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 zero touchdowns, but he didn’t single-handedly lose the game and that’s progress.

RUNNING BACKS: B+. You need points to win, and Frank Gore was the only 49er who scored. Carlos Hyde carried the ball six times for 55 yards before he left the game with an ankle injury – the Seahawks didn’t seem prepared for him. And Bruce Miller led all 49ers with four catches for 56 yards. It took the 49ers 14 games to figure out Miller is one of their best receivers.

WIDE RECEIVERS: F. No one showed up. Michael Crabtree caught three passes for 19 yards. Anquan Boldin caught two passes for 23 yards. Brandon Lloyd caught 1 pass for 12 yards. It’s been clear for more than a year that these receivers can’t beat the Seahawks’ cornerbacks. Baalke did the team a disservice by drafting zero good wide receivers the past few years.

TIGHT ENDS: F. Did Vernon Davis play? The stat sheet says he did but I don’t remember seeing him. I wrote during training camp that Davis could decide to hold out this season if the Niners didn’t renegotiate his contract. Did we witness him holding out without actually holding out? Did he mail in the season?

OFFENSIVE LINE: D. Gave up six sacks and 11 quarterback hits. Mike Iupati is a flat-out liability in pass protection. I doubt he’s on the team next season.

DEFENSIVE LINE: B-. The Niners’ defense sacked Russell Wilson five times and hit him 10 times. The pass rush was the best aspect of the Niners’ defense in this game, and Ray McDonald was the 49ers’ best pass rusher, not Aldon Smith or Justin Smith. But the run defense did not play well, giving up 152 yards and a touchdown.

LINEBACKERS: B-. Once Chris Borland rolled his ankle and left the game, the Niners’ defense no longer had enough talent to stop Marshawn Lynch.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: B-. Gave up just 12 completions, but Perrish Cox and Antoine Bethea each gave up a deep catch. And Eric Reid gave up a 10-yard TD catch to Paul Richardson, the Seahawks’ rookie receiver. Reid also was flagged twice in one drive for unnecessary roughness. He did not play well this season. If you’re going to draft a safety in the top-20 picks, he better be a Hall of Famer. Reid won’t even make the Pro Bowl this season. Baalke should have drafted a cornerback instead of Reid.

SPECIAL TEAMS: F. Gave up a 19-yard punt return and committed three holding penalties – one occurred on a fair catch.

COACHES: F. After four seasons, the NFL figured out Jim Harbaugh’s offense – that’s been clear all year. The Niners need to hire an offensive coach who makes better adjustments between seasons, between games, between halves. Once again, the Niners scored zero points in the second half. That’s bad coaching.

BAALKE: F. Before the season began, I wrote that the 49ers were at the mercy of Vernon Davis, the only fast skill player on the offense. If he held out or didn’t play well, the Niners offense would become slow and beatable. That’s exactly what happened. Yes, the offensive coaches coached poorly, but Baalke could have made their jobs easier if he had drafted just one go-to offensive skill player during his five years as the Niners’ general manager. Remember, Baalke passed on Alshon Jeffery and T.Y. Hilton in 2012, and he passed on a dozen good wide receivers in 2014.

Think about that as you stare at your desk, Trent.

This article has 445 Comments

    1. I just read all the posts… Why hasnt anyone mentioned the fact that with 4th & 1 late in the 4th and their last healthy RB hobbled on the play before that they didnt call T.O. They had all 3 and a fg would have made it a one possession game. Damn seasons on the line why are you not getting togther and picking the best play. Anyone else see that?

  1. “Mike Iupati is a flat-out liability in pass coverage.”

    That should be pass protection.

      1. Your comment about Alex Smith was uncalled for. When coached right he was a winner. He is wining in KC with no defense and a great running back. With a couple of good receivers they would be a lot better.

        1. Mavin is right. Alex Smith never opened the wrist cheat sheet as long as Kaep does. Kc right now has a rookie tight end, another TE that was a rookie last year, put up 45 points after he lost 4 key players during the playoffs vs the colts and his wide receivers today are valued at a -9, yet he continues to make plays with however little he has.

          1. Your kc info is a bit off. He has a 2nd year te in Kelce and a veteran te in fasano, not sure where you get he has a rookie. His wrs are highly unproven and outside of bowe, are no better than #4s on most every other team in this league. Basically he has a #2/3wr in bowe, a decent te duo, and a legit pro bowl rb at his disposal and for the dude to have 18tds to 6 ints, on track for 21 tds to 7 ints, 3400 yards, and a possible 10 win season, it’s pretty remarkable.

    1. Yeah, it seem Iupati is more of a power-blocking right guard. But even there you still have to pass block a little. Too bad, his career was off to a good start.

  2. Grant

    You’re just scratching the surface on this theme. Please, I implore you, go deep, and excoriate the phony GM that has so completely bamboozled York the Younger.

  3. The RBs deserve an A Grant. They were the offense today, and after they left we did nothing.

  4. I think the 49ers should hold JH to his contract. On the simple matter of pride as a coach, you would think he would fire Roman and somehow fix the offense. Baalke? If Jed York keeps this failure because they are buddies or something, we will know that the young man is “Dan Snyder West” and will understand if JH runs for the hills.

    1. Jed York has been leaking that Harbaugh will not be back since Jed had trade talks with Cleveland. Harbaugh won’t resign, and he is going to be gone because that’s been the 2014 Jed York game plan.

      1. I’d be shocked if Jed fired Baalke. That’s his “football man” and source of all things football. It’s like dumb and dumber, trying to lead this organization to the 6th Super Bowl ring.

        By the way, the “Dan Snyder West” comment is spot on.

  5. “It took the 49ers 14 games to figure out Miller is one of their best receivers.”

    That’s one I don’t get. He was good a season ago in that capacity too, but they kept taking him off the field this year trying to get all their new toys on the field.

    1. Didn’t Roman say during TC that the offense would feature more passes to the RB’s in 2014?

      B.Miller has a good track record in catching and Hyde was said to be a good receiver as well.
      Don’t know why that plan never materialized.

    2. I have thought the same all season. Kap trusts Miller, and he can handle Kap’s fastballs (most of the time).

    3. especially with all the injuries to the TEs, you’d think they’d want Miller in there as blocking/receiving option…maybe as a possible 2nd TE/H-Back that McDonald was and Delanie Walker before him. I’m not saying he’s a viable primary TE. But I think he’d work in a pinch as blocking/receiving H-Back.

  6. 49ers offensive line played well, most of those sacks were on Kap holding the ball too long and he had time to throw for the most part. Also thought the wide receivers were getting separation. Kap obviously missed a wide open Boldin but also missed a wide open Patton and Crabtree had separation from Sherman over the middle on one sack. Giving Baalke an F for this season is also laughable considering how well the 49ers depth has played and been tested this year.. You’re delusional if you think one go-to offensive skill player is all this offense is missing. 49ers top 4 wide receivers have had a 900+ yard receiver in the last 3 years, not enough for Roman and Kaepernick apparently.

    1. Offensive line played well???? HAHAHAHA, what season have you been watching? Most of the sacks are on Kap running for his life. Did you see what a turnstile this O-line has been the last two years? You gotta be kidding me.

      1. I didn’t watch a season in one game, I also didn’t watch two years in one game. I saw one game and they played well

        1. The offensive line did not protect the QB. We lead the league in sacks for a reason. Add 6 more today.

          1. Why point the fingers to the offensive line for Kap’s poor performance today? I thought this guy was a multi-talented athlete who has a strong arm that can throw 50,60 yards bomb, can out run the defense with his quickness. The only problem is Kap is not a pocket passer and he’s poor knowledge on the football field in reading the opposing defense and he has trouble finding the option receivers to throw too.

            1. Russel Wilson is about as good as I have ever seen at escaping being sacked. He is much more elusive than Kaep in that respect. But did you see how many times he was sacked in the Niner game. Did he hold the ball too long or run into sacks? There are times when it is almost impossible for a QB to avoid a sack. There might be sometimes when there is an option open that they for what ever reason do not see, but should that negate the responsibility of the offensive line for putting them in that sort of position in the first place.

              Watched GB play the Bills. Rodgers looked really bad. Threw two interceptions and it could have been more if the db doesn’t drop a sure pick six. He also fumbled at the goal line and couldn’t find the ball. Ball bounces into the end zone and just lays for about 5 sec. there till GB player picks up. Only player who fumbles ball in last 2 min can advance the ball so it’s a safety which ends GB chances at a victory.

              Rodgers is considered by many as the QB who is playing the best right now. Gb needed that game and Rodgers play and last muff pretty much caused that loss. Did he choke? Does he need to learn to read defenses and develop pocket awareness. No! But if he were to be judged by that game those things could be argued.

              My point is that every QB no matter how good they are has horrible games. Every QB throws inaccurate passes and interceptions due to not reading the defense correctly. Kaep has had some bad games this year. The problem is that the offense has been so bad that his bad plays have magnified effect on the outcomes. Some of the posts on this site- like an elite QB can compensate for bad protection and other subpar play by his team. That is total BS. Sometimes they can but not always. I have seen too many elite QB’s throw interceptions because of bad reads and miss receivers who were wide open. This was Rice’s point. A QB is not always going to be accurate, so he often needs some help from his receivers. I remember there were games when Montana was off as well. But a lot of posters with agenda’s hold the present QB to an unrealistic standard and magnify every mistake to prove their point. Just in the last two weeks I have seen Rodgers and Luck have games where they were not only inaccurate but also made bad decisions in the pocket to cause and almost cause their teams games. Different standard for Kaep by some 49er fans in that if Kaep had done that it would have been used as evidence that he is incapable of being a pocket and accurate passer.

      2. You can’t protect a QB that is a no read and run or a one read and run. That’s the problem. Kaep doesn’t trust his line. He’s Immature, and not football smart.

        1. The game is too fast for him right now. He is not giving his line a chance, or his WR a chance to get set or get into their route. He quickly breaks the play before it has developed and fleas the pocket. That’s a result of poor study and commitment to the offensive scheme. How can you win with guys like that?

      3. Absolutely correct. The Of-line has been a turnstile, Highway 49 to the QB. Kap has stunk but the pressure he faces game in and game out takes its toll. Not many QB’s, if any, could stand up to that kind of pressure.

    2. tkamB

      4 of the first 5 sacks came on 3rd and 9 or longer, and the one that wasn’t was the result of Kaeprnick trying to run up the middle instead of hitting a wide open Hyde with a checkdown.

      Agree with you on the Kaepernick stuff. He has 0 touch and is just not very good.

      Also agree with you on Baalke. I don’t think he’s made the offensive coaches job as much as Kaepernick’s inconsistency has.

      1. I’ll go back and watch when this game is over on game rewind but I remember a lot of blitzes that were picked up well but Kap didn’t get the ball out quick enough which resulted in the sacks. Could be on the offensive scheme, Kap, or both but I thought Kap had time in the pocket for the most part.

      2. Jack:

        “He has 0 touch and is just not very good.”—He’s a hyped up version of Jim Drunkenmiller. The sooner the NIners get rid of him the better for the team..

    3. PFF grades seem to agree with me, they have 1 sack on Miller, 1 sack on Gore, and 1 sack on Kaepernick. There were only 2 sacks on the offensive line, both on Iupati but the only offensive lineman to grade in the red in pass blocking was Looney with a -1.8. Overall the OL got a +2.9 grade, they played pretty well.

      1. tkamB,

        I disagree that most of the sacks were due to Kap holding the ball too long, but I agree that the Oline held up pretty well overall, and were excellent in run blocking yesterday.

        The problem was the same issue they’ve had all year and that is minimal gains on early downs leaving them with 3rd and long. I think most of the sacks came in those situations.

        1. They sure did. It was like clockwork. Third and long, Seahawks blitz, protection can’t pick them all up, sack. It was impossible to tell while watching if there was anyone available for a quick dumpoff, so not sure if that is Kaep’s fault, or simply poor play design.

          1. Scooter,
            Some of it is play design for sure. There are no go-to outlet, high percentage designed plays for CK to go to. The remainder is due to poor execution.

            1. “There are no go-to outlet, high percentage designed plays for CK to go to.”

              Who has high percentage plays for 3rd and long?

              1. I was talking about 3rd downs in general, not necessarily 3rd and long situations.

                I’m going to start calling it 3rd and sack from now on :)

  7. Grant,

    Giving Baalke an F grade for passing on 2 receivers in 2 different drafts seems a little absurd. 30 other GM’s passed on those receivers as well, so lets act like that it’s a huge failure on his part. Has he been good at drafting receivers? Absolutely not. It would just be nice to see you use better reasons to support your claims.

    Also, it sure seems like you’ve had an agenda against Eric Reid. You had no mention of his interception in the grades and even wrote earlier that he simply “ran around until the clock ran out” making it seem like he wasn’t attempting to (almost) return the int for a touchdown. He was a pro bowler as rookie and your claiming drafting him was a mistake? I think anybody with a reasonable knowledge of football would say that the Eric Reid pick has been a good one. Additionally, you assume that drafting a corner in that first round would have given the Niners a shutdown DB. Who’s to say that DB wouldn’t have been a bust? I’ll take the Eric Reid pick and happily watch him every sunday…

    1. I agree, Bill. Seems strange that every player that plays better than a guy Baalke picked is a failure by Baalke, but no other GM should be held to the same standard. If they were, every GM would be given an F.

