Vic Fangio on covering Jimmy Graham: “He’s hard. Do you have any ideas?”

SANTA CLARA — This is the transcript of Vic Fangio’s Thursday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers’ P.R. department.

You think LB Patrick Willis can play Sunday?

“It’s questionable. As the week rolls on, if he doesn’t start practicing at some point then it starts moving to doubtful.”


Is he just taking a different tact this week or did he suffer a setback last week?

“I don’t think he suffered a setback. It just hadn’t gotten much better.”


He went through limited practice last week, at least that’s what it said on the report. What does that mean?

“Limited could mean you take half the reps, 25 percent of the reps, go through individually only. There’s a wide range there.”


What did it mean last week for Willis?



Obviously, LB Chris Borland raked up a lot of tackles on Sunday. How did he grade out as far as you’re concerned?

“He played good in the game. Obviously, like all of us, had a couple of plays he’d like to do over. Overall, he played a good football game.”


Did he get better as the game went on? Seemed like a lot of his tackles were coming in the second half.

“Possibly. I think the biggest thing you’re looking for there, which happened, is he got better from his first start to his second start, which can happen particularly if you’re a smart guy and a prideful guy, which he is. He’s going to continue to improve the more he plays.”


How is he progressing as far as balancing his responsibilities and his instincts?

“He’s getting better there. He’s getting better there.”


Patrick lined up a lot against Saints TE Jimmy Graham in past meetings. Is that something Chris would have to do or is that going to fall more on safety help? How do you defend this guy?

“He’s hard. Do you have any ideas? It’ll be a mix of guys depending upon the coverage we’re in, depending upon where he lines up. Could be a corner type, could be a safety type, could be a linebacker type, so, it will be a mix.”


Is Borland’s size as opposed to Graham’s size, is that something that’s kind of overrated or is there a lot to that?

“No. The guy is whatever he is – 6’5”? And Chris is whatever he is. I don’t even know. What is Chris?”



“5’11. And all of our defensive backs are in that same range. He’s going to have that height advantage almost over everybody that will line up on him, just like he does each and every week in the NFL for the most part. It’s a tough matchup and makes it tougher that he’s a part of a very balanced offense so it’s hard to give special attention to one guy all the time. We just have to go out and play.”


S Eric Reid said that Borland leads the team in practice interceptions? Have those come against tight end routes or have you seen him cover tight ends in practice?

“I don’t know. Can’t give you an exact what they’ve come across. They’ve come against scout team quarterbacks, too.”


Is DL Glenn Dorsey getting closer to making his debut?

“He is.”


Could it come Sunday?

“It could. I’m not sure, though. To me, that’s truly 50-50 right now.”


Is that why Seahawks defensive lineman Demarcus Dobbs was released just because there was a lot of guys on the defensive line and you would have to create room somewhere for Dorsey.

“Yeah, part of the reason.”


For an outside linebacker like LB Aaron Lynch, how much do his responsibilities increase in base as opposed to nickel?

“Well, they increase a lot because in nickel he doesn’t drop very much unless we have some zone pressures on where he has to drop. And in base, he can be dropped in lot. So, changes a lot.”


Has that been a point of emphasis for him this week with LB Dan Skuta injured?

“Well, it’s been a point of emphasis for him every week. He gets a lot of base reps in practice even when he’s only playing the nickel, so, obviously, he’s getting more this week with Dan not practicing yet. He went in there in the game the other day and got a couple in the base and did fine.”


When LB Aldon Smith comes back, do you have to figure out how to still get Lynch on the field and could he cut into LB Ahmad Brooks’ playing time?

“Well, that would be handled at that point. As long as Aaron keeps playing the way he’s playing right now as far as in the nickel stuff, he’ll be in there.”


What has Saints RB Mark Ingram done to increase his production this year?

“Well, they’re a very balanced offense. They do a great job of running and throwing. They run the ball a lot more than people realize. They’re seventh in the league in rushing yards and second in yards per carry. And they’re doing a good job blocking and he’s doing a good job of running. And because of the mix of their offense, run and pass, it’s hard to lean one way heavier and they’ve been doing a good job taking advantage of that. They’ve run the ball extremely well no matter who the back has been.”


Another question about the future, but when Willis comes back do you have to consider trying to keep Borland on the field as well?

“If Willis and [LB NaVorro] Bowman are both back?”


No. I guess what I’m talking about is when Willis comes back and Bowman is not back yet, do you have to make a decision between Borland and LB Michael Wilhoite or is that Wilhoite’s spot?

“We’ll make that decision at that time. I haven’t really thought about that yet.”


What about CB Tramaine Brock? How is he and has he suffered a setback with his toe?

