the Seahawks game. I can’t figure out what he’s thinking. The guy must be anticipating pressure that’s not always there. He’s trying not to take a hit at all. He has to try and stay in the pocket and deliver a ball on time and on target to the wideouts. It would also help of he didn’t decide for the past 2 games to
      throw every pass 80mph. He’s rushing everything. He playing like the game is faster than it is. He has to slow the game down.

    2. No doubt. Watched receivers running open with no ball in the air.
      It’s a little different right now than our last qb. We know ck would throw those balls before, I am bewildered as to why he won’t pull the trigger.

      1. Maybe CK is more worried about his tv commercial image more than football at the moment.
        In any case, he has set the bar high for himself and now its time to deliver.

      2. Aes you have a good point. Good to see it crashed on him right now. Maybe he will go back to the quiet humble assassin we know he can be. I just hope they run the ball to open up the pass. Teams have got to be kicking their chops knowing all we do is throw.

    3. My buddies and I were saying it’s almost as if JH told Kap to ‘careful’ out there. He doesn’t seem to have to aggressiveness that he had last year. Sure our WR aren’t the same as Denver’s WR corp, but they aren’t as bad as the performance the last 2 weeks.

      IMO the biggest issues have been poor play calling and Kap’s inability to make a quick decision and deliver the ball accurately the past 2 games. Our piss poor offense has put undue pressure on the D.

      1. I think you’re close there, Bray. I don’t think he’s gone Hollywood as some have wondered. He’s thinking too much. I’m sure the team worked with him about limiting his exposure to hits as a strategy to stay on the field all season (as Shanahan has with RG3), so that may take some of his natural game away.

      2. Speaking of RGIII, I heard a comment by Warren Moon today that RGIII’s problems may stem partially from Washington asking him to play QB as almost exclusively a pocket passer. As Moon explained it, RGIII is having to learn how to read new defensive sets and learn how to respond to those sets because they are not the defensive sets he has seen throughout his football experience. In effect, he is having to relearn how to play QB in a system where he cannot rely on his legs and the defense does not have to take his legs into account.

      3. Yup. I really think that’s the case. It has absolutely nothing to do with filming a couple of commercials, that’s just lazy to say that’s the reason for his struggles.
        He was so decisive last year as a young QB seeing his first live action. He looks tentative, it’s likely that is coming from the instructions he receives. I agree that RG3 appears to be in the same position, as well as recovering from his injury.

        When you have the best athlete at a position, you’ve got to let them play. Of course you can coach them up on the finer points, but you cannot take away the playmaking ability by making a naturally aggressive player play more conservative. Just like you can’t take a naturally conservative player play more aggressively. You do that with the play calling.

    4. I don’t have access to the coaches film so I will have to take your word for it. Are you saying he had receivers open but Kaep simply wasn’t progressing through his reads? Or that he saw them open and still didn’t throw it?

      Also, which receivers were coming open? Was it the same guys consistently, or different guys at different times?

      Jack, in your opinion, did the receivers do enough in that game to not be considered a concern moving forward, and the blame rests squarely with Kaep and his happy feet?

  39. update on patrick willis? im not going in too much detail on the myriad of growing pains that i hope this is-but when willis went out-there was negative support at his position-they attacked that side the remainder of the game. if mr. wilhoite is our starter with no aldon….eric reid will be forsed to make most of the tackles on that side and he should prepare for this-i took patrick willis for granted when i saw this backup play-it appears he does not like to hit or pursue the ball like willis or an average linebacker at best….

  40. Week #3 Blog Pick’em results:

    1-Rocket 34
    2-CFC 30
    3-Lee9er 30
    4-Nick 30
    5-nofear4 30
    6-Jack H. 29
    7-Crab15 29
    8-JPN 29
    9-MWN 29
    10-Matt 29
    11-DRogue 28
    12-23J 28
    13-LT.D 28
    14-Pirate49 26
    15-Ninermd 26

    Week #1 Winner: Rocket w/12
    Week #2 Winner: Rocket w/13
    Week #3 Winner: CFC w/11

    Group avg: 29.0

    1. Just call me f’ing arrogant know it all clairvoyant football pick’em genius…at least until the next time I’m wrong which could be in about 30 seconds or until I screw up the picks for a couple of weeks.

