There’s plenty of blame for the 49ers’ loss. So let’s get started

It was a long day for Jimmy Garoppolo against the Cardinals. But he wasn’t the only one. (Kent Porter/Press Democrat)

 

Unprepared, sloppy and flat, the 49ers hit the trifecta in Sunday’s 24-20 loss to the Cardinals. It isn’t often that you can blame all three football components for a loss,  offense, defense and special teams, but they all contributed.

“All three units got to play well,” George Kittle said afterwards. “All three units didn’t play well.”

I’m sure everyone is eager to get started with some Jimmy Garoppolo-bashing, and we’ll get to him, but first let’s highlight a couple of moments that said a lot about the outcome.

First, the blocked punt in the first quarter. That should virtually never happen to a competent, professional football team. Teams go a full year without getting a punt blocked.

The protection was lackadaisical at best. You’ve seen the replay, so no need to go over specifics. The 49ers missed their pickups, leaving slender defensive back Dontae Johnson to be steamrolled by two rushers up the middle.

But it was also important when it happened. The 49ers were up 10-0. Garoppolo was 5-7 for 111 yards and a TD. The running game was rolling. It all looked good.

The blocked punt turned everything upside down. The Cardinals recovered the ball deep in 49ers territory and scored immediately, making it 10-7. It was literally a whole new ball game.

Second, the 14-play, 94-yard Arizona drive at the end of the third quarter and start of the fourth. The 49ers defense not only could not get Arizona off the field, but they also gifted the Cardinals with free first downs.

Taking over at his own six, Kyler Murray had trouble getting it out of there. Facing third and ten, he was forced to throw the ball away so wildly that the 49ers tried to make a case for intentional grounding. But wait, K’Waun Williams was called for holding. First down.

Later, Murray faced second and 21. He ran for a modest gain. But Kerry Hyder was called for a late hit on Murray on the ground. First down.

And then, looking at third and 11, Murray overthrew his receiver. Players started to walk off the field. But wait. Emmanuel Mosley was called for holding. First down.

Soon thereafter Murray took off on a swerving, darting run for a touchdown to make it 17-13 Arizona.

And finally, your Super Bowl nightmare revisited. It is easy to forget that the 49ers came back and took the lead again in the fourth quarter. Garoppolo took them the length of the field, helped by a nice long throw to Kyle Juszczyk and a very fortunate pass interference call. Garoppolo hit Jerick McKinnon with the touchdown pass and let’s all pretend we didn’t think it might be offensive pass interference on Kittle.

But having done that, and taken a 20-17 lead, the Niners gave it back. On third and six, the 49ers let DeAndre Hopkins take a stroll through an empty space in pass coverage. A blown coverage at a critical point at the end of the game? Where in the name of Patrick Mahomes have we seen that before? And Hopkins, who was a monster Sunday (14 catches, 151 yards) is the last guy you want to leave uncovered.

Hopkins took the ball to the goal line and the Cardinals made it 24-20.

At that point, it became hey-Jimmy-can-you-bail-us-out-here? Could he put together one more last minute, game-winning drive? He couldn’t.

Garoppolo was throwing high all game. Kittle was left exposed reaching for a high ball and took a nasty shot to the knee. Others had the same experience. Not confidence-inducing.

Garopollo’s numbers weren’t bad, 19-33 for 259 yards, but the real story is lack of success on third down. Kittle mentioned it afterward.

“What were we, 2-11 on third down?” he said, not even mentioning the 0-2 on fourth down. “We just couldn’t stay on the field.”

It’s true. The Cardinals ran 17 more offensive plays and had 11 more first downs. They were able to keep the ball and tire the 49ers’ defense. Meanwhile, the 49ers couldn’t pick up first downs and couldn’t control the ball to give the defense a break.

A lot of that is on Garoppolo. At times, he definitely looked like someone who hasn’t played in a football game since February. His protection seemed pretty good. There were times when it looked like he had more time than he thought.

Still, he moved the team, threw for two touchdowns, including a 76-yard pitch and catch to Raheem Mostert, and passed for ten first downs.

But it has to happen in the red zone. Early in the game, the offense was looking at first and goal from the ten. A Kittle false start moved them back. Garoppolo was sacked while running in circles. Jet McKinnon gave everyone hope with a slick run to the one-yard-line.

And then, on fourth and one, Mostert was stopped short on a dive into the line. Those are some points the Niners could have used on the scoreboard later.

So what we’re saying here is, if you want to troll Jimmy G, go ahead. He knew the deal when he took the job. And he’s getting millions to do it.

Several times each year the game comes down to the end and the team looks to their franchise quarterback to bail them out. Sometimes it works. Not always. And when it doesn’t there’s lots of heat.

I’m just saying in this one you ought to give some thought to how the 49ers got to that point, trailing in the fourth quarter, giving up yardage and critical penalties.

This did not look like a team that was ready to start the season. That better change.

 

 

 

 

This article has 174 Comments

  1. Yup. I knew it was going to be a tough game, but the Cards made enough plays to win.
    .
    The Niner O line better improve, or it will be a long season.

    1. Seb,
      One way KS can help the O line is get Jimmy G. back under center where he belongs. The running game is better when he is under center and the play action game is far better when he is under center. I don’t know the exact numbers here but I believe the 9ers were in shotgun far more yesterday then their avg game last year.

    2. PFF says … don’t go blaming Kinlaw!

      Javon Kinlaw: graded out well in his NFL debut (39 snaps, 81.4 overall grade, 2 QB pressures, 1 run stop).

      Solomon Thomas: had yet another uninspiring outing (40 snaps, 44.9 overall grade, no tackles/pressures).

      A 4th year player being badly outplayed by a rookie who missed out on the entirety of OTA’s, and preseason games?

      Yah, I am officially DONE with Solomon Thomas!

  2. the curse of JimmyP…….oh the revenge tour???? yeah the teams Frisco beat last year are gonna get revenge…on them

    team has issues…..couldn’t beat a 5 win team…..maybe Jimmy can give a refund didn’t earn his check today that’s for sure

  3. Garoppolo reminds me of Klay Thompson, when he is hot and played that awesome game against the Saints and when he is cold, he is awful. He never was accurate passer, take note to all of the circus catching that Kiddle did last year. The jury is still out for the guy, yea he wins games but he might kill his receivers in the process.

    1. That God awful throw where he floated the ball to Kittle with the defender bearing right down in him was as a pathetic throw as I’ve seen in years ….you won’t see that in HS . That could have been torn ACL and season over right there , if Kittle doesn’t play Sunday season just might be over. JG is not the answer

  4. This game was similar to the last game in Miami. Offense and defense start solid. However, offense reaches premature peak, goes limp and impotent for the rest of the game and scores a measly 20 points each time. Defense soldiers on but eventually gets gassed chasing a mobile QB and the DBs are shown up by a star receiver.

    One can point to Jimmy G’s lackluster performance or errors by the defense, but the main blame rests with the coaches. They did not get the team ready to play. The players had little energy and were not on the same page. Vance adjusted to Kyle’s game plan but Kyle did not appear to be able to make the re-adjustments. On defense, Saleh is not big on rapid in-game adjustments I suppose.

    the 4 back-breaking mistakes (including by the ref) that I counted:
    1. The blocked punt led to massive momentum change.
    2. Couldn’t punch in from less than a yard on 4th down.
    3. Absurd roughing penalty on Hyder.
    4. Williams unnecessary holding penalty on 3rd and 15 at Cards 10.