      1. Its a failure because he didn’t do what Grant wanted him too and not based other real measurements.

      2. Scooter- Every team has different needs. The Niner’s biggest need was a speed receiver and this draft was loaded. It was the opportune time to draft a player the Niner’s were in need of. The need becomes greater this coming draft but the situation will make it much more difficult if even possible to fill that need through the draft. The draft is not as deep so later rounds picks will not have the value they had last season. There are not going to be as many receivers available so none will be around as late as they were the last draft.

        Baalke got some good players in the later rounds this last draft. However he could have gotten more for his buck in the top of the draft. Ward even if he pans out as a decent slot db was still over drafted. They got basically nothing fom him this year and in that respect he was a wasted pick. I suspect TB was afraid to draft another receiver because he needed to play it safe, not whiff this draft and enough players who succeeded. This was a deep draft so the went for numbers rather than take a chance to be exposed as a failure at drafting receivers one again.

        He drafted for what he needed to look good rather than for team need.

        1. Willtalk
          WTF are you talking about? We had 3 WR and added a 4th during the draft, meanwhile we did not have anyone to play the slot CB for us. In what universe is a “speed receiver” a bigger need than slot corner? I understand that u look back on this draft and see all the WR playing good but at our draft spot the only “speed” receivers were m Bryant a 4th rounder and J Brown a 3rd rounder so who did u want them to draft at 30?

          1. BOS49er,
            Baalke may have wanted a slot guy, but ended up drafting an under sized safety. In what universe does that make sense? Willtalk makes a lot of points, one of them being that Baalke drafted to cover his arse rather for the good of the team. That’s why I think this organization is doomed unless Baalke is canned.

            1. An undersized safety that spent much of his college career covering the slot, and did it well. So it actually makes a lot of sense.

        2. As I’ve asked many times before Willtalk, which rookie WRs would have played a lot of snaps on this team, given the calibre of vets they have on the roster? Not many in my opinion (though some disagree), and the majority of those they would have needed to trade up very high for.

          While I would have loved to see one of the top rookie WRs on this roster, the draft didn’t pan out that way. The biggest team need was clearly a nickel DB, even if you want to believe it was a speed WR (I agree it was a need, but their biggest), so when the top WR options were taken it made sense to take Ward. And then when Johnson became available Baalke took the option to use a mid round pick on him rather than hope one of the top remaining WRs available fell to them or trading away multiple picks in one of the most talent rich drafts in recent memory.

          You keep harping on about Baalke and his OCD tendencies and his “mistake” in holding onto picks. Now he’s scared of drafting a WR. The mind truly boggles at such hubris.

          History supports the idea of accumulating picks. We now have a talented and young roster that provides hope for future seasons despite a number of our star players reaching the end of their deals and unlikely to be retained due to cap pressures. Sounds like some fine GM work to me, but obviously not everyone agrees.

    2. “2:47 Wilson forces a pass over the middle and throws right to Eric Reid, who runs around until the clock expires. Halftime. The Seahawks were in field goal range.”

      That’s a strange description of the play.

      Wilson did a tremendous job to stop that from being a touchdown, and in the process won the game for Seattle by taking out Borland.

      1. A less heroic effort would have saved Borland, and might have prevented the bad roughing the passer call.

    3. This was just a stupid statement. The players that make Seattle so successful on defense are the safeties. The fact that they cover so much ground greatly helps that defense and if either one of those players were to miss games it would hurt that defense a lot. However, by Grants Logic they are safeties so they cannot be that valuable.

      1. Earl Thomas in particular. His excellent range allows them to play single high safety so often.

    4. If anyone truly believes Baalke is doing a poor job, look at the draft history of every team since he’s been in charge and try to find any that have done a better job. I’ve put up the links to show the Niners are rated in the top 3 in virtually every draft analysis done over this span, but the armchair GM’s would rather rail over the players they didn’t get.

      1. I wouldn’t say that Baalke has done a really bad job compared to other GM. He has however had a lot of picks to work with in respect , and the option earlier to draft best player available rather than need. This last draft the need and opportunity to fullfil it was there and he didn’t take advantage of it.

        Every GM makes mistakes and whiffs on players. The red flag I perceived with TB was not that he whiffed but the reason he did. I believe rational that he uses for drafts is faulty. Also I think some of his strategy in respect to long term priorities is flawed as well.

        I have posted in the past that I thought he just wasn’t capable of handling all the various aspects of the GM yet. Just didn’t have enough experience and that along with the lack of NFL experience of JH would eventually have a negative effect on the team. I expected it to happen eventually but not this quickly or soon.

        1. “He has however had a lot of picks to work with in respect”. Yes, but by design.

          You should read the ESPN article on Scott McCloughan. You might find a new appreciation of how hard it is to make every draft pick a winner.

    5. Forget just WR, Baalke has been a failure in drafting skill position offensive players. Here is the list: AJ Jenkins, LaMichael James, Vance McDonald and not to mention the players Baalke passed up on (Alson, TY Hilton, Muhammed Sanu, Marvin Jones, Ruben Randall, Dwayne Allen, etc.).

  8. Kaepernick may have played like Smith in his management of the offense, but Smith put up 297 yards and 2 touchdowns today. I’d say Smith’s having a decent year behind an offense line far worse than what Kaepernick is operating behind.

  9. I can’t wait to hear the press conference where they decide to fire Harbaugh and give the reason. What are they gonna say? He won a lot of games but we didn’t get along. We had to let him go. Okay sure!

  10. This team will look different next season, that’s for sure. Anyone know what scouts are responsible for the WR’s? Fire that person too.

  11. It was an absolute guarantee after I disagreed with you about Reid that you would then decide to harp on it here. Still no comment about Wilhoite’s responsibility on that TD play to Richardson, I see.

    What I will say is Reid hasn’t play as well this year as may have been hoped. He hasn’t been poor, but he hasn’t been particularly good, either. And he had some glaring mistakes. But when you say he “hasn’t played well” I assume you mean he has played poorly, as this is what people typically mean when they say someone isn’t doing well. It isn’t true. He’s played ok. And he’s still only a 2nd year player, with potential to improve his game.

    As for saying they should have taken a top CB in 2013 (by that you mean Rhodes or Trufant), sure, both of those guys are playing well and would no doubt help any team they are on. With all the injuries the 49ers have had a CB it is easy to see how such a player could help. But the 49ers CBs by and large have played well this season. If the 49ers didn’t have Reid, which other safety would they have back there? And how much of a liability would they be?

    1. Agree with you on Reid. Not a strength, but far from a liability. Hilarious how the standard of drafting a top 20 safety is either a HOF or bust apparently. I was someone who really wanted Trufant in that draft, but I’m not complaining with Reid who is also by far the best safety to come out of that class.

      1. Yeah, I mentioned during the game, out of the top four safeties drafted in 2013, Reid is the only one with the positive grade and he’s ranked around middle of the safety pack in the NFL. The other three, Vaccoro, Elam and Cyprien, are all in the bottom 10 for the position.

        1. Not to mention Goldson has been rated among the worst at his position since we’ve moved on. A great move by Baalke that can really only be criticized by comparing it to the best possible scenario. Also funny because I distinctly remember Grant wanting the 49ers to trade up for Milliner or Hayden that year, and neither of them would’ve helped us more than Reid has.

          1. Grant falls into the school of thought that you need to have a legitimate shutdown CB. From that point of view I get where he is coming from. And on some defenses it is true.

            But the way the 49ers play defense a shutdown CB is a luxury, not a necessity. The 49ers are following the same blueprint as the Ravens. Build from the inside, out.

            1. There are 30 teams in the NFL without a shutdown corner. Someone should go tell Manning and Rodgers that since they don’t have a shutdown corner, they don’t have a chance to win the Superbowl.

              1. Well, Manning does have Chris Harris who is pretty close to being in that category, but your point is a good one. There are not many true shutdown CBs.

        2. Reid went through a bit of sophomore slump but I expect him to be back strong next year. He’s a smart, athletic player with no major weaknesses and he will steadily get better with every passing season.

          1. I was hard on Reid all year but I think he will be a great FS for the next 5 years.
            Why are we worrying about defense. We had a patchwork lineup all year and finished in top 5.
            It’s the offense.Harbaugh needs a complete overhaul there.

            1. Why is it a major weakness? He’s not great in man-to-man (he’s not horrible either), but then the 49ers FS doesn’t play man-to-man very often.

              Still no mention of Wilhoite’s role in that TD…? Sure looked to my eyes he was supposed to covering that inside zone, but was late to get across. Reid had coverage over the top with outside leverage. The 49ers ended up essentially covering the TE with 3 guys because Wilhoite wasn’t where he was supposed to be.

            2. We are down to our 5th and 6th corners (johnson and mcfadden) and the refs with that terrible call on moody cost us a touchdown not the coverage. Everybody and their mother admitted that it was a bad call on the roughing the passer and without that its a FG attempt

              1. Actually we are down to our 6th, 7th and 8th CBs. Johnson started the year as the 6th CB behind Brock, Culliver, Cox, Cook and Ward.

            3. This is where Grant and I have always agreed. You need great cover guys throughout the secondary. Sure, maybe you can have ONE guy (Chancellor for Seattle or Chung for New England) who is more of an enforcer. But the rest of the guys should be as close to lockdown as you can find.

              Neither Reid nor Bethea can cover anyone one-on-one. They both rely on angles and anticipation. And we still have no shut down CB to take away an opponent’s best player or simply one side of the field.

              That’s on Baalke, unless someone else is making those decisions who we don’t know about.

              1. sullyball- I think that might be another problem. We don’t really know who is responsible for making the different decisions. All we are doing is speculating and assigning blame but we might be wrong. That seem to be the way this team operates. Those that make decisions seem to be comfortable in letting others take the heat for far too long. I suspect we are blaming a lot of people/players unfairly for being good soldiers.

              2. Yes, that is definitely one school of thought. Its not one shared by Baalke, rightly or wrongly. I fear you are going to be continually disappointed if you are waiting for Baalke to draft a dominant cover CB in the first round.

                Personally I agree with Baalke’s method. Build a team that can take away the run, generate a pass rush, get some good safeties that can tackle, and get some athletic CBs that can run and tackle. Its worked for the Ravens and Steelers, two teams that have consistently marched out some stellar defenses over the years.

              3. The Steelers and Ravens each had a Hall of Fame safety. The Niners do not have a Hall of Fame safety.

              4. You can clearly see that is the direction Baalke is going for though. Reid isn’t at that level, I agree. Neither is Bethea. But combined they are a very good safety combination.

              5. That direction can work if Baalke gets a safety who’s good enough to win a Defensive Player of the Year award.

              6. “The Steelers and Ravens each had a Hall of Fame safety. The Niners do not have a Hall of Fame safety.”

                Troy Polamalu – 1 Pro Bowl in first 2 seasons
                Ed Reed – 1 Pro Bowl in first 2 seasons
                Eric Reid – 1 Pro Bowl in first 2 seasons

                What am I missing here?

              7. “That direction can work if Baalke gets a safety who’s good enough to win a Defensive Player of the Year award.”

                Ed Reed did it in year 3. Polumalu in year 8.

              8. Its a good strategy to employ, with proven success on defense. CBs are still one of the highest paid positions in the NFL. The strategy the 49ers, Ravens and Steelers employ means they can put their money into a lower valued position (in the NFL market). It is also a position that is typically of lower value in the draft, meaning good players can fall a bit.

              9. It’s a fine strategy if the safety is a transcendent player. Eric Reid is not transcendent. He’s solid.

              10. Reid is also still very young, and learning. He’ll get better. As is Ward, who will likely end up being Reid’s safety partner in a few years time. They are both talented players. Bethea is also a highly talented player.

                I think the idea of a transcendent safety is over-stating the necessary talent level. Woodson, Reed and Polamalu are all top tier safeties, no doubt. But I’m pretty confident if you team two very good safeties that will work, too. In fact the 49ers secondary has been plenty good this year with Reid and Bethea.

              11. The Niners have one very good safety this season — Bethea. Reid has been ordinary in 2014. PFF ranks him tied for 46th among safeties.

              12. Reid has been ok. He’s around middle of the pack for safeties this year, so I would say he’s been average. He’s had some bad games, some bad plays.

                Yesterday he no doubt was crucified by PFF for the two penalties (the one on Richardson was pretty line ball though, he’d had the ball for a few steps already so in my opinion should have been considered a runner). And no doubt like yourself they apportion him the blame for Richardson’s TD, though I still believe Wilhoite is at least equally responsible as he should have been closing that window and preventing Wilson from passing into it. Maybe something that is worth asking in interviews whether Reid was supposed to have inside help there?

                Bethea has been fantastic, as you pointed out. As a group they have been pretty darn good.

              13. Yeah, the defense has been pretty darn good, but it would be better if Baalke had drafted Trufant or Rhodes instead of Reid.

              14. I can’t disagree with that as both guys have been excellent this season, and the 49ers have been short on CBs for much of the year.

              15. The only issue the Niners had at CB this year was keeping them healthy. I agree with the strategy Baalke has employed because the Safety position has become the focal point of the defense in many ways. CB’s are limited due to the rules favoring WR’s and it’s been clearly shown here and in Seattle that you can get big physical CB’s later in the draft. I’d take Reid over Trufant and Rhodes now, never mind last year.