  41. Why is there even Alex Smith discussions on here anymore. He is not on our team anymore, he’s a Chief. Kap is the QB. And Kap has a way higher ceiling than Alex. People are overreacting. Kap is struggling as of now but majority of that is due to injuries on offense and the idiotic gameplan harbaugh and Roman have come up with. Patton, Williams, and Moore are our #2-4. C’mon guys. Not much talent there. Look at Brady in NE, he’s struggling big time, granted they are 3-0 but their opponents are 3-6 this season. Kap is our QB and our future. Relax people. And yes I know it’s “kaep” not Kap but Kap is easier to type in my phone

    1. Alex is part of the discussion because he’s the guy that KAP replaced last year. And as great as he played at times, he also had a chance to win the Superbowl and didn’t. And now he’s regressing big time and as talented as he is, it means nothing if he doesn’t play better that the guy he replaced.
      KAP is immensely talented but it means nothing if the results on the field don’t show it. Harbaugh and Roman put everything on KAP, not realizing the other coaches and players get paid to coach and play too.
      KAP went Hollywood, that’s the scary part. He rose too fast.

    2. Adam one reason Alex Smith is still on the minds of 9er fans is we need him to win at least 8 games to give us a 2nd rd pick, so we are all rooting for him. Next yr there will be less AS talk but it wo’nt disappear but there will be less. Earlier this year there was an emotional strand regarding Steve Young and my god he has been gone close to 2 decades.

      1. Agreed oldcoach.
        Alex’ entire season will be on display throughout the blog. It will likely be that way until either CK wins a ?Superbowl or Smith falters.

        As long as Smith has success, the naysayers will pronounce judgment on the 49ers if we continue to lose.

        Here’s a side note concerning Alex Smith that will be on display this weekend.
        Alex’ thorn over the last two seasons has been the NYG.

        I actually have the Giants winning a close one over the Chiefs because of that reason.
        I know that Smith is in an entirely different situation now, but sometimes old habits (good or bad) are hard to break. I think the NYG are in his head.

    1. jack:

      Thanks for the detailed analysis. It means I won’t have to go through the pain of reliving the team’s awful performance on NFL Game Rewind.

      I just wish you had written something encouraging to counter the anxiety that is creeping in.

      Any idea what happened to Kaepernick’s poise and accuracy? He seemed to possess plenty of both last year.

      1. KAEP has regressed. He seem rattled and disinterested in the first half. Frustrated. We can say that it’s only his 12th game, because it’s only Russell Wilson’s 19th game. Andrew Luck’s 19th game. And KAEP is a third year player.
        He just needs to play up to his potential. No excuses. No whining.

      2. Fan,

        Is what we are seeing his potential? Isn’t it possible that he played above his head last year and now he is coming back to reality?

      3. Fan,

        I don’t think that 2 bad games means Kap has regressed. You’re exaggerating. I expect that from you. He won’t be the 1st good QB in the history of football to have a couple of bad games. I guess Brady. Has regressed as well. I’m sure you’d love to see him stink it up this week. It won’t happen.

      4. Jack,

        You’ve seen too much film on Kap to think he can’t play better than he is now. He just got a bad case of playing wayyyy tooooo fast. He spent his summer getting faster and now he’s playing a little bit quick. If he stinks it up facing the Rams, then we have a problem.

      5. Was Colin tight? Trying too hard? Over amped? His accuracy has in the past been pinpoint, although he’s still forgetting touch too often. Did he leave his confidence up in Seattle? Nothing much this past Sunday will help that for Thursday, and the Rams aren’t a great team to try to get that running game going again to give CK some breathing room.
        Jack’s breakdown is interesting. CK is still my guy and I’m confident he’ll play better. He needs to see the field better. We loved his aggressiveness last season for looking for the deepest receiver, but it isn’t always the best choice every time. In the words of the inestimable Lil’ Feat: “You got to feel The Groove…”
        I still think the play calling needs some work, but unlike some here I’m not ready to fire Roman, pants him and say rude things about his mother.

      6. Jack:

        It’s bewildering to me. I can understand defenses figuring out the read option and taking that away, but that doesn’t explain the sudden loss of accuracy and poise. Hell, Green Bay did that, and Kaepernick responded with one of his best games ever. I just can’t figure it out, and that is frustrating.