    Niners got breaks from Simmons’ mistakes in coverage and missed field goals by the AZ kicker. They need to get their act together quickly for the road trip, else I can see them splitting the two games.

    1. Couldn’t punch in from less than a yard on 4th down.

      I couldn’t get that call at all. Sure, let’s run it behind our backup backup center :/ Shannie must have some things up his sleeve besides that?

      1. Great question. I wish someone had asked him what changes he made in game plan to account for a new center. I thought that the large number of shotgun snaps was to ensure less pressure up the middle.

    2. The Coaches didn’t have the team ready to play. Oldest line in the book and I don’t buy it. They had the team as ready to play as you can missing multiple players due to injury during TC and they had them ready to play to the tune of 10-0 until the punt block and even after as they went right down the field until being stopped on 4th and goal. That’s not an example of not being ready. It’s being rusty, sloppy, unconditioned whatever else you want to call it but when you say Coaching is a problem there has to be evidence of that in regards to strategy, penalties, guys not knowing where they are supposed to be etc. That wasn’t the case at all yesterday. It sucks to lose, especially the opener at home, but that’s football sometimes. The better team doesn’t always win because of mistakes made by players and that was what happened. The good thing is it’s game one of 16 (hopefully) and they will get some people back in the next few weeks to hopefully solidify them for the stretch run to the playoffs.

      1. The way I see it, when a large number of players are playing “rusty, sloppy, unconditioned”, it rests directly on the shoulders of the coaches.

        This missing 2 receivers is a poor excuse for the loss. Aiyuk is a rookie and was not expected to start. Deebo’s loss was a problem but that was not the reason the Niners lost the game. They lost the game because of a large number of errors resulting from shoddy play. The Kittle injury is directly a result of Jimmy G’s poor throw.

        Every team has injuries. Every team started the season with the same handicap of no pre-season games, yada yada.

        It’s possible that because of so many distractions related to COVID , Kyle was not able to convey the immediacy and urgency of every play in starting the season. I think he will fix that.

        1. No it rests on the shoulders of professional football players who make mistakes. There was nothing in the game to suggest they weren’t Coached up and ready to go. It’s up to the players to execute and there were too many times they didn’t do it.

      2. Notanexpert,
        I agree that the better team lost, and that happens from time to time. Good teams, though make it happen and win ugly.
        I’m not worried yet but I will be if they are not at least 3-2 by the Rams game.

        The bigger issue, is that we can expect more injuries to happen throughout the year, we just have to hope they don’t mount all at once or all in one area so that team has an identifiable weakness for our opponents.

  5. Wasnt able to watch the game..
    Had to follow along to twitter feeds and clips..
    But not the way i expected us to start the season..
    Season is far from done…

    Arizona plays us tough..so im not surprised that it was a difficult match.
    Hell..we conceivably could have lost those two games last year..especially being down double digits at home last year to them…

    Division games are tricky like that ..
    Playing the same team twice
    u know each other well…each other’s tendencies….weaknesses..
    So im not suprised at the income…just disappointed

    But.. it was just a lil disheartening after the superbowl…
    7months! .
    .We waited to see our beloved 49ers play again..and it ends in another game that slipped away.

    From the clips and highlights…
    Jimmy G..just can’t get his accuracy together..when we need…
    As a big Jimmy G fan…
    Im starting to believe that Kyle really is trying to scheme around his weaknesses..
    But ..Only so much Kyle can do
    He can’t pass the ball for him too..

    This is a timing..rhythm.. developed based offense like Walsh’s…
    So when you have an innacurate Qb stalling drives…it gets bad.. and gets ugly quick..
    He can’t trust Jimmy to make simple reads and passes when called upon…
    So the playcalling is dictating that..
    Kyle can’t fully run this offense

    Kyle needs pocket presence and accuracy..
    Not necessarily mobility…but can you overcome coaching and improvise…

    I know Jimmy can do it..but he’s not consistent with it…
    Its frustrating as a head coach,team and fan..
    So if its not corrected..they’ll turn on him fast..
    If not already

    The defense can only hold it down so long…
    So goin three and out…over and over again…
    Will tire a defense out…

    Lynch and Kyle talked about closers.a year or two ago..not goin 15innings…or rounds..
    So we gotta get this offense together..

    We’ll be fine….this is the first quarter of the season…..
    I know it sucks seeing Seattle and the Rams win too…just adds insult to injury..

    But its not how u start…its how u finish..

    Go 49ers!

  6. Garoppolo is the NFL’s only “problem” quarterback who’s forced to play without an NFL- caliber WR yet pours on the 4th Q comebacks and maintains a 100+ passer rating .

    Maybe, just maybe, he’s not the problem.

    1. K Bourne is a NFL caliber WR – How many catches did he have? – or better how many times did he run a nice route – got opened and did not receive a pass

      Arizona threw to one WR all day……..Plz stop with this WR excuse – this offense can put up numbers without a #1 WR – we all know this.

      1. One,
        Jimmy didn’t play well at all but the wr’s were not good. Bourne didn’t get separation very often when his number was called.
        As currently constructed this is one the 2 worst receiving Corps in the NFL.

      2. Bourne caught 2 passes. On 5 Targets. He caught 30 balls last year. He’s right on pace for his career averages. He’s slow as molasses and isn’t a legit starting receiver. He’s at best #3. When you have Bourne AND Taylor as your top two receivers with 10 targets then you aren’t going to have many big plays from the receiver position. It was clear as day that receiver was one of the weakest areas on the field yesterday. We need Aiyuk back. This offense needs a true deep threat receiver. Someone who can get YAC and go downfield and make plays.

    2. Garoppolo isn’t the the biggest problem, per say, but he’s got to play better than he did yesterday. His numbers were decent, but he missed a lot of throws, even leaving his All-Pro TE hung out to dry on a relatively routine pass for an NFL caliber QB.

      I’ll be honest …. I had my concerns when I noticed he came out wearing that bulky knee brace. My concern was less about the knee brace being restrictive, and more about Jimmy’s mental state. He doesn’t “need” that brace, and he hasn’t been the same guy with it, which tells me he’s still hung up mentally with his reconstructed knee. Confidence is underrated in it’s importance, and I think Jimmy has a crises of confidence which is clearly holding him back. He simply hasn’t played with the kind of poise he played with in college, or early on his his professional career. Right now, it seems clear to me that Jimmy’s issues are primarily between his ears, and he simply hasn’t gotten over the hump mentally in terms of his ACL injury, and at this point, his obvious lack of confidence is really starting to concern me.

      1. – How can he play all those games last yr and still lack confidence?

        I don’t know the answer to this – and it is pissing me off

        1. I’m not sure oneniner.

          I’ve been one of Jimmy’s biggest supporters, but it sure seems to me that he’s lacking confidence. If you evaluate Jimmy’s game film, and compare his body language, poise, and pocket presence to bothpre, and post-injury, I don’t think there is really any question that there is a rather stark difference. And confidence, or lack thereof, can be a complex thing. How often do you see hesitation from the 49ers QB? I see it often, so when guys do get open (they usually aren’t open for long at the NFL level) and even with his lightning quick release, that split second hesitation can often be the difference between a completion and an incomplete pass, or worse, an INT. I mean, I’d rather see the occasional INT due to being overly aggressive, than this skittish hesitation, and these delayed releases.