“No, I don’t think he really suffered a setback. As you know, he played in the Denver game and would’ve preferred playing him part time that game, but then because of the situation had to play him full time. He looked like a guy that was rusty. A guy that hadn’t played in a long time and didn’t play as well as he’s capable of playing. Had a little minor setback last week but just wasn’t ready and gave it one more week. And hopefully this week, we’ll get him in there in the mix and not have to play full time.”


You’ve spent a lot of time, obviously, back in the day in New Orleans. You’ve been back there quite a few times since then. Any memories you have there or any special feelings when you go back there?

“Well, it’s the place I spent the most time in the NFL and it was my first job in the NFL. My son was born there. Yeah, it is. Outside of my hometown, it’s the place I’ve lived the longest in my life. Feel like I know the place. Feel a little bit at home when I go there and recognize everything. And I like the city. New Orleans is a good place.”


What’s your favorite restaurant?

“Impastato’s. I highly recommend it. It’s in Metairie, though.”


Close to your hotel?



Will you be there Friday night?

“I don’t know about Friday night but I sent the doctors there last year and they’re still thanking me to this day. I would highly recommend going there.”





Where at?

“It’s in Metairie, right near the Lakeside Mall. Right as if you’re going over the causeway. It’s hard to find because it’s back on a side street. But there’s an old-time goomba there. He’s about 75 and he’s still working it hard.”



“That’s it. Joe Impastato.”


See you there.

This article has 97 Comments

  1. Fangio makes for fun listening. Hopefully he can keep his soldiers continue to play disciplined defense.

    1. You can make that one thing because since being drafted he’s played in 112 out of 120 regular season games. Not what I would call “always hurt.”

    1. I lived in Florence, KY for a few years. Just across the bridge from Cincy. They need new ownership. All that man cares about is money. When they were at their at their absolute worse, their owner was raising ticket prices. He has some wacky deal with the county. The county pays him for every empty seat in the stadium.

      Marvin Lewis hasn’t done too much of anything either.

  2. Browns reminded me of the old Grambling College teams last night. Grambling being a poor, small African-American school with very limited resources still had terrific teams based soley on talent and grit. Niners should watch that game. There was a lot of fire in that Brown’s team, something I don’t see much of in Santa Clara…

    1. Grambling had great teams because it had all the great black athletes who were not allowed to play at southern white universities.

      1. That’s exactly correct. Their success faded when the stars understandably went for the big money programs to get exposure to get drafted to the Pros. Grambling, and arch rival Southern U., seem to have recruited some excellent musicians too (and still are) for their marching bands; those bands are The Bomb! Halftime at the Grambling/Southern Game is fabulous. There’s probably some YouTube clips on them.

        1. I believe raider great, DB Willie Brown was from Grambling.
          Back in the 60-70’s they were a small production line for players entering the NFL.

          1. Those not interested can scroll past, but here’s a list of Grambling alums that I recognized who did well in the NFL. There are oth guys too.
            Willie Brown
            Nemiah Wilson
            Woody People’s
            James Harris
            Doug Williams
            Ernie Ladd
            Gary ‘Big Hands’ Johnson
            Buck Buchanon
            Jason Hatcher
            Charlie Joiner
            Albert Lewis
            Jake Reed
            Nate Singleton
            Mike St Clair
            Rosen Taylor
            Everson Walls
            Sammy White
            And Tank Younger, who played and then was one of the earlier black guys to break the barrier and get into mid-management.
            I think in the 50s some of the big time college programs began using a few black stars on their rosters. Probably shortly after Jackie Robinson broke the barrier in MLB

            1. I was just asking because I’m familiar with Grambling being I had a sister graduate from Clark Atlanta University. Eddie Robinson coached well into the 90’s maybe later. He always recruited athletes. I wouldn’t say They only went there because they couldn’t get into those southern white schools. Many people go to those schools because it’s a family tradition.

  3. Well guys, Jameis Winston continues to be involved in the dumbest of things. Currently under investigation for points shaving against Louisville. I’m assuming, could be wrong, his stock is slowly dropping. If he falls mid to late 1st rd, do we take him?

  4. If you asked me yesterday I would’ve said probably not. I’m kind of conservative on the subject of off field issues. I’m dazzled by Winston’s talent and Gamer mentality, but Josh Gordon is very talented too, yet he’s not helping his team. Aldon likewise.
    I’ll withhold judgement until some details firm up. If however these allegations do hold up, I’d never let him into my facility or allow his name to be discussed as a prospect for my team.
    Hornung & Karras bet on games and were punished. Pete Rose is still banned for betting on games. But POINT SHAVING!!?!!? That’s unforgivable in amateur or professional sports.
    Again: IF true. We know next to nothing at this point.