        I hope your Crabtree security blanket theory is wrong because there is a good chance that Crabtree isn’t going to be Crabtree this year, assuming he makes it back onto the field.

      7. Claude the Raiders look alot better running the read option than the 49ers do, could the problem be with the 49ers style of read option rather than the read option overall?

      8. Jack,
        Good point. He caught everyone by surprise. He was never a good practice player or accurate. He’s not making good decisions, teams are figuring out how he audibles and how to take away his strengths.
        If we look back at the body of work from last year, maybe it’s not as impressive as we think.
        23Jordan,
        —- Ah forget it what’s the point with you?

      9. With regards to CK trying to “Do too much”… that’s easy when no one else is doing much of anything.

        The O-line has not looked as good as it should. The receivers aside from Boldin are terrible. Injuries are piling up. And the coaches don’t have patience with the running game and Frank. On defense, Justin is no longer the Cowboy of old, and our putrid CB play is being exposed. Most of all, our offensive coaching and play calling is being overmatched by our opponents.

        There is a team-wide malaise. So of course CK is going to try to do too much – because if he does not carry this team right now, they are NOT going to win.

    2. Thanks for the detailed breakdown Jack. You are making me even lazier than I already am by doing all the work.

      It just confirms what appears to be happening on the field. Kap doesn’t look comfortable, he bails from the pocket earlier than necessary and is not giving all the receivers a chance. He seems to not want to throw the ball to guys he doesn’t have trust in, which is understandable in a way, but needs to be overcome. The crazy thing is the pass protection has been pretty good for the most part so he should be having time to find open guys but he seems to be feeling pressure that isn’t there at times. He’s also not running with conviction when he does break the pocket. He seems to be loping and looking to go down or run out of bounds. His play has to improve or this team has no chance.

      1. Rocket,

        Our offensive line. Has been crap. He had time in the Packer game but these last 2 have been horrible. He had a few chances against the Colts but Update and Davits and Goodwill stink right now. Your other points I agree with and have said so as well.

      2. I disagree Jordan. The Oline has been pretty solid in pass protection and were very good running the ball against the Colts. I don’t see them as a big problem right now although Iupati and Goodwin were pretty bad at times the first couple of games. Kap has had time to make plays; he just hasn’t made them.

    3. Great write up, Jack!

      I did not see much of Sunday’s game (as I was on a flight home), but I what I did see, along with the Seattle game, fits what you described in your blog. In four years of watching him here in Reno and then last year with the 49ers, I have never seen Kaep play scared, but that is what I have seen the last two games.

      What strikes me most is that instead of challenging defenses to stop him, which is what we saw in Nevada and last year, he is trying to avoid the defensives, to find a way around them, rather than going up against them. Some of that is coaching, no doubt, but some of it is Kaep. He does not look comfortable with anything, and he is certainly not having fun.

      1. Thanks JPN. So far this season Kaepernick looks a lot like Jeff Garcia did in 1999. Instead of playing within the offense he is trying to take everything on himself.

        If you remember Garcia had the real good first start against Tennessee at home but then went into a big slump, partly from trying to do too much because the defense was poor and they had to come back.

        After they sat him for a few weeks he came back and played lights out to end the season and ended up in the Pro Bowl the next 2 seasons.

        They need to take the ball from Kaep in a sense, by sticking with the run, and making him work the underneath stuff to get his confidence going.

        That’s my 2 cents.

    4. Thanks Jack, that answers my above question.

      Interestingly enough, much of the bad plays were down to inaccurate throws, not bad reads, giving up on a play or an unwillingness to put it in there. I think the reason for that is the same as why he seems to have happy feet. He needs to calm down in the pocket. It is like the game is coming too fast for him at the moment, and he looks panicky. This is the real problem for Kaep at the moment.

      The other thing I noted both in game and in your analysis is the receivers are really struggling with the jam. Yes, Kaep needs to give the plays some more time to develop, but at the same time when you see your guys not beating the jam from the snap you can understand why he might start looking for other alternatives, like tucking it and running.

      Finally, a couple of missed opportunities were because he threw to a covered Boldin rather than the free receiver. That is the dilemma you face with a guy like Boldin, who rarely really comes free and has a reputation for being able to come up with the ball in 1-on-1 situations.