          Getting his confidence back could be a process. His receivers certainly need to be better, but if I were him, I’d start by shedding the knee brace, getting back to proper footwork, and concentrate on driving the football downfield, rather than aiming it. I’d be of the mindset that, if the knee gets hurt again, so be it, because what good is a healthy knee if you don’t trust it anyways. And he needs to quite playing not to lose, and start playing to win!

      2. Nice story but it doesn’t hold water. He was one of the best in the NFL during the regular season in his first year after the knee injury and first as a full time starter. Not sure why you take a small sample and makeup a story about his mental state but if you don’t believe me go back and watch how well he played last season for the majority of the time and maybe you’ll be reminded.

        1. How do I explain it? Two words: Kyle Shanahan.

          Notanexpert, don’t misconstrue my point. In my opinion, an uninhibited Jimmy Garoppolo is among the league’s most talented QB’s, and at times that talent really shines through. But the fact of the matter is that his footwork is at times very shaky, and he’s prone to hesitation, those are two signs of a QB who is at times, unsure of himself, and that knee brace has definitely effected both his his mobility, and ability to use his hips to properly “drive” the football. Don’t take my word for it, watch the tape. As a result, his velocity is down, he’s late on too many throws, passes tend to sail on him more often than usual, and he’s not anywhere near as elusive at evading the pass rush, or scrambling for positive yardage.

          He seriously needs to get back to trusting his eye, and being the confident gunslinger that he was prior to the injury.

          1. It’s time to shed that brace!

            For me, one of the most exciting days of training camp this year was hearing that Jimmy was playing without his knee brace. I thought that was a sign of a guy who had finally regained confidence in the knee, and was ready to forget all about the knee injury. And that’s why I was discouraged the minute I saw him wearing it again prior to kickoff.

            That knee should be stronger, and more stable now, than ever before. Why the brace? His mobility, especially moving around the pocket, was a strength before he put that thing on. Now, he’s basically a statue, and it makes the RPO much less effective as well.

            1. Is he still a good QB? Yes, of course. Is he one of the best QB’s in the league right now? No, not right now.

              Did he cost the 49ers the game VS the Cardinals? No, that was a team effort, aided by a questionable WR corp.

              But, was he “confident Jimmy” in the 4th QTR? Absolutely, positively, not!

              1. He better get back to being Jimmy G., or his days playing for Kyle are numbered, that I can promise everyone.

                The good news is that he has the talent to reach his potential, IMO.

              2. If Jimmy doesn’t show the improvements over the course of the season that we’re all looking for, this will indeed be his final season with the 49ers….

              3. There was one play Jimmy made, or I should say didn’t make, on Sunday, that really bothered me.

                I’ll have to go back and re-watch the play, but going off of memory, it was a play in the redzone where McKinnon leaked out of the backfield, and McKinnon was Jimmy’s hot read on the play. Well, I believe a Cardinal’s LB recognized McKinnon, and went to cover him, but instead of sticking with McKinnon for an extra split second, to see if he could beat the LB, Jimmy moved off of the read just as McKinnon put a filthy move on the defender, and was then wide open for an easy pitch and catch TD. Jimmy should have been a little more patient, because it was the perfect play call, and he made the correct intitial read, but Jimmy moved off of the read prematurally, and it ended up costing the 49ers an easy TD.

                I immediately began YELLING at my TV screen in utter disbelief, because that’s exactly the kind of play the team brought Jet in to make, and Jimmy had made the correct read. He just geeked out when he saw the LB react, and gave up on the play way too quickly, something I’ve seen Jimmy do far too often!

            2. 49,
              I agree with you in some areas but disagree in others.

              I think Jimmy lacks confidence but more in his receivers than in himself… perhaps I’m wrong and all the off-season talk has made him question himself.
              He sailed the ball on Bourne but he always has been a dart thrower, who has never learned to use his lower body when throwing. Brett Kolman did a film breakdown of this in 2017 believe.
              This is great for a quick release but is terrible for leading a receiver on deeper routes with over the shoulder routes and out routes where you need to drive the ball. ( see Sanders rams game, saints game, Super Bowl). 2 of those were completions but the throws were not accurate, and then there’s the game I’m trying to erase from my memory. As for the out route he’s gotten away with this due to timing… but how do you get timing with receivers you’re not familiar with… especially when they add a late move onto the route (per KS’ interview).
              And yes you’re right he’s not an all pro qb… but he’s a top 8-12 qb who can reach borderline top 5. And you can win trophies with them too.

              1. Shoup, I’m frustrated because I have no doubt that Jimmy has the physical ability to make it work, even with a below average group of receivers. He certainly had it at the end of 2017! He basically carried this team to 5 straight wins at the end of 2017, and he did it in spectacular fashion. But he wasn’t doing it with hesitation and happy feet this in 2017, but that’s what I see out of him right now. The tape doesn’t lie. Whatever the case, Jimmy was woefully inconsistent on Sunday, just as he was in the second half of the Super Bowl, and just as he was during significant stretches last season.

                I have no doubt that he lacks confidence in his current group of starting WR’s. I mean, Dante Pettis is embarrassingly soft, and simply refuses to lay it all on the line. I would struggle to trust Dante as well. But the thing is … he and Kendrick are the starting WR’s right now, so Jimmy has to trust them. He has to believe he can make it work, because if the results of not trusting his WR’s are what we saw out of the offense on Sunday, that’s simply not good enough. I understand that he’s not going to target those guys as much as he’d like, but if he’s going to shake the criticism, and take his game to the next level, then he needs to make lemonade out of lemons, because that’s what the team needs from him, and that’s what the top QB’s do.

                – He has got to stop being late to pull the trigger
                – He has to stop sailing the ball
                – He has to stop missing his guys when they do get open

                Right now, he’s not doing any of those things consistently, and as a result, he’s not a top 12 QB. Right now, because he doesn’t trust that he can make everyone around him better, Jimmy is just an average QB playing in the league’s toughest division. Whatever it is that’s holding him back, he needs to figure it out, ASAP, because if Jimmy doesn’t step it up, this team will be in trouble, IMO.

              2. The thing is, immediately after Sunday’s loss, I criticized the sky-is-falling attitude from some people on this blog. I thought Jimmy was decent. I thought the defense simply got gassed in the second half, and had no answers for Hopkins, and a scrambling Murray.

                But then I went back and watched the game again.

                Bottom line: I only thought a handful of guys played really well, and Jimmy was not one of those guys. In fact, he played nowhere near what his 103.0 Passer Rating indicated (which is one reason I don’t particularly like that antiquated rating). He almost single-handedly put Kittle on season ending IR. In fact, rarely did Jimmy put the ball exactly where he would have wanted to. Yah, his wideouts weren’t getting much in terms of separation, but even when they did, Jimmy was usually off target. His mechanics were shaky at best, and he was either impatient, or indecisive. I know timing is usually a bit of an issue in the first game of the season, especially considering the circumstances, but that’s no excuse for poor mechanics.

              3. 49,
                What I’m saying is that His mechanics haven’t changed since before the injury. He’s never incorporated his legs into his throws… and while I was hopeful he would get to work on his mechanics this off season. That was ruined with covid.
                A key difference is Defenses now know his preferences and will game plan for it.
                Basically, he’s not playing that different than 2017, but he has less weapons and defenses know what to expect.
                That said, SF clearly wasn’t sold on him Or they would have changed his contract.