    1. Pete Rose is still banned for betting on games.
      That’s the reason they’ve told the public all these years but common sense would tell you that to receive a lifetime ban he did something far naughtier.

    2. This is a weird question I know but could you see the 49ers throwing a game with the Cards if they thought the Seahawks for some reason might otherwise win the division?

  5. I’m a FSU fan. My girlfriend and I were at that game. He looked terrible. I don’t know if he was shaving points though. FSU has struggled the 1st of all their games this year.

    The kid is extremely talented. I’ve also never in all my years of football seen someone keep it together on the field when their off the field life was a circus. He’s got talent. Him being on the niners for me is a double edge sword. He’s better than Kaep but you never know what stupid decision he’s going to make. He has A LOT of maturing.

  6. “a very balance offense”
    [speaking of the New Orleans Saints]

    by next Monday, expect the Saints to be
    4-0 at home. And, if the Niners choose to
    call more plays which involve CK running the ball,
    my money says that he will sustain his first big boy
    real deal NFL hit/injury. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

    Coach Jim Harbaw: running out of options on offense….

  7. The 49ers will likely have 4 rookies starting on Sunday. Yep, Baalke blew it by not trading away those picks to move up in the first round.

      1. That had more to do with the offense than the defense which is where 3 of those rookies will start.

    1. Yeah Jack, those rookies aren’t providing any help at all. We needed an “impact” player.

      1. Exactly one that makes catches in the redzone and does not roll out of bounds. The kinda impact that wins games!

          1. Yes like Stevie Johnson where we traded a 4th to get an impact player. Resources to acquire other resources.You are finally seeing the lite Scooter. Maybe it’s all that horse crap you’ve been smelling that’s clouding your brain!

              1. It was a 4th, but they made additional moves that made it a 7th.

                That’s much smarter than giving away multiple picks to move up for 1 guy.

              2. As you know the NFL draft is never an exact science. As you pointed out moving up or down has never been a proven method either way to getting that guy or guys that make you a legit winner. My point is looking exclusively at the 49ers situation. It only made sense for them to move up because they were already a contender, had depth and were primed to make a championship run once again. I’m not saying every team that has an abundance of picks should move up or rebuild, but in the Niners situation why not? Between 2013 and the 2015 draft, where were their holes to fill for this roster? Not too many. So with that being said what do you do with over 11 picks, and then another 7 or 8 next year? Why continue to pick guys that are injured and waiting for them to rehab, stash them on the practice roster, or having them sit amd develop in camp only to be released or release another valuable asset? It’s the like the rich getting greedy. Dobbs has been a great soldier for the Niners. He is the odd man out now and going to our fiercist rival with valuable information. I see that as counter productive to having too much depth.

              3. Where were the holes? Look at the depth on this team since 2011 and tell me what is so special about it? There have been a lot of undrafted FAs and cast offs from other teams. For a long time our backup DL were four undrafted FAs in Williams, Dobbs, Tukuafu and TJE. Of those, only Williams is a quality starter. Dobbs is an average backup DL at best. This was the first year where he’s seen any extensive game time, and he wasn’t doing much. Dobbs being the odd man out is no great loss for the 49ers.

                Our main backup ILBs have been Larry Grant and Michael Wilhoite. Our backup safeties have been Spillman and Dahl, and other lesser lights I can’t even remember. Our backup CBs have been Brock, Morris, Cox, Asomugha, etc. Brock looked good last year and earned his new contract, and Cox was a cast off that has come good this year. But the formula is the same – relying on a bunch of undrafted FAs and cast offs to fill the depth roles and hoping like heck they don’t get exposed.

                On offense, the WRs have been a shambles until this season. The OL has had journeymen as key backups for years.

                Only now do the 49ers finally have quality young guys providing depth for this team, that have been brought in through the draft. And with key players out injured this year that depth has been necessary, even if the team does find itself at 4-4.

                Also, you keep forgetting the 49ers did trade up in 2013, to get Reid. They did it quite a few times in that draft actually. Only Reid is really providing much to the team right now, which is the real concern. Not the draft strategy.

              4. Scooter all those cast offs you mentioned and lesser likes performed very well? You act like they didn’t contribute, in fact that year those guys played great earning extensions.
                You mentioned that the WR have been in shambles since this year. Why is that Scooter? Maybe because Baalke whiffed on a couple picks like Williams,
                Patton, Crabtree(bust) Jenkins?

                As for the DL what’s been wrong with the UDFA in Williams, Tukuafu, Dobbs, and Jerrod Eddie. They have been on the field playing, contributing. Where have Dial and Caredine been? They don’t even play. Your telling me those picks are better served sitting?
                As for trading up for Reid, CK it seems to me that strategy worked out well even though CK has been mediocre so far but when they did move up, it seemed to work so not sure why you think it would not work again. Your contradicting your self over and over again with this. Why can’t you see the value in trading up? They done well with the undrafted free agents. They can develop them. When they have moved up, it’s also worked.