                As far as Reid is concerned, he hasn’t played as well as he did last year, but he’s still been pretty good most of the season. Losing the players they did affected everyone on that side of the ball imo.

            4. Grant,

              Surely you understand the phrase “major weakness”, as in glaring weakness? I think Reid will improve is man coverage skills as he gains in experience. Right now he is just focused on recognizing defensive schemes that offenses are throwing at them. This year has been hard on the backfield because, aside from shifting personnel at CB, the front 7 has not been able to apply consistent pressure as they did in the past 3 years.

              Speaking of man-to-man coverage, could Dontae Johnson turn into the Niner’s version of the poor man’s Richard Sherman?

            5. in what way was man to man coverage a weakness?

              to my knowledge, they don’t run a lot of man coverage except in hybrid zone/man form. It looks like 2 man under but is really man/zone which is why you usually see the the coverage over top of the receivers and why the receivers are able to make a comeback and catch the ball in coverage consistently.

              1. When I say one-on-one coverage I’m not necessarily saying man coverage as a system. (Lets remember that Seattle runs quite a bit of Cover 3). I’m suggesting those times when you as a DB are locked up one-on-one with somebody. Having the fluid hips to turn, the body control and flexibility to react to the ball, and then the quickness and timing to make a great play on the ball. I don’t see anyone in our secondary right now with elite skills in those areas.

                And, sure, you can cover up that weakness for a while. But I think back to how our secondary was burned by Balt in that Super Bowl. I don’t think Sherman-Thomas or Revis-McCourty would have given up any of those big plays that put us so far in the hole.

              2. Sully, having those kinda guys is great, no question. It should be noted though that the Seahawks actually use the same philosophy as Baalke when it comes to drafting DBs. Take early round safeties, draft tall, athletic CBs in the later rounds they can develop.

                Getting a guy like Sherman in the 5th was a stroke of luck. They didn’t take him that late because they thought he’d be an All-Pro. They took him because he suited the mold of CB they like to use – big and athletic. Just like what Baalke does. What’s to say that one of Johnson, Acker or Reaser aren’t the next Sherman?

          2. Its easy to underestimate the impact of losing the likes of Whitner, Rogers and Brown this offseason on a young guy like Reid, and then losing Brock to injury. Not only in terms of losing the veteran presence and knowledge of the system they provided, but also in terms of the expectation that comes with being the sole returning starter in the defensive backfield from the previous year.

            Bethea has been great, but he’s new to the system. I’m not surprised at all that Reid had a bit of a slump this year, in fact I said before the season started it was likely. As the season has progressed he’s gotten better.

            1. Scooter, I don’t consider Whitner, Rogers, Brown, Brock to be “great” cover guys, do you? Brock is probably the best of that group, but I don’t think we can call him great.

              1. sully,

                Whitner, Rogers, Brown, Brock are good SYSTEM guys. So much of defense, especially in the secondary is about coordination and communication. The Niners don’t really highly value “shutdown corners”, they just want guys that will stop the big play and make opportunistic plays when they come (usually because the pass rush causes the QB to make a mistake…which is why they spend their money on the front 7). this is what Grant doesn’t understand.

              2. Thanks affnp, my thoughts exactly.

                Sully, read some of my posts above and you’ll see I don’t believe the team needs these exceptional cover DBs you so desperately want.

    2. Scooter I think we all just expected both safeties to do a lot better considering we basically had two new starter at the CB positions. Reid was solid last year and Bethea had periods of greatness ad was brought in to provide some stability and leadership . But both guys showed no consistency and or leadership.

      1. Have to disagree with you on Bethea there, Prime. I believe Bethea is ranked in the top 5 safeties by PFF, and deservedly so. He has been fantastic this year. Today may not have been his best game, but he’s been a very good and consistent performer.

        1. He’s #2 overall right now behind Weddle, could drop a bit after today but yeah Bethea has been great

          1. Bethea should be the ONLY Niner Pro Bowler. One year after having the most in the league (I believe) we will not have much this season.

        2. Scooter’s right. To expect the tandem of a strong safety new to the system and a sophomore to play better than they have is just unrealistic. The safety play exceeded my expectations.

    3. Grant cherry pick stats from time to time and forgets the good plays like his INT tonight. He’s played better than average and is an upgrade over Goldson. I think we contributed to his agenda with Reid by pointing out his overstatement of him not playing well. It might help all note that there are options beside bad or good in between. Reid is in one of those categories.

      Good points Scooter.

    4. The 49ers defense played good in the first half. It wasn’t until they lost Borland and were down to a guy who normally would be a 3rd string linebacker that they started to give up chunks of yardage in the run game. and gave up the go ahead/game winning score.

      1. Once Borland went down I figured their odds dropped considerable. Especially the way Lynch runs the ball. Borland was one player they needed and couldn’t replace against Seattle.

  12. Grant, you are getting overly pessimistic lately, what is going on? Before I used to regularly sing your praises publicly because you and Kawakami were the only beat writers to tell things how they are. But now I’m starting feel like you are bashing team and not seeing anything good where there is some or there was some. You are also engaging in “the team should have done this”, but that can be said of every single team in the league after the fact. Hindsight is 20/20. The reigning champions should have never signed Percy Harvin, for instance. See how easy that is?

  13. This is not a blog as much as it is Grant’s skewed opinions and I told you so banter. 5 starters missing on defense including the best inside LB in the game, 2 best run stuffing NT’s missing, an offensive line patched together that features 2 players that should not be on the roster, 3rd string center, and many poor performances by Kaep and the coaches and Baalke is to blame for some of it but not nearly as much as Grant contends.

    1. Baalke is to blame for the offense. He cannot draft skill positions and the misses in rounds 1 & 2. AJ Jenkins, LaMichael James, Vance McDonald. Only Carlos Hyde doesn’t look like a bust, but he doesn’t look like anything special either.

      Even Iupati at 17. A Guard should never be drafted that high. Anthony Davis at 11. That’s a draft position reserved for LT. Then there is Colin…

      so far it looks like Marcus Martin (3rd round) might be another bust.

      He had all these extra picks yet has missed on Taylor Mays, Corey Lemonier, Tank Carradine and possibly Jimmie Ward.

      You can’t be 2 for 17 in the star dept in early rounds & have 7-8 busts and continue to be successful.

      The success of the team came from McCloughan and Harbaugh.

        1. meaningless sacks vs backup offensive lineman who’ve had the bumps and bruises of actually playing instead of standing on the sidelines? you homers have got to be kidding me. it’s like jonathan martin doing well. fool’s gold.

          and he’ll be 26 in February (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornellius_Carradine).

          he couldn’t beat out Jerod-Eddie for PT and couldn’t beat out Dobbs when he was here. he can’t claim not to have a good DL coach as Tomsula has a proven track record.

          but even if he isn’t a bust. Baalke’s had 17 picks in the 1st 3 rounds & picked up 2 star players, 6-7 busts & hasn’t been able to draft at WR, TE and perhaps RB depending on whether Hyde pans out. He has a questionable track record on the OL.

          even on defense, i don’t know if he’s been able to get decent talent in the latter rounds or it’s the crew of Fangio, Tomsula, Donatell, Leavitt.

          guys seem to be fine here and decline when they move on Goldson, Tarell, Larry Grant, Sopoaga, RJ, etc.

          1. So anyone who isn’t declaring Baalke a bust is a homer? Run right off that cliff for us why don’t you?

  14. If your going to draft a safety in the first 20 picks, he’d better be a hall of famer? That’s the stupidest thing you’ve ever said.

  15. Kap DID loose the game!
    That pass to a WIDE OPEN Boldin in the 3rd Q sealed their fate.
    Had that been a catch and YAC, it would have kept the drive alive and put some points on the board.
    Kap keeps having bone headed games.
    How many delay of games did he have (they should be part of the QB rating….)?

  16. I noticed the ghost of VD running down the field on one replay, he looked slow like he had a hitch in his giddyup.

    Fair grades, although a bit generous on Krapernick. He threw some atrocious passes, especially the one to a wide open Boldin. Plus most of the sacks are on Krap for standing there like the idiot he is and taking them.

    1. What made him good was his scrambling, he now just takes a sack. I know they are bringing the house and he knows it why stay in the pocket call hike and start moving. I know what play you saw VD and you are right he looked like he was just trotting down the field.

  17. I said after the Raider game that the 49ers would finish 7-9. Don’t see any reason to change that. No healthy running backs, Borland hurt, short week. This team is done.

    1. I agree Jack! I said that last week after the loss to the Raiders their next three games are going to be tough. There’s possibility they’ll end up 7-9 at end of the season:-)

    2. I said 7-9 at the beginning of the season. Hated our FA signings, hated re-signing Kaep, liked our draft overall but knew it would take time for those guys to develop, and figured in that Bowman and Aldon would be out for most of the year.

    3. After the Oakland game, predicting 7-9 was reasonable. If Arizona has as many injuries coming out of their Seahawks game as the 49ers did Sunday, then the last game might be a tossup. The halt and the lame fighting a long range field goal game to the death.

  18. If you’re going to draft a safety in the top-20 picks, he better be a Hall of Famer.
    Says who?

  19. You’re Baalke grade and review reeks of fandom. One missing offensive weapon drafted at some point in the past 5 years is the reason this season turned into a failure? Pure gibberish.

  20. Wow. I do believe this year is over…however next year we should have a lot of talent returning…we have what 19 players on IR? I do think the QB position needs help, and we have to get some WR…

  21. Grant,

    The biggest thing that changed at TE that nobody talks about is coaching. We now have a defensive coach coaching the TEs, right? Does VD’s drop off possibly have anything to do with coaching? I’m not letting VD off the hook for sure, but I’m just wondering about coaching…

  22. As open as Grant leaves himself to justifiable criticism, he was 100% right about the Turtles. And that is entirely on Baalke, unless you consider Patton and Ellington viable speed threats.

    Jury is still out on them, and that is entirely on Harbaugh. Baalke seems unable to draft offensive talent, but it’s really hard to judge that, because Harbaugh’s offensive staff seems unable to utilize young (and old) talent.

    1. The 2014 draft may be one of the best ever for receivers.

      WR speed could be had in the late 3rd to 4th round. People will be watching how Brandon Thomas, Bruce Ellington, and Stevie Johnson perform in future seasons.

      If Ward turns out to have ongoing foot (or other fragility) issues, it will look even worse for Baalke.

      Many think the 4th for Stevie Johnson trade was a tacit admittance by the 49ers that they aren’t any good at assessing college receivers.

  23. Seriously Grant. We get it already you are not a fan, but do you have to be the ultimate anti-fan.

    Is this really journalism? Wow. I think im to the point joining the PD exodus.

  24. This game is a good microcosm of the strengths and weaknesses of both Harbaugh and Baalke.

    Baalke B

    Baalke Good – The roster depth was impressive. Most (if not all) other teams would have collapsed with as many players out (or playing hurt) as the 49ers had. Good job Baalke.
    Baalke Bad – No edge WR speed. None on the horizon either.

    Harbaugh and Coaching Staff C+

    Harbaugh and Coaching Staff Good – The backups played their guts out. I feel much better about team depth after this game. The 49er coaches are miracle workers for getting the 3rd-4th-5th-6th-7th stringers ready to play.

    Harbaugh and Coaching Staff Bad – More mindless late game management. Its mid 4th qtr, two scores down. Naturally, the 49ers run a clock chewing style of offense. Huddles. Waiting till 2 seconds before play/game clock runs out to hike the ball. Its as if they were protecting a lead.

    I would have given the coaching staff an A- if not for the downright weird way they manage games in the 4th qtr.

    So far, its 1 TD by the starting offense in the last 16 4th qtrs.

  25. Vernon Davis is badly hurt. All season I was unsure weather VD mentally checked out, is on a kind of playing strike, or is hurt.

    There was a cut-away shot of him trying to run a deep seam route. He ran as if he had a wooden leg. Its either his back, a really bad hammy or both.

    1. Tanier wrote on the end of Harbaugh’s Camelot before the game today:
      “It was Camelot, and while the Super Bowl brought an upset, there was no reason to think it would bring the end. Harbaugh, Kaepernick and Roman stormed the playoffs again a season later, but the results were not quite as magical. The Seahawks displayed everything the 49ers wanted to be: tough on defense, crafty with options, the Pac-10 firebrand coach and quarterback for the smartphone era. There were hiccups on that 2013 playoff road: games where Kaepernick’s growth seemed stunted, games where Harbaugh’s Man-on-Fire sideline act had worn thin, long stretches where Roman’s offense moved like a thresher on a NASCAR track.
      Twenty-two months after we hailed the 49ers as the face of the NFL’s future, 10 months after they came within a few plays of returning to the Super Bowl, we are tearing down statues and scratching the names off the obelisks. The rift between Harbaugh and his bosses has become a self-fulfilling prophecy, his wild-man routine (like so many other wild-man routines) proved to be a better short-term motivator than long-range management plan.
      Roman has so many toys in his toy chest that he cannot focus on any of them: He lines up a series of 2012-vintage power runs to get his team into the red zone, then gets distracted and switches to a spread formation that can only lead to a field goal. Kaepernick got lost halfway between deadly duel threat and traditional pocket passer, often combining the worst of both worlds.”

      1. mood,

        it’s often the defenses and the offense’s limitations that dictate the personnel groups and formations called which leads to the appearance of a bipolar offensive identity. there seems to be some weird thought that the Niners are trying to force Kaepernick to be a pocket passer…run a spread offense…etc…if you look back the Niners called plenty of read option and designed QB runs, lots of play action.