              4. Shoup, I understand he’s more of an arm thrower. What I don’t understand is the happy feet, and is inability to make a play. He’s either rushing his passes before the play develops, or he’s simply holding onto the ball, and taking unnecessary sacks. My gosh, he wasn’t even going through his progressions on Sunday. He was staring down his receivers, and if his first read wasn’t open (which it often wasn’t because of poor WR play) he would go into full on panic mode! No poise, whatsoever! To my dismay, he looked more like a rookie on Sunday, than a QB who just took his team to the Super Bowl (albeit, on the back of the Niners’ running game).

                Not good enough. Not even close!

              5. I am under no illusions about the fact that Jimmy is often a clutch performer, and that’s good. There were a number of big moments in 2019 where Jimmy made a big throw, or a few big plays at just the right time. My problem with Jimmy is his lack of consistency. It’s great to be able to stand in the pocket and somehow convert two huge 3rd and 16’s (big win VS Rams) in the clutch. The problem is that it’s hard to count on coming through in that situation, time and time again. Your far better off being more consistent in the first place, because the odds are tougher when you consistently need to bail yourself out late in the game.

                I guess that’s what I need change this season, with Jimmy – CONSISTENCY!

                Is that fair Shoup, and BTW, I like our interactions. I think you are a knowledgeable football guy.

              6. 49,
                We disagree in few areas but you’re right in many observations. For example, I agree that Jimmy has major consistency issues and I think that comes down to his mechanics.
                As for his reads, I think he was actually rushing more often than holding onto reads but even here I think he’s inconsistent. I’m guessing that might be due to him having more faith in certain receivers than others so he holds on to those reads. Let’s hope the Chemistry reports with Aiyuk were true and he settles down.

          2. Notanexpert, don’t misconstrue my point. In my opinion, an uninhibited Jimmy Garoppolo is among the league’s most talented QB’s, and at times that talent really shines through. But the fact of the matter is that his footwork is at times very shaky, and he’s prone to hesitation, those are two signs of a QB who is at times, unsure of himself, and that knee brace has definitely effected both his his mobility, and ability to use his hips to properly “drive” the football. Don’t take my word for it, watch the tape. As a result, his velocity is down, he’s late on too many throws, passes tend to sail on him more often than usual, and he’s not anywhere near as elusive at evading the pass rush, or scrambling for positive yardage.

            He looks no different than he has since he’s been here and his performance fits with the other two opening week appearances previous to this. This was actually his best statistical opening game with the 9ers and while he was inconsistent, he played well enough for them to win if they punch in the 4th and goal.

            This reeks of fan disappointment due to a loss and then sudo psychological analysis based on nothing tangible other than he didn’t play to your expectations. That’s your problem not his.

            1. Notanexpert , go ahead and put your stock in the antiquated Passer Rating, and I’ll stick with what I see on the game film (and a QBR of 35.2, which ranked Garoppolo 26th in week 1, vs an average defense).

              I like Jimmy. I like his leadership, and I like his potential. Hopefully, he’ll eventually reach his potential, because Sunday certainly wasn’t it.

              1. I go by what I see and then compare it with the numbers. Rating is just one stat. His total yards, YPA, TD passes and rating were all the best he’s put up in opening games since he’s been here. The only reason he’s being criticized and getting the psychological analysis treatment from fans like yourself is because they lost the game. He was not good against Tampa last year and worse against Minnesota the year before. He’s not suffering from a lack of confidence. He suffered from his own annual slow start, a lack of weapons to throw to and his usual mechanical breakdowns at certain points of the game. Typical Garoppolo and he’ll get better as things go on. Keep yourself together and don’t leave after a few games like you have previously if things don’t go the way you want them to.

  7. Kyle Shanahan says Jimmy Garoppolo has to play better – is all I need to hear to confirm what I thought

    “He had some good plays in there, but just like the entire offense, just missed a number of opportunities that it was going to take to win that game,

  8. You can’t slowly hang this loss on Garoppolo, I agree… But let’s not pretend he’s the quarterback that this team hoped they were getting when they traded for him and extended his contract. Quarterback is the most important position on the field for obvious reasons, Haroppolo still had a chance to pull this game out and didn’t, that’s the bottom line.

  9. I like your slant on the game, but most of your takes have already been covered and regurgitated over the last 24 hrs.
    You guys are literally a day late and a dollar short.
    Hire an intern that could deliver 49ers news on time!

    No complaints against you, CW. You are the consummate professional and a BayArea and National highly respected journalist. This falls solely on the PD decision makers. Please hire someone who could take the reins – daily.

    1. From what i’ve heard from Grant and his dad, the PD is out of money. They were barely paying Grant anything as he was just freelancing for them. So i doubt any one is coming.

      But on the game, that was terrible to watch. Jimmy looked like trash, but to be fair had virtually no weapon worth throwing to outside of an injured Kittle. Hopefully with 2 easy New York teams coming up, it should get confidence back up, but without Deebo and Aiyuk on the field its going to be a rough season.

  10. Nice article CW. Your first sentence pretty much says it all. You could have stopped there, though I’m glad you didn’t! Unprepared, sloppy and flat! Yep! That description starts at Kyle, and ends at the water boy. Plenty of blame to go around. Let loose the “We need Mullen’s crowd”! Yea, that’s the answer! Lol. Please!

  11. Sunday morning, as I took my dog to the park for her walk, I saw a friend of mine who is a football fan and he asked me what I thought about the Niners game. I unfortunately said I thought the Niners would lose, and that the Cardinals would pull off the upset. I wish I had been wrong…

    It is only one game, and without our top receivers, but some of the old concerns remain. The offensive line’s pass protection stats have been significantly worse than their run blocking capabilities, and it showed again yesterday. McGlinchey still needs to improve his pass blocking, and the interior had difficulty picking up inside blitzes or allowing Jimmy G to step up in the pocket.

    Did Garoppolo hold the ball too long sometimes? Yes. Did he not see open receivers while in the pocket? Yes. Is some of it because of feeling antsy in the pocket? I think so; he does throw flat footed on occasion, and he doesn’t take the time to scan the whole field whether he has the time or not. We can all agree he missed on some throws. This doesn’t make him a horrible quarterback; he remains a quality quarterback. He just is not going to be on the same level as Mahomes, Brees, or Wilson, let alone Montana or Steve Young. Is it enough to carry the Niners to a Super Bowl win? I believe so.

    The defense just got tired, being on the field for 82 plays. They started strong, but tired and allowed Murray too much time in the pocket in the second half, and unable to catch him when Murray took off on runs. Some of the penalties were a little questionable (Greenlaw’s unnecessary roughness penalty was ticky tack, and the holding on Moseley on Christian Kirk more liked Kirk grabbing a handful of Moseley’s jersey).

    On to New York…from what I’ve seen so far tonight, the Giants’ offensive line remains weak and can be exploited by the Niners’ line. Schefter is reporting that Kittle is questionable with a knee sprain; hopefully he recovers.

