The winner of Monday’s 49ers-Vikings game will be…

This is my Sunday column.

In their season opener Monday night, the San Francisco 49ers will play one of the up-and-coming teams in the NFL — the Minnesota Vikings. Here are five reasons the Vikings will win.

If I’m wrong and the 49ers win, I know you’ll go after me and I’ll deserve it. This is how I see it. No apologies.

1. San Francisco’s pass protection

On certain days during training camp, the 49ers defense would practice blitzing. And on those days, the 49ers offensive line would give up nine or 10 sacks. Just one after another. Not real sacks — the defense can’t hit the quarterback in practice. But in a real game, Colin Kaepernick would have gotten smashed.

The Niners have exactly two outstanding offensive linemen — Joe Staley the left tackle, and Alex Boone the left guard. The center, Marcus Martin, is a fill-in. He’s starting until Daniel Kilgore returns from a broken ankle he suffered last season.

The right tackle, Erik Pears, also a fill-in, is starting because Anthony Davis decided to retire during minicamp. Pears should be a solid player. He has started 86 games in the NFL.

And the right guard, Jordan Devey, is a fill-in who’s playing because 2014 third-round pick Brandon Thomas and 2015 sixth-round pick Ian Silberman aren’t ready to start.

As currently constructed, the 49ers have one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL, lacking both talent and cohesion. Devey still hasn’t played with the starters in a game. Meaning Week 1 is the first time these five offensive linemen will play together.

Vikings’ head coach Mike Zimmer calls some of the most exotic blitzes in the league. He’s going to test the Niners offensive linemen often to see how well they communicate and work together. They may flunk.

2. San Francisco’s defensive coordinator

Eric Mangini may turn out to be a fantastic defensive coordinator for the 49ers.

But Monday night will be the first game he has called plays since January 14, 2006 when his New England Patriots defense gave up 27 points to the Denver Broncos in the divisional round of the playoffs.

Monday night also will be Mangini’s first game calling plays without the help of Patriots head coach Bill Belichick – one of the best defensive coaches in the NFL.

Belichick’s assistant coaches rarely succeed once they leave the Patriots. Will Mangini succeed?

Maybe, but probably not Week 1. He has to go up against Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner, one of the best play-callers in the league since 1991.

Turner will school Mangini.

3. Minnesota’s play-action passing game

One way Turner will school Mangini: the play-action passing game.

The Vikings didn’t have one last season without running back Adrian Peterson. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater completed just 56.4 percent of his play-action passes while averaging only 6.1 yards per play-action attempt and posting a grotesque passer rating of 63.8 on those plays, according to Pro Football Focus.

But on regular passes — non-play-action passes — Bridgewater was outstanding. He completed 67.1 percent of his passes, averaged 7.7 yards per attempt and posted a passer rating of 92.4. He did this as a rookie.

By the end of the season, he was one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. The final five games, he posted a passer rating of 102.9. And he didn’t have a play-action passing game to make things easier. He was operating with the highest degree of difficulty.

Things will be much easier for him Monday night. Play action involving Peterson will create voids in the middle of the 49ers defense, behind the inside linebackers and in front of the safeties. Norv Turner will take advantage of those voids.

4. NaVorro Bowman’s knee

Bowman is coming off a torn ACL and MCL and, if he has one weakness, it’s pass coverage. He still seems a bit tentative and stiff while dropping back and changing directions. He seems much more effective bursting upfield to stop the run.

Bowman probably will play every snap with the base defense on first down and second down — running downs — and then sit on obvious passing downs like third-and-more-than-four.

The Niners will try to hide him in pass coverage, and Turner won’t let them. Expect Turner to attack Bowman in pass coverage on first and second down. Expect Bridgewater’s play-action passes to go Bowman’s direction.

And expect Bowman to seem overwhelmed for the first time in his career.

5. San Francisco’s cornerbacks

The 49ers top-three cornerbacks are Tramaine Brock, Kenneth Acker and Keith Reaser. Acker and Reaser are a couple of second-year players who spent their rookie seasons on the Injured Reserve list. They’ve played zero games in the NFL.

Brock is a six-year veteran who played just three games last season. He missed the other 13 games with toe, ankle and hamstring injuries. And the hamstring still bothers him. It forced him to sit out portions of practice this week.

So the Niners have three question marks at cornerback.

While the Vikings have three proven wide receivers — Mike Wallace, Charles Johnson and Jarius Wright.

Combined, they made 140 catches last season.

Across the board, Minnesota’s receivers have the advantage over San Francisco’s corners. Bridgewater can take his pick of whom to go after.

Final score: Vikings 23, 49ers 13.

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

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  1. About Bowman,

    I wouldn’t expect them to sit their best blitzer on 3rd and long. And overwhelmed? I’ll believe that when I see it.

    1. Seb, CK=Delete, AES and other Kap worshipers….Got to be worried after Crabtrees comments that he needs “A Qb WHO CAN DELIVER THE BALL!!!”….WOW…

      I always thought Greg Cosell Grant and I were right regarding Kap…With this new ammunition and Mangini’s first year at defensive playcalling in years and Kap not practicing like Aaron Rogers on an 80 yard drive and score (Bill Walsh always said you play how you practice)************** 52-0 Vikes WINBLOWOUT***************************

          1. I just saw the highlight of the Foles pass to set up the winning FG. He dropped it in between Sherman and Earl Thomas, 2 pro-bowlers. That’s a pass that Kaep hasn’t thrown ever. Hopefully we get to see it this year because he worked out with Kurt Warner!

      1. TomD,
        Since it’s Sunday, here’s a little Sunday School lesson I learned when I was a little boy and still stand by it: Luke 4:8.

        You would stand to do yourself a great favor by taking the time to study the true definition of worship vs being a fan of a sports team bud.
        But then again, your posts never seem to have any semblance of logical study behind them.

        1. CK=ELITE,

          Your COMRADES-IN-KAP have all CHIMED IN…Brother where Art thou?

          How about T-H-O-S-E R-A-M-S !!!!

          What about Crabtrees comments about Kap’s Quarterbacking skills? Are you now worried about Monday Night?

      2. It is true that Crabtree needs a QB who can deliver the ball. He needs it delivered via Ups or USPP, because he certainly can not catch it.

  2. My prediction – The teams are evenly matched, but the score won’t be.

    Both offenses passing games will rely heavily on play action passes to cover for O-line shortcomings. If a team gets behind by two scores or has a faltering run game, they will get swamped by the other team’s pass rush.

    My prediction: Sleepiness on the east coast in the 4th qtr.

  3. Grant,

    For the same reasons you listed the niners losing, you should of listed the Vikings losing. You also neglected to mention the niners have home field advantage as well.

    1. The Vikings ol.
    A backup center, a rookie RT? Are you kidding me??

    2. The Vikings secondary. Their secondary especially their CBS are very average at best. At least the niners have 2 pro bowl safeties. And last time I checked boldin and Torrey smith are worlds better than Johnson and Wallace. Wow.

    3. Bridgewater is a game manager. And I’m surprised you mentioned how well he did to end the year. Most ALL of his passes are less than 10 yards so of course his completion percentage and qbr will be higher than most qbs. Thought you knew that. Plus, he isn’t a game winner more of an average game manager.

    4. Vikings DC. Well zimmer had a very good defense in cin. So he was dependent on great players. Now he has a weak run defense and an even worse pass defense. So you should of focused on him facing the better niners offense than mangini facing a poor passing game in minn.

    I would like to hear any of your rebuttals to these point bc the Vikings will be more suspect on their OL secondary and DC than the niners would be. Also, did bowman look hindered at all during preseason? 2 sacks and 12 tackles (3 for loss) says even at 90% he is the best lb in the league with Luke K.

    1. Chris, you’re really a delusional idiot. anyone with any football knowledge ranks the Vikings defense, especially its secondary as already one of the best in the game and about to get better.. Their OLine is suspect as you point out, but nothing else about their team is.. They’re better than the 49’s in every single category except for receiver, and they’ve got some good ones too… For the 49’s to win this game, they’ll need key turnovers and a bunch of great runs by your QB. Anything can happen, but your view of your team is a silly fantasy. You’ll get some good draft picks in the next few years.

