Meet the New Boss, Same as the New Boss

Well, for what it’s worth (and thank God, BTW), the powers that be have named Trey Lance as quarterbacko numero uno. At least he’s getting the starting QB reps. In OTAs. In May. Zzzzzzzz.

So, yeah, whatever. Funny how the world is suddenly in tune with Lance being the savior of the team now rather than the guy the team wanted to kick out the door a month ago.

But, hey, it’s still May, and we are slowly grinding toward the start of the season when camp opens in July. Much like Trey Lance’s reincarnation though, the Giants have provided a spark to the summer as they brought up some young guns of their own and are starting to actually play interesting baseball. They’ve blown past the Padres and have their sights set on the D-Backs.

Fun fun!

How this latest QB deal shakes out, I have no idea. But I mean really, what if Lance comes in guns a-blazin’ and puts up early Kaepernick numbers? What if he blows away the world in his first few games? Will he even get a shot?

We don’t even know, seeing as all reports are that Purdy will start throwing next week, and that his scheduled recovery is on schedule. Strange days indeed. There is a long time before all this is hammered out, but it still makes me excited about this upcoming season. This team is poised at the pinnacle of success, and have only themselves to stop them.

Party on!!

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Super Bowl LX is Coming Here – And OTAs are Here!!

Yippie. I guess. Last time they did this it was on Market St. 6 blocks from where I worked. When I was working in an office. Crazy security. You could count up to 10 guys stationed on top of the buildings going down market to the Ferry building. nd it was only 40 miles away from the stadium.


But whatevs. For all the stink Santa Clara raised about the stadium, they’ll gladly take all that NFL money to the bank. Wonder how the package deals work out, though. Do they stay in SF up until game day? It may be since all the pregame BS in up there. Shit, I just hope we are one of the teams playing.

Anyhow, the story line of “everyone in the building hates Trey Lance” seems to have morphed into “Trey Lance has made huge strides practicing with Patrick Mahomes.” Yeah, and I have land on the moon for sale. We used to hear how great Alex Smith was at throwing deep passes every fucking offseason yet neither Nolan, Singletary, or Harbaugh ever tried.

Thing is, all signs are pointing to Purdy being on schedule with his rehab. I guess. I really want the powers that be to slow-roll Purdy’s recovery. Mainly to give Lance a real shot at running the team. Passing, I mean. None of this RPO shit that will get him killed. Said it before and I’ll say it again. Pete Carroll played it right with Russell Wilson. He made him a pocket passer that could escape trouble and use his speed to elude pass rushers and get big chunks of yards. Because his WRs were on mid to deep routes ALL THE TIME. This opened up the flats and the edges of the defense and gave the 49ers fits for 10 years.

This is how Shanahan HAS to play it. End of story. Sure, he can have a check-down in CMC, or even Kittle at times, but the offense NEEDS to be built around a strong passing game. Not the RPO crowd-the-line bullshit. Open this up and let Lance do his thing.

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RIP Jim Brown

Jim Brown, one of football’s, and humanity’s, greatest passed away at the age of 87. Beyond the punishing power and speed of his football abilities, he was one of the original social justice warriors who never backed down from a fight. He was one of the first mega football stars as he drove the popularity of the sport on TV in the early 60s with his relentless running style. In his short 9 year career he shattered rushing and TD records across the league.

At the height of his career he retired to pursue acting. He did a great turn in the Dirty Dozen, 100 Rifles opposite Raquel Welch, and a bunch of blaxploitation films, including the parody I’m Gonna Git You, Sucka! Great stuff. His inner-city causes spanned decades, and raised millions upon millions.

Rushing for 1,863 s a great season by today’s standards. Brown did it in 14 games.
Brown also rushed for 1,538 in 12 games in 1963.

Screenshot 2023-05-20 at 6.02.27 PM

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Jack Colleto – The Newest Swiss Army Knife

The 49ers picked up another UDFA. This guy, FB Jack Colleto, 6’3″, 240 lb, plays all over the field on offense and defense, was the Paul Hornung winner, and seems to be the kind of guy Shanahan drools over.

In 43 games with Oregon State, Colletto rushed for 401 yards and 22 touchdowns, caught four passes for 37 yards and a touchdown, passed for 254 yards, and had 51 tackles and an interception on defense.

Not sure he’ll get much LB time, but the guy was unstoppable in short yardage. Remember short yardage? The bane of Kyle Shanahan’s existence? Most teams don’t have one fullback. Now we have 2. Hey if he can get that 3rd and 1 or 2nd and goal, I’m all for it.

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Here We Go – The Stairway to Heaven

Jacob’s Ladder? Highway to Hell? We will see, but this sched looks fairly beefy. The good news is the first 4 games aren’t of the hellacious type, so if our QB situation isn’t ironed out, we have a good month to settle in.

The givens should be Pitt, Cle, Rams x2, Jax, TB, and AZ x2. The rest are playoff teams and Seattle, always a thorn. Then again, one season’s turd is next seasons darling.