        1. AFFP

          I get your point. But I wonder if the best teams allow the opposing personnel and their formations to constantly dictate their choice of plays. For offenses to succeed, they are the ones who should keep the defenses unsure. Do you think that that’s what the Niners have done this season. Or else, if opposing defenses realize that if they have defensive formation A, then the Niners will definitely run either play B or C. So right at the snap, defense changes from A to D and the Niners offense still plays it like they are playing A and the play goes nowhere.

          In other words, the element of surprise seems to pretty much gone from the Niners offense. Combined with execution ineptitude, we have 3 losses (Bears, Rams and Raiders) that ended post-season hopes.

        2. AFFP,
          Not exactly. The creativity that was present circa 2012 in the running game and formations deployed has been missing. Just yesterday, we saw Seattle running some of those circa 2012 plays with Will Tukuafu and the heavy packages. When was the last time we saw that from the 49ers? I don’t remember seeing any of that this year.

    2. I saw that run. He did look like he had a wooden leg. He used to outrun defenders with no problem. He looked awful on that run. It almost looked like he wasn’t trying. I really hope it’s injury. Honestly, I think he has too many business distractions… going public, art gallery, Jamba Juice, new contract, etc. He’s forgotten that his #1 job is being a professional football player.

    3. Brodie— Or he didn’t work out as much in the off season along with being in a natural decline due to age. A lot to keeping in shape has to do with desire. You lose desire and you don’t work as hard. Davis seemed to have lost his desire for the game even before this season started.

  26. “If you’re going to draft a safety in the top-20 picks, he better be a Hall of Famer.” Wow. Just, wow…

  27. The niners are a slow team. I am quite confident we have the slowest receiving core in the league collectively. We definitely have the slowest receiving core of the players who actually see the field. We need to asses the capability of QP and ellington. Crab is gone. SJ i have mixed feelings about, but I think Patton could replace him -if given an opportunity.

    But we desperately need to draft or trade for a true #1 wr. Someone like – dez, megatron, julio, antonio, AJ etc. We need someone fast who can catch a jump ball. We need a redzone target. We need someone who will draw a double coverage.

    Also, we need a TEwho can catch and block. Time to rebuild. Let’s not give a free pass to baalke . He has had a lot of F ups.

  28. Its going to depend on how bad the York’s want to be in the fiftieth Super Bowl next year. How bad do they want to showcase their new stadium with their team. Those answers will occur sooner then later.

    To me its simple, keep Harbaugh indicates they are serious. I am not saying that is the right thing to do.

    Statistically speaking 12 percent of first year coaches reach the Super Bowl and 6 percent actually win it. Those figures do indicate that it can be done with a first year coach. They also indicate it doesn’t happen very often at all.

    I would assume if they hire a new HC some housecleaning will be done. I would say to mention a few Gore, Crabtree, Justin Smith, Brooks, Culliver would probably be gone. Not sure about Hunter or Bowman they may not make it back from injuries.

    Injuries – boy we sure had a slew of them this year.

    Its kind of like where we were four years ago. Questioning the HC and the QB. The names have changed but the arguments haven’t.

  29. Defensive players out before the game…
    ILB – Bowman, Willis
    CB – Brock, Culliver, Ward, Cook
    NT – Williams, Dorsey

    Offensive Players out before the game…
    TE- V. McDonald, Derek Carrier
    RT – A. Davis
    C – Kilgore, M. Martin

    Inured during the game…
    RB – Gore, Hyde
    ILB – Borland, Willhoite
    TE – Celek
    OLB – Brooks

    Playing all season with (significant) reduction in abilities due to injury…
    V. Davis, Iupati, Crabtree

    The 49ers played an amazing game considering all the talent that’s off the field. Hats off to the coaching staff for getting them ready to play.

    The depth on this team, and its assistant coaching staff, are (or should be) the envy of the NFL.

    Harbaugh’s 2nd half game management drives me nuts, but York better think long and hard before messing with this formula. I came away from this game feeling much better about the long term roster strength.

    Lacking WR speed? Yup. But we have backups for backups that would start no many teams.

    1. “The 49ers played an amazing game considering all the talent that’s off the field. Hats off to the coaching staff for getting them ready to play.”

      Well said, Brodie! Our players competed today like champions and that’s all we really could ask for them.

      1. Ricardo, great teams win Championships! It doesn’t matter how well you compete if your don’t win. The problem with some of you here to many excuses, you just can’t accept the fact that the 49ers aren’t that good, especially our offense stinks and QB can’t even carry the offense on his back:-)

      2. I completely agree. They played hard despite the adversity storm that engulfed the team this year. If York sacks Harbaugh and the team fails to reach the Super Bowl, he and his GM should be relieved of their duties….

    2. No question. Last time we played the ‘Hawks it was an embarrassment. We didn’t show up or meet their intensity, but the reality is, half our starters were injured by the end of yesterday’s game. On top of that, terrible calls to seal fate. In fact, if the 49ers would have just run that offense for the entire year, we would be fine. We would have won most games.

    3. No question. Last time we played the ‘Hawks it was an embarrassment. We didn’t show up or meet their intensity, but the reality is, half our starters were injured by the end of yesterday’s game. On top of that, terrible calls to seal fate. In fact, if the 49ers would have just run that offense for the entire year, we would be fine. We would have won most games.

  30. Question about trading Harbaugh. If the FO has a deal with Oakland (for example) to trade Harbaugh for one or more draft picks and Harbaugh says no, can Harbaugh subsequently sign with Oakland once he is fired.

  31. I would make the argument that the 49ers run for the last three seasons was due to their exceptional defense with the offense doing what was needed to win, with mostly the running game. Harbaugh and Roman haven’t shown that they can make the offense better — in fact it has gotten worse — maybe they didn’t realize the Kap wasn’t Luck and defenses were not USC like. As for Baalke, he is from the Parcells school of football which is physical runs and just enough passes to win. Worked in the last century. Baalke has not yet drafted a standout receiver because he doesn’t know what one looks like. If Jed York wants to do the right thing, he needs to keep the players and bring a brand new experienced GM and an offensive minded young coach.

  32. Think about that as you stare at your desk, Trent.

    OK, it’s official; Grant has jumped the shark. Jack, is there any way you can move your blog to a site that allows for conversations in the comment section?

    1. Claude,

      The site that I work with now allows for comments. It’s not as smooth as this one, but if you want to have banter with another commenter all you need to do is address it to them.

      1. Jack:

        Thanks for the response. I’m traveling for the next week or so, but will give it a try when I can.

        rocket: Unfortunately, it’s fewer and fewer all the time.

        1. My eyesight isn’t what it used to be. could someone please tell me what the text in CB’s avatar says. Thank you

    2. CB,

      The zone forum setup sucks, which is why I continue to come here. I’ve just stopped reading the articles and scroll through comments until I find something interesting. There’s a lot more crap to wade through with all the wannabe GM’s and Coaches spreading their fertilizer, but there are still a few here and there that have good input.

      1. They’ve eliminated the need for each post to be moderated, which at least gets things moving quicker.

        1. Jack, when you get a chance, please copy and paste rocket’s above comments and send it to the person(s) in-charge of the zone. I’m pretty sure you’ve done your part, but If they can make their forum more interactive the way this blog works, they will attract a lot more readers.

  33. Eddie D had John McVay and Jeddy Y has Paraag Marathe. Before the game, Terry Bradshaw summed it up very well for me when basically he said with disbelief: What the heck is going on with the 49ers FO, have they lost their minds? Jed has his stadium and one of the league’s biggest cash cows. Time now to focus on bidness. I would not be surprised if the 49er business model is more like Billy Beane’s Moneyball than Eddie D’s style of bringing in the best football minds at every level. What we don’t need now is a 34 year old finance and history major and his Stanford Business School wizard to reinvent the wheel. I wonder what Baalke’s guru, Bill Parcells, says about firing a head coach with a record like Harbaugh’s? Smart move Trent, bring in a nicer guy. Better to feel good than to take a chance with a proven winner who can sometimes be difficult. Yeah, right.

  34. Reid leads one of the best defenses in the game this year

    without our best players….he is a stud, you are not

  35. Any journalist who bashes yesterdays efforts when considering the amount of injuries and poor calls that went against the 49ers, should be fired! You can bash this team when deserved, and they have deserved it the past couple weeks, but if you are a fan, give YOUR team props when they play inspired football.

    1) Kaepernick did everything he could yesterday with an aging, overrated receiving core. It has no speed to stretch and it is death in today’s NFL. No TE’s. Instead of a raise for Davis, I hope they rework his contract. He let the whole team down.

    2) The defense was sunk once Borland was out. If anyone wants to know how great a pick he was, just watch the game the minute after his injury. Different defense completely. Stud!

    3) I see the silver lining now. Hyde will be good. You saw the flashes. Ellington will get better. Lynch is flat good. Borland is close to Pro Bowl level a rookie. Dial continues to improve. He will be a force next year. McDonald is now our best lineman. Johnson will be a solid corner for us next year. Kid played pretty well as rookie. Marcus Martin, improved when he played. Ironically, I have more concerns about our first round pick than any of the others.

    1. Just want to add that Carradine has been steadily improving over the last few weeks, now that he is actually playing, He had two sacks yesterday. Justin Smith is great, but age trumps desire. Time to let him go and use the $4.25 million in savings on speedy WR or red zone TE. Bring Justin back as an assistant defensive line coach.

      1. I’ll agree that one of the encouraging signs for next year is the ascension of Tank, but not ready to see Cowboy ride off into the sunset just yet….

      2. Yes, we need to get younger.

        We also need to get healthy. Most of the league would have gone 3-13 with all the key injuries we had.

          1. I would suggest Brad Seely is overrated as a coach. Most teams use young guys on STs and can make it work. Seely consistently gets experienced, specialist STs guys and his units are consistently mediocre.

            1. Hell, the Seachickens use half our leftovers for STs and turn them into pro-bowlers…WTF on that.

  36. I’m reading a lot of comments that are nothing but people venting their personal frustration and disappointment about the team at Grant simply because he doesn’t blow sunshine up their heinies about the team to make them feel better. Pretty damn immature.

    1. What a silly comment There is nothing immature about disagreeing with a journalist. GC has made plenty of inappropriate and unnecessary comments about this team in the past. Implying that peoples reactions or views about GC and his content are somehow improper is horses**t. I have no issue with today’s particular article, but make no bones. he has crossed journalistic integrity line more than once. As they say, fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. Frankly, I am sure GC is fine with the tradeoff between his increasing readership, and being universally loved and respected. GC is basically the FoxNews of sports. Truth is not the story, the story is the truth.

      1. Funny you must have assumed you were one of the people I was talking about, wonder why that is?

    2. Almost as immature as a guy who lives in his parents’ basement smugly telling an NFL Executive of the Year winner how to do his job.

  37. The Niners stood still while the league moved past the Niners offense. Baalke whiffed on a few drafts which didm’ help. Still, the Niner roster is stacked and should compete for a title.
    This is a pretty disappointing season. The O-Line was spotty, the TE was spotty, but what you cannot have is a QB that is spotty and that’s what we got all year folks.

    Yeah yeah yeah I’ve been saying this since week 2 but if you look at the few plays that Russell can make, as opposed to the ones CK couldn’t make, there’s your 10 point difference in the game.

    Also glad to see Roman go. I think he had some plays that can get players open, but his problem is the rhythm of how he calls plays. He’s too afraid to behind the chains.

    1. Wilson didn’t play any better than Kap did yesterday and threw a terrible pick to cost his team points. The difference between the two teams yesterday was the Niner injuries piling up and a horrible call that handed the Seahawks a first down and ultimately a TD. There was little to separate these teams yesterday which shows that the napalm and rebuild theory that some throw out is ridiculous.

      This team had a poor season by their standards. The QB struggled at times, as did every other facet of the offense including the playcallers. It happens, as does the injuries and fall off from a lot of games played over the course of a few seasons. This is a parity league and it really doesn’t take much to send a season in the wrong direction.

      I hate the idea that Harbaugh is going to be the former HC in a few weeks, but that is likely what is going to happen and I really fear a return to pre Harbaugh results if they screw up the next Coaching hire. The fact Tomsula is rumored to be the top choice is a sign that might be on the horizon.

      1. Wilson’s interception didn’t cost his team any points. It actually ended up hurting the 49ers more than Seattle because Borland was injured during the return.

        1. Jack,

          Yeah it did. They were in position for a FG try. He made a poor throw and decision. Borland’s injury was unfortunate but it still hurt Seattle on the score board potentially.

  38. 5 heartless, gutless or talentless people who should be gone next year (but may not).

    1) Roman. If he is here, I may not be. He is that bad.
    2) Crabtree. If he is here, I may not be. He is that bad.
    3) Both Davis’s. With regard to their year, just flat wow!
    4) Iupati. How can he be an NFL star, but cannot pass block. Strange.
    5) Brock. Gets big contract, sits out because of big toe. Stranger.
    6) Brooks. Two distractions in one year. Sorry, unless your name is Aldon Smith, that is one too many.

    Let me also list the people who an be on my team forever:
    1) Gore
    2) Gore again.
    3) Boldin
    4) Bethea
    5) Staley
    6) Smith.