      1. Vikings were not a 12-4 juggernaut. They finished 7-9, and did not impress.
        Try to pump them up all you want, but they could easily lose this game.
        I admit they do have talent, but Seattle grabbed one of the Niner rejects again, so if the past SB team grabs 49er rejects, that says that the 49ers are talented.

      2. Dave, the Viking defense ranked 14th whereas the 49ers defense ranked 5th in 2014. Please enlighten all the “delusional idiots lacking in football knowledge” on here when/how the Vikings defense became “one of the best in the game”….

        1. I think he was referring to predictions this year. Even with the 5th ranked defense SF couldn’t win 9 games. The miners as a whole just were mediocre.
          In unrelated news here are how ex-49ers performed yesterday:

          Gore amassed 31 yards on 8 carries yesterday. Crabtree had 5 catches for 37 yards.

  4. The Vikings may well win this game because their coaching staff has more experience and that their roster may have more proven players. Almost anyone who is not a Niner fan believes the Niners have no shot in this game, or this season and are destined to spend the next decade back in the basement….heck, some Niner fans apparently concur.
    That’s okay, Tomsula, his staff and his players will have to earn respect and it will take some time.

    What I do hope for this game is that the team is in it till the last snap. If they come out flat, appear disorganized and collapse when the game gets tight…as in a number of games last
    season then, all the positive talk that came out of Santa Clara for the past six months will seem hollow.

  5. coaching like a man with his pants on fire, huh?

    roughing the kicker penalty =
    formula for a heart attack

    just ask Coach Harbaw
    (only the second game of the season…)

  6. The reason Mangini wins against Norv is that he wont have to blitz. They can play their base defense all night. This will allow them to keep both safeties high to contain the long ball and Bowman can spy AP all night.
    The depth of our d-line is going to carry us for the first 4 games. By that time the offense will have awoken.
    Niners win 17-10

  7. Interesting analysis, Grant. But you don’t take into account this: We’re going to run the ball. And then we’re going to run it again. After that, we’re going to run it still more. And yet again, we will ru- . . . Wait! It’s a play-action pass! Kaepernick’s out of the pocket, rolling to his right to buy time, and – Torrey Smith! Smith’s ten yards behind the safety and almost in the end zone! Does Colin see him? Yes! Yes, he does and – oh, he’s launched a beauty! And Smith’s there! Deep in the end zone! He can’t run any further back and the safety’s closing, trying to get to Smith before the ball does – but he can’t! He doesn’t! Perfect pass! Perfect catch! Touchdown 49ers!

  8. How do you still have a job every year you criticize the niners and every your wrong, i am sure your bosses see all your errors, if the games even close you should be fired for being a horrible sports writer based on media negative bandwagon

  9. Grant,

    Expertly considered and written. And the same lofty praise should go to Lowell for his piece on Aldon Smith and Coach Del Rio. Must have been something in the water at Rancho Cohn recently.

    I think the only way 49ers win is if Kaep performs to potential and throws less than 25 times, with Hyde and Bush going for 200 combined rushing and receiving yards between them.

      1. I don’t really see what’s so offensive about what he said. And why do people see him as a loudmouth when he rarely speaks to the media?

        1. I can only speak for myself but his initial holdout as a rookie and just the way he’s handled himself over the years. He took a shot at his former QB. He can say whatever he wants, but it shows what kind of guy he is IMO. He’s always let people know when he’s unhappy.

        2. Not so much a loud mouth but always throwing his QB’s under the bus. He was a terrible draft pick, worse player, and overrated WR. He wont do anything for the Raiders.

        3. Crab was not guaranteed to make the team. I had to laugh at how he framed his situation where he said he turned down the Niners for a bigger payday. The Niners wanted him to take a big pay cut. He went on the free agent market and found no interest, so he settled for a paltry sum with tons of incentives. He will need good luck making those, and the Niners were smart to let him go.
          Crab was smart to tell Carr to throw the ball to Cooper, because Cooper is so much better than Crab.

        4. Grimey, because he was the source of the leaks. His buddy Deon tried to deflect the ire by naming others, but IMO, it was Crab all the way.

            1. So you know for sure that Crab never uttered a bad word in front of Deon?
              I would like enlightenment from such a knowing source. Just dont tell me Kawakami…

              1. Well, i will throw out a caveat that I am surmising as an interested fan and do not know the intricate and intimate machinations of a large corporation.

    1. Not surprised. His only good year was with ck, and it was one where he wasn’t injured. I didn’t like it when he threw AS under the bus, but could understand his frustrations and I can understand last years frustrations. But he’s a diva and with that rookie snatching balls everywhere in Oakland it’s a matter of time before he starts calling out Carr.
      Got tired of his act in 13. He can’t even beat out an aging possession receiver in Boldin. He’s delusional, slow, and a *itch!

      1. MD,
        Totally agree!
        I was a fan of Crabtree when he was here, but he’s no longer here so that support ended.
        Crabtree will only be with the raiders what he was as a 49ers WR: A second option!

  10. If kap is good he can overcome a below average line, mangini was given a head coach after that bad bronchos game and was given another head coaching job he can handle being d coordinator, seriously teddy bridgewater in garbage games in a garbage season, cb in san fran are based off pressure and the defensive line, criticize pressure not cb especially without seeing them, navaro bowman is a tackling lb wil not be a liability in coverage bad story with no football knowledge

  11. Hyde/Bush

    1. Interesting intersection, remarkable for two attributes: first, it housed the most conspicuous neighborhood Blockbuster Video, made even moreso when it when under and shuttered; and second, there is a crest at the top of Bush at Hyde that sees its fair share of collisions.

    2. NFL’s top rushing duo in 2015.

  12. Players lost were non factors how many games have p willis, aldon smith, crabtree and iupati played the last few years. They will be better off after this purge of overhyped players that were good in they re prime, justin smith was not playing half as well as he was the year before. Baalke has been preparing the d line the o line signed t smith>crabs, gore roman lots of positives too see if you, actually new what was going on in san fran, no superbowl this year but will compete

  13. I like the 49ERS 26-24.

    And I will say, at least in this instance, it’s good to know that Grant isn’t usually correct when it comes to handicapping games. Usually get’s them dead wrong. When Grant said Bowman, the NFL’s 2013 MVP, will look overwhelmed, I knew at that point Grant’s prediction wasn’t real, it was his made-up, gin-up some controversy – prediction.

    Nice try Grant.


    1. Niners may lose this Sunday. Did anyone think Grant would predict any thing different. One thing about Grant he doesn’t get better with age. 49ers fans have come to expect that.

  14. Oh, Grant. Stop. Now. Before it’s too late.

    Suggesting that the 49ers will sit Bowman on passing downs is farcical. It makes you sound like a rank amateur.

    Oh, wait…that’s exactly what you are.

  15. Defense will be tested for sure. But my bigger worry is scoring points. You gotta score more points to win. A skittery QB with a new OL … uh oh

  16. Two questions – if we win the toss do we defer (why wouldn’t we)?
    First offensive play – run or pass?

    I’m guessing defer and run but a pass to Vernon would be nice.

  17. Grant (& Everyone)

    Have we been completely hoodwinked into perceiving this Aldon Smith scenario as far more minuscule than it really is?!

    This is one of the biggest gaffes in the history of NFL personnel management. Why is nobody taking the 49ers to task for letting him get away? This guy was averaging a sack per game for 43 games. Imagine, if he plays 12 years at 16 sacks per season, he retires with 192 sacks. If he plays as many games as Reggie White, he has 34 more career sacks.

    Take a look at a picture of Aldon Smith in a Raiders uniform, from today at practice. The guy is an absolute monster, and he will never, EVER wear red and gold again. That’s on Jed, Trent, and Jim Harbaugh, not to mention Goodell’s inexplicable approach to league discipline. But really, it’s on Jed. Jed will be remembered as the guy who let Aldon Smith get away. What a travesty!!!

    1. They had to! The PR was killing them. Are we forgetting the previous 5 incidents, MacDonald? Good riddance. The NFL is gonna suspend him anyway. You think hes gonna play the rest of the year? Cmon man!

    2. If you have to ask why they let him get away you evidently haven been watching 49er football since Aldon was drafted. If you were his employer how many chances would you give him. He will not play out the one year contract he signed with the Raiders. Suspended one full year.

    3. The one thing niner fans can still keep hope about is that the niners may still resign him to a big deal next year. It seems like TK and a couple other sportswriters think the team will go after him again next year. I would LOVE to see Aldon Smith and Aaron lynch play a full season together.