  12. 49, no, it is not the bulky knee braces like the O linemen wear. It is a lightweight one that is more for protection, with little hampering of mobility. That brace should give him more confidence to run, so I hope he keeps wearing it all season.
    .
    JG did not seem to get a good grip on the ball. It slipped out of his hand on a pump fake, and tended to wobble. Conversely, the passes that Brees, Wilson and Rodgers threw, were tight spirals right on the money.
    .
    JG needs better support. Better O line protection, and receivers that can get open. That pass to Mostert for his 76 yard TD was put in the right place, and hit him in stride, so JG just needs to keep making those kind of plays.
    .
    I am a lot more concerned about the defense. They seemed to let the Cards convert third downs, while in third and long, too many times. They did not play disciplined, and let Murray run free.

  13. At least I end this gloomy Monday with a laugh…  

    Trump ad asks people to support the troops. But it uses a picture of Russian jets.

    1. And an ad congratulating him a “Noble Prize” nomination. That’s what happens when a campaign is flat broke, grifted out of a billion dollars, you have to “hire” illiterate volunteers. Luckily for Trump he has a huge base of just that to choose from.

      1. Too bad the filthy rich and filthier poor vote Democrat.

        The rest of us, the true responsible financial backbone of the nation are upper middle class and vote Trump.

        I’d rather keep my hard earned money in my wallet. I worked until 4:20am last night at my business, then went to bed and woke up at 6:45am. All because I want to save enough for my kid to go to a decent college and a retirement for my wife and I. We’ve lost pretty much everything due to the pandemic and now trying to build things up again.

        Then I’m reminded yesterday that my city, the city of San Francisco has decided to give $1000 to every pregnant black and Pacific Islander woman no questions asked. This benefit runs through 6 months post pregnancy. The cycle starts again if the woman decides to get pregnant again, which will certainly happen again as soon as the prior baby pops out. Just in time to keep the guaranteed income flowing.

        My wife and I painfully chose to have just one child to try and be financially responsible. And then I’m reminded of these idiots having 3, 4, 5 kids and no means to support them.

        That, my friend is your vision of America and why someone who is not some dumb back country hick like you claim, but rather an immigrant who has worked hard to build a business is voting for Trump.

        Hope you think about that next time you claim that his voters are illiterate. I’d be willing to bet between my wife and I, 1 PhD and 1 masters in engineering, that we stack up nicely against your intelligence litmus test.

        Idiot.

        1. Typical nonsense response from somebody who has bought the propaganda and ignores everything this moronic President has done because you focus on taxes. I’m also upper middle class and got a tax break a couple of years ago like many others. Know what else I got? Tax write offs taken away that cost me more money than the tax cut gave me. Know what else you are getting from Trump in that Tax cut? An increase in tax each year until you are back where you started in about 5 years. Know who isn’t having their tax break taken back over time? The top 1% who got 87% of the tax cut compared to 13% for everybody else. If you are indeed an immigrant which I doubt considering the nonsense you are spewing, then try doing some research into exactly what is being done by Republicans as far as putting money in your pocket and also the fact they don’t seem to like immigrants very much considering they are trying to keep them out of the country and committing atrocities at the border.

  14. Jimmy played bad but let’s be real he was throwing to a bunch of WR3s that barley got separation all game. Bourne lead all receivers with 2 Catches for 34 yards on 5 targets. He’s not a starting receiver in this league. BTW he should of stayed on his feet on that game winning potential TD and jumped for the ball instead of falling backwards. He would of got a PI Call. Jimmy underthrew the pass but Bourne played it horribly. Taylor got all that hype this offseason and he looked like the same player back in 2018 where he had 215 yards in 13 games. Can’t make contested catches and no separation. 5 targets 2 catches for 7 Yards. That’s not going to cut it. Pettis had 1 target all game. You can blame the play calling, the lack of containment on Murray or Hopkins, but this game came down to not scoring enough points on offense. We need Deebo and Aiyuk back or this pass offense will continue to struggle without any true playmakers at wide receiver.

  15. A wise man recently posted that Richie James was better than Taylor. Behold:

    RJ screen pass for 57 yards versus Cards last year.
    https://www.49ers.com/video/49ers-richie-james-jr-57-yard-gain-week-11-cardinals

    RJ 53 yard catch and run.
    https://www.49ers.com/video/richie-james-jr-speeds-past-the-raiders-defense-for-a-53-yard-gain

    I am also doubling down on the assertion that Pettis is useless. Reminder that he was a healthy scratch in the Super Bowl. There has to be a free agent WR out there who can replace Pettis and contribute right away.

      1. That’s true,
        This probably also played into the wr’s not being able to separate, as Kyle couldn’t run any fresh bodies out there. As they say ” fatigue makes cowards of us all.”

      2. Thanks OC. Apparently they are working out Sanu today. Niners need to completely overhaul their WR corps. We don’t need to keep guys on the roster who jog routes and have zero to little chance of ever catching a pass. Let’s promote Kevin White from the practice squad. The current status quo is unacceptable.

    1. Trent Taylor gets a lot of hype for a receiver that hasn’t done much in this league. He looked slow out there. We definitely need more speed at receiver. James last year was our most efficient receiver. 6 catches on 10 targets for 165 yards. If Bourne or Taylor had those numbers everyone would be screaming they need more touches. For some reason Kyle doesn’t use him as much as he should.

  16. this team has/had the talent and the coaching to get to the SB and almost win

    this team also has the talent/coaching to get to the SB and not win

    the strength of this team is the amazing Shanahan running game, Kittle, and the talent on D. the less strong parts are those that i didnt just mention. this has been talked about by various pundits for a while, including the Maiocco podcast.

    I’m lucky enough to have seen the Niners win 5 Super Bowls. If we want to win another one, we’re probably going to have to add to that list of positive attributes – and quickly, because the window to win a SB is about 2-3 years max. (Do some teams win over a longer timeframe? they do: they usually have a HOF QB that they rebuild around. ask yourself if we have a HOF QB now).

    It’s going to be an entertaining year. This team has a lot of talent and at least one great coach. The SB loser’s curse looms large tho, and it exists for a reason. Let’s hope this team can overcome the effect of football gravity, if you will.

  17. One thing I was looking for was which Niners played at a relatively high level in the first game, especially those among the core group of players. They seem to have been Bosa, Kittle, Williams, Greenlaw, Mostert and Sherm (probably Ward too). However, Jimmy G, McGlinchey, Warner and Armstead disappointed to varying extents.

        1. I was skeptical of paying Ward that big contract after playing good on a contract year. 6 years and 1 good season to show for it got him paid. I thought T-Moore could of filled in at FS this year for a much cheaper price. And then we could of paid Emmanuel Sanders.

  18. I am with the GOAT JR on this one……Players are young and getting complacent….

    “Something that really, really got me heated yesterday — and I’m not going to call any names or anything like that — during the break, they were playing music,” Rice explained, “and we had certain guys dancing that hadn’t done anything on the football field; that didn’t have a reception or anything. That’s not the standard of the San Francisco 49ers.

    “If you want to dance, you want to be a dancer or do whatever, you shouldn’t be wearing that uniform. You’ve got to be productive. You’ve got to contribute to the team. And if you can’t do that, go do something else. That really just pissed me off. The Niners are not about that.

    “Now, you score a touchdown, you can do whatever you want. You can dance, you can breakdance. I don’t care. But if you are dancing and you haven’t made a catch, or you haven’t done anything on the football field, I have a problem with that.”