              5. I don’t think anyone is saying to “never” trade up.

                The 49ers went into this years draft having two clear needs, corner and receiver. You trade up to get “your” guy, whomever he may be if the price is right, I think that guy for the 49ers this season was either Beckham or Fuller. The cost of moving from 30 to around 18 would be a swap of 1’s and a giving up your 3rd. Moving higher would likely cost more.

                If it was an impact receiver you wanted, which one was it? Only 2 receivers were selected after 12.

                If it was a corner you wanted, which one was it? Only 1 was taken after 14.

                As you make those moves remember what you are giving up. You’ll be giving up at least 2 picks that have turned into starters for you already this season.

              6. Right on, Jack.

                Where did I say they should never trade up, Prime? In fact, I have said they will be in a good position to trade up next year, if they so choose. Before the draft this year I said they should trade up for Beckham or Fuller, if they don’t need to give up much in doing so. From what Baalke has said it sounds like that was exactly what they were trying to do, too (though maybe not for those particular players).

                As Jack pointed out, for the right guy you don’t mind making the swap of picks for (like they did with Reid), but you have to mindful of the potential value those picks provide. You have been talking about trading up to around the top 10. To do so would have cost a lot of draft collateral. Would Beckham or Fuller be that much better than what they got instead?

                In my previous post I was simply showing that the incredible depth you seem to believe the 49ers had simply was not as incredible as you and many others perceive.

                Some cast offs have played well, no doubt, but then most of those guys have been signed with the intention of starting. Baalke does a good job finding guys on the cheap to fill holes. One of the things I’ve mentioned as a positive in the past. But then you also have cast offs like Braylon Edwards, Asomugha, Marlon Moore, Dahl, Leonard Davis, Adam Snyder, etc., that are signed to play more depth roles, that have been less than stellar. If the team had the young talent in depth roles in place, many of these guys wouldn’t be signed.

                Some of the UDFAs they’ve brought in have also worked out. None of them look like future stars, but some solid starting calibre guys like Brock, Boone and Williams, and some guys they can use in depth roles in a pinch.

                But most of these UDFAs are guys you wouldn’t want to rely on as a starter for an extended period of time in case of injury. TJE, Dobbs and Tukuafu should not be primary backups in my opinion. They simply are not that good. The fact that Carradine and Dial are not ahead of them is not a reflection of the talent of Dobbs and TJE, but a reflection of where Carradine and Dial are at in terms of development. The fact they released Dobbs yet kept the guys that have been behind him on the depth chart tells you who they think has more talent.

                Wilhoite should be a 4th LB and STs player, though when playing next to an All Pro in a strong D he can look like an ok starter. The same goes with most of the UDFAs they bring onto the roster. Ok depth guys, decent STs players, but not guys you really see as future starters. And even if they get there, you shouldn’t be relying on it.

                Regarding the WRs, yes, not having Jenkins pan out definitely put a hole in the WR unit. What does that have to do with trading up for an impact player? I’m not trying to argue that Baalke gets it right with every pick, its you that seems to believe he should be.

                To me there are a few key misconceptions in your argument Prime:

                Misconception 1: The 49ers have had great depth the past few years.

                Misconception 2: You can only find top line talent at the top of the draft.

                Misconception 3: The 49ers are one player away from being SB champions, and (see misconception 2) that one player can only be found by trading up in the draft.

                Misconception 4: Baalke should be hitting on every draft pick.

              7. Scooter says “To me there are a few key misconceptions in your argument Prime:

                Misconception 1: The 49ers have had great depth the past few years.

                They have had good depth the last 3 years and with the abundance of picks, it would have made perfect sense to package 2014 and 2015 picks to move up yet again like they did when they acquired Eric Reid and Kaepernick. You have to answer why picks like Lattimore, Dial, and Carredine are good picks when they don’t even play!

                Misconception 2: You can only find top line talent at the top of the draft.

                History has shown that there are more day one starters in the 1st round than any other round in the NFL draft. They had the resources to do.

                Misconception 3: The 49ers are one player away from being SB champions, and (see misconception 2) that one player can only be found by trading up in the draft.

                The 49ers are close. Moving up to get that impact player not only gets you immediate help, but can solidify that position for the next 10 years.

                Misconception 4: Baalke should be hitting on every draft pick.

                I said the NFL is not an exact science. You may not get it right every year as displayed in his 2012 draft, but he did get it right each time he moved up. The likelyhood of findng a good player, immediate help/starter in the 1st round versus any other round is a safe bet.