      Smith will have lots of teams squeamish about giving him big money- I hope that the niners ignore the media and just get Aldon Smith back for the rest of his career. He is a hall of fame player.

    4. The 49ers are not to blame for Aldon Smith off-field issues, Aldon Smith is!
      What makes you think that donning a raiders uni will turn on a light in Aldon’ head?

      Aldon’ past stats are only a fading memory (to me) of a person that was given an abundant of opportunities to come correct and failed to get out of his own way.

      In the final analysis, I hope Aldon can get control of his life, but I’m also at peace that he is no longer a 49er.

      1. Neither is the media to blame for Aldon’ issues!

        Seems like some people are ignoring to root of the problem when it comes to Aldon (it’s Aldon!). Sadly, those people are looking at the potential stats of a player and help for their team rather than the mental and social help this player needs.

        Sure the 49ers could have given Aldon another chance, but what if he has another episode with drinking and this time kills a person while DUI?
        The same people taking shots at the 49ers for not signing Aldon would likely be blaming the 49ers for signing a troubled player with a proven alcohol problem.

        49ers did the right thing and I stand by them on their decision.

    5. Nobody is talking about it E, because the 49ers had no choice. Anyone who thinks otherwise is a numbskull, and in a tiny minority. And, don’t expect Aldon to play more than a handful of games this season. Goodell will suspend Smith. You can take that to the bank, at it will be for at least 8 games, maybe more.

  18. 3 things. Norv is not a football god. He is pedestrian, and his time with the Niners proved it. Mangini is not going to get schooled.
    Bow is back. He spent all last season rehabbing, but also studying. He knows who to read and where the play will go, so Bow will play instinctually, and negate AP.
    The 3 new DBs kinda remind me of ’81, and we all remember how that ended up.
    Grant is playing it safe because everyone knows the Niners have big question marks so the smart money should go to the Vikes.
    He has set very low expectations so any positives will seem wonderful. If the Niners lose, he will crow, but if they win, he will gladly admit he was mistaken and everyone will be so deliriously happy, they will welcome him back with open arms.
    It is formulaic and predictable, but understandable and safe.

  19. I agree on who will win, but not necessarily for all the reasons you list. I agree the OL could (and likely will) be an issue. And I agree the play-action for the Vikings will be a bit of a problem. I don’t think Mangini will be the issue, nor the CBs. Bowman’s knee, or more accurately what his knee injury means for his speed and agility in the middle of the park, I think will also be an issue, to a degree.

    For mine the main reasons other than those I agreed with above are:
    – Peterson’s ability to consistently produce yardage on the ground.
    – Pocket awareness of Bridgewater and ability to get the ball out quickly vs a rather suspect 49ers pass rush. I think the 49ers will struggle to pressure Bridgewater.
    – The ability of the 49ers D to cover the TEs and RBs. I think Peterson and Asaita could be big factors in the passing game for the Vikings.
    – 49ers passing offense hasn’t found a rhythm yet, and could take some time to get into a groove. I expect the 49ers to rush for more yards than they pass for week 1.

    1. Scooter,

      How do we know if the passing game has found its rhythm? We haven’t seen it yet? It may not have, but I’ll wait until Monday to make that judgment.

      1. Ok, the 49ers passing offense has not shown it has found any rhythm during preseason, albeit in limited opportunities. Happy?

        1. Scooter,

          It’s fine if you think that what CK has shown in preseason is representative of where he’s at. I hope it’s not and don’t believe it is (at least not necessarily). The 49ers say they didn’t want to give anything away by showing what CK is really going to do in the regular season. If true, then what CK did in preseason seems pretty much null and void as far as being a predictor as to what he’s going to do this year, IMO.

          I’m looking forward to a somewhat improved CK and Hyde being an upgrade over Gore.

          1. I think it is fair to assume a passing offense that hasn’t performed well in a game environment as yet this year (i.e. during preseason) may take a bit of time to gel. I appreciate they were keeping stuff back, but so was every team, both on offense and defense. You still want to see the first team offense demonstrate they are in sync.

            That of course doesn’t mean they will be slow out of the gate, not by any means. Which is why I said it “could” take some time to get in a groove. But my expectation is they will take some time. Hope I am wrong.

            1. Yeah, it can’t be denied that it would’ve been preferable for CK to have looked better in the passing game opportunities he did have in the preseason, whether they were holding things back or not. My “null and void” take was a little strong.

  20. Gwant – You haven’t factored in the carnage the Hayne Plane will inflict on kick returns.

    It’s hard to take this article seriously until you do.

  21. Politely, Grant — YOU SUCK. Even your dad didn’t have to go out of his way to be controversial. You’re not very good at writing or at being controversial, so you have to do your usual attack on the 49ers. At some point you’re going to have to admit that this is a pretty good 49er team and you are not a very good writer.

  22. Usually, I do not bother with the ad hominem attacks, but this one is so off base, it warrants a response.
    Grant’s father did go out of his way to be controversial. I was infuriated with LC because of what he said, but read every word he wrote, too.
    You should not describe some one as a poor writer who just had an insightful article published in Sports illustrated.
    It leaves egg on your face, and defines you as kinda clueless.

      1. I do. It just does not bother me like some other posters. It is expected. I am sure he stirs up the pot on this site just to gauge sentiment so he can write for a more general public.

      2. This is a blog, not a newspaper . It’s for you and me and GC.
        I think GC uses it to bounce some of his (sometimes errant) thoughts to see how it falls with others. I don’t see anything wrong with that.
        This article was well written and thought out and shows us his version of proving a point.
        Most people on here don’t show ANY line of thinking.
        For some to respond with; Grant you’re a moron, idiot, hater or something if that nature is just puerile and proves only the IQ of the writer…….

  23. Peterson averaged 3 yards per carry in his career against the 49ers, and after a year away from football, I don’t see any dramatic increase in this game. Therefore, their play action passing won’t be that lethal, and Bowmans’ film study and instincts compensate to prevent being overwhelmed. Without authentic game film, preseason not withstanding, the Vikings are forced to assume the 49ers game plan both offensively and defensively. Not so with the 49ers staff. They have plenty of tendencies and scheme film to evaluate….

    1. 3 yd average against a completely different D.

      This game could get ugly. But at the same time I could see niners using that home MNF game juice and pulling this one out. Plus Bowman’s first game back, new coach, something to prove, people to shut up. But still a lot will have to go right, starting with that o-line.

  24. Realistically, for a rebuilding team I believe there are too many obstacles for the 49ers to overcome in the first half of season. With game exposure coaching and players should increase their effectiveness. I am looking for hallmarks to emerge in the first half of the season: I would like to see more than 19.1 points per game, a range of 15- 20 first downs, several 4th quarter touchdowns, a defense that doesn’t “embarrass” itself, overall “error free” coaching, and whoever the QB is 250 yards per game. I could go on but what is the point these are the 21st century 49ers assembled by a New Age owner. Good luck 49ers.

  25. Grant I can take your predictions without getting all hurt over them.
    But as a Bownaniac I refuse to hear that garbage about him being overwhelmed.
    I said it last year and I’ll say it again. There are those certain freaks who no matter how bad the injury come back and dominate.
    The Bowmanator is one of those freaks.
    Don’t you EVER (finger pointed and waiving) say something this ridiculous again. You’ve been warned!!!! :-0

    1. Wilson: Not much. Did you see forced fumble CB Cary Williams ran in for a TD. As I said b/4 we lost to the a lessor Ram team last year with Kam. Can’t wait to see 49ers play them.

      1. Not much what? Not sure which comment you’re replying to. I was at work from 1:30-5:30pm so I missed the later part of the game. I am guessing that your replying to the secondary looking weaker. I think you’re not considering all the times Ram’s TE’s were open, wide open. Still a really good team, but it wasn’t as dominating as we’ve seen in the past. Yes the Rams are one of those team’s who play tough. I am not jumping to any conclusions about what the 49ers will do against them. Last year we split with them. Also you’re not considering that 34pts were put up on this team. That’s not something any of us are used to. More missed tackles than I am used to in a Hawks D. I am waiting to see how we look tomorrow and over the next few weeks.

      2. Mary,

        You had better hope that no depth having team of yours stays healthy.