  19. A few thoughts…

    First game. Some good. Some bad. Every season has it’s own life. The team that played Sunday isn’t the team that will finish the season. KS will fix alot even before the next game. I still can’t believe the 49ers did not do more in the offseason to address the Center position. I thought the interior o-line struggled. Got no push on the goal line. Also, why is Mostert your RB on 4th and Goal? Need a guy with more weight to push through in that situation. For a guy everyone says is talented, Dante Pettis does absolutely nothing. I felt like his effort on the one pass he had was poor. No physicality in his game. I was hopeful he would show up but now I’m ready to see him dangled as trade bait. Jimmy G was off most of the game. He was either late in his reads or he was throwing too soon before the WR cleared the zone. Lastly, NFL officiating is making the game nearly unwatchable. I’m not a fan of protecting the QB to the extreme on the slides. Is the QB a football player or not? I’m not a fan of the Defensive Holding calls. Refs really bailed out the Cardinals with calls multiple times per game. On one critical 3rd down, Kittle got absolutely mugged but no call. Then they hit Kwaun for a ridiculous hold on Hopkins when Hopkins was the one initiating contact. It’s so uneven it’s hard to understand the implementation of the rules. In other games, the OPI calls were absurd. NFL just isn’t as enjoyable when the Refs think everyone tunes in to watch them throw flags.

    1. The 4th and Goal was unsuccessful for a couple reasons: 1. The rookie TE got absolutely stoned and pushed back. 2. Trent Williams was blocking down and clipped the shoulder pad of Brunskill who was pulling to lead into the hole. This knocked Brunskill off his path and slowed him enough to screw up the timing and allow penetration. With those two things happening I don’t think it would have made a difference with the 49ers biggest back, Wilson, in there.

      1. Disagree. 2 defenders met Mostert in the hole and pushed him back. Mostert did a good job of trying to push forward but just couldn’t get much lean. The 49ers don’t have a protypical short yardage back. IMO Jeff Wilson is the best option the 49ers have in that situation.

          1. Jack,
            Why do you think KS had JG in the shotgun so much Sunday. The 49ers seem to run the ball far more effectively when JG is under center and the play action game is also better when he is under center. I’m not sure of the numbers but they seemed to be in shotgun much more on Sun than they were last year.

              1. Jack, is Shanahan trying to do too much? Too much coaching?

                I said earlier last week that it looks like Jimmy G has shackles on and when it’s time to perform and make throws, he has the fear of God in him, and he just can’t let it rip.
                Maybe knowing that if he makes a mistake, his coach is gonna “over coach”him again.
                I see paralysis by analysis in his play.

              2. Prime: I’ve had similar thoughts for over a year. When he first got here, Jimmy was unfettered and there were no expectations. He played unfettered and he had a great six games. But now KS is just all over him like a nagging spouse. Remember when Mullens was in the huddle and told KS to to shut up (I don’t think KS heard him, but the guys in the huddle laughed). Based on what Mullens did, it sure seems like there is some truth to this. It’s hampering Jimmy as he is perhaps trying too hard to please KS.

                He did have a positive on Sunday and that is that he didn’t make any turnovers; but it was at times at the expense of holding on to the ball too long. I said it last year – he and KS need to be on more equal terms – I don’t think it is happening and may never happen.

              3. Great add Cubus. If both guys don’t get on the same page it will be someone moving on, most likely Jimmy G.
                I sure don’t want Kirk Cousins as our QB next year so I’m hoping Kyle starts to get Jimmy G into a better rhythm early in games and throws more on 1st and 2nd down.
                Take some chances but still let the running game be your bread and butter.

                Maybe it’s time someone else starts calling the plays and KS monitors it.

              4. Maybe it’s time someone else starts calling the plays and KS monitors it.

                Seb, where’s Prime and what have you done to him?

                Shanny is the best play caller in the game and you want to let someone else do it? Euck that!

          2. J.P., I’m not disagreeing with the blocking. Obviously Brunskill got knocked off The route on his pull. I’m saying I don’t see Mostert as the best goal line back. He doesn’t push the pile much. I also don’t like pulling a guard on a quick hitting play like that. It’s an exceptionally difficult ask of a Guard on a play where the defense is crashing down hard. Way too much can go wrong – and it did.

        1. Exactly…Should of gave Wilson the ball on 4th and 1. He’s our best Rb with yards after contact. Paying Coleman over 4 million as the 3rd back is too much money. They need to cut bait with TCO and use Wilson as the RB3.

          1. They should not have used Coleman due to the conditions, so they should have used Jeff Wilson. After Richie James got injured, Wilson could also have been used as a pass catcher.

  20. As a coach you have to trust your Oline to create an opening in that situation.
    Jack brings up a good point.
    And it validates my comments after the game that the 49ers looked out of sync.
    I swear that I was watching a 49er exhibition game on Sunday. The players were step slow and timing was off.

    Time to get it all corrected starting this Sunday.

    1. At least until Samuel gets back. The hope is his ineffectiveness as a Patriot had more to due with injury rather than regression.

  21. Someone mentioned that the Press Democrat was broke. That goes for all newspapers. They’re dead but just don’t know it yet. Hopefully some enterprising writer will start a blog. We probably have several qualified people on this blog. Maybe several could join forces.

    1. Yes, in the internet age, information is free and they get revenue from advertising. In the present situation, putting information on a piece of paper and distributing it all the way to the Oregon border, is just not economically viable.
      .
      However, the PD does provide good information on local events and issues, that the big news sources just do not cover. I hope they can grow and adapt, so they do not go by the way of the DoDo Bird.
      .
      I would nominate Old Coach to be the blog maven, with Rib, AES and Razor facilitating. Nobody else seem interested, and those 4 mentioned are the core bloggers on this site. Then, at least, we can have daily posts.

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  23. Shanahan clings for too long. CJ Breathard, Taylor and Pettis should not have made the final roster. Sonu and perhaps someone else should have been brought in the minute Deebo and and Aiyuk were injured. What is the point of having players on the roster if they can’t contribute when their number is called.

        1. To my knowledge he had just one significant injury — fracture of the fifth metatarsal bone. He lost the season because of repeated infection in the same area where he had the surgery. Such infections should not count as injuries, IMO. Is there any other injury I am not aware of?

          1. He missed most of the previous season with a back injury. He has missed a lot of time due to injury. Hopefully this is the year he stays healthy.

        2. None of our receivers looked good last Sunday.
          The entire offense was out of sync. The Oline was below average as was Jimmy G.
          The defense wasn’t any better and had no answer for Murray.
          Let’s face it, the team wasn’t ready to play and starts with the coaching.
          Analysing what happened last Sunday is simply as the old adage says; “Monday morning quarterbacking.”
          Well now it’s Wednesday.
          On to the east coast.

      1. Thanks; missed that. Hopefully Verrett’s hamstring issues resolve by Sunday. Though given the number of cornerbacks signed, this is unlikely.

  24. Sherman on IR for 3 weeks at least. Witherspoon on concussion protocol. Yikes! Time for the D line to justify the investment by proving their worth against less mobile QBs for the next 2 weeks.

  25. Looks like it will be Mosely and Williams outside and Moore in the slot or Mosley and Johnson with Williams in the slot. Anyone for the Santa Clara injury curse.