  39. I don’t like the blame game on referees because it happens in all games. But this time it really changed game instead of being down by 6 we were forced to go for it all on our pocessions instead of maybe 2 FGs. So it pisses me off after the fact that NFL admits their mistake.

  40. NinerMD
    Chew no this — and a bunch of other things. Chiefs currently competing for the playoffs. Big game coming up in Pittsburgh while CK gets to hit the books and learn how to be a QB.
    If Chiefs get in, their first rd could be against Indy, a rematch from last year, or Cincy with Andy Dalton. They get by Cincy and it’s Denver or NE. NE they beat on a Monday night, granted it was way early in the year. Denver they played great in denver but lost at the end. Once you get in anything can happen. Can you imagine the Chiefs and the Seahawks in the SB? Can the Chiefs even compete against them? Oh yeah, THEY ALREADY BEAT THEM!

    Did you see the Chiefs and Raiders game? We saw a few aerial bombs and some nice precision passing that led to some nice YAC.
    Alex is not a great QB. But like RW he can get things done. CK is way down at the bottom this year as a QB.
    Where’s Bay Area numb nuts? It’s time to root for Gabbert!

    1. ninermd is a big time dolt…….its eating him apart our boy wonder just krapped on himself and to make it worse Alex is not a bad QB after all…..

    2. Chew on the identical passing stats from the games ck and smith played againts the seahaks. Keep
      In mind smith was at home.

      Now also keep in mind the injuries to the two teams and key ones at that. You got Alex smith yesterday without a healthy RB. And way less key injuries. And for a little more. Ck had more rushin yards. Again Wilson didn’t do anything ck didn’t yesterday. Except hand the ball off to his rb who was healthy and taking advantage of another injury on the defense.

      Nice try 77. Keep up the bad work.

      1. Chew on this — Smith’s team won! And when the Niners played at home they got smoked!
        Oh yeah the KC game was not played in ideal conditions. It was cold and windy!
        You have Ck running into sacks and missing wide open receivers and not taking check downs and generally look lost and confused.

        Bring on Gabbert!

        1. Fan777- They very fact that you are pushing for Gabbart is a big red flag that your greatest joy in life would be and has always been that Kaep gets replaced like Alex did even if that means that the Niners have a horrible season. Glad you got your priorities right.

          1. Willtalk – The fact you want to keep Kaep and not look at other alternatives shows you have no priorities other then to love Kaep til death do you part!

        2. Lol the weather? Really? That’s the excuse for the chiefs getting beat in Oakland? Oh my you would have been the best excuse man for smith when he was here.
          I see you forgot to mention the number of times they ran the ball. And that gore averaged 5+ yards a carry and yet only touched it 12 times. In a close game. I get it. It’s all ck’s fault. When he had good games this season and played well, you still had a problem. Why would I listen to a complete moron about team play, qb play, or football at all?
          The weather… Lmao.

          1. You should just tap out now man. Sure the chiefs lost to the raiders. But they played on a short week, in really bad weather, and had a chance to win at the end,
            Kaep and the niners had 10 days to prepare for the raiders, took a bus to the stadium,and the offense was over matched,

      2. Ninermd, I’m just SMH when i read your Post to many excuses one after another:-) You just can’t moved on from Alex Smith. Just accept the facts that your boy Kaep is just a failure and frankly he doesn’t have it to be the 49ers savior:-)

      3. Hey Ninermd, Smith has been playing with players that don’t come close to what Kaepernick has….and winning. Jamal Charles had to leave the game. Just admit it. The healing begins when you admit it. Harbaugh made the wrong choice

    3. Very, very well said. Harbaugh went for the hot chick with big ta ta s in 2012, and his ex is in KC laughing his way into the playoffs. That’s Karma at its finest.

  41. Ed Hochulis’ officiating skills have been diminishing every year. Time to relieve him of his duties….

    1. How can Ed’s officiating skills be diminishing if he claims that he could see Moody’s helmet through Wilson’s torso? The guy has x-ray vision.

  42. Re Harbaugh: Does the 49er administration want an excellent football coach or the good humor man? For all of you who follow football records closer than I, name all the coaches that have a better record than Harbaugh in their first fours years. I suspect the list is very short. Isn’t it the goal of all 32 teams to make the playoffs and ultimately the Super Bowl each year? In the past four years name the teams who have a better playoff run than the 49ers. Given the current NFL coaches available, who has a better record than Harbaugh? The only one that comes to mind is Thomsula and he has a very short resume as a head coach. I was in the military in the upper peninsula of Michigan during the Lombardi Packers era. Lombardi was stubborn and often irascible but could he coach football?

    Re Baalke: He hasn’t acquired a go to, speed demon receiver but he sure knows linebackers. Actually, aside from receiver his record of acquiring players is, overall, not too bad. There may be a team with deeper, quality player depth than the 49ers but none come immediately to mind. There are two basic philosophies on personnel: draft players to fit the scheme or change the scheme to fit the players. (See Don Shula, Miami Dolphins.)

    Re ownership and administration: If you want a group of sycophants fine but its seems to me you want people who disagree to offer different perspectives, schemes and opinions on personnel. No coach or administration has ever been right 100% of the time.

    One off year in four is not a reason to dismantle what has been a successful franchise in that time. The expression, “Be careful for what you wish because you may get it” comes to mind.

      1. What was new for me was that I wasn’t aware that the FO might have some leverage regarding the assistant coaches. So Fangio can’t just leave because Harbaugh does. Of course, if he really wants to leave it would be better to let him go (disgruntled employee); but since he has a commitment he might willingly stay on another year and by the end of that year who knows how things might change.

    1. Nice. Can you make one of him missing Boldin crossing right in front of him wide open and then taking the sack?

    2. God that’s so sad. That’s just as bad as the first play of the Raider game. He did himself no favors by going to all those press conferences with the beats headphones because it sure seems like there is no light bulb up there in that head.

      Bay Area Fanatic – care to comment?

      1. Agreed. At least when Smith was here he was sporting a Giants baseball hat in support of our bay area brothers

    3. That wasn’t a drive killer. It was first down and the play would have gained about 3 yards if he’d dumped it off to Hyde.

      The poor throw over Boldin’s head was the drive killer. The biggest drive killer was once again getting stoned on a short yardage play, this time on 4th down. A great summery of all the things that plagued this team during the season in one game.

      1. It’s a drive killer because it was so unnecessary. Now it’s 2nd and 10+ yards. You don’t give negative plays to a top tier defense. You make them earn it. Kaep’s been making bone head plays like this all year. And last year. And the year before. Problem is he’s not making enough wow plays to compensate for these brain farts.

      2. I’ll have to disagree Rocket. The offense had the momentum on their side before that play. After Kaep inexplicably tried to tuck the ball and run despite having a comfortable pocket and it resulted in a sack, the offense had zero momentum.

        1. Here’s what happened before that play. Score is 7-3 Niners. They have a drive that started on their own 10 yard line. They make some nice plays and Kaep has a 22 yard run. Around the 40 he scrambles out of the pocket, passes to Miller who get the ball to the 35. This is the play that Gore suffered his concussion.
          The next play is the GIF. And then the next play they take a time out to avoid a delay of game. The next play they try to run the read option, Kaep keeps it and loses two yards. The next play Seattle shows blitz and blitzes, and Kaep is sacked.
          That’s Kaep in a nutshell. He plays best when he can improvise, but you can’t win or have a consistent offense that way.
          I kinda feel sorry for him now…..

      3. I didn’t say it was a good play. It was not a drive killer. It’s first down and they lost two yards. When he misses a wide open Boldin on 3rd down, that’s a drive killer.

    4. What happened after that play? The Niners were winning and close to FG range. I love how Avril is jumping up and down like he made a great play when all Kaep did was run right up him so he can get a sack.

      1. Avril made a nice move there, actually. He saw that Kap was moving forward, so he reversed his momentum and came inside the block to intercept Kap. If he does not do that, he has no shot at being part of that play. It was 94 (Kevin Williams) who just had to fall to the side to tackle Kap as Kap tried to unnecessarily squeeze through a narrow window.

    1. Bay Area, I like your thinking. And maybe it’s something involving a draft pick and/or players. Gordon’s main issues have been with weed, which has become a lesser crime in the NFL. Plus, he can get the really good stuff in Cali, so he wouldn’t have to smoke so much of it. I think I’d rather take a chance on Gordon than Peterson at this point.

      1. my inclination would have been to trade future draft picks for him early in the season and especially after the Rice fiasco. It seemed obvious that his suspension was due to be shortened and his price at that time would have still been rock bottom. If you are willing to gamble on an injured college player as a low risk high reward pick, Gordon would also qualify in that respect. If the Niners had Gordon even if he doesn’t contribute much this season he would assure that they had the speed receiver they would have to pay an arm and a leg for this coming season.

  43. Almost completely agree with your take, Grant.

    as Ronnie Lott said way-back-when, the NFL is about who outhits who. When the Niners play the Seahawks, our guys come off the field faster and more often. The physics of NFL football is brutally simple. Whether than’s Bruce Miller’s broken scapula and Bowman’s broken knee last year, or a series of our guys coming off the field this year, the result is the same. Arguably, a key factor yesterday was running out of TEs and RBs, something Seattle didnt have to face because they were forcing the action in the NFL’s most basic fashion. Bottom line: we won’t beat Seattle consistently until we can outhit them consistently.

    Trent Baalke has a deadly flaw: the inability to assess offensive talent. He appears cut from the Parcells mode, which thankfully means the ability to bring in big/strong guys like Aldon, Bowman (altho I am not sure he gets credit for drafting him), Tank, etc and good bargains like Borland, Wilhoite, etc. But it was obvious during the 2011 playoff run that the #1 glaring need was a gamebreaking wide receiver, he has failed ignominiously in each draft/offseason since.

    Kaep is not the QB I was hoping he would be by now. But it’s unclear that he’s far behind the same learning curve that Steve Young took when he got here, transitioning from “Mr Happy Feet” to a NFL MVP pocket passer. Kaep may never make this transition. But given the dearth of available franchise quarterbacks (!), we need to take 18-24 months for coaches to see if this transition is going to happen.

    It’s well known now that fan favorite Eddie Debartolo was so ego-overinvested in the Niners that he regularly threatened to fire Bill Walsh. Yes, that Bill Walsh – the guy who helped revolutionize the game and took the 49ers from 2-14 to a Super Bowl in 3 years, then added 2 more on top of it. But the reasons Eddie is a fan favorite is he had just enough control over his “inner child” as the touchy feely types say that he didn’t hit the nuclear button on someone who was eminently talented in a field where he himself had none. Now it’s up to young Mr York to make what will probably be the most important decision of his life. I can guarantee you that when he’s 50, 60, and 80 years old, his mind will still roll this one over in his head. He will say, “I had the chance to go with a GM who showed great instincts in bringing in linebackers, or a coach who just turned a crap franchise around but was a complete dork to deal with…and I did X”. Mr York, just what do you bring to this football and business decision? If you err on the side over overestimating your own insight and wisdom, and underestimating the extent to which your ego needs soothing, beware.

  44. I would give Balke an F-
    Jed York an F
    and the to whole York family – please sell the Niners to someone who can put the team’s need first and does not setup whole seasons of futility by sabotaging their own coaches

  45. Jack:

    I’m puzzled by the whole injury bug this year and you typically have stats available to you. Is there a stat that provides a relative view of how injuries have affected NFL teams this year. Obviously we have more injuries than in the past, but are we much higher than average (seems that way)? If you know of a free site to get the information, I’ll be glad to do the research.

    1. The injury bug was going to happen sooner or later. We had 3 seasons where many teams were sitting at home(See: Cardinals) while the niners were still playing deep into January. Many teams had longer off season which allow them to heal. I don’t know if you watch basketball but the Miami Heat was in the same boat as us. After so many seasons of making deep runs it takes a toll on the body. Patrick Willis admitted he’s had toe problem for a few years. He just refused to get surgery. The fact the our coaches refuse to give younger guys significant minutes do not help as well. They never earn to adjust to the league so we lean harder on vets. HYDE was supposed to give Gore a break, he wasnt allowed to. The next coaching staff has to learn how to ease young guys into the mix. New England is perfect. They have no problem throwing new guys to wolves. It’s the only way to learn.

      1. Agree that these are factors, but I for one would like to get some perspective. Are we having 50% more injuries (based on some statistic) than last year? Are we twice the league average or only 25% above the league average. Are injuries for the league as a whole rising? I have no idea.

        Given how it has impacted our season, I think having a statistical relationship is more valuable than just a vague idea. It could spur action if the team is actually looking at the numbers.

        I read somewhere that Stats LLC has some information on this, but it looks to me like it’s a pay site.

              1. Thanks, Mid:

                If you can provide me with the sites I can do it myself. I’d like to get some data for multiple years as well as SF vs NFL as a whole.

  46. It’s a shame we lost and now everyone will try and say Wilson is a better QB than Colin. Real fans know that is far from the case. Give Colin the same weapons and we win this game every time. Colin is twice as good as Wilson will ever be.

      1. ONE healthy rb ATLEAST.
        Did anyone watch the game yesterday?
        Nobody noticed the offense started stalling when gore went down? What about the holding calls on offense? Some claim ck had drive killers, those aren’t?
        What about the Borland injury? Notice how lynch started running more efficient? Wilson didn’t do anything ck didn’t to win this game. I don’t care how many times you want to say it. It isn’t true. 77 you wanted Alex smith. You got him. Deal with it.