        Here’s the Seahawks depth chart (I’m talking after starters):

        QB: thin, RB: thin, WR: thin, TE: OK, O Line: thin, D Line: good, LB: thin, DB, thin.

        If the Seahawks have a couple of key injuries, it’s all over for them. This is a result of overpaying the “core” players. The Seahawks have about $90M tied up in eight players.

  26. I’d expect the Niners to use Kaep’s legs and screen passes early. If they succeed, it should take some pressure off the line and give him more time to pass. Then it would be up to the defense. Can they be as effective as last year? We’ll just have to see.

    1. I am interested to see how Dorsey, Williams and Dial do against the run. I could see AD gaining some yards but overall playing well against Teddy too.

  27. I’ll take the ‘underdog’ Niners in this one… Primetime home opener with the emotional return of Bowman will outweigh AP… Carlos Hyde will want to prove he’s keeping our ground game strong which will be too much for that Vikings’ defense…. Kap connects with at least one deep pass to Smith putting those ‘chemistry’ concerns to rest. 23-9 Niners.

  28. The Texans are learning why Hoyer was not only undrafted but has been on 5 teams in 6 seasons. WTF were they thinking when they made him their starting QB. Mallet will get his opportunity to show why the Patriots were willing to let him go.

  29. and my favorite RB from the 2015 draft, Karlos Williams, just busted one in from 25 yards for Greg Roman’s Bills! And are we seeing what Roman’s offense was supposed to do now with Tyrod Taylor at the helm?

    Maybe it’s been Kaepernick gumming up the works this whole time. Roman a genius, Tyrod a Hall of Famer, Karpernick an Uberchump?

      1. Sadly I think we are forgetting all the good plays Roman had and scarred by the ones that cost us important games. Give it a few weeks.

    1. I think the Bills will shock the AFC this year. They have a decent QB to go along with that stout defense. They also showed why Fred Jackson was expendable.
      I may have ripped Roman unmercifully these last 2 years, but maybe most of the dysfunction followed after the play was sent down to the field.

    2. Ryan and Roman are a perfect fit for each other. Ryan likes to run the ball and rely on his defense and Roman is one of the best when designing run plays. I won’t be surprised if Buffalo wins more games this year than the Niners and makes the playoff.

    3. U must have problems if crabs wants nothing
      To do with u. Remember how passive aggressive he was towards Alex smith? Blaine gabbert anyone?

  30. Seattle’s D has no depth. When Wagner was out last year because of injury, that D did not look great. Now they are missing Kam, they do not look great. One player! Can you imagine if they have a similar injury bug that we experienced last year?

    1. Seattle’s biggest concern is the same as the Niners, OL! I think Seattle’s OL will be one of the worst by the end of the year. Wilson is going to earn all that money. :)

  31. Anyone paying attention to my boy, Frank Gore today? 8 carries, 39 yards, before he bowed out of the game due to cramping? Now, maybe this an opportunity to explain to people, what happens to a running back, when they get to Frank’s age. Father time is not kind to running backs. And the speed at which a RB’s skills, primarily due to an aging body, stiff joints, old injuries, and major muscle groups that don’t recover, begin to decline can be frighteningly fast!

    1. Lynch’s stats on making 1 yd when everyone is expecting it is not great. And against the Rams front 4, near impossible. I’ve never been against the SB call.

      1. Forget about that play, Mary. Your D gave up 34 points! You will not win many games in the NFL with that performance. Kam is the only having a good day in that defense. :)

      1. They did not botch that play. They had runn that option play successfully da couple of times uring the day. Open a play for either Lynch or Wilson. Who are you people you don’t even know football.

  32. Grant,
    Just getting back to your original topic. Sure, on paper the Vikes look like the better team for all the reasons you ID’ed.
    But as someone once said, “that’s why you play the game.”

    Would you have predicted a Greg Roman led Bills offense would have beat Andrew Luck and Colts?
    No need to answer, I’ll just stick to the “that’s why they play the game” adage.

    1. AES…

      ME…ME…ME…!For the last year and a half of JH, I was pointing out that JH was changing Roman’s calls into Kaep…Hide and watch, Roman’s gonna’ be a HC candidate for ’16

      1. OREGON!
        What’s up my ol’ CK nemesis! (lol)
        That’s a mighty bold statement my friend. Either the Bills (and GRo) will put the NFL on it’s collective rear-ends with a surprisingly good season or they will revert back to the, well the Bills after a couple of games.
        I choose to believe the latter.

        Btw, any predictions on tomorrows score?

        1. AES…

          I don’t think that the Bills will light the world up…right away…but take two more years (15 & ’16) and they will return to their winning ways that you and I ahd HTWAITS are old enough to remember. I’m not proud of this prediction….But I ‘m calling for 34 to 13 Vikes….I’m still not a believer in your boy.

          1. OREGON,
            Your prediction seems more like an indictment against our Defense as opposed to CK.
            Where do the Vike’s 34 points come from?

            Btw, I can’t have you leave here bud, who am I going razz when Kaep starts to win? (lol)

  33. Well 49ers are going to be in last place in this division so I don’t know what you’re cackling about. Seahawks will just get btr. Let me know when 49ers score 18 pts in 7 minutes.

        1. What are you talking about, you kook?

          “Seahawks are just going to bet (get) better.” You sound like you’re losing your mind.

          What are you going to say if the Seahawks lose to GB?

    1. Hawks = way overrated… Really wouldn’t be surprised if they end up last in this division… How ’bout Sherman and that ‘vaunted’ defense? LOL….

  34. Can you beat that….

    Our ex-game manager had another ‘decent’ game 22/33, 243 yards passing, 3 passing TD’s, and no int’s….and no td passes to wr’s…they counted them anyway…huh…

      1. OREGON,
        I would be more apt to believe that statement (7 SB rings) if you would have said Aaron Rodgers, who we passed on to go after your boy Alex.

          1. OREGON,
            True that, 23 other teams did pass on him, but I’m still upset at only ONE team for not having the presence of mind to study a player who virtually played in their backyard – arrrrgh!

            But at least I have the satisfaction of knowing that we have a QB that has beat the great Aaron Rodgers. Well, maybe I shouldn’t say “we” right?

        1. I disagree. We might have one but no more than that. The reason I say that is twofold: Rodgers has played in a system geared toward his strength yet has only one Super Bowl ring, and the front office didn’t showed any interest in trying to make an effort in helping out the QB until the year they drafted Crabtree. They started making a better effort after that.

      1. Poor Seahawks. They sure miss Kam. I see they are on a streak. A 2 game losing streak that began when they should have handed the ball to Lynch, so they lost the Super Bowl, and this game when they should have done play action pass. instead of plowing Lynch into the teeth of the defense. Pete is losing it. Poor judgement to gift the field position. Pity the Seahawks. They play GB.

        1. Seb: Do you ever STFU and stick to topics you know about? Football is not one of them. I was mocking you when I was speaking about common sense.

          1. Peter Carrolls arrogance is starting to show in his play calling. Same thing happened when he was at USC. The demise is becoming more clear!

              1. Razoreater: Not true actually. If we had lost Sherman or Earl would be a bigger loss. Will he be missed of course — but next man up. Don’t forget we lost to the Rams last year & we had Kam. You guys all laughed & then you played them and went into typical 49ers depression let’s fire all our coaches. Their front 4 D is very good and Todd Gurly will be playing.

              2. Marty, Cam is a glue guy. He keeps the locker room together. You pay glue guys. You don’t pay guys like Jimmy Graham instead of guys like Chancellor. Dumb move! Keep it up!

              3. Wrong, Mary, Chancellor organized the defense, not Sherman, not Thomas, Chancellor. Without him, the defense looked lost. Plus all the lost depth, bad trades, and bad draft picks are starting to rear their ugly heads. They better get Chancellor back in the fold and stay healthy, because they have no depth at most positions (only DL is somewhat deep).

            1. You didn’t make any call;l this has been on national TV for the last month. You’re a nitwit. We couldn’t get into the redzone and RW has to do better. 49ers won’t even finish 8-8 this year & I’m going to gloat.

              1. So you like to gloat when your team loses? Sounds kinda kinky to me.
                Oh well, you better get used to it. Seasquawks are nothing special.
                2 game losing streak is gunna haunt their psyche.

      1. TrollD, when you type in capital letters, it means you are shouting. It also tells me you are deranged to go shouting on a blog post. Please grow up and behave.