  42. Is there any other team who has been hit as hard with injury and illness as the 49ers?
    M. Crabtree
    M. Manningham
    L. James
    V. Davis
    C. Culliver
    I. Williams
    A. Smith
    P. Willis
    N. Asomough
    R. McDonald Yet many here Grant included wa’nt to find a face to blame. I believe this might just be one of those yrs when everything that could possibly go wrong health wise goes wrong. Hopefully we can get fully healthy by Nov. and go on a 8 game winning streak.

    1. That’s a tough list to be without old coach, but the offense being so anemic is cause for concern. You could understand them not being able to score in the 20′s every game, but to score 10 points in two games? It’s also a concern when you see how quickly they abandoned the running game which was working. The plan the past two weeks has just seemed disjointed and there has been an inability to adapt.

      1. Rocket i believe that it would be FAR easier to game plan with Crabtree, Manningham and Davis all healthy. In fact i stronly believe that we would be 2-1 if those 3 players were healthy and we would’nt be having this conversation. All things being relativley equal health is by far the most important trait a team can have.

      2. I agree old coach, but the offense can’t come to a screeching halt due to injuries. The game plan has to be able to overcome that, and Kap has to regain his composure a bit in the pocket.

      3. Rocket you ca’nt game plan for lack of talent and right now the 9ers lack talent at WR and TE. Which allows teams to bring up 8 or 9 in the box. Now as to why they stopped running the ball of tackle after their 2nd possession. i can only guess that indy adjusted. No matter how well we run the ball untill we have better talent at WR and TE we are going to be in trouble. Our D has’nt been too bad so far more exhausted than out played but with the recent losses on D [A. Smith,P. Willis and Asomugha] things could go from bad to worse on D also. We may just have to grin and bear it untill next yr and hope we will be healthy then.

      4. old coach:

        I respectfully disagree with the assertion that you can’t gameplan for lack of talent on the offensive side of the ball, but only because I read that Bill Walsh said so. He believed that you could scheme around talent deficiencies on offense, but you needed talent on defense. Otherwise, opposing offenses will find your weakness and exploit it.

        Harbaugh and Roman are bright enough that they should be able to figure this out.

      5. Claude it comes down to your definition of the phrase “lack of talent” Your’re correct there is a level of poor talent you can game plan for. I believe the 9ers have fallen below that level at WR and TE. Boldin is a good player i see the rest of the WR corp filling special teams roles on other teams, there is not one of them who could hold Mike Wilsons jock and i believe Wilson was the kind of player Walsh was talking about.
        At TE Celek is a blocking specialist and special teams player and McDonald may eventually be the kind of player you can game plan for but he needs to learn the playbook before you can start adjusting his routes. I’ve seen great coaches lose with bad talent usually brought about by injuries and i’ve seen mediocre coaches win with great talent but one rule that always is true talent wins championships.

      6. old coach:

        I didn’t realize you were pegging the talent level that low. I suspect even Walsh would acknowledge that the talent needs to meet a minimum threshold before you can overcome its lack with scheme.

    2. So many Monday morning QB’s right now all over the Internet crying about what’s wrong with the 49ers. The one thing than cannot be argued is that the team is depleted by injuries etc. It starts there. There are other factors, coaching and CK’s soph slump as a starter to name two but the injury bug and loss of free agents in the offseason has effected this team dramatically. From a personnel standpoint this is not the same team right now that played in the Super Bowl.

  43. Gore carried the ball 11 times in the game and it breaks down like this.

    8 runs between the tackles totalling 32 yards.
    **6 times with the QB under center totalling 27 yards
    **2 times from the pistol totalling 5 yards

    3 runs off tackle totalling 50 yards, all with the QB under center

    I find that last item interesting since Gore has lost a step and according to many can no longer turn the corner.

      1. Watch those two off tackle runs again. I did. They were perfectly designed and blocked. On the first one, Vance McDonald down blocked, Anthony Davis blocked McDonald’s man, and Boone and Miller led Gore through the hole between McDonald and Davis. Gore wasn’t touched until he was 20 yards down field. He still seems slower than last season but you disagree. That’s fair. Keep in mind the Colts are terrible against outside runs and they were missing their starting middle linebacker and strong safety.

