I wanted to give my fingers a rest. Fatigue is setting in after August was spent pounding away on the keyboard with double-day and sometimes triple-day blogging. I want to be fresh for December, so we’re going with a podcast today.
The Question Lady set me up with an open-ended opportunity to speak about the 49ers’ chances of running the table, Alex Smith’s future and what the 49ers might do with their two first-round picks in the 2010 draft.
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—Can the 49ers run the table? Well, of course, they can. But is it realistic? Probably not.
With parity in the NFL and the inconsistent nature of the 49ers, I don’t see how they can win six games in a row against any group of opponents. This is a league in which the Chiefs defeated the Steelers, and the Raiders have beaten the Eagles and Bengals.
I can’t envision the 49ers winning six in a row to finish with a 10-6 record. And if they finish 9-7, the 49ers are going to have to get lucky with tie-breakers and such.
And in order for the 49ers to finish 10-6, they’re going to have to put together their longest win streak since 1997.
—Is Alex Smith the QB of the future? The short answer is we’ll all probably have a better idea in six weeks. Mike Singletary and Jimmy Raye have expressed optimism that Smith is that guy. I’ve seen Smith throw the ball very well at times. But there comes a point when must put up some numbers – and some victories.
The organization is going to give Smith every opportunity because this could be a rough offseason to be in the market for an impact quarterback. Free-agency probably will not yield much. Trade options are limited because. After all, what team is going to voluntarily part with a good quarterback? And the draft is always iffy.
—What are the 49ers going to do with their two first-round picks in the 2010 draft? The easy, simple answer is that the 49ers are going to select an offensive lineman.
That seems reasonable until you consider that nobody knows where the 49ers will be selecting. They are scheduled to have two first-round picks: their own and that of the Carolina Panthers. Right now, both of those selections would be in the middle of the round.
What if there are four really good offensive linemen and then there’s a huge drop-off? Would the 49ers take a second-round talent in the middle of the first round just to fill a need?
It’s pretty obvious the 49ers need help on the offensive line, as well as a pass rusher. Those are the positions that should be 1-A and 1-B on the wish list, but that doesn’t mean they will fill both of those needs in the first round.
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Receiver Brandon Jones, who has yet to catch a pass this season, was added to the injury reporter today with a thumb injury. He took part in the team’s full walk-through today, and he’s listed as probable for tomorrow’s game against the Jaguars. It is not known whether the 49ers will stick with Jones as the primary punt-return man in tomorrow’s game. Arnaz Battle might not be available. Second-year safety Reggie Smith can also return punts.
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Receiver Jerry Rice – surprise – was among the list of 25 semifinalists announced today for the Pro Football Hall of Fame class of 2010. Running back Roger Craig and pass-rusher Charles Haley also made the first cut. The list of 25 will be reduced to 15 by Jan. 7. Then, the day before the Super Bowl, anywhere from four to seven players will be selected for induction into the Hall of Fame.
Other semifinalists who saw time with the 49ers during their careers are defensive players Richard Dent, Chris Doleman, Kevin Greene and Rickey Jackson.
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From the pages of today’s Press Democrat . . . “Small Jones-Drew has come up big.”
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Hmmm, so much for giving my fingers a rest.
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