49ers see runs of success in their quarterback’s future

This is my Sunday column. Keep running him until he breaks down. That is the 49ers’ plan for Colin Kaepernick next season. I can’t prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, but I can make a case. Exhibit A: Mike Shanahan and Rob Chudzinski – the top candidates to become the Niners’ new offensive coordinator, according to reports. Shanahan was Robert Griffin III’s head coach…

January 17, 2015

Baalke: “I think somewhere in there (Tomsula) said we’re going to run the football.”

SANTA CLARA — This is the transcript of Jim Tomsula’s introductory press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ p.r. department. CEO Jed York opening comments: “Good afternoon. We are here to introduce the new head coach of the San Francisco 49ers, Jim Tomsula. It’s been a long process, a detail-oriented process. [49ers general manager] Trent Baalke will get into more details on that. We obviously interviewed a lot of candidates for…

January 15, 2015

York: “Jim is a great teacher and a tremendous mentor who conducts himself with great class and integrity.”

The 49ers just officially named Jim Tomsula the head coach. Here is the press release. “After conducting a thorough coaching search, and meeting with a number of outstanding candidates, Jim Tomsula clearly is the right man to lead this team,” said 49ers CEO Jed York. “Jim is a great teacher and a tremendous mentor who conducts himself with great class and integrity.” “Our organization is excited to have Jim Tomsula leading this…

January 14, 2015

49ers’ next coach will be…

This is my Friday column. Let’s play a game. Based on what we know about Jed York and Trent Baalke, which isn’t much, and what we know about their head-coaching search, which is even less, predict which coach they will hire. Easy, right? I think I know the answer, based on next to nothing. And not only that — I think I know the exact words and phrases York and…

January 8, 2015

The quarterback deficiencies of Colin Rand Kaepernick

This is my Sunday column. As Jed York and Trent Baalke search for someone who can make Colin Kaepernick a competent pocket passer, keep in mind that Jim Harbaugh, the Quarterback Whisperer, couldn’t do it; George Whitfield, the Quarterback Guru, couldn’t do it; and Bill Walsh, The Genius, almost certainly wouldn’t care to try. Of course, I can’t prove that last part — Walsh passed away in 2007 — but…

January 3, 2015

49ers, here’s your man

This is my Wednesday column. I don’t get you, Jed. You say you know what you’re looking for and you still can’t find it. I asked you Monday what qualities the next head coach of the 49ers should have. You were prepared for that question. Right away, you said, “I want a teacher. I think what made Bill Walsh so successful is that he was a great teacher, whether that…

December 30, 2014

Anthony Davis’ criticism is out of bounds

This is my Sunday column. Anthony Davis sure has a lot to say for a guy who played just six games this season. Four days after he played his first game in five weeks, Davis more or less fired his own boss, offensive coordinator Greg Roman, via Twitter: “Greg Roman to me when I was 21: ‘You know we can get someone off the street to do what you do.’…

December 27, 2014

49ers’ coaching choice important and perilous

This is my Wednesday column. Trent Baalke will move against you first, Jed. After you get rid of Jim Harbaugh, Baalke will set up an interview with someone you’re supposed to trust — some hot-shot NFL offensive coordinator, maybe Adam Gase or Josh McDaniels or Darrell Bevell. And at that interview, the coordinator will guarantee to Baalke he can fix the 49ers’ offense. Do not let Baalke hire him, Jed….

December 24, 2014

Jim Harbaugh: “I’m going to finish this until the end.”

Here is the transcript of Jim Harbaugh’s Thursday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ p.r. department. How’s the running back situation looking at this time? “[RB] Frank [Gore] practiced today. [RB] Alphonso Smith has had a good week. And we have a new back that has worked in very nicely. Anticipate him being ready for the game and contributing at running back and special teams.”   So, RB Phillip Tanner,…

December 18, 2014

Trent Baalke: “We’re not going to rubber stamp this decision going forward in saying that every time a situation like this occurs, this is exactly how we’re going to act.”