              8. So give us the impact player you think they should have traded up for, and which draft picks you want to give up.

              9. Jack read my post about what picks should have been traded.
                The arguement Scooter made was it was unnecessary to move up based on the 49ers situation. I think I’ve made it more than clear than why they should have.
                You guys keep asking me the same question as to why trading up made sense. What else do you want me to say over and over again?

              10. Well, if you think the depth guys they’ve had on the roster were good, then sure, no need to draft many players. We definitely disagree on the quality of the depth.

                And yes, there are more day 1 starters from the first round. Not all of those day 1 starters are any good, mind. Most teams first round pick is a pick of need to fill a hole, so stands to reason the guy will start. The question is, how often does, for example, a pick around 10 – 15 pan out compared to a late first rounder + second rounder, combined? If you look at the average value chart in the article I linked you to yesterday you’ll see the combo of picks works out better, on average.

                Yes, the 49ers are close (or have been). Probably closer last year than this year. Probably why they decided to move up and get Reid to fill their biggest need. This year they had quite a few holes, which is evidenced by how many of their rookies are actually starting. Again, look at the average value chart I linked you to yesterday to see how one top line pick fares against a late first and second rounder, on average. Basically if you move up for the right guy, sure, they have a better chance of being a top line player than a late first and second. How often do teams take the right guy? 10.3% of the time in the top 5, according to that article, and it gets worse the further in the draft you go.

                Good observation regarding Baalke’s strike rate when he does move up in early picks. He does generally do well in those scenarios. Again, from what he said after the draft he wanted to move up this year too, but it cost too much. There has been a lot of speculation that all the guys he wanted to move up for were gone once the Bears picked at #14. And once the guys he wanted were gone he was happy to stay pat. So lets assume it would have been Fuller or Beckham, how many guys would they have given up to get them, and how much better would one of those guys have made this team compared to the guys they did get?

              11. Prime,

                I don’t feel like wasting my time scrolling through multiple posts and comments to find it.

              12. It would have made the Niners a lot better at the position for the next 10 years. If your talking about Fuller or Beckam.
                It’s hit or miss right now to know if Borland, Johnson, Thomas, Dial, Carredine,etc will be in a 49ers uniform for the next 10 years.

              13. “Jack read my post about what picks should have been traded.”

                Right, you mean the ones that in hindsight don’t appear to be working out. Instead of moving up with those picks, maybe Baalke should have just drafted the players that were available that are now looking good. Oh sorry, forgot, you realise it isn’t an exact science. Just don’t accept that Baalke should have drafted Carradine, Dial (a mighty 5th rounder which I’m sure they could have parlayed into a top 10 pick) or Lattimore (a comp pick) because they haven’t done much.

                “The arguement Scooter made was it was unnecessary to move up based on the 49ers situation.”

                It absolutely was “unnecessary”. But I have no qualms with an argument saying moving up was a valid option. It was. But which player picked in the top 15 would have been worth giving up the picks to get him this year? Especially considering the team had obvious holes to fill?

                “You guys keep asking me the same question as to why trading up made sense.”

                No, we keep asking you who they should have traded up for, and what they should have given up for them. Appears you have now decided it should have been a combo of 2014 and 2015 picks. Which 2014 and 2015 picks? Which players would we now not have, and which future picks should have been given up? And we still haven’t heard who it should have been for.

              14. What about Ward and Hyde, Prime? Those are the guys the 49ers would have been giving up, as well as one or two of the guys you mentioned, to get in the top 15.

              15. The reason I have not orchestarted a would be deal because that would be irrelevant to the arguement. For the 100th time, comparing players already drafted or would have been traded for one another is a guessing game.
                The point is the 49ers should have moved up but you guys can’t say why it would not have made sense!
                Then you back track and say you that there is nothing wrong with moving up depending on who they would have gotten. Well how conveninet. Too bad every draft didn’t unfold that way where you knew how it would unfold and then see if it makes sense.

              16. WTF do you mean I can’t say why it didn’t make sense?!! For someone complaining about Jack not reading his posts… I’ve outlined why ad nauseam.

                Without saying who for, or what they should have given up, saying they should have traded up is simply a throw away statement. Its completely meaningless.

                You are basically saying the 49ers should have traded up for a future all pro that would have taken them over the top this year. I don’t know who because its completely pointless to look at after the fact, but that guy was out there, they should have identified him, and should have given up whatever it took to get him. But they also should have made sure they had all the players they needed to cover all the holes from FA departures, injuries and suspensions.

              17. “The point is the 49ers should have moved up but you guys can’t say why it would not have made sense!”

                I think we’ve both said that it would not have made sense to give up the number of picks that it would have taken to move up for Beckham or Fuller.

                “Then you back track and say you that there is nothing wrong with moving up depending on who they would have gotten.”