      2. Of course it was blocked well, that is the first thing every running back needs to be successful. On the second one McDonald does a nice job of leading him down field.

        On the 3rd off tackle run, to the left at the start of the 2nd half he picks up 7.

        6 times between the tackles from under center and he averaged 4.5 yards per carry, 2 times from the gun and he averaged 2.5.

      3. Claude,

        Here’s an explanation I haven’t heard yet. I think the offensive coaches panicked a bit. The defense was giving up long, time consuming drives, and they weren’t sure how many more shots they were going to get.

      4. Here’s an explanation I haven’t heard yet. I think the offensive coaches panicked a bit. The defense was giving up long, time consuming drives, and they weren’t sure how many more shots they were going to get.

        I don’t buy that one at all. First off they stopped running the ball after their first drive of the second half and didn’t run it much before that after the TD drive. Second, if you see the other offense controlling the ball, you want to keep them off the field; not take a chance of giving it right back to them.

        Personally I think they just had a plan they thought would work and wouldn’t deviate from it. Extreme arrogance and/or inability to adjust to the game situation.

      5. Grant,

        Gore is probably a little slower but the losing your legs is a big step up from losing a bit of speed which is what I took issue with last week. He’s not the Gore of his prime, but he still has the ability to run the ball if given the chance. He’s never been overly fast to begin with. He’s always been a guy who can find a hole and follow his blocking and it appears, at least from the Colt game, he can still do that.

      6. The Rams didn’t look so hot against the run last week.

        That may have to do with the fact that Daryl Richardson left during the first quarter after having a foot that was already injured stepped on.

      7. As Hammer described, there were passing opportunities that were missed in the first half. The coaches in the booth probably saw the same thing and was hoping Kaep could hit a few of those and get in a rhythm.
        And Kaep still has the options of 2 called plays and audible, right? Maybe it was the coaches’ directives and both of the called plays were passing plays. IDK.

    1. I dont know why we got away from the run as the game went on, it was working just fine early!
      I think a big issue is our lost identity: think about it: with alex smith, we knew we could not get into shoot outs with the big time offenses, so we ran the ball a ton! This allowed us to do one very important thing: control the time of possession!!!!!! An important aspect of conroling the TOP…..keeping our veteran D fresh!!! Also, the other teams D had to play us honest! and we could run the play action!!!
      All the talk about “game manager” from those missing alex smith, I think it starts with the coaching! We must run the ball!
      We perfected the formula to beat big time offenses ( we had to, since we could not outscore them in a shoot out), and now that formula is being used on us!!!
      run the ball
      control the clock
      keep the opposing offense off the field
      sustain drives
      keep OUR defense fresh
      kill ‘em with play action!
      dont forget field position
      We need to get back to 49er football!!!

      Not sure if we want to be a big time passing team ( if so god help us, ’cause it aint going well)
      or if injurys are preventing us from running as much as we would like?

      1. Ironically, Alex Smith is hardly ever handing the ball off. He is passing nonstop, mostly short and medium range passes. Once again, his defense (the same guys as last year’s worst team) are playing at the top 3 level. Once again, he is on a team that has raised to the top undefeated on the strength of ball-control and turnovers. Just saying …

    2. Jack,
      After that series where Frank had those decent runs, did the Colts bring more into the box? Is that why SF gave up the run? Cuz I was raising a ruckus here asking Where’s the beef? Where’s the running game?

      1. Brotha Tuna says:
        September 24, 2013 at 12:54 pm

        “After that series where Frank had those decent runs, did the Colts bring more into the box?”

        No, but the 49ers basically stopped running Gore, but also after the 1st quarter TD drive the offense only had 13 more plays during the half compared to 21 for Indianapolis.

        Indy did a fantastic job of controlling the tempo all day long.

  44. How good can a clean and sober A. Smith be. If he can hold the record for sacks in his first 2 seasons coming to practice drunk how good can he be totally healthy and mentally prepared.

    1. MWN
      Pizza, alcohol, texting, etc. can all be forms of distraction while driving. It’s a good thing he didn’t injure anybody but himself.

  45. Im starting to think Baalke is not that great..I think hes benefitting from MCCloughans drafts..His drafts have netted Bruce Miller and Aldon Smith if Im correct..Oh and Culliver thats really it out of three drafts right?

