The semi-resurgent San Francisco 49ers host the team the shall not be nicknamed this weekend. After two of the 49ers ugliest losses in a while against the Rams and Broncos, they won two of their ugliest wins in recent memory against New Orleans and New York. Granted they were road wins, but stop me if you are happy with the offense.
The woefullest red zone offense was even more woeful as their 4 trips into the red zone against the worst defense in the NFL netted a grand total of 9 points. Eli Manning apparently tried to undo the damage his brother did against us by throwing 5 picks and generally sucking harder than a Kirby plugged in to 220 volts. Galling to me is that for all our losses, ONE can be attributed to the defense. And that was the misguided Fangio strategy of laying off Peyton’s WRs and not pressuring Manning in the pocket. The rest, the defense did enough to win. Or the offense simply couldn’t sustain any drives in the 2nd half to put games away and thus the defense wore down.
Which brings us to another weak-assed NFC East opponent. The Washington Red-asses. To say our team is in turmoil is not too far from the truth, but the reality on the other side of the line of scrimmage makes the 49ers look like the 1966 Packers. The Redskins yet again are a footnote in the NFC East having gone 3-7 amid quarterback controversies, benchings, and the dressing down of RG III by Jay Gruden, you have unrelenting stink. And, seeing how they sold the farm to get their QB who isn’t working out, they likely have another 3 years of crapitude coming their way.
So, what happens now? I have no clue. The team doesn’t seem pt have a very big home field advantage, or they aren’t used to playing in Great America’s parking lot, but losing to the Bears and Rams at home is not a good look. Granted, they did beat the Eagles and the Chiefs there, but I can’t understand why this team seemingly cannot design a cogent offensive game plan that takes advantage of a given team’s weaknesses, and can never seem to sustain anything other than the occasional big play surrounded by ineptitude and butchery.
The 49ers have gone away from their run game, and if you take away Kappy’s scramble numbers we go from 8th to 27th. Not good. Passing has been very inconsistent amid a ton of sacks, and a screwed up blocking scheme, hampered by injuries, holdouts, and blatant inconsistency. Beyond that, we play to the level, or below the lever of our opponents. Thing is we are NOT far from being a very good team. For all intents and purposes, we have no business being this good on defense. Vic Fangio has done an EXCELLENT job of integrating the rookies into the defense, as injuries have forced them to.
The newly-unleashed offense? Well, the leash may be off, but we still aren’t moving. The complaining alluded to early in camp and during the regular season seems to be emanating from two of our supposed stars and leaders in the twin virusses, VD and Crabs. Both have been lackadaisacal and both have suffered the dropsies all year. At least Crabs has come through amid the mistakes as he complains about his role. VD seems to be half-assing in on every route. He is but an afterthought.
All of this leads to discord with an offense that is already challenged. Kappy tried a few times to get VD involved in the offense, but got nothing for it. rabs? He’s 50-50. Time to up the plays for Stevie Wonder, throw a few more deep balls to BLloyd, and put VD on the bench. VMcD can block fine. And I loved the deep route they sent him on last week. Can you say Huh? Gimme a good goddamned break. You can’t use Lloyd on a play like that?
Fix the offense, and this team can go far in the playoffs. Don’t fix it and we are one and done, if not on the outside looking in. The Niners have the next couple games to determine their fate. Which they pretty much hold in their hands. 3-1 in the next 4, and they are in the thick of the playoff run. Anything less and they are done.