        1. I did not realize I really have to thank you.

          Also, I am not a Rams fan. I am a 49er fan happy the Rams created an opening for the 49ers to step into…However I think it is to big of a stage for the current coaching staff

  35. I think NewJim’s decision about Hayne playing tmw is going to be setting the tone for the season.
    Is he willing to take a chance on some raw talent and taking the heat for it like OldJim did with Kap?
    or is he going to go conservative and trying to preserve old school thinking and go with the old and proven and not very innovative. It will show his philosophy and ability to evaluate a roster.
    Monday will tell……

      1. TrollD comes out. He is a Lambs fan. Too bad they had 3 turnovers and lost the TOP battle by 9 minutes. The good news is both of those teams look vulnerable.

        1. Seb, the Rams look legit not vulnerable. Their Dline will give our OL everything they can handle and more. It might be good to temper the hype until after we play tomorrow.

          Seattle doesn’t have the same look as they’ve had in the past. Too many changes on defense and they still have the same issues on offense. They were still in this late. I wouldn’t count either of these teams out.

          1. Still, they gave up 3 turnovers and gave up big plays. Granted, it is easy to praise a D line studded with first round picks.
            I did not say they were bad, I implied that they have weaknesses. Both teams will present a formidable opponent to the Niners.

  36. Grant your prediction is not an unreasonable assessment being that it’s so early in the season with very little other wise to go on. It mostly a toss up at this point for a lot of games this one included so any prediction either way by anyone can not reasonably be faulted.

    1. Seb,

      I am a tried and true 49er fan, and former season ticket holder from the glory days.
      I was just excited the Rams created a position at the top for the Niners to step into, having knocked off the NFC Champs.
      I think the stage will prove too big for a D-2 GM and European League football coach

        1. If you would just stop your irrational screeds, many posters would appreciate it.
          Just stick to topic on hand and stop pretending you have all the answers. I on the other hand, may engage in vigorous debate, but at least come to a resolution.
          I also am man enough to admit I am wrong. It does not hurt to eat some humble pie, and I have eaten some big slices.
          Please be reasonable and logical, and attempt to back up your statements with ascertainable facts. I and many posters would greatly appreciate a transformation from a so called fan behaving like a troll, to a respectful faithful happy and entertaining fan.

  37. Marcus Mariota with three first half TD passes. Winston with one but to the wrong team. Marcus looks like a vet instead of a Rook.

      1. Earlier in this thread I wrote he “doesn’t have breakaway speed”. And that was after I watched his punt return TD. He’s good, but not that fast.

  38. 22 of 33 (completions…)
    243 total passing yards
    three touchdowns; no interceptions.

    My name is Alex Smith. Bet on Kansas City
    against Denver this coming Thursday, hmm?

    How far into the season will we be before Kaep
    puts up numbers like this? Stay tuned, huh???

        1. New season and you still riding his and my nuts. Gets new grip gloves onelame! You’re a wanna be fan. KC would love for you to roll in and yell coldblooded assassin after Alex’s name. You’re still a joke!

    1. Here’s what we know about Alex. I enjoyed Alex’s attitude, work ethic and what he did for the 49ers, but leave him in KC please.

      “(Kap’s) with relatively high number of passes which traveled 31 or more yards past the line of scrimmage. Tight end Davis caught three of those five bombs and was Kap’s primary deep threat receiver, especially in 2013 when he was on the receiving end of all three of Kaepernicks’ 30-plus yards touchdown throws. In his two seasons with the Chiefs, Alex Smith didn’t throw a single touchdown pass 31 or more yards downfield. To no surprise”

          1. Not really, he’s always had a weird aversion to throwing to wide receivers. Just ask Crabtree.

            They’ll get one this year because Reid will put Maclin in the backfield in some goal line situations.

            1. I do think its weird just from a statistical point of view. You’d have to really have an aversion to not have a TD by a WR. Its weird He did throw quite a few TD’s to Davis and Walker while on the 49ers. He’s always been so careful with the ball so do you think its Reid’s offense or is it Smith’s aversion to risky throws or both?

              1. I think it has to do with the parts of the field he’s confident in throwing to, and routes he likes to throw. I also think Reid knows what he has and accentuates Alex’s strengths, which may contribute by giving more scoring opportunities to players other than WRs. I agree that it’s a statistical oddity however.

      1. Wilson 73

        Do you get more points for TD passes that are over 31 yards…or less…Alex has 3 TD passes so far this season….seems to me to be a dumstat

    1. As he alligator arms a td. Couldn’t have asked for a better place to go. A scold year qb who is overhyped. But I’m sure crabs can “make him better” if he just “delivers” that wuss is a legend in his own mind!

    1. The old “Rocky Horror Show” (old costumes and all) in Oaktown is tired and needs to move on.

      Del Rio will rue the day he signed his name on the dotted line. But at least he may get a fresh start in Carson. The last decent headcoach the raiders had was Hue Jackson but Al wanted instant dividends and he did not have the patience to let HJ build a foundation.

  39. Hmm, i wonder if my 5 player trade to Oakland might have not been so delusional after all. Looks like they need help everywhere.

  40. Stevie Johnson with 6 catches and a TD today. Benefits of playing with a good pocket passing QB (and having a #1 WR that takes most of the attention of the D).

        1. You’re betting against the quarterback that’s putting his life on the line by stepping onto that field for your team? Classy….

          1. Razor…the reason that he’s stepping onto that field isn’t for me nor for you…but I’d bet it’s for a lot less drama and 13 million other reasons

    1. No, its the benefit of actually being involved in the offense. Those were designed. How many times was he actually in a pass design in our offense

  41. Rich Cimini
    ESPN Staff Writer

    An encouraging medical update from the Jets on rookie LB Lorenzo Mauldin: He has a concussion, but there’s no neck injury. He’s awake and has feeling in his extremities. He will remain in the hospital overnight for observation.

    1. I didn’t watch it but I read a report. He played sparingly and the article said he did not have much of an effect. What you would expect from a guy who’s probably out of football condition.

    2. Got 1 serious rush on dalton but it was a screen play. Looked slow. Tried some moves but didn’t work. Not a factor at all, not even with Mack on that side. They switched him over and still did nothing

  42. KC is my dark horse for the super bowl
    And I think gore will not make this a full season.
    I think GB is overrated Nelson loss will hurt them big time. So that leaves the Eagles and Cowboys fighting for the Super Bowl spot. Got a feeling it’s going to be an injury plagued season for a lot of teams. I think our Niners took everyone else’s injury punishment last season by themselves

      1. San Diego and Kansas City are both legitimate threats with legitimate concerns as well: San Diego with its defense and Kansas City with its offensive line.

  43. It’s a real possibility the squawks start out 0-2. That’s a bad look for playoff probability.

    I know. It’s early. You don’t have to say it.

    1. Next game is against GB. I bet GB may have some big motives to play well. It is entirely possible to see Seattle 0-2.
      And I will love every minute, and hope they keep their streak alive.

      1. Was it a dig at the 49ers? Doesn’t sounds good, but as the guy at niners nation says, it could just have been a comment about the Raiders, and that he wasn’t trying to imply the 49ers didn’t look after him.

        1. It wasn’t a dig at all you can watch the interview in full in the link I posted. He said nothing bad about the 49ers.

          People are so f—ing sensitive around here. Stop being fortywhiners.

          1. I wouldn’t say its being too sensitive, maybe a little more prudent in trusting shock value reporting. It certainly was set up to make people think that it was slanted a certain way.

          2. I will not apologize for being ungrateful and to top it off, screw over his teammates, fans and organization multiple times….

      1. Aldon Smith said he’s excited to “be a part of a bunch of guys who work hard and an organization who looks out for their players.

        That was an overt dig at the Forty Niners. Ingrate hasn’t been with the Raiders to know how hard anybody works or who they look out for. Rot in hell you bastard!

      2. I did not like his reply when asked what therapy or help he was getting. He noted his support group, but I wanted to hear about counselors, experts and some structure, even 10 step programs.
        His support may be more like enablers and apologists.

        1. Seb

          How would YOU answer that question ? Maybe you’d think that it was none of the interviewer’s damned business…do you think ?