        1. 77 you wanted Alex smith. You got him. Deal with it.

          In a way that’s true. We had a QB that we traded because he didn’t make players better and thus was considered to have a low ceiling. The problem though is that we replaced him with a QB that has the same limitation.

          1. And ck did last season.
            He regressed this season. But so did the o-Line. No right end either. I’m not saying ck was good this season I’m talking to the grants and other smith fans when I say you’re dreaming if you think smith would have done better with this team.
            KC’s O -line is better than ours. That game yesterday is exactly what we would have seen out of Smith.
            Identical numbers, a couple of missed throws downfield. (Watch KC game yesterday and any of old smith games with us) zero turnovers, intermediate throws, you don’t need stats to remember how Alex smith looked and still does when he’s pressured. They look the same.

            Yeah I’m talking to the 77 and prime who flat out wished they still had Alex smith. Onelame included.

            Look at his game by game stats vs tough defenses.

            Look at the SF game
            And the Seattle game.
            And for the soft defenses he plays. Look at the YAC from his dump offs.
            Yeah he wins, but againts mediocre to bad defenses. But they won’t say that.

            1. MD Your using the same arguments that I used in defending Alex, I happen to agree with your arguments. The reality is CK has all this physical gift and not so much upstairs, where as Alex had the upstairs part taken care of but didn’t posses the physical gifts. Its almost like putting Alex brain on CK body would be the ideal QB. As it was with Alex its the same with CK its a team game and the team lost.

              Of course CK didn’t lose the game, neither did Harbaugh, or the refs, its just the continuing misfortunes that have plagued this team from the onset.

              1. You’re right under….
                Because a couple of idiots “said” ck was my hero and I’m making excuses doesn’t mean it’s true.
                I just refuse to blame this whole offensive implosion on him only. But when you have hurt feelings I guess they don’t think you can look at it objectively.
                It’s simple. Ck was horrid this season, and it wasn’t only him, and Alex smith wouldn’t do any better with this offense.
                I put up the numbers. I’ve watched the games. It’s right there in front of them but they choose to skip those facts and carry on. Is what it is. Smith is gone and that’s all she wrote.

            2. Ninermd says “Yeah he wins, but againts mediocre to bad defenses”

              Is that the biggest crock or what? So what does it mean then that Kaepernick lost to the Raiders and that the Chiefs beat them and the Seahawks? Your comparisons and analogies between Smith and Kaepernick contradict each other that you cannot even see it. Keep fishing though, it makes my Monday a lot funnier listening to you haters.

              1. He lost to the raiders too. They do play twice dummy.
                and my comparisons?
                Go back and read who wants that bum back here and thinks he can do better than this bum.

            3. i think Alex stunk, managed to become above average in 2012, and has since dropped back to average in KC, but the fact that Colin hasn’t been significantly better than him and has been worse this season despite having better receivers (he may be older & slower, but Boldin is 100x better than anything they’ve had opposite Crabtree).

              Colin’s a read-option QB that hasn’t developed in the pocket. Thing is, very few do. Steve Young is the only one that comes to mind in terms of a running QB becoming arguably great in the pocket. Maybe Garcia became good in the pocket, he was at least passable.

              As the league has gotten better defending the new QB breed, Colin (and his counterparts) have been on the decline.

              the irony is that you & bay have become the new oneniner & prime with the excuses, praise the 49ers QB or you’re not a fan, etc.

          2. I don’t want Alex Smith, but I think he got a raw deal the way they showed him the door. He was playing at a high level and got replaced by CK who has way more limitations then Alex.

            1. Hyde is deceptive in that he looks and runs like a power back. But the reality is that he does much better in open space once he gets past the Oline. He just overwhelms defenders if he can get a bit of an angle on them which he is good at doing in the open field.He still runs a bit high to be a viable short yardage back. Gore was actually more of a power runner when he was younger. They should use Hyde as a check down receiver more. I don’t think a corner could bring him down one on one.

    1. Bay Area Kaeperlover-

      Wilson has Lynch and that’s it. His WR are.. Baldwin, Kearse, scrubs.
      He doesn’t have a FB as good as Miller. Vernon may have had an off year but he’s a pro bowl caliber TE. The O-Line had an off year too but Staley’s been to the PB. Iapti is a solid run blocker. Guess who is not anywhere close to being a pro bowl player at his position — yeah — your favorite Niner CK.

      Do you cuddle with that fathead at night?

    2. seriously dude…that boat sailed long ago…….hate to say it but “The midget” is much better

      1. No that boat has not sailed exactly. A career is a long time. Wilson barely put points up against 4 string players and half were from the street due to injuries. Marshawn lynch on the niners gets those 3rd and 4th and 1-2 every time. He once again was the most important player on the field. When you have to use your full back to get you first downs your in trouble. This conversation will change next year I promise you.. Niners get there line fixed and add 2 wrs that can seperate you will see a different QB…

        1. lol….dude let it go….our QB really really sucks…..definitely not elite.

          R.Wilson is better at everything….handling the press/public, avoiding sacks(he lost his center also), going through his progression, making other players better…..etc,…..and he has a Super Bowl ring……

          1. He avoided tons of sacks yesterday. Lol
            Notice his softball answers to your questions?
            He would never mention that Wilson still runs the option and that’s where he gets his payday, he won’t mention lynch, he won’t mention how the Seahawks went back to runnin the ball after the Dallas loss. He won’t mention his defense sets him up nicely when healthy which they are.
            Nope none of those facts will be answered because it gives Wilson an upper edge to make his point.
            You think this blog bashes it’s qb, should have heard the Seahak fans talking about their midget. They were begging to run more, so were 49er fans. Difference is. Their OC noticed that was their strength ours….. Throw more who needs to run the Ball. Were teaching here. Pathetic!

            1. Kaepernick should’a been sack 9 times yesterday, he was just lucky that he eluded those sacks with the defender over running him. But overall he still stink as a QB 27 yrs old is on a declined already:-)

  47. Relax, y’all. The negativity toward their performance is undeserved.
    The Niners played with heart and (for the most part) skill, we just got beat by one of the best teams in football. I’ve been utterly disappointed with recent efforts, but the team showed up and did themselves proud.
    – Defense gets an A. Despite injuries, we harassed and stifled Wilson, sacked him a ton, didn’t let him break big runs, and held them to 17 points… and that’s with a huge missed holding call on Marshawn’s biggest run (lead to a touchdown… Skuta got yanked and Lynch got the edge because of it), and a horsesh-t late hit that turned another 3 into 7. Really, that was a 9-point defensive effort even with injuries piling up.
    – Offense looked pretty good until Gore’s injury. We moved the ball well, lost what would have been a 1st half field goal due to the “block in the back” on Lloyd (defender turned his back and fell down) on one drive, and played with toughness and the 2TE sets that fit our personnel.
    – Yes, Kap missed a couple passes, ran into a sack or three, and didn’t always make the right play. But he played the right way, stayed away from big mistakes, found checkdowns and threatened the D with his running. He’s at his best when he throws for 220 and runs for 60, and the offense is RUN-first.
    – Play calling was much better. I’ve got no beef with the plays this game. Remember that we even lost Celek and had to go with undrafted Asante Cleveland on a regular basis.
    – Hyde is a stud. He’s better than Seattle’s other 2 backs. Remember that next year when Lynch is out of the division.
    – Bruuuuuuuuuuuccce!!! Great player, barely visible before this game.
    – V Davis is playing hurt, but he’s also a year older and a step slower. He’s always been muscle-bound, and he’s losing his speed. Father time, etc… Time to move on, but with a big hearty thanks for the memories.
    – Speaking of speed, we have Crabtree and Boldin, and we don’t need both. Johnson is duplicative as well. We need a burner or 2. And 6’5 would be a nice change in the red zone. How many times did they show the routes and Kap had nobody with a step on their defender (and Seattle’s CBs are big and not that fast!)?
    – Offensive line, when healthy, is just pretty good. No longer great. Iupati will get a big offer elsewhere, he’s gone. A Davis will be healthy next year, and he’s probably our best lineman. Boone can’t play any worse, and C will be better due to health.
    – DL played well, and has depth. JSmith is my hero, but I think he’s done. Better to leave the bar early than find you stayed too long. Carradine looked nice, Dial can move over to DE, McDonald looked like he still has it.
    – Stop sweating the DBs/CBs… we had like 3 starters injured. Our rookie CB is a ROOKIE, he’s not supposed to be great yet. He is a tough tackler and can cover the slot, that’s great, you need that in the league nowadays. He’ll do well. He has the physical and mental makeup to succeed.
    – Gore is a champ, but it’s time. He lacks the burst. Time to draft Hyde’s backup. Some fantastic backs are available this year, and Gurley might last until late 2nd (for 2016 season). KHunter returns as the COP back.

    1. If we can extend Frank a year we should,so he can mentor Duke Johnson RB.Johnson and Hyde would be a dynamic combo.

      1. I think mentoring by some players is vastly overrated. Especially rb’s. Gore has great field vision and an unnatural ability to find small holes. Those things can not be taught. Besides Gore seems more like a do’er not teacher.

        1. I think Gore is so disgusted with the back hitting and with Harbaughs choice for QB not panning out, he might just pull a Barry Sanders and walk off into the sunset.

  48. keep harb get rid of roman and all the coaches on offense except rathman. if harb doesnt agree then let him go. we need a new plan

    1. I agree keep JH get rid of Roman and all the 10 coaches on offense except Rathman.

      If JH doesn’t agree then let him go. we definitely need a new plan.

    2. With no rb.
      Ya think that could have had a hand in that? You become one dimensional vs Seattle and they will eat you alive. Ask manning, Brady, Rodgers and their OC’s.

      1. Roman does provide a few new wrinkles every now and then but his basic offense doesn’t have enough variations or options built into to keep from being anything but predictable.

  49. One way to fix the secondary… Draft Trae Waynes to be your shutdown CB. Move Ward to safety full time so he can make plays in front of him. Move Reid down into the box so he can blow guys up without incurring penalties.

  50. I do believe most players support Harbaugh. There are so many problems with the team right now. After yesterdays game I thought the game was well played till the fourth quarter. I do not understand when your down two scores why they are handing off to Alfonso Smith? Why are they so slow to get to the line when time is of the essence? Why does CK hang on to the ball to long? Why is CK not seeing more? Why are the Niners not Whaming? Why is there no speed? Why are we committing so many penalties on positive plays? Why can’t the offensive line pass block? Why are the receivers drop so many balls? Why are so many players having civic problems? Why are they not rolling CK out?

    I think the most devastating injury suffered was at the center position. I refuse to use injuries as an excuse. Every team has them. Look at the Cardinals they are on their third string QB and are getting the job done.

    My thoughts for the rest of the season. I would sit veteran players such as Justin Smith, Boldin, Gore, I would play all the youngsters and get them some real time playing. I might go so far as let Gabbert get the start and see what they have there. Get Johnson some reps too.

    Going to be a real interesting off season.

  51. Anyone notice that on the interception, if Brooks blocks Wilson, A. We score a TD, and B. Borland would not have been hurt. Brooks quit on the play for some reason.

    1. It’s because he’s quit on this team. You don’t miss a meeting after quitting and throwing a for two weeks earlier. And to think they are the ones who have him his chance.

  52. As of this moment, the 49ers have the 16th draft pick (from niners nation).

    Should we play for pride the next two games? Or do we play mostly non-starters to see what we have (preseason just isn’t the same) and not worry at all about our final record.

    1. Does it really matter what we think on this issue?
      I think we already know what will happen. Harbaugh will field the best team he can and win every game he is a part of.

    2. Play for pride. Yes it could cost us by dropping down in the draft, but unless it’s a high top 10 pick I don’t think it’s worth losing the last two games.

      1. Cubis- Play for pride or play back up players? I thought they were playing back ups already, and even back ups to the back ups. Perhaps they should just play their scout teams. lol.

  53. NFL has now acknowledged that the Moody foul was wrong.

    This officiating error is NOT a fault of the referees. It’s a completely a fault of the rules committee and the owners. There is no way a human can every time make these decisions correctly when they are happening at millisecond time scale. All these major decisions like P.I. and roughing the passer should be automatically reviewed in the booth.

    1. Problem is officials often make calls from a poor position and based on what they think they saw instead of what they did. A flag should only be thrown if it is an obvious and blatant infraction that an official sees clearly. The protection of QB’s has led to far too many arbitrary calls.

      1. Absolutely. Throwing a flag based on what they think may have happened when they don’t have a clear view of the play is, quite frankly, ludicrous. Hochuli should have known better.

    2. No. It’s the refs fault.
      If you are to fault the nfl it should be because they don’t have a chance to challenge that garbage.