                I don’t think either of us have stated that. Scooter wanted them to get Beckham, but moving to 11 or 12 would have cost too many other picks. I wanted them to go after Fuller, but moving to 14 or 15 to get him also would have cost too much.

                Instead they stayed at 30, got a guy who is giving them about the same results as Fuller has given Chicago, and with the picks in the 3rd that they were able to keep picked up two guys who will be starting for them on Sunday.

              18. “WTF do you mean I can’t say why it didn’t make sense?!!

                You’ve tried now for 3 days but still can’t get it. Not sure what else to tell you other than trading up with a surplus of picks is a great way to get impact players that can hold down the position for your organization for the next 10 years!
                Show me a theory as to why that statement does not make sense. No forget that last request, I’ll just read your posts over and over and pretend you tried to come up with a legit arguememt. Can’t handle your side door reasons any longer.

            1. So Baalke actually made the trade for an impact player that you’ve been clamouring about, that didn’t cost a whole bunch of high picks to make, and you are still complaining he didn’t make a trade for an impact player?

              Time to let your right hand talk to your left, Prime.

              1. 4-4 says we need more impact players. Stevie was good value for a 4th. Now if Baalke was smart, he would have done another.

              2. Wasn’t Lattimore a 4th? Wasn’t Looney a 4th? Is he not expendable along with next years third or 4th? Wait LMJ and Vance were 2nd round picks. How are both those looking?

              3. I ask again Prime, who should they have gotten? You keep avoiding the question and just throw out they should have moved up to get an impact player.

                You’ve said they should have traded up for an impact WR, yet you concede they did trade for an impact WR. Should they have traded for another impact WR? Who would he be playing ahead of?

                You’ve said they should have traded up for an impact CB. Who? Fuller is the only one taken ahead of Ward that has made much of a positive impact, and he would have cost a lot to get. Maybe Verrett, but he hasn’t been an “impact” player as such. And the secondary for the 49ers has been good, so how much of an impact would Fuller have made? And what areas would the team be suffering in to have gotten him?

                Maybe they should have traded up for an impact pass rushing OLB. But then they got Lynch, anyway. And which pass rushing OLB would they have traded up for? Barr or Mack would have cost far too much to move up from #30 and get.

                Maybe an impact DL? Aaron Donald? Again would have cost a lot to move up and get. And what position would he play? He’s a 3-tech best suited to a 4-3. And would he honestly be playing ahead of Justin Smith? Personally I can definitely see some value to a guy like Donald on this team, but would he be more valuable than the players they’d have had to miss out on to get him?

                So lets assume they had gotten Fuller or Donald, but it cost them Ward, Hyde, Borland and Martin to get him. Is that a good trade off? Who is the backup RB? Who is filling in at ILB this week? Who is our starting centre this week? And that’s if it was Fuller. If it was Donald, who is the nickel CB this week, and if Cox, who is starting on the outside?

              4. “Wasn’t Lattimore a 4th? Wasn’t Looney a 4th? Is he not expendable along with next years third or 4th?”

                So what, you think they could have packaged up a bunch of 4th rounders to move up from #30 and get an “impact” player in the first round?

                “Wait LMJ and Vance were 2nd round picks. How are both those looking?”

                Have a look through the first round picks for this year and last year. Are all of those guys looking like impact players to you? Good use of your 50-50 hindsight to identify guys the 49ers drafted that haven’t lived up to expectation that the team could have invested elsewhere. Because you know, Baalke should be hitting at 100% with his draft picks and all that.

              5. Scooter:

                Those are trivial details. The point is that Baalke SHOULD HAVE TRADED UP! That’s how you get impact players in Madden! Plus, making a big trade would have resulted in the media talking a lot about the 49ers after the draft, and that’s really what’s important.

              6. Like I told you yesterday, to compare guys now after they have played in the NFL would be an exercise in futility.
                You have yet to provide an arguement as to why moving up in the draft is a bad idea for a team that has a surplus of picks. I also add a team rich in depth and young at most positions?

              7. Mr. Cut and Paste, when did I ever use Madden to back up an arguement? Are you gonna pull an MD and pretend you heard me use it somewhere, sometime?

              8. Prime, without offering a suggestion on who they should have moved up for, and what they might have needed to give up to get such a player, your whole argument is pointless.

                There is nothing wrong with moving up when you have a surplus of picks per se. Heck, there is nothing inherently wrong with moving up when you don’t have a surplus of picks. But moving up simply because you have a surplus of picks makes no sense.

                Many people like to say this team has no holes, and so they only need to take a handful of players each year. This season as much as any has shown that is baloney. Almost all the draft picks taken between rounds 1 and 5 are now playing. Aside from Brandon Thomas, who was touted a possible 1st rounder that they got with a compensatory 3rd (one for the future when Iupati most likely moves on), it is only late round guys that aren’t on the 53, and those guys have been stashed for future depth.