  44. ESPN Stats & Info

    Highest Total QBR in 1st Career Start
    Last 10 Seasons
    Colin Kaepernick 95.9
    Marcus Mariota 95.7

    1. Titans were not Super Bowl worthy and Mariota brought the thunder. Kaepernick inherited a Ferrari and it functions like a Pinto now. I still believe trading Kaepernick and the entire set of draft picks to get Mariota would have been a steal.

        1. I just don’t understand,Kaepernick isn’t elite but he is in the next level,people on here are just ridiculous. He isn’t perfect but rather have him than 20 other want to be QBs in this league.

          1. I don’t mind dissent in the off season, but when your team is about to enter the fray, don’t be a malcontent. Do your job and root for your team, and that includes Colin Kaepernick….

          2. Michael,

            Two reasons:

            A) There are fans of Alex Smith who are angry he lost his job and take it out on the guy who made the decision (Harbaugh) and the guy who replaced him (Kaepernick).

            B) The same fans have tunnel vision, and blame the QB for not winning the SB, not winning the NFCCG in Seattle and believe he is most responsible for the fall off in 2014. In other words it’s all about the QB and nothing else matters. Non football playing fan 101. No understanding of how things have to come together for a QB to perform. Just anger that the QB isn’t playing the way they want him too.

            1. Rocket

              I’m guilty of (A)… and that is all….
              (B) is for yourself or someone else…but I hope that I just sidestepped another 9 paragraph explanation that explains nothing.

              1. Rocket,
                I was not a fan of Alex Smith, but he was playing well so it would have been nice for the storybook story to see him get a chance to play in the SB. CK was a roll of the dice, so he was supposed to be the missing piece to get the Niners over the top. They “tinkered” with the Ferrari and came up empty. That’s on CK because, while FB is a team game, he had a chance to do something to win the game. Just one play was all he needed and he didn’t do it. And he had the same opportunity and failed again in the NFCCG — to lose to a division rival too.

                It seems like you have tunnel vision because you can’t accept that he played a role in the losses. Yes, he played a role in some wins too, like the GB game, but ultimately history is written by the winners and CK failed in the two biggest opportunitie to be a legacy.

                Alex Smith failed too — but you can’t really pin the loss to the giants in the NFCCG on him. Yeah he played bad, but he didn’t make the error that cost the game, where as CK did.

                He has a chance to get the Niners on track tonight! Start making amends for past failures.

            2. I didn’t mention any names and yet two respond in under an hour. Wonder why that is?


              You are the epitome of A and B. You are constantly calling for the backup or the guy who isn’t here. You were even calling for Tebow. You are a clear cut example of a fan who just wants somebody else with little comprehension of why the suggestions make no sense.


              You can actually be thoughtful and have perspective when you try, but get too caught up in the Kap sucks view because of your ongoing feud with Bay.

              1. Too finish that thought to fan:

                I have never ever said Kap didn’t have a part to play in those losses. I have been fair about Kap in saying that he has to develop his game and he’s not an elite player, but that he’s helped this team win a lot of games and has the talent to be developed into something more. That is my view in a nutshell. He is not there yet, but has shown signs he can be and has won a lot of big games with this team.

                He did play a role in the losses, especially with the TO’s in Seattle, but you refuse to acknowledge the fact he was not the sole reason or even the biggest reason for either loss. The SB was lost on Defense and ST’s. The fact they were even in a position to take the lead at the end of the game was because Kap brought them back in the second half. This was a guy making his 10th career start and he led them back from a huge deficit. Putting the blame on him shows a glaring lack of objectivity on your part.

                Seattle was the same deal. Sure he made some horrible mistakes, especially the first pick he threw, but the only reason the Niners were even in the game was because of Kap. He was their only offense. So if you want to blame him for the loss fine, but he was the only reason it was competitive.

                That is why I stick up for him in these arguments. It’s not because I think he’s a great player and has no faults. It’s because some of you just rip the guy continually and ignore anything positive he’s ever done. He’s not some scrub who hasn’t performed well in big games. Give the guy a break. Maybe he’ll take the next step, and maybe he won’t but if this is the best he is, at least he’s helped them win a lot of games.

              2. Rocket,

                The past is prologue, as they say.
                It’s new season, Clean slate. Let’s hope Kaep shows improvement.
                Let’s hope Bowman is back and Hyde is the new beast of the NFC.
                And Tomsula gets a W. I like the guy. Do I think he’s a coach of Harbaugh’s caliber? Heck no!

              3. Rocket

                Just who did you expect to come out in answer to your indictment ?Things have gotten too personal on here lately and we can both blame each other for that. Also, I’m sure that you know that I never called for Tebow…that was a mish-mash of terms from Seb, who also blithers on and on. As I have mentioned before, you have a nasty habit of categorizing or ‘filing’ at your own will. That is why I suggested that we honor each other by not being caustic to each other.

      1. I think some are crowning Mariota way too early. Let’s revisit this topic of discussion later on in the season after he has faced a strong defense and not that piddly thing with Tampa Bay masquerading as a defense.

        1. MID,
          Nobody can take anything away from what Mariota did yesterday – it was a masterful performance.
          But I agree with you, let’s wait after a few games or how about an entire season before making a more educated opinion.

          If I recall, Mr. Cam Newton set the NFL world on fire by passing for over 400 yrds in first two games as a pro. He’s more than settled down since than.

    2. Seb

      How would YOU answer that question ? Maybe you’d think that it was none of the interviewer’s damned business…do you think ?

  45. This is from ESPN.COM.

    New York Receiving REC YDS AVG TD LONG TGTS
    Daniel Fells 3 33 11.0 0 13 4
    Odell Beckham Jr. 4 28 7.0 0 16 7
    Shane Vereen 3 27 9.0 0 12 3
    Preston Parker 2 23 11.5 0 15 6
    Rueben Randle 3 23 7.7 0 16 5
    Odell Beckham Jr. 3 23 7.7 0 16 6
    Larry Donnell 3 21 7.0 0 8 4
    Rashad Jennings 0 0 0.0 0 0 1

    Anyone notice what is wrong here?

  46. I’m loving Romo on Raiders stink-up post game show. Can we get Romo for 9ers post-game. He is tearing it up! He used terms like “wup a$$” and “we are F’d”. gotta love him

  47. Me thinks I am going to adjust how the defense gets points in Quest4Six. There’s no way I should over 34 points for the Seattle defense and my opponent has only .20 points for his Buffalo defense. :-P

    1. Mid,

      I hope that your comment was sarcastic (it seemed so).

      I don’t think it would be fair to change the rules after the season started.

      1. I’ll put it up to a vote on one of the polls Allan so that I can know the overall consensus on the idea. I just know the Bills had a much better defense than the Seahawks did on Sunday yet that Seahawks defense gave me a jarring 34 points while the Bills defense didn’t even get past one point.

          1. That is why I am thinking about changing them if the rest of the league supports it Seb. The Seahawks defense was horrible yet I garnered over 34 fantasy points from them. Meanwhile my opponent had the Bills defense which performed much better; however he only managed to get 0.20 fantasy points.

            1. I do not follow the Fantasy points because I just want to concentrate on the Niners, and Fantasy requires looking at all the games and all the players.
              Just a huge time waste to me. Niners are enough for me.

  48. good piece Grant, altho i must say i couldn’t bear to read it all on the first pass. I’m mentally prepared for a tough game and a tough season, but it’s not like we haven’t seen that before. I’m a Niner’s fan for the duration, and I’m afraid this is one of those wobbly years to go with all the stout ones. Go Niners!

    1. Seb,

      Appreciate the caps rule on site, however, overstated your case accusing me of non factual 49er data, therefore, I Must restate my case:

      Why 49ers will lose to Vikes:

      1. 49ers new personnel and coaches on offense and defense had no time to develop cohesion.
      2. I don’t trust their inside linebackers for a full game
      3. Their defensive backfield is new, lacking cohesion
      4. Running back is learning a new system, and he himself has yet to prove anything.
      4. O-line can’t protect Kap
      5. Kap went to school in the offseason–can he put this knowledge to use in prime time?..I say no, based on what we know from Grant’s practice sessions.
      6.Mangini, everyone is buying into, but what happens if he doesn’t step up–we all feel the D’s our strongsuit…I say it fails us leading to a lopsided win…..
      So far, Seb, you have credited me with being correct about the Rams being good this season, and My prediction about Mike Davis earning the 3rd string running back position was correct….By season’s end, he’ll be #2….So given this info., why won’t my info. on the Vikes winning big be accurate?