Fun fact, we play on both Thanksgiving day and Christmas day. And we have SIX trips to the east. And for some reason we have TWO fucking Thursday games. Fuck you very much, Roger.

1 – Sunday, September 10 at Pittsburgh Steelers – 10:00 a.m. PT on FOX
2 – Sunday, September 17 at Los Angeles Rams – 1:05 p.m. PT on FOX
3 – Thursday, September 21 vs. New York Giants – 5:15 pm PT Prime Video
4 – Sunday, October 1 vs. Arizona Cardinals – 1:25 p.m. PT on FOX
5 – Sunday, October 8 vs. Dallas Cowboys – 5:20 p.m. PT on NBC
6 – Sunday, October 15 at Cleveland Browns – 10:00 a.m. PT on FOX
7 – Monday, October 23 at Minnesota Vikings – 5:15 p.m. PT on ESPN
8 – Sunday, October 29 vs. Cincinnati Bengals – 1:25 p.m. PT on CBS
9 – BYE
10 – Sunday, November 12 at Jacksonville Jaguars – 10:00 a.m. PT on FOX
11 – Sunday, November 19 vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – 1:05 p.m. PT on FOX
12 – Thursday, November 23 at Seattle Seahawks – 5:20 p.m. PT on NBC
13 – Sunday, December 3 at Philadelphia Eagles – 1:25 p.m. PT on FOX
14 – Sunday, December 10 vs. Seattle Seahawks – 1:05 p.m. PT on FOX
15 – Sunday, December 17 at Arizona Cardinals – 1:05 p.m. PT on CBS
16 – Monday, December 25 vs. Baltimore Ravens – 5:15 p.m. PT on ABC
17 – Sunday, December 31 at Washington Commanders – 10:00 a.m. PT on FOX
18 – January vs. Los Angeles Rams – Time, Date and Network TBD

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Draft Grades – And a Happy Birthday

FWIW, and yeah, this shit is total shit because you really can’t tell how a draft goes for a good 3-4 seasons have gone by, but that doesn’t stop the talking wonks from shitting all over a given team’s draft. I mean who can forget the glowing accounts of the first draft done by the new regime in 2017? It was pretty much unanimous As across the board.

We all know how that turned out. Solly Thomas was a solid 3rd round pick, not a #3 overall. Reuben Foster did his best Aldon Smith impersonation, Joe Williams never got on the field, etc. Kittle was the steal of that draft.

This draft? Pretty much Cs to Fs from the prognosticators. Why? Who knows? Brown at Safety was a pick for need. Antonio Gipson is 33 and was solid, but getting a younger stud guy there fits our need. Moody? Sure, using a 3rd round pick on him might be seen at a little high, but 2 things.

  1. It was a comp pick, so you can call it a 4th round pick
  2. He’s a starter. Unless something goes horribly wrong, he’s the starting kicker. Getting a starter in the 4th round is usually thought of as a good thing.

Latu? A reach? Maybe, but he’s a guy in the mold of Kittle who didn’t have huge numbers, but did enough things (blocking, route running, being a nuisance) well enough to take a shot on. Beal seems to be a bona fide playmaker who has something that jumps off the tape, and that’s his first step to the QB. The rest are what they are. Until they get into camp and train, all this is pure guess work.

And, given the track record of the success this front office has with day 2 and 3 guys, I’d give them the benefit of the doubt. For now.

And a shout out to Ronnie Lott, celebrating his 64th birthday. The man was a joy to watch and I saw countless games at the Stick where he was throwing himself around with reckless abandon.

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What About Last Year’s Draft? OOFDAs?

For funzies, let’s take a look at last year’s draft.

Round 2 (No. 61 overall) – Drake Jackson, LB/DE, USC
Round 3 (93) – Ty Davis-Price, RB, LSU
Round 3 (105, special compensatory) – Danny Gray, WR, SMU
Round 4 (134) – Spencer Burford, OT, Texas-San Antonio
Round 5 (172) – Samuel Womack, CB, Toledo
Round 6 (187, from Broncos) – Nick Zakelj, OT, Fordham
Round 6 (220, compensatory) – Kalia Davis, DT, UCF
Round 6 (221, compensatory) – Tariq Castro-Fields, CB, Penn State
Round 7 (262, compensatory) – Brock Purdy, QB, Iowa State

Jackson? Meh. Showed flashes at times. But D linemen not named Nick Bosa usually take a year or 2 to get comfortable in the NFL so he’s not toast. Yet.
Davis-Price? Another useless 3rd round waste RB pick that will do little to nothing.
Gray? A doghouse denizen. No idea what he brings.
Burford? Turned into a bona fide starter.
Womack played fine for where he was drafted. Special teams standout.
Davis and Zakelj are still on the team.
Brock Purdy? Gee, not sure about him.

But stop me if you heard this before. Top picks bad. Bottom picks good. And the very bottom turned out pretty good, eh?