This is the transcript of Trent Baalke’s Wednesday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ p.r. department. Opening comments: “Well, this is unexpected. Welcome, everybody. I just want to inform everybody that after the recent allegations concerning [DT] Ray McDonald, we as an organization have notified him and his agent that he will be terminated, released immediately, effective immediately. While this organization has a strong belief in due process, and has…

December 17, 2014

49ers 7, Seahawks 17: Grades

SEATTLE – Trent Baalke folded his arms and hung his head in shame. The 49ers’ season was over. The Niners and Seahawks were shaking hands at midfield and Baalke was staring at his desk in the press box. Bad look, Trent. Time to face the failure you created. KAEPERNICK: C. Played like Alex Smith. Didn’t turn the ball over – a first for Kaepernick against the Seahawks. Yes, he scored…

December 14, 2014

49ers 13, Raiders 24: Grades

OAKLAND – Before we get to the grades, let’s have a moment of silence for the Jim Harbaugh Era.       That’s enough. KAEPERNICK: Ω. He gets an omega, the last letter in the Greek alphabet, because English just won’t do. An ‘F’ isn’t low enough. A ‘Z’ isn’t low enough. This was the worst performance of Kaepernick’s career, the kind of performance that gets a quarterback benched and…

December 7, 2014

49ers GM Trent Baalke, pass or fail?

This is my Sunday column. What about Trent Baalke? Sure, the 49ers probably will dump Jim Harbaugh at the end of the season. His quarterback isn’t improving and his offense stinks and he ticks people off. We get all that. But what about Baalke? Who’s to say the Niners won’t dump him, too? What makes him worth keeping? Let’s evaluate his contribution to the franchise. Let’s figure out how many…

December 6, 2014

Harbaugh a Raider? Considering the unthinkable

Here is my Tuesday column. SANTA CLARA Would Jim Harbaugh willingly coach the Raiders next season? Is he insane? He is under contract to coach the 49ers next season, but ESPN reported this past weekend that the Niners will dump him after this season unless the team makes a deep run into the playoffs – fat chance. Almost every other week it seems a new report comes out reminding us…

December 1, 2014

49ers turf war suffocates progress

This is my Saturday column. Even Trent Baalke’s daughter wants Jim Harbaugh to fire Greg Roman. Cassie Baalke has seen enough. The college student reached her breaking point Thursday night after the Niners’ offense scored just three points at home against the Seahawks. “Greg Roman can take a hike,” she tweeted, “the 49ers don’t want you no more.” She quickly deleted the tweet from her account, and she’s probably on…

November 28, 2014

49ers 3, Seahawks 19: Grades

SANTA CLARA – Jed York can’t blame Vic Fangio for this one — the 49ers’ defense gave up just one touchdown. It was the offense that failed to show up for the third game in a row. Here are the grades. KAEPERNICK: Z. Worst game of his career. His passes were inaccurate, his downfield vision was poor and he forced passes to covered receivers. Is there any doubt which team…

November 27, 2014

49ers announce Marcus Lattimore’s retirement

The 49ers announced Marcus Lattimore’s retirement Wednesday morning. Here’s a statement from Trent Baalke, and a statement from Lattimore. BAALKE: “This was a very difficult decision for Marcus and it was clear after speaking with him that he had put a lot of thought into it. He is a high-character young man who has done everything asked of him and more during his time with us and we have a…

November 5, 2014

Jim Harbaugh’s job description does not include being nice

This is my Thursday column on the Jim Harbaugh rumors. This Monday, as the 49ers started to prepare for the Rams, Jim Harbaugh told the media, please, don’t ask the players if they like him. “That’s not their job to defend the head coach,” Harbaugh said. “Their job is to do their jobs – to play football, have each other’s backs, and that’s what I’ve always seen out of them….

October 9, 2014

Vic Fangio struggles with the hand he was dealt

This is my Saturday column previewing the 49ers’ Sunday home game against the Eagles. What is Vic Fangio supposed to do? Call plays while hopping on one leg? Vic, try patting your head and rubbing your stomach in the coaches’ box. Say rubber baby buggy bumpers. Strike a pose. The 49ers’ defensive coordinator is running out of options. He tried blitzing. He tried not blitzing. Neither has worked. The 49ers’…

September 27, 2014

49ers have moral obligation to bench McDonald during investigation

Here is my Tuesday column. SANTA CLARA — Give the 49ers credit for handling Ray McDonald correctly for the most part. McDonald spent the night in jail after he allegedly hit his pregnant fiancé around 2 a.m. Sunday morning. On Tuesday, the San Jose Police Chief released a statement saying McDonald’s pregnant fiancé “had visible injuries.” This is all we know so far. The 49ers could have canned McDonald as…

September 2, 2014