      1. I forgot one third of the team*******Special Teams******

        49ers got rid of Pro Bowler, Any Lee, for a rookie….

        Prime-Time will prove to be to big for the Rookie so he’ll shank a least 2 punts tonight, leading to short fields for the Vikes. Vikes will overload an porous 49er blocking team and block another.

        1. AES

          Jeff Garcia’s naked bootleg call,with a Ram overloaded OL, a Bill Walsh designed play from his so-called, outdated offense,(and forget that Randy Cross says the Patriots have infiused our playbook into their offense) won the game for the Ram’s.
          I think I’ll trust Rany Cross, who made the line calls as to who is out dated with their information, if that’s all right with you AES… (By the way, I hear Sprint Option Right is still in vogue–Mike Holmgren wanted to update you Aes).

          1. Tommyboy,
            What makes you so sure that Garcia is influencing the playcalling in Ram country?

            Your attempt at giving Garcia validation sadly dismisses the fact that headcoach Jeff Fisher was part of the Bill Walsh coaching tree. You do Fisher a great disservice by not giving him any credit from learning the WC offense from the master himself.
            Once again, you make statements without a valid foundation.

            Btw, I don’t recall throwing shade on the WO offense – do you have any verbatim comment from me on this?

  49. Game day boys. I have no idea what to expect tonight. By all accounts we are suppose to get blown out according to all the media guys out there.

    1. Get used to it. We will be picked to lose every single game this year. You know, because of the “unprecedented offseason turnover” and “team turmoil”.

  50. TrollD, since you are trying hard to behave, I will give you a few pointers.
    Do not try to out argue me. Most have tried, and most have learned their lesson. Notice that most posters just leave me alone and let me post in peace?
    Try to be short and succinct. Notice many of my posts are one sentence? I admit to writing some long posts, but I heartily invite posters to ignore them.
    Sticking to the facts may be your aim, but you have wanted to replace Kaep with Tebow and now have predicted a 0-52 loss. I get to bring up those facts and will throw them in your face.
    Just quit while you are behind, and leave me alone. I will be happy, and you will be spared a ton of grief.

      1. By the way, anyone see what Any Reid did with Alex Smith on Sunday?…That West Coast Offense when orchestrated by the master can sure result in about 10 wide open pass plays per game

        1. By the way, Seb, not trying to out argue you, just giving you a lesson in logic 101. I pride myself in taking that course and am very good at it. Perhaps you could learn something from me here!

          1. Seb, I think were talking at cross-purposes here, which is not unusual on this site. Like Spock on Start Trek, some times it’s difficult to understand the subtlties of logic…I will explain, because I’ve encountered this phenomena with others on this site.
            If I add up facts, and logically, the facts add up to a 49ers loss, its just a loss.
            If a 49ers fan picks up a Rams wide receiver for his fantasy team and the 49ers lose, it’s just a loss.
            But to this logic equation you are the one adding this: Therefore, you can not root for the 49ers.
            This is not our, or Spocks intention, it’s your’s, Seb.

            1. TomD Star Trek??? Spock??? Come on man is that what this site has come to? Whats next a serious discussion of Klingon football terminology? I think you and Seb should give it a rest for a while, the level of discourse seems to be slipping.

              1. Why not Coach? I’ve always been curious as to what the Klingon terminology for TD, sack, and Cheathawk is.

              2. Old Coach wrote, ” I think [TomD] and Seb should give it a rest for a while, the level of discourse seems to be slipping.”

                Perhaps we could resurrect the Dunning-Kruger Effect discussion from a few years past (though such a resurrection would be the poorer from Claude’s absence, as he always had the fortitude to brutally cut to the chase with respect to such matters). It would not only be relevant in light of posts above, it would also raise the level of conversation to wonderfully esoteric heights. Of course, such discourse would have nothing to do with football, but given some of the football related discussion found above, that might not be so bad.

              3. He was banned, I believe. For a while, he kept coming back with a new IP, but either the PD figured out how to stop him or he grew tired of trying. Someone by the same name (and with the same style) posts on NinersNation now.

              4. It had to do with sustained personal verbal attacks against the person with the power to ban… but I have said too much… ;)

              1. Well Seb I’m a liitle concerned that the team seemed to rally around Zaire but the new kid did throw one hell of a TD pass it was dare I say Montanaesque.

    1. Not just Tebow, a boat load of draft picks u conveniently forget to mention.
      Besides, after Monday’s loss, you’ll wish for a college QB, at least one who can complete passes on 3rd down

  51. Moving on, since logic is a lost art as well as attention spans in the digital world, allow this post…Does anyone acknowledge the power of a masterful WCO coach in Andy Reid and his work so far with Alex

  52. As Mike Tyson once said, “everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”

    49ers will do the punching and win big 38-13

  53. Interesting first week so far.

    Eli Manning and Tom Coughlin handing a game they had in the bag to the Cowboys with two brain farts at the end. First Eli throws the ball away when he should have just gone down to the keep the clock running, and then Coughlin kicks a FG instead of going for it on 4th down to put the game away. Even if they don’t get it, the Cowboys are starting on their 1 yard line. A great lesson on how to steal defeat from the Jaws of victory.

    Marcus Mariota with a great start to his career, but the Bucs sure made it easy for him. All 4 TD’s were passes of less than 10 yards and one read throws. Lovie Smith may be in for a short tenure in TB. Winston struggled big time and forced some throws he got away with in College that get picked in the pros. Will be fun to see how these two develop the rest of the year.

    Peyton Manning’s arm looks to be completely shot. He was struggling to get it outside the hash marks all afternoon and did not throw one TD pass in the game. Denver has a great defense it appears, but they will be relying on it and the running game more than they expected.

    Seattle continues to make some strange decisions that cost them. Whether it was an onside kick or a pooch kick, it was a bad decision. Kick it deep and let your vaunted defense win a game for you Pete.

    New Raiders; same as the old Raiders.

    Bears defense held up well against the Packers, proving Vic Fangio knows what he’s doing and did not get by in SF because of the great talent alone.

    Jay Cutler is still Jay Cutler. Unfortunate reality for the Bears.

    Johnny Manziel came in and threw a TD pass…followed by 2014 Johnny Manziel.

    No matter what rules they implement, or how much they try to shield players from injuries, the league cannot overcome a basic truth about this game: It’s vicious and players get hurt. There is no way to avoid it, so stop screwing around with it and accept the realities of the sport.

    Hard to argue with Grant’s thoughts on the game tonight, but I am hoping the team has had a great week of practice and give themselves a chance to win this thing. No missed tackles on Peterson, no turnovers, run the ball and manufacture a pass rush on Teddy B. Do these things and they win.

    1. Mariota looks good. How can you not see that? That first TD, he faked a handoff then threw fast to the WR with a small window in between the LB and DB, and the WR caught it in stride. CK’s big wind-up would not have been able to make that throw.

      And he didn’t even run!!!

      1. Mariota has an interesting delivery on read-option play action fakes yesterday.

        He puts the ball in the belly of the running back in typical fashion… but he uses the withdrawal of the football as part of his throwing motion.

        He seems to be reading the DBs just like he was dropping back… but he does this while he’s faking the read option handoff.

        Instead of resetting his feet, he steps forward just as he retracts the ball from the RB, then delivers the throw in one motion. The ball comes out super fast.

        Merging the fake handoff with the throwing motion might not be a new thing, but its new to me. I’ve seen it done with in hitch passes, but not in patterns Mariota threw to yesterday.

      2. I did see it. I said Mariota had a great start to his career. He did well and I’m not taking anything away from him. The point was just how bad TB performed and made it pretty easy on him. No pressure, uncovered receivers. They couldn’t have been more accommodating.

          1. Chicago went 10-6 that season. They were 7-2 coming into that game in SF. The Bucs were the worst team in football last year and look like they are in the running again this season. Nice try but again your lack of research bites you in the ass.

              1. Grimey49,

                I’m in Hollywood baby. I have my assistant do all the work for me and I just read what she gives me!

              2. If TomD is your assistant, can you show him where the CAPS button is on his keyboard. I think it maybe stuck on all the time.

            1. They have gone 10-6 but I don’t think they were a good team. I also think the Niner team is way better then the Titan team.