                And the only reason this team has all that young depth you astutely mentioned is because they don’t throw away picks to get one guy. That is how you build a roster that doesn’t fall into the wasteland once high priced vets come to the end of their contracts/ careers.

                The idea that the 49ers had great depth in 2011 and 2012 was a fallacy. Most of that depth was undrafted FAs and cast offs. Baalke in the past two drafts has added a lot of young talent to the roster. Not all of those guys will pay off, but what it does mean is that come next year, the 49ers will be in a position where there won’t be many glaring holes on the roster that can’t be replaced by young guys already with the team, that have already had time to learn the pro game. No need to be drafting to find immediate starters next year, which means they can be more selective. It also provides far more leeway to move up if they so choose.

              9. Well Scooter there is also nothing wrong with stock piling picks. Keep guys always having to compete for a job week in week out.
                To me that’s a great philosophy to have in college sports. In the pros, you have 2-3 years to build a championship team. Parity rules the NFL so you better make a run in that time because if you don’t, your rebuilding once again. Look at the Jets, Bills, and Packers. Teams that had windows to win, did or didn’t and now are lost or regrouping. The Niners after this year at where?

              10. Teams are rebuilding every year, Prime, though I take your point. Given the way contracts are typically structured and restrictions placed by the salary cap, you usually get a 2-3 year window with a core group of players. Then some of those core guys will move on, and if you want to remain at the top the core guys that leave will need to be replaced, to create a new core of old and new. And so the process goes on.

                The idea of trading up for an impact player to take you over the top assumes you can only find an impact player at the top of a draft. While the success rate obviously improves the higher the draft pick, your odds of finding a good player actually improve by holding your picks and taking the extra players rather than combining picks for one shot at the money. The following article gives you a good run down.


                Lets think of it another way. How many Super Bowl winning teams have traded up to pick an “impact” player to take them over the top that year? I can tell you that not since the 2003 season has the team that won the SB actually traded up in the first round of the draft that year, and in that draft the Patriots moved up one spot (from pick 14 to pick 13).

                The Ravens and Seahawks in 2012 and 2013, respectively, actually traded down to accumulate picks. And every SB winning team between 2004 and 2011 seasons stayed pat during the draft leading into that year. Certainly brings into question the idea of trading up for an impact rookie to take you over the top.

            2. Jack says “Prime,

              I don’t feel like wasting my time scrolling through multiple posts and comments to find it”

              Well then either stay off the thread or STFU! What else can I tell you?

  8. How do we do anything on offense with this offensive line? They can’t run block or pass block. We can’t run it or throw it. We need our defense to hold the Saints to 16 points. We can win 17-16. Kap is killing me right now. I’m not over that fumble.

    1. This could be the game that Kap grows up and turns the corner. Or this is the game that could be his demise. Other teams have access to tape too.

  9. I’ve always wondered where the 49er whiners lived. Up until I started reading here I had no idea. Mark me dumb.

  10. I expected more from Martin last week. I don’t care if it was his 1st game. He got embarrassed and I hope he knows that. He has to play twice as well this week. We can wear that defense down. They always tire late.

    1. You may be disappointed then. Sean Peyton loves to blitz. Rob Ryan loves to blitz. They have tape of 8 sacks from pressure packages last week, and it’s a rookie Center in a dome. Marcus is going to be twice as good? High expectations.
      That is unless as Mary guesses the Niners decide to throw the game to enhance their playoff status or thwart the Seatards. I’m not quite sure how that would work, you know, how SF losing would keep Seattle out, but it’s Starbucks Mathematics, I guess. I’m certainly not the quantitative analyst or football genius that Mary is. She also seems to be a shrewd judge of character, as men like Jim Harbaugh, Fangio, Tomsula, Bethea, Staley, Boldin, and Justin Smith sure seem like the kind of quitters who would lay down for a game. Seems about right.
      I’d be shocked if the Niners can scratch out a win this week, but you know, I’ll be rooting for it. Road trip in a couple of hours; I’ll be watching the game from Foresta in Yosemite mañana. Go Niners!

      1. “Hornung & Karras bet on games and were punished. Pete Rose is still banned for betting on games. But POINT SHAVING!!?!!? That’s unforgivable in amateur or professional sports.
        Again: IF true. We know next to nothing at this point.”
        Tuna : I was reading the above quote by you, and just took “cheating” to another level. I didn’t mean this game with the Saints — 49ers want to win this game with the Saints. They want to go on to the playoffs. That being said, if it became impossible to get a playoff spot would the 49ers or any division rival ever consider throwing a game to keep their “arch rival” from a playoff a playoff spot home field advantage.