    1. Baalke is a genius for talent and physical abilities, but sometimes he misses on the attributes of work ethic, commitment, team loyalty, and basic common sens, especially the case with A.J. Jenkins. As for Chris Culliver, he was brilliant pick. He proved himself well, all except for the SuperBowl and for misspeaking gaffe after being entrapped by “Arnie the”got-ja DJ.” He’s a better cornerback than anyone else on the team. Meanwhile, Trent also selected Navarro. Enough said.

      1. Whiffing on AJ is killing us right now. Last year Kaeps three favorite receivers were Crabs, Davis and Walker. Not one of those guys was on the field last week. The Dolts are 29th against the run and we abandoned it in the 2nd half. This is on the coaches plain and simple.
        Has anyone heard any details about the conversation that Gore had with Harbs after the game?

  46. Harbaugh gives the worst interviews ever, hands-down, second to none. I always walk away thinking that not a single question was answered. The journalists are always pulling teeth trying to get him to answer even the most basic of questions. Often times he snaps at the journalist for his audacity to ask questions that were NOT ANSWERED the day before. What a piece of work he’s become.

  47. The Week 3 standings and results from the Quest4Six league:

    1. Amsterdam Invaders 3-0
    Defeated MidWestNiner 95.90 to 62.26

    2. Uaaaatchi 2-1
    Lost to West Coast Bias 93.84 to 74.90

    3. TeamSF 2-1
    Defeated NF_HAS 73.98 to 73.36

    4. Orenthal Hernandez 2-1
    Defeated Coffee’s for Closers 134.22 to 79.00

    5. NF_HAS 2-1
    Lost to TeamSF 73.98 to 73.36

    6. MidWestNiner 1-2
    Lost to Amsterdam Invaders 95.90 to 62.26

    7. GreenDart 1-2
    Defeated barnone dmp5 107.36 to 89.42

    8. West Coast Bias 1-2
    Defeated Uaaaatchi 93.84 to 74.90

    9. barnone dmp5 1-2
    Lost to GreenDart 107.36 to 89.42

    10. Coffee’s for Closers 0-3
    Lost to Orenthal Hernandez 134.22 to 79.00

  48. How could we miss it?
    For quite some time, Head Coach Harbaw rants and raves
    on the sideline, leaning on the refs and pushing the envelope.
    Now, our team is getting hit with quantities of drive-sustaining
    penalties on the defense and drive-killing calls on the offense too.
    Hmm…
    Are the zebras delivering an age-old message:
    what goes around comes around…?
    Mister Harbaw, did you think your over-the-top antics
    would not catch up with you and the team?
    Hope that key calls do not cost us another game Thursday.

  49. I have yet to see the entire Colts game. But from what I saw in Redzone and the analysis of friends, sports writers and blog folks such as yourselves, it appears CK has no WRs open and is getting little time to throw. He is showing is frustration. Defenses are putting the Niners in a box.

    Blueprint is out:
    1. Punch them in the mouth b/c they are no longer tough, thus beat your man one on one. All start at the line and our line was dominated the past 2 weeks.

    2. Use press corners to jam the WRs. The GB defense let them down again. Last year they let CK run all over and didn’t adjust, this year they let Boldin sit in the zones and didn’t adjust. If they adjusted, we may be 0-3. Seattle’s CBs are great. Are the Colts corners that great? Or do you need just an average CB to jam all of our WRs…?… god help us.

    3. I don’t know what is up with the running game, but we have better figure it out… We need to lean on the power run, draws, play action and screens. Why can’t Roman adjust on the fly… we seem to be stale.

    The loss at the end of the Super Bowl and red zone issues the past 2 years is a direct result of Roman and Harbs not having the team prepared.

    Niners need to have a guy check or it could look like a 3-5 bye week.

    1. Thank you Midwest. This blog has become worse than a Jerry Springer episode. If it weren’t for your links, there wouldn’t be any “inside the 49ers” information on here.

  50. The games are going to be tougher then ever before, we are not going to get the favorable calls any longer, unless it is obvious, Harbaugh acts like a raving lunatic on the sidelines and the refs now loathe me, because he complains about everything.

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