  54. Balke is a good gm. HE PUT ALOT OF TALENT ON THIS TEAM LAST 3 YEARS! It’s the GM job to get the talent on the team it’s the coaches job to play it and use it. Aron Lynch was our best pass rusher all year then he sits on bench last few games. WTF?? HYDE should been starter over slow aging Gore since week 1. The coaches don’t play new guys or rookies over vets. Even if they look better. Thats one of the problems with this conservative coaching staff under Harbaugh. GM added Johnson and Brandon Lloyd but they RARELY GOT ON THE FIELD. Instead we go big and slow 2 wr sets with a fullback and old slow Rb 85 percent of time. That’s not GM fault. Crabtree and Davis should of got snaps cut out. Good coaches adjust and make changes on the fly. Look at all the draft picks Balked got last 3 years! look at all the probowlers and starters! Bethea was great pickup. Upgrade over Whitner. Trading for Perish Cox for peanuts was solid move. Traded Boldin for nothing. He drafted Aldon Smith Bowman Eric Reid*( How many ints he have grant? Probowler last year. Great pick) Bruce Miller Culliver Aron Lynch Hyde Dontae Johnson Boreland Jimmy Ward. No too mention Phil Dawson great pickup. It’s not Balked it’s the offensive system. We need a new aggressive coaching staff in 2015. Gore Brooks Crabtree Vernon Davis all need released. Cut the aging slow dead weight and start with new weapons. Balked didn’t draft those them they aren’t his guys anyways.

      1. Baalke does get good free agent and trade acquisitions. Give him props for that. It’s just his drafting offensive players that he falls really short at. He is good at getting extra picks but not that good at making the most of them. He has also not done well in acquiring a viable back up QB. The Johnson and especially Boldin trades just fell into his lap via circumstance rather than TB making a good deal.There are other aspects to being a good GM that he appears to lack as well, as evidenced in the circus that the 49ers have become. The disconnect between him and JH is one of those issues. The problem is that none of use can be really sure who makes which decisions and that in itself personifies what might be the biggest problem within the 49er’s.

  55. 6:20 left in the fourth quarter, third-and-2 from the Seahawks’ 39-yard line, and Greg Roman pulls a Greg Roman, calling an inside handoff for Alfonso Smith who gains just one yard.

    1. Roman and Kaep were meant for each other because neither has a sense of the moment. And of course he goes to Miller one too many times on the FB dive.
      At the same time, Kaep also completely whiffs on a roll-out throwing behind an undrafted TE who drops the pass, instead of taking Miller underneath on a swing pass for a first down.
      Even with that blown roughing the passer penalty, did anyone think Kaep would pass for a TD in the 4th quarter when he has yet to do it all year????

      1. Wait for Mary or Prime to answer. No one else interested. Unless you care to double post for me some more.

        1. You should care. Your hero sucks. It’s time for the team to try Gabbert. He threw a 4th quarter TD!

          1. Fan do you realize how moronic that is? Gabbert is worse in every way that Kap. If he could play he’d be on the field as JH has already shown in replacing Smith.

              1. Bay Area Fanatically stupid —
                CK stunk. He was your hero and savior. Looks like I was smart enough to see what was wrong with him. We’ve been arguing this all season and I stuck by my guns and it turns out — CK stunk.
                Don’t whine about refs, injuries, O-Line, Roman etc. He had a chance to make plays and did not. He ran into sacks! Did you see GIF Jack made? Did you see him miss a wide open Boldin by a mile? What about Vernon Davis?
                So why don’t you double post how wrong you are.
                I don’t care if Gabbert stunk at the Jags. Let’s see what he can do because we all know what Kaep can’t do.
                You guys feel so threatened by Gabbert, McCoy etc. because anyone who has success with these weapons just makes Kaep look even more pathetic.

            1. The season is over. Let’s see what Gabbert can do. I’ve seen enough of Kaep missing reads and running into sacks.

              1. If you want that just go back and watch some old Jaguar’s footage on NFL rewind. Ok what ever put him in. He’ll make one or three good plays and the fan base will anoint him over looking all his bad stuff.

  56. Overall a very disappointing season but it was to be expected. The 49ers whether it was self inflicted or not, had distractions, injuries and poor performances from key players that added up to missing the playoffs.
    Is this another hot potato blunder by the Yorks in pretending to know what actually needs to be done to run a football organization? Hey great job Jed getting a new stadium and some extra cash in your pocket, but now what? What are you going to do with this black cloud of Baalke and Harbaugh hanging over your team that pretty much, has everything it needs to be a contender.
    Oh wait, might want to draft a accurate QB along the way so your new guy has something to fall back on. You know, his guy. And this new guy you do hire, has some pretty big shoes to fill. I would proceed with caution but what might be the thing to do, extend Harbaugh for another 2 years, including next year and then move on if things don’t work out after that.

  57. My instincts tell me it would be nuts to fire Harbaugh.

    Harb’s 4th qtr play calling and time management are awful… and he’s downright rude and disdainful to the press… but he’s great at so many other aspects of being a coach.

    I can’t be 100% sure about the Harbaugh situation because I don’t know the exact nature of the personality conflicts between Harbs-Baalke-York.

    Is it merely a tense mismatch between myopic, grindstone, introverts Baalke and Harbaugh? (I’m an INTJ)

    Was it something far worse, like insults bordering on fisticuffs?

    1. From what I’ve seen during the game (as shown on TV), it seems like Harbaugh has been calmer this year than in past years.

      1. Unfortunately yes. Harbaugh is not throwing down his headset, not going ballistic, and not pacing the sidelines furiously. In other words, he is not himself. These are signs to me that he may not be on the sidelines next season.

        1. Harbaugh’ calmer demeanor may be by doctors order. Didn’t he have a minor heart condition and procedure a couple of seasons ago?

    2. The 49ers aren’t firing Harbaugh, his going to have a choice which team he wants to get traded too and 49ers will get their drafts in returned. After that all involved are happy:-)

  58. I knew the season was over when we lost to Seattle the first time. We’ll go 7-9. There are a few other 7 win teams to root for so we can move higher in the draft.
    We need to play Kaep to try and keep his value up. I’d like to see Gabbert play some though. We stashed a few players on IR over the weekend. It sounds like Osgood is now out the rest of the year. I’d like us to see who we could claim off other team’s practice squads. Grant’s buddy Fales QB would be the pickup i’d like to see to add to the competition next year.

  59. Grant reread your Dad’s last two columns regarding Harbaugh. It takes a certain amount of years and a level of maturity that your Dad posseses and you do’nt to understand why getting rid of a winning coach in the NFL is stupid and knee jerk. Inexperience of the level that you and little Jed have should lead you to listen to the words of wisdom that older more mature men like your Pops and I can share with you.

    1. I’m old enough to agree with you two old guys and with Kawakami who is doing all the leg work.

  60. I guess if the 49ers score 3 points that’s a “D” for Kaepernick and if they score 14 that’s an “A” according to Grant’s grading system. 7 points is a “D” at best under my grading system for any offensive player.

    1. Mike, if weren’t for the 49ers defense, the Seahawks would’a blown this game wide open. Thanks to our defense for thier courage to hold off the barrage. But at the end it’s just a lopsided game, our offense stink because Kaepernick stunk.

  61. Over the last 16 games (going back to last years playoff vs Carolina)…

    – Number of fourth quarter touchdowns by offensive starters – 1

    – Average fourth quarter scoring by offensive starters – 1.4 Points

    – Average fourth quarter scoring overall – 2.3 Points

    Another way to look at it… That’s four games of 4th quarters…. 5.6 points per game by offensive starters.


  62. Whoever takes over this team has one golden opportunity to win right away. A lot of ifs. If we keep Fangio. That is the biggest one. Fangio ran a good defense. Next year we get back, Willis, Bowman, Aldon for a full year, Culliver, Ian Williams and Dorsey. Culliver played really well down the stretch.

    On offense we have some work to do up front. My opinion you get rid of Iupati. We have a good foundation with Anthony Davis, Boone, Kilgore (who can play guard ) and Marcus Martin. My picks in the draft are Ereck Flowers who plays both RT and LF Tackle or Ronnie Stanley.

    I wouldn’t draft a TE. It is my opinion that this group was really underutilized. I have not given up on V-Mack. Carrier has shown flashes and Celek is a load and has caught the ball when his number was called. Their lack of production is on the coaching staff IMO. Davis Gone……

    WR we need Boldin back for one year. Gone will be Crabtree and Lloyd and Stevie. Once again failure on the coaches part. We don’t know what we have in Ellington or Patton. Free agent I’d like to take a sniff on is Denarius Moore. And draft, I’d like to draft in the 2nd round Stefon Diggs out of Maryland. He’s a flat out burner and he’s a return man.

    RB we are pretty set with Hyde and Hunter. We could go safe and bring in a Forsett or McFadden as our 3rd back. Or we could make a splash and bring in Adrian Peterson who paired with Hyde would help carry the load and give us a real shot at the Superbowl next year.

    QB Some good some bad. I believe with a more modern passing offense, a rebuilt offensive line and some speed on the outside we are set with CK and Gabbert. I don’t really like any of the QB’s coming out this year. If we want to bring in a vet to compete with Kaep this year Sanchez is available.

    Whoever comes in and coaches next year would be crazy to go away from the formula we have. Balance and more creativity are the key. Adding Peterson would be a good PR move. I believe our fans would go crazy for him and give Kaep a strong enough run game that he wouldn’t have to shoulder the responsibility of carrying the load.

        1. You wet your own bed dude. You’re the one with the proxy servers and all those ip addresses. Maybe you have a split personality like your hero Kaep. There’s good kaep and bad kaep

        2. Here ya go — in case you missed it, from Matt Maoicco:

          For the season, the 49ers have been outscored 143 to 76 in the second halves of games. And Kaepernick still has not thrown a touchdown pass in the fourth quarter.

    1. If AP is cut, he would be a solid pick up. I agree with that. If not, Todd Gurley may be around to draft in the 2nd round.

    2. You can’t count on Bowman ever being able to play anything like his old self. Maybe, maybe not. There is no way to predict.

    3. Bay, it’s easy to say the next HC for the 49ers will have a good team to coached. Don’t you think Harbaugh had a great team to coach coming to the 49ers. Next HC is a question mark, with all the injuries, FA’s and players getting old and retiring the 49ers might have some problems next season.

  63. Bay,
    Peterson may not be available, but Ray Rice would be. Both have committed wrongs and have paid a steep price both financially and as public figures.
    Obviously I would prefer AD, but he has yet to be released from the Vikings.

    I personally believe that the Vikings will keep AD and continue to build around him and their young QB.
    I really like Duke Johnson of Miami (the U). He is Frank Gore 2.0 with much more speed. Johnson is adept at finding small creases like FG and has the speed to take it to the house from anywhere on the field. He could be available between rd. 2-3.

    1. AES I like Johnson too. Rice has got nothing left. The Vikings IMO don’t want Peterson back. But they may want something for him.

      1. Bay,
        If AD is released, I would like to see the 49ers do their due diligence in signing him.
        It would not be wise for the D to load the box with AD because he has the ability to get to the 2nd level in a hurry. This could help relieve pressure on CK as well and open up more opp’s for the passing game.

  64. once again except for rathman ALL coaches on the offense need to go.if this staff cant get anything out of Kap and the rest of the offense then fire them.you draft and sign wide receivers (patton,ellington,johnson etc ) then never use them.same old slow guys.this includes running backs hyde should have had more carries this year.to much relying on vets and not giving new people a chance

  65. Which is the biggest delima for the future success of the 49ers?

    Finding Harbaugh’s replacement?
    Finding Kaepernick’s replacement?
    Finding and developing fast edge receiver?

        1. Baalke can replace Roman with a fairly well respected OC with relative ease. No need to settle for a “Dad Gum Yahoo” OC like they did in 2009. There will be lost of eager candidates. With such a talent packed roster, he can find a pretty good HC too.

          But QB will take years to draft and develop. By the time he does, many of the star, high round one players will be gone or over the hump.

          I wrote “biggest delima” not because I thought HC,QB,WR were the biggest needs (though they may be)… but because HC,QB are extremely difficult positions to fill.

          For Baalke, throw in WR too.

      1. I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s probably going to happen, but I think it would be idiotic if it does because there isn’t a good coaching candidate out there right now.

          1. I think Tomsula has some good attributes for a HC. He appears to be a very good teacher, good motivator, well respected by the players, and has lots of energy. Not sure what he is like in terms of game management, though he has experience doing it in NFL Europe.

            If he is made HC, they need to surround him with a good staff. I don’t know how much he would have to add to game planning the offense or defense. He had some experience as a DC in NFL Europe, but I would want to have someone like Fangio still running the D, that is an excellent X’s and O’s man. He has little to no experience with offense, so they would need to get someone to run the offense.

            Basically it would be like having Mike Singletary as the HC. You’d just hope Tomsula is more willing to have quality guys supporting him than Singletary was.

            1. That was my thought as far as the offense but I was not as sure when it to the defensive side of the ball. It would be smart.

            2. My biggest concern with Tomsula is the the quality of Coaches he could attract. He really doesn’t have much of a Coaching history at this level other than his 8 years in SF. There is also the fact that the last time the team hired a motivator as HC, it crashed and burned dramatically. Who is going to come in as OC and how do you keep the same system in place if they are successful? I really want no part of that experience again.

              JT is a good Dline Coach, but that doesn’t make him a HC in the NFL. I think it would be a huge mistake to give a contending team a novice at HC.

          2. I’m very hesitant on handing the job to Tomsula, mainly because I’m not exactly interested in having another situation like the ones we did with Nolan or Singletary.

      2. What will happen sooner…
        A) The 49ers get a very good new head coach and offensive coordinator?
        B) The 49ers get a decent, game ready new quarterback?
        C) The 49ers get an affective deep threat WR?

        I’m thinking D, C, B. Baalke’s biggest challenge will be finding a new quarterback.