              1. It was a declining team much like our team last year. Injuries and aging stars. A once dominant defense caught unawares by a sophomore QB. Again they still posted 10 wins, were second only to the 49ers in scoring defense with 15ppg and 3rd in scoring offense with 29.5ppg. Not sure that’s a bad team.

    2. I texted my Broncos fan friend that even if it isn’t Peyton’s last year it sure should be.

      Hard to accept 31 points as a performance worth giving special credit for. I guess they get some credit for keeping Rogers to 13 points in the first half but giving up 21 in the second sure doesn’t sound all that great to me.

      For the conspiracy folks it’s really hard to imagine that both Coughlin and Eli botched the clock management at the end of that game but I’ll let them hash that one out. After a rivalry game like that it’s hard to get a pulse on either team. Are they both good or both bad. Did one elevate their game for the rivalry and play outside of what we can expect from them throughout the season?

      Yea the Raider Nation has to really have a bad feeling in their stomach after that game yesterday. All that positive energy heading into that game came crashing down when the defense folded like a cheap chair. The offense and the Carr injury is nothing to get worried about, yet. The real concern across the bay has to be why that defense was so atrocious. It won’t matter if Carr is healthy and is able to move the ball if he’s on the sidelines watching the opposing team march up and down the field.

      I’m not going to take anything away from what was a fantastic rookie premiere but let’s hold off on handing Marcus the RotY award at least until he faces a team that isn’t a total dumpster fire who’s coach is throwing gasoline on the flames.

      Although we have a good history of containing Peterson I think the team is walking into a buzzsaw tonight. He’s the best running back in the league and he hasn’t been this motivated to make a statement since his rookie year or since coming back from his injury. It’s going to take another injury(truly not hoping for that, just saying) to keep Peterson under 130 yards rushing tonight. I think he’ll have at least 2 scores as well. Once Peterson is scorching us that play action pass will start carving up the middle linebackers and safeties and you can expect Teddy to have a pretty decent night as well unless the 49ers have been hiding some super secret pass rush. I originally projected 23-10 but I’m going with 33-17 Vikings instead.

      1. Hard to accept 31 points as a performance worth giving special credit for. I guess they get some credit for keeping Rogers to 10points in the first half but giving up 21 in the second sure doesn’t sound all that great to me.

      2. The final score was not indicative of how well the Bears defense played. They got little help from the offense and held the Packers to a little over 300 yards of total offense. The game wasn’t decided until Cutler threw a late pick.

        Mariota was good, very good in fact, I didn’t mean to imply anything different. It was just puzzling to see how easy the Bucs made it for him. It’s going to be interesting to see how future opponents game plan him, because TB didn’t make him hold the ball or get in his face at all, and that is a sure fire way to get your ass handed to you.

        I hear you on tonight’s game. I’m not expecting them to win, but I’m putting my fan hat on and hoping for one.

      1. I’m starting to believe that Jim Harbaugh made all the 2012 draft class selections, and that’s why Jed started dumping him in February of 2014. With that “dark force” exorcised” how can we miss winning Superbowl 50?

        1. I am honored but I wish and dream like everyone else. I expect a frustration tonight and a tough nine games to start the season.

          It all started in the All-America Football Conference with the Cleveland Browns and …


    1. 2012 not the worst 49er draft? I think its a tie with the 2008 draft.

      Draft position is rarely mentioned when evaluating player selection. Below are (standard) chart values of 49ers drafts 2008-2013.

      Year – Chart Value
      2014 – 1,718
      2013 – 2,041
      2012 – 1,031
      2011 – 2,363
      2010 – 2,800
      2009 – 1,600
      2008 – 1,463

      Note: These are draft slots used. They don’t include picks traded to following season(s).

      Year – Chart Value – Players

      2012 – 1,031 – Jenkins, LMJ, Looney, Fleming, Robinson, Slowey, Johnson
      2008 – 1,463 – Balmer, Rachal, Regie Smith, Cody Wallace, Josh Morgan, Larry Grant

      I like pre-leg break Morgan. Grant was a nice fill-in until he got popped for PEDs.

      1. Had a flashback of 2008 draft when I watched Cody Wallace playing center for Steelers with Pouncey injured. He must be the only of that draft still in the league.

        With the exception of the Cowboys, it seems that all the O lines of the top half of the league are unsettled and “below average”, at least in expectation.

        1. Good call. I wonder why?

          Could it be the same reason there’s a shortage of young pocket passers? A college system that produces fewer pocket passers might also produce fewer pass protectors.

          The rookie salary cap could also be a culprit. Teams have to have more year 1-4 players to manage the overall cap. This jettisons quality mid-level players in favor of younger guys. Depth at O-Line suffers.

          1. I think it’s mostly injuries and free agency reshuffles that prevents continuity in O line. Having 5 decent linemen working together is much more important than having an O line with a couple of Pro Bowlers, one middling player, and 2 scrubs. Superior coaching and regular drafting of O linemen becomes important.

    2. B2W

      ‘Not too sure who writes your material, but I just checked the Dolphins active roster, and LaMichael James is still on it, with no announcements. Wouldn’t that be just SOOO Harbaugh, to get cut after averaging 27 yards per return…I guess we’ll see….

      1. Take it for what it’s worth but Florio is reporting it as well. He go into it with a teammate but the fumble on special might have been the final straw.

        1. Hey KY – haven’t heard from you in a while. I know you weren’t a fan of Mariotta during the draft period, but he had a very good debut yesterday. Winston not so much. Are the Titans your local games out there?

          1. I am in Louisville. We got the Bills, Bengals, and the Chicago game. I did see the highlights. He was very smart with ball. I believe his football IQ is higher than Jameis’. Yesterday it showed. He didn’t do anything fancy but he made smart decisions with the ball.

      2. Got it from Matt Barrows a few hours ago – “And the 49ers’ 2012 draft grows a little more dim … @flasportsbuzz Fins cut LaMike james. Bring Stoneburner up to 53.”

        Matt’s never let me down before.

      3. CBS Sports – “The Dolphins announced Monday they released running back LaMichael James. To take his spot on the roster, tight end Jake Stoneburner was promoted from the practice squad.”

    1. The 49ers have had a tendency to disappoint me whenever I bet on them. So tonight I bet against them in the hopes they will do that and win big! I would rather lose the bet and have them win. Maybe Grant has a little of that thinking in mind.

  54. Don’t know what to expect tonight. Grants point are all valid and shouldn’t be overlooked. But I’m actually excited to see this secondary in action. I think the run D will be strong. The pass rush is a concern, but the Vikes pass pro is suspect.

    Offense is a complete mystery to me. Hyde should look solid. Outside of that I have no idea.

  55. No TV in my rural area. My favorite places to watch Niner games (Fireside Healdsburg, Flamez Windsor) closed.

    Anyone know of a good place in greater Healdsburg to watch the game tonight… that’s committed to staying open through the 4th qtr?

    I’m considering Wild Flower Grill (noisy acoustics, can’t hear TV), BnB Lounge. Healdsburg Bar and Grill will be too crowded.

  56. Doesn’t the team have to submit a list of inactives (or maybe it’s the other way around namely a list of actives). If so, when will we see it. I’m anxious to know if Hayne will be suiting up.

    1. 90 minutes before kickoff. Usually Barrows, Maiocco and the like tweet it as soon as they know. The radio guys too. Grant usually posts the inactives before the game too.

      1. Sometimes teams get an inkling of who is suiting up during warm-ups… a little while before the inactive announcements. They are rarely noted in the press… but the Hayne Mania might provide a few early tweets. Say 100 mins before kickoff.

  57. Like many others, I have no inclination to offer predictions about tonight’s game. Grant raised some good points in favor of a likely 49ers loss, and some other posters have raised some relevant factors that could indicate the likelihood of a win. I do, however, plan to enjoy watching the game. And while I am fully prepared to watch a losing effort, I would not be surprised if the outcome is otherwise.

    1. I want to see a competitive game, that hopefully is a win for the 9ers.
      I have no clue what I am going to see tonight.
      But truly who amoung us really knows what we are going to see from this team?

  58. That Under Armour commercial with Tom Brady would have been more realistic if it would’ve had him coaching a ball boy to deflate the football properly.

  59. My workplace is located about a mile or two from Levi Stadium. The weather has been unsettled all day – windy and cloudy. About 60% chance of precipitation. #7torms Coming

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