        It’s been my experience in life that pretty much anything a person could imagine has already been done. It was just a question and I wondered if anyone of you had ever heard of such a thing. And I think you that was my only intent.

  11. Football baby picked the 49ers to win against the Saints. Book it…

    Now can someone explain to me why a Cleveland TD was a San Francisco fumble and why the NFLPA isn’t outraged that Referees are dictating the outcome of NFL games? It’s incredibly hard to make the probowl when your team is 8-8 or worse regardless of any accolades.

      1. In the third quarter, Terrence West leaped over the pile, fumbled the ball and it was recovered by Cincy. 4:49 left in the third. It was initially ruled a fumble on the field and overturned on replay.
        It was essentially the same fumble Kaepernick made. Broke the plain with the ball then lost it.

        1. The difference is that in this case you can clearly see where the ball is in relation to the goalline. With the Kaepernick play he was in a pile and there was no view down the line.

  12. where will the press/the fans rate the team
    when we leave New Orleans at 8-9….?
    16th minus X = ……….?

    Time to surprise us, Coach Harbaw.
    Time to pull a rabbit out of a hat, hmm?
    Time to pull your head out of your ***.

    Take off the khaki tutu and settle down.
    You have time left to turn the ship around.

  13. The more I think about our playoff chances the more depressed I get. We have to win tomorrow. That’s not going to be easy. Our offense has to get into a rhythm and put up points. That’s suppsed to be done in the superdome. I hope I’m wrong but it’s something we’ve struggled to do this year.

    If we do not make the playoffs it may be a blessing in disguise. We have to get our house in order. Contracts need to be taken care of, some players need to be let go, we need the chance to figure the direction the offense will go in, players need to get healthy, and I can go on. The niners haven’t had a long offseason in a while. That plays a part in the health of the players. If we don’t make the playoffs this year, I expect us to complete dominate next yr. I expect the offense to move the at a pace unlike we’ve seen. I also expect the offense to put points on the board. I hope we do make the playoffs but if we don’t we will be a lot better next yr.

    1. Well take heart, it’s a must win for the Seahawks also; although we have an easier opponent than you.

  14. ( think wildcard ties are broken by roughly by 1) Head to Head, 2) Division, 3) Conference. The 49ers already have 3 conference (2 division) losses.

    A look at the wildcard tie-breaker competition…
    – Detroit only has 1 conference loss.
    – Packers have 3 conference losses, but will they lose 3 more games?
    – Seattle only has 2 conference losses, but the 49ers have a chance to win the head-to-head
    – AZ has no conference or division losses. They would have to lose 5 of the final 8 (along with an extreme 49er surge) for the 49ers to have a remote chance.
    – 49ers beat Dallas and Philly, so they win tie breaker

    Its really looking like 11-5 or bust. The Rams and Cards losses were huge. To be champion, teams have to “take out the trash”, and that didn’t happen.

    1. I remember at the beginning of the season many people said we’d lose 2 games after our bye week. Neither of those two game were to the Rams.

      1. Yup… My preseason prediction 11-5 overall, with only 2 losses after the bye… New Orleans, Seattle.

        If the 49ers surge, playing the remaining games as I hoped and expected in preseason… they will be 10-6… but with five deadly conference losses.

    2. This is what I’m hoping for:

      I’d be shocked if anyone can knock Cards out of Div. Win

      If we can beat KC (which I’m worried about) and right I feel okay beating Eagles (since Foles is out) and split with 49ers and Cards and pound the rams I think we’ll be okay.

  15. Brodie2 (above) predicts
    If the Saints kick butt, then
    the Niners are 4-5 and so must win
    every game from that point “onward.”
    What is Coach Harbaw’s response?
    ….”onward”….So I guess he understands, huh?

    1. Sounds like a lame a$$ excuse from Lameareafantic! I told you to shut up a couple days ago. Take my advice. You will be a better person for it!

      1. Prime go pound sand. Leave me alone you big meanie. Pick on some one your own size you jerk. Colin is the best QB in football. How is KC doing with your boy Smith? Yeah thats what I thought.

  16. Would the 49ers have a better, worse or the same record if Gabbert was the starting QB? Would he have lost any of the games we’ve won? Would he have won any of the ones we’ve lost?

    I’m inclined to think we’d probably have about the same record.

    1. Let’s see- romo was bad so he handed the game to the niners.
      Gabbert scored the first TD and Levi so he would have a much better game against Chicago,
      As would have been back up vs backup. But let’s say her loses that game.
      Defense won’t the eagles game, Colin had a solid win in the chiefs game, and rams suck so there’s no way niners lose to them, so with grabbert it’s possible they are 6-2.

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