        By the time the new quarterback develops into a decent player, most of the core talent will be over the hill, or gone.

        When people talk about “super bowl windows”, this is the long term delima the 49ers face.

        1. If they get rid of Harbaugh, IMO, whoever the new coach is has 4yrs to deliver. If they do decide to bring in a new QB next year, he takes Kaep’s spot, he has the same time frame. There are no grace periods.

  66. Just had a thought. If they replace both Harbaugh and Kaep, who are some of you guys going to hate on. Would sure hate being you family or your dog.

    1. Ck isn’t going anywhere next season. So whoever hates the idea of that is gonna have a long 2015 season. And we know who they are. So I’ll end with a …..ha ha ha ha ha haaaaaaaa

        1. Suffer is the right word but for you clowns it was never about football. It was all about highlights and fantasy football stats. Never could understand the game and that’s been evident by the hypocrisy and idiocy since you two have been posting your hot garbage!

          1. From my side the idiots are the negative ones that keep hoping for things that are NOT going to happen. Let the professionals make their moves and quit pretending you know more. It makes you come of looking more foolish than you already are prime trash and troll77.

            Dude you aren’t even American. Go watch the Gray cup.

            1. You do realize you have no credibility right?
              How many good quarters did Kaep play this year buddy?
              Luckily you don’t have to count that high because he sucked so bad this year. Put him near the bottom of the list for all QBs….

              1. Hmmm fantroll. Who has no credibility? I’m behind my team and what I want to happen is going to happen.
                You’ve been hating like a troll all year and what you want to happen won’t happen…. look on the mirror and say, ” I don’t know $h! T”.

              2. You have no cred and no respect because everything you’ve ever predicted has never happened. Now that you have jinxed CK into staying, he’s as good as gone or benched for the new regime. Congrats!

              3. Everyone is not happy with the qb because he’s a wink link. Just like I said. Before you think kaep is going to be the qb next year, think about this- a new head coach is coming in, he watches tape too. cK is not his guy. He’s not going to coach if he thinks he’s uncoachable. So guess what? They go with Blaine gabbert, release Kapernick, and then get. Game breaking WR. Good luck watching your idol ride the bench on a bad team like the bucs, he’s not even a weapon anymore because teams have figured him out.
                You may need to watch him in the cfl or arena league football!

          2. Lol this coming from a guy who said he gets his knowledge from madden. And then suggested I should. Ha ha haaaaa.

            1. Ninermd I think you’ve been sniffing too much glue because when I used Madden for any analogy is beyond me. Unlike you Im not stuck in the 80’s.
              Face facts man, your hero blew it this year. Might have cost us an extension for the best coach we’ve ever had since Walsh. But what do you care? As long as the box score appeals to you, your happy. Keep sniffing pal!

              1. “Might have cost us an extension for the best coach we’ve ever had since Walsh.”
                ~ prime

                Don’t agree with this opinion. Sure Harbaugh is loyal to a fault when it comes to his players but to maintain that CK cost Harbaugh his job is reaching for straws.
                Harbaugh may have made up his mind to end his 49er coaching days when he found out the FO tried to trade him to Cleveland back in March.
                Any coach would feel tremendously slighted if the team he has led deep into the playoffs for 3 straight years is being bandied around as trade bait.
                My thinking (and just one man’s opinion) is that if Harbaugh could have had another deep run into the playoffs this season he still would have wanted out.

                We could blame Kap for a lot of things this season, but blaming him for Harbaugh’ eminent departure is not one of them.

              2. Why not? If the 49ers make the playoffs it’s harder to get rid of the coach. Why did the 49ers not make the playoffs: injuries and poor play from their QB. JH was all in with CK. His guy, the chosen one. When CK faultered that only reassured the organization that he had to go because his guy didnt play well enough to win. The disconnect between the front office and the coach was coach wanted it his way.
                As for JH wanting out of SF regardless, that’s pure speculation.

      1. MD,
        Kap will be back, but his leash will be short. If his first few games next year look anything like he has this season he will be replaced by the mid-way point of the season .

        With Harbaugh likely gone, CK no longer will have a strong ally between him and the FO.
        My wish list for Kap next year.
        1. Start an extensive and exhaustive QB training program immediately after the season ends.

        2. Spend countless hours studying his own game film. A good place to learn where he has regressed would be in watching himself – similar to what baseball players do when they fall into a deep hitting slump.

        3. No more commercials – because of his underachieving season it may be a blessing for advertisers not to come knocking on his door.

        4. Sign a FA or draft a QB that can ignite a little fire under Kap.

        5. Find an OC that can utilize CK’ strengths and not limit them.

      2. Hahaha! Don’t be to sure Kaepernick’s contract was structured by the 49ers any given time at end of each season the 49ers can let him go without any compensation to Kaep if he failed to meet the performance expected of him:-)

  67. Bethea and Reid have combined to allow a 73.54 rating to opposing quarterbacks.

    The two safeties up in Seattle have comined to allow a 88.17 rating to opposing quarterbacks.

    1. That’s pretty impressive. It would be interesting to see where that places them in the NFL.

      I’d also be interested to know how many times Reid has been targeted this season, if you happen to have access to that sort of info?

      1. Reid has been targeted 27 times this season, allowed 16 receptions for 147 yards, 5 touchdowns, 3 interceptions, 2 passes defensed.

        1. 5 TDs in 27 targets is awful. Trufant has given up 2 TDs in 80 targets. Rhodes has given up 1 TD in 74 targets.

        2. So he’s been targeted less than twice a game. During the offseason I had a few arguments around the acquisition of Bethea. Many people said he was no longer good in coverage, and cited his poor PFF grades and QB rating allowed in coverage as proof. They even said Whitner was better because he had better PFF coverage grades and QB rating allowed.

          The thing everyone forgets is that PFF grades and QB rating doesn’t take into account coverage on plays in which the ball didn’t go your way. There is no prize for good coverage if the ball goes somewhere else.

          People kept glossing over this, and the fact that Bethea was only targeted 33 times all last year, while Whitner was targeted 46 times. You don’t get targeted so seldomly if you are doing a poor job in coverage.

          Sure, when you are targeted sometimes that will lead to big plays. This year Reid’s mistakes in coverage have led to some TDs. But by and large he is clearly doing something right if he is being targeted just twice a game.

            1. I don’t have access to PFF – any chance we can get a rundown on targets per game for most FSs?

              1. I’ll give you some totals.

                Eric Weddle: 35.
                Harrison Smith: 34.
                Josh Evans: 28.
                Dashon Goldson: 25.
                Devin McCourty: 20.

              2. They group all of the safeties together, but Reid’s targets is probably close to the average as Grant stated.

          1. Bethea is giving up a QB rating of 56.6. Whitner gave up a rating of 66.8 last season.

            Through 14 games Bethea has 31 stops, 71 total tackles and 13 missed tackles. In 16 games a year ago Whitner had 12 stops, 59 tackles and 7 missed tackles.

      2. His counterpart in Seattle has been targeted 20 times, allowed 12 receptions for 136 yards, 2 touchdowns, 1 interception, 2 passes defensed.

  68. Next year is my 70th season following the 49ers. These past four years have been an unimaginable experience. There have been several moments that compare with any other high points in 49er history. For instance, The Catch is number one only because two major defensive plays took place immediately after.

    It’s interesting to end this season in agreement with Lowell Cohn and Tim Kawakami about Jed York’s ownership record this year. That’s not the case on a large range of issues.

    At some point Mariucci and Harbaugh will wind up in an interesting analysis of coach – owner relationships.

    Enjoy the coming games.

  69. The 49ers offense has scored 23 points over the last 3 games. The last time they were this bad was weeks 13-15 of 2006 when they scored 22 points.

    So you can say that Kaepernick is playing at about the same level as Alex Smith was back in year 2.

      1. Smith’s rookie season, the team was coming off a disastrous 2-14 season I believe. That team had no talent. Kaep took a championship caliber team and drove it into a ditch.

        1. Yep by going to the Super Bowl and NFC title game after he left.
          Alex smith has 1 0 playoff wins since? They’re sitting at 8-6 and probably going home in two weeks.
          Boy what a savior.
          Hey remember that big throw he missed last year vs the colts that would have finished the game? Same ol Alex. Same ol Smithers. NOTHING is his fault. Lol

          1. Seriously, tap out while you can dude. Alex took a 2-14 to the playoffs last year. He lost all his weapons in the playoff game against the colts.
            Kaep IS THE ONLY NINER QB TO LOSE a Superbowl. The ONLY ONE TO THROW AN INT.
            He could have won the game but lost it because he didn’t know how to read defenses. Did you see them break down all the plays near the goal dummy? He blew all four passes at the goal line.
            He’s getting Pwned by the Seahawks.

            KC scored 41, 34, 34,31 in some wins. What’s the lowest total? 10 in the opener.

            Niners barely in games because their offense sucks. Highest total was 31 with a gift pick 6 to end the game by the Rams.

            Guess who has a chance to go the playoffs this year? Guess who’s done and may end up in the CFL? Guess who cost great Niners like Justin Smith, Gore, and Willis a chance to get a ring because he didn’t put the time into become a great QB. And if he did and this is what we have? Oh lord don’t let him on the team bus anymore.

            Bay Area Doofus — You still don’t get it. You’re the troll. You’re not rooting for th team, you’re rooting for Kaep. They should sit him down and put in another QB because he’s simply not getting it done.

          2. Ninermd it sounds liked you’re wishing for Alex Smith to fail next week and not make the playoffs. So much for your hatred, you want him to be a failure like your Golden bust kaep:-)

            1. Keep clinging to years past because that somehow makes up for the inaccuracy, poor decision making and immaturity this year. Yeah he’s a good QB, 2 years ago when there was no film and he could run. Now the league has figured him out and he looks lost in the woods. Well done Bay!

    1. Jack don’t wallow in the trash. In 2006 Gore had over 2100 all purpose yards 9 Tds. Kaep has never had that support.

      1. Bay,

        In 2012 Kaepernick put up almost identical numbers to Smith, the difference was the explosive plays he made with his legs.

        Those have been almost non-existent the past 2 seasons. He’s no better than the QB you railed on for years.

        Give it a rest. You’re starting to sound like a DS9/Hofer clone.

        1. Jack no need to be an ass. Unlike those two I actually get on Kaep for his failures. I just don’t ignore the systematic failures surrounding him.

          1. …..Unlike those two I actually get on Kaep for his failures.

            HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

            No seriously…..

            HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

            No I mean ….. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!

            Turns out you’re a troll just like I said. You hate on the entire team now.

            1. Jack,

              I cannot quite tell – is that Patton who comes open across the middle? The Seahawks just let him go so they can contain Kap. He needs to take advantage of that and hit the open receiver.

              1. I’d like to see Kaepernick/Gore/Hyde with the Cowboys offensive line in 2014 just to see the difference in production. A part of me feels like maybe we need T-Shirts that read, It’s The O-Line Stupid….

          2. yet you ignored them with smith was here, how ironic. you are the biggest hypocrite on this blog hands down. you’re a joke dude. always have been always will be

          3. When AS was here, everything was his fault and he was the worst QB ever. Bay blamed him for everything! But now with CK it’s everyone else’s fault, right? GTFO bay. You’re nothing but a clown.

          4. Love all the brand new names calling me out. 5 brand new guys coming out of the woodwork.
            Next season will be tough for a lot of you being that you are all wrong.

            1. You tell em Bay! Don’t worry about the haters. CK will prove he is better than Montana, just like you proved you were right about Alex Smith aka the worst QB in football! Great minds think alike Bay, you’re so wise! Keep it up man! :)

              1. What a joke dude. Really? Montana? You’ve been sniffing to much Kaepernick ball sweat. We need to do an intervention.

  70. My daughter wants a Kaepernick jersey. I Like the guy but I’m not sure if I want toake that investment. Lol.

    1. Check around. It sounds like there might be some here on this blog that would gladly unload their CK7 jerseys for pennies on the dollar. :)

  71. I agree with a poor grade for Baalke. Maybe not an F but everyone and his brother have seen the need for a quality speed WR and he continues to not fill that need. The NFL stands for “not for long” and Baalke has gone a long time without taking care of a major need.

    Kap has regressed but I cannot remember seeing many instances of the 49ers group of wideouts being wide open this season. Kap always has to fit the ball in. This was illustrated last week in the Raiders game. Their O-line gave Carr time to search the field and he made critical throws to wide open receivers. Rarely see that from the 49ers. Our wideouts are always blanketed. Dill headed Sherman commented on the ease of defending our wideouts and Kap. Part of the blame lays with the scheme that Harbaugh’s and Roman employ and part of the blame lays with Baalke’s inability to fill a glaring need over the years.

  72. One other shout out to Baalke–Please stop drafting injured players.

    Just read an article about Jimmie Ward. I loved the guy before the draft but he was recovering from an injury when Baalke drafted him. He re-injured his foot in early Nov and we lost him for the season.

    Don’t walk the pitcher and don’t draft an injured player in the first round of the NFL draft. Cardinal rules. Please Trent, no more broken broken players in any round of any draft.

  73. We need to get rid of sour-cancer Vernon Davis right away. Unless the 49ers get back to the power running game, they will not want to extend Iupati’s contract.

  74. I’m guessin’ Mr.Cohn will not be applying for work with the 49ers anytime soon.WTG!! heehee

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