  26. On Murray’s TD run, Bosa rushed like a rookie and gave up his position, allowing Murray to run through a wide open side. There is enough blame to go all around.
    .
    JG did throw well, when he had time. One cannot laud his pitch and catch to Mostert, then say he was inaccurate. He did fail with his last pass, but at least he was close to winning. JG, with better O line play, will be better. It will also help in the run game, too.
    .
    KS should design more plays that let the defense to over commit to one side, then have the RB cut back, so the defense is out of position. More counters and swing passes to the RBs should be dialed up.
    .
    This next game with the Jets will not be a picnic. They will also want a win.
    .
    KS needs to scheme better, and Saleh needs his defenders to play with more discipline. Saleh looked confused, exhorting the players to get sacks, but allowing Murray to break containment, at will.
    .
    Maybe KS should appoint Bobby Turner as OC, so he can concentrate on being the HC.
    .
    These injuries are concerning, but they need to be able to deal with attrition. No wonder JL was signing all of those FA veterans.

    1. Only a moron would judge Jimmy G’s performance with such a low bar. I guess you’re essentially using Kaep as your barometer of a good QB.

      1. Then you must be one, because I am not panicking about JG, like you are.
        .
        Yes, Kaep could have played, and he would have been way better than several drek QBs I saw last weekend.
        .
        It is so ironic to hear posters and pundits lament the fact that JG is not like Lamar Jackson. I have been saying all along, that the era of the mobile, dual threat QBs has arrived. However, I also think that JG can win a SB, playing to his strengths, while disguising his weaknesses. Tom Brady was not a mobile QB, so he had a good defense and enough support to win 6 rings. An accurate QB who is football savvy like JG can do that, too.

          1. Steve Young? He was immobile?
            .
            Joe Montana set the record for rushing over 50 yards, and passing for over 300 yards in a SB. He was mobile, too.

            1. Was Young a better passer or runner? Did the 49ers demolish the Chargers with Steve’s legs or arm?

              Will Montana be remembered as a passer or a mobile QB?

              All these QB’s can run. But at the end of the day they have to be quarterbacks.
              Live and die in the pocket passing the ball because creating outside gets you highlights and T boned and out of the league.

              Just ask Kap, Jemarcus Russell, Kordell Stewart, and soon to be Lamar Jackson.
              I’ll go as far and say Kyler Murray when he gets crushed inside once teams figure to keep him inside the pocket. Something our useless DC could not figure out.

  27. Recent CB injuries are precisely why it is imprudent to carry 3 QB. Our secondary was suspect last year. Looks like we are headed down the same path in the early goings. Adding depth at CB is a better option than CJB. What exactly does CJB add to the team at this point ?

  28. No Sherman, Witherspoon, or Deebo, a questionable Kittle, Aiyuk, and center combo and a cross country trip could make this next game very interesting… even an ugly win should be respected at this point.

  29. How good would CJ Henderson look right now! Should have drafted a corner.

    This is how the demise starts. Bad effort, injuries, QB issues, and it snow balls.

  30. Watching how sloppy the team was on Sunday really sucked. Pretty much the whole team was off. Despite that, they had plenty of opportunities to win the game. Maybe I am biased but to me they looked like they are the better team but juts kept making little mistakes that cost them. And that was without some key players.

    Seeing the comments this week from posters it seems like many fans now think the team is in serious trouble and not that good anymore. Bizarre. There are some fragile fans just waiting to sour on the team. Losing Sherman sucks, maybe not having Kittle also sucks, but I also expect this team to be far too good for the Jets.

    1. It’s crazy isn’t it? For years I’ve been reading different 49er websites and haven’t commented much, but this one has a level of insanity to it after a loss that is hard to ignore. Garoppolo wasn’t great but throws 2 TD’s no picks and some on here are ready to move on to the next guy. I just don’t get the overreactions from some of the fans around here.

  31. Scooter,
    Even with key players out in the next few games, we are better than the teams we are playing in the east coast.
    But if we lose a couple of those games things will get interesting if we come home with a 2-2 record.
    But that shouldn’t happen. We’re still good enough to come home at 3-1.

      1. Yes, because if the 49ers lose to all those teams then they aren’t a good team. But why are people already thinking the 49ers aren’t good? One poor game does not make last years NFC champs bad.

        1. I think it stems from the QB position. Garoppolo wasn’t very good. Add that to his 4th quarter in the SB and there is nothing easier then dumping on the most critical position in sports.

          Now with injuries mounting, nothing will derail a team faster than poor QB play and injuries.

          I don’t like what’s happening between Shanny and Jimmy G. I see a major disconnect between the two between the play calling and the execution. He looks scared to make a deep throw and Shanny has him playing robotic football with limiting his throws on 1st and 2nd down.
          Yes, I’m worried!

          1. First game of the season without a preseason, his starting WRs were Bourne and Pettis, and his starting centre is a PS player they signed only a couple of weeks ago. JG looked poor, no question, but so did a lot of QBs in week 1. Let’s wait a few weeks to see if he gets back into football rhythm before we get the pitchforks out and start claiming JG is now awful or there is a disconnect between JG and Shanny.

          2. I agree with what you say except the criticism of Jimmy G in the SB. His downfall was that helmet to helmet hit when, like John Madden used to say, You get up looking out your ear hole. The difference between the Madden era and today is that it is now a penalty and the refs blew it. Compare for example how the refs handled Murray on Sunday. If you are running the ball all bets should be off – your are a runner and are fair game. What I mean precisely is compare the two hits that drew flags on Murray and the one that did not on Jimmy. JG has experienced adversity that he has never had to face before and his confidence is accordingly shaken. The only thing in common between the SB game and last Sunday is that the refs had too much effect on the outcome. It is ruining the game IMHO. As for Jimmy, we get to see if Kyle is just lucky or if he’s also good.

        2. It’s a long season. Hate losing the opener, let alone to an inferior divisional rival but it doesn’t mean much as long as things get rectified in a timely fashion….

          1. Razor,
            I’m not sure how inferior the Cards are to the 49ers. Injuries and lack of salary cap room kept the 9ers from improving that much this off season. I believe that the Cards improved greatly this off season and were on the come at the end of last season.

              1. Aiyuk you think was drafted to be a starter? We don’t know what this kid can do yet.
                And you’ve been very critical of both Richburg and Garland, no? Something about a soft underbelly?

              2. Aiyuk may or may not have been drafted with the thought he would definitely be the starter this year, but I’m sure that was the hope given they didn’t replace Sanders with anyone else, and he was definitely getting 1st team reps in TC from all reports. It also sounded like he was their best WR in camp.

                And whether you think Richburg/ Garland are good starters or not, they are the 49ers #1 and #2 centre options. Using your #3 centre is never a good thing, especially when that guy was not even on a roster a few weeks before the season started.

              3. I actually thought Grasu was pretty good.
                So was week one a blip, rust, lack of chemistry or a QB who has hit his ceiling or a coach who doesn’t trust him?
                I keep harping on the Jimmy G/Shanny relationship and I hope I’m wrong.

              4. I think we don’t know what week 1 was at this point, but at this stage the most likely scenario is it was a blip constructed from a multitude of factors, including rust from being week 1 with no preseason, top WRs missing, and 3rd string centre. Even if you think Grasu played well, it probably impacted on things like OL calls/ communication, Shanahan’s trust in how the OL would hold up (impacting on play calling), and JG’s trust in how the OL would hold up (impacting on his poise and decision making).

                JG/ Shanahan were good enough to get to the SB last year and lead an offense that ranked among the top in the NFL in most categories. At full strength the offense hasn’t changed that much from last year. At this point I just don’t see why anyone would be thinking the offense is now broken in some way.

              5. Well said Scooter. The offense is not broken, just stuck. Maybe guys like Deebo and Aiyuk can ignite it and give Jimmy some much needed fire power.

                Somethings gotta give. You can win games in the regular season by being run heavy but as we seen in the playoffs, at some point you gotta let your quarterback loose.

            1. The Cards have Kyler Murray under a rookie contract, so they can afford to spend more of the cap on other players.
              .
              I will agree that the Cards have improved, too. In fact, it looks like the entire NFC West has improved.

      2. If we lose to the Jets, Giants, Eagles and Dolphins, the season is over.

        If we lose to the Jets or the Giants the season is on shaky grounds. There is an urgency due to the week one loss, and if the Niners don’t take care of business against these two obviously inferior teams, then….

        1. Prime reminds me of the character who goes around screaming- No need to PANIC! Wotta Debbie Downer.
          .
          It is the test of how a champion behaves when faced with adversity, that will expose their weaknesses, or exemplify their strengths.
          .
          I still have faith in this team, because they DO have JG. In fact, I have refrained from posting any 10 point plans to improve, because they are NFC Champions, with a 13-3 record, not a 4-12 team.
          .
          JL has his work cut out for him, but I am confident that he has built a strong squad, and can obtain enough talent to win. This pandemic has messed things up, so it is not unreasonable to expect there will be bumps in the road.

          1. I’m as optimistic as the next optimist, have even been accused of homerism, but their opening day performance, JG, WRs, defense, basically all around, especially in comparison to how the other NFCW teams fared, has led to more than a shadow of doubt in my mind. We’ll see with larger samples.

  32. I don’t particularly see the 49ers fighting for a Wildcard birth. But even if that happens for some unforseen reason, we still are good enough to beat every team we go against.
    No team will want to play us in the post season especially once we have our key players back and rookies like Kinlaw and Aiyuk have more games under their belt.

    As I’ve mentioned, Sundays game looked like a preseason game for the 49ers. We will see the real 49ers starting this Sunday.
    Much is expected from this team this season, it stands to reason that many of us took this loss as disappointing.
    But I doubt that anyone is throwing in the towel.

  33. OT, but the hatred directed towards Budda Baker exposed the ugly side of a racist, who claims to be a Niner fan. I hope the vast majority of die hard faithful Niner fans will condemn such heinous behavior.
    .
    I would not be surprised that he has posted here. The lack of restraints have encouraged such boorish behavior.
    .
    I hope the 49ers find out who sent that, and will ban him for life.

  34. Hopefully Sanu will make a difference this week. Right now the opposing defenses are spending about 2 seconds worrying about Bourne and Taylor. Double Kittle, play the run and pressure Jimmy. Niner wide receivers are no threat at this point. On offense I’d pass, pass, pass against the Niners. Having said that, right now I’m leaning towards the Niners -7 and the over (42 1/2) Even hurt, they’re better than the Jets. No home field advantage. Beautiful fall day in the mid sixties. Yea, Niners will win somewhere in the 27-17 area. I will fine tune later in the week after the injury report. Great start to the season. 4-0 last week. Fill those coffers!

    1. It wasn’t the passing game that was the problem for the 49ers D against the Cardinals, it was Murray’s scrambling. If teams decide to go pass heavy with a QB that isn’t as much of a threat running the ball as Murray the 49ers DL will cause a lot of problems for that offense.

    2. Yep our receivers struggled to get separation. And the few times they were open Jimmy wasn’t accurate. Hopefully with Aiyuk back we finally get a receiver that can stretch the defense. Bourne and Taylor can’t be on the field at the same time they just don’t scare anyone with their speed. Sanu is basically another slow possession receiver like Bourne but he’s bigger and catch those 50/50 balls something Bourne can’t do. Sanu should replace Trent Taylor in the slot right away. Taylor looked awful last Sunday. And when Deebo comes back the big 3 at WR will be Deebo Aiyuk and Sanu. Not a great trio but good enough hopefully. If Aiyuk can bring us what Sanders did last season we should be fine.

  35. Jeff Deeney
    @PFF_Jeff
    Ironically, DeForest Buckner’s highest-graded game as a rookie was exactly 81.4. #49ers

    PFF College
    @PFF_College
    Javon Kinlaw Wk 1 grade: 81.4

    🔺 1st among rookie DTs
    🔺 5th among all NFL DTs
    12:40 AM · Sep 17, 2020

    1. The sample sizes are extremely small at the moment, but we can add Defo’s grade from Sunday to the mix.
      Buckner’s Wk 1 grade: 68.3

  36. Aiyuk and Garland are back.

    Matt Barrows @mattbarrows
    For #49ers, WR Brandon Aiyuk and C Ben Garland were full-go in today’s practice.
    No practice for TE George Kittle, CBs Ahkello Witherspoon, Jason Verrett and for WR Richie James.
    Richard Sherman goes on IR …

  37. Quiz for Niners fan. Frank Gore will start for the Jets on Sunday. I hope he runs for a hundred yards while Niners rout the Jets. Only two Niners currently on the roster played with Frank. One of them is Jimmy Ward — beloved of every coaching staff and front office since he was drafted much to the chagrin of the fans :) Who is the other?

    1. Mr. Frank Gore was the heart and soul of the 49ers. He will always be a true 49er and respected as such.
      When we lost the Superbowl under Harbaugh, my heart went out to Gore because no one deserved more than him.
      I hope he has a good game but not good enough to beat us.

    1. Yeah, JG did not play well. He did seem to miss some reads/ lock into some reads, and his accuracy was off on a lot of throws.

      However, in terms of missing open receivers, it is easy from a fans point of view looking at the film and see a receiver open to blame the QB for missing them. But we simply don’t know what JG’s progressions/ reads were on the play. Shanahan has admitted the WRs were not a big part of the game plan, so I think it is partly a case of JG’s reads just not taking him to the open player more than him missing the read.

      Also, on the play Mostert was open in the end zone, perversely that was a case of JG moving through his progression too quickly to see Mostert come open. He was covered initially and the correct read probably was to go to the next guy in the progression. Unfortunately that then coincided with Mostert beating his guy just after JG left him.

      1. “Also, on the play Mostert was open in the end zone, perversely that was a case of JG moving through his progression too quickly to see Mostert come open. He was covered initially and the correct read probably was to go to the next guy in the progression. Unfortunately that then coincided with Mostert beating his guy just after JG left him.”

        Yep. I’ll bet this happens a lot; but fans only see the open guy not whether or not the QB has already passed him by in the progression.

        1. Yeah, true but the point was not about Mostert, but how Jimmy G locked himself to the right side of the field even thus missing the open Pettis — though the O line gave him enough time. He has one of the fastest releases in the league which should allow him to scan the field.

      2. it is easy from a fans point of view looking at the film and see a receiver open to blame the QB for missing them. But we simply don’t know what JG’s progressions/ reads were on the play.

        Yeah, that’s the argument I have used in the past to defend Jimmy G and other Niners’ QBs in the past. However, we fans have been beating up on Pettis for a while. On that play, it seems that Jimmy G locked himself to the right side of the field but also threw the ball late allowing the DB to make a play.
        I expect that the offense will play much better this Sunday.

  38. Mood,
    On the missed opportunity to Pettis from the 10 yrd line, it appears that Jimmy looked toward Pettis for a brief moment, but Pettis was not yet open.
    Jimmy then looked elsewhere.

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