Here are the OOFDAs

Tay Martin, WR, Oklahoma State – 6’3″/186
Segun Olubi, LB, San Diego State – 6’2″/220
Jason Poe, OL, Mercer
Leon O’Neal, S, Texas A&M – 6’1″/210
Taysir Mack, WR, Pittsburgh – 6’2:/190
Dohnovan West, C, Arizona State – 6’4″/300
Kevin Atkins, DT, Fresno State
Qwuantrezz knight, CB, UCLA
Sam Schlueter, OL, Minnesota
Jeremiah Gemmel, LB, UNC
Taylor Hawkins, DB, San Diego State
Jordan Mason, RB, Georgia Tech

Poe, Hawkins, and Knight are still on the team, Olubi is on the Commanders, O’Neal is in Canada, Mack is out of football, West, Gemmel, and Atkins are in the XFL, Scheluter is on the Jets.

Mason of course was the prize of this OOFDA group. He’s a stud runner who a lot of us were high on. And he flew past TDP on the depth chart.

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Draft / UDFA Haul

Hmmm. Liked the guys we got on Friday.
Saturday? Meh. Thought we’d draft O line help and maybe more CBs, but hey, we didn’t draft an RB!

Round 3: 87th-Overall – S Ji’Ayir Brown, Penn State
Round 3: 99th-Overall – K Jake Moody, Michigan
Round 3: 101st-Overall – TE Cameron Latu, Alabama
Round 5: 155th-Overall – CB Darrell Luter Jr., South Alabama
Round 5: 173rd-Overall – DL Robert Beal Jr., Georgia
Round 6: 216th-Overall – LB Dee Winters, TCU
Round 7: 247th-Overall – TE Brayden Willis, Oklahoma
Round 7: 253rd-Overall – WR Ronnie Bell, Michigan
Round 7: 255th-Overall – LB Jalen Graham, Purdue

The UDFAs are:

OL Joey Fisher, Shepherd
OL Ilm Manning, Hawaii
C Corey Luciano, Washington
FB Jack Colletto, Oregon State
RB Ronald Awatt, UTEP
DB D’Shawn Jamison, Texas
DB Avery Young, Rutgers
DL Spencer Waege, North Dakota State
RB Khalan Laborn, Marshall
LB Mariano Sori-Marin, Minnesota
WR Jadakis Bonds, Hampton

We waited till UDFA time for the RB and O line help. Three O linemen, a couple DBs, 3 RBs, and the rest. Here on Gilligan’s Island.

The good news is Mel Kiper gets to detach his head and go back underground for another 51 weeks. He gave the Niners the worst draft report card. Which of course means we nailed it. Since our braintrust seems to thrive on the lower rounds, let’s hope they keep it up. No one knows how these go. 2017 was rated a top draft, and just by looking at it in the moment, sure. Funny thing is, George Kittle was the star of that draft. In the 5 hole. DT DJ Jones was drafted in the 6th round. The rest are either out of football or 3rd stringers. Witherspoon is decent enough at times, Solly Thomas bounced around to the Jets, Reuben Foster is in the USFL, BeatHard is a backup for the Jags, and Joe Williams never made an NFL roster.

Ouch. So, fuck Mel Kiper’s head. Still time to pick up some FA O line help.

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Day 3 Pick 6

For draft day 2 I give the 49ers a solid B. The Niners traded up to 87 to get Ji’Ayir Brown. A highly rated guy who is a ball-hawking safety who can play deep or close to the line. He had 10 picks and 122 tackles his senior year at Penn State. Ferocious hitter who can cover. Like the pick.

A kicker? Hey, better than a throw-away RB. We need someone to replace Robbie Gould, and Moody is the most consistent guy in college, so there’s that. Robbie was also talking to Moody, according to Matt Maiocco:

Jake Moody says he’s been talking a lot with Robbie Gould, and Robbie just texted to him to congratulation him and tell him how great it is with the 49ers.

Here’s what Shanahan said about drafting a kicker. Really:

I still can’t believe we didn’t take a running back.” 

He then said this in a more serious vein. I can live with it:

“You think you’re looking at there’s probably five to six teams who you feel need a kicker. So the whole debate is where to go get that guy, because it’s someone you need to get. And when you look at the history, the majority of kickers go in the fourth round. We didn’t have a fourth round pick. The guy was not going to be there in the fifth round.”

We needed a kicker. We got one. TE Cameron Latu? Good blocker, good route runner, decent enough. Maybe another Kittle in the rough. I expect today to be a lot of beef for the O line. Maybe a flier at CB.

Round 5, Pick 155
Round 5, Pick 173 (via MIA)
Round 6, Pick 216 (Compensatory)
Round 7, Pick 247
Round 7, Pick 253 (Compensatory)
Round 7, Pick 255 (Compensatory)

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Draft Day (for us) ! ! !

Amazingly, there are 4 other teams without 1st round picks in the draft. The Denver Broncos, Los Angeles Rams, Cleveland Browns, Miami Dolphins, and us. And of those teams, the Broncos, Rams, and Cleveland absolutely suck.

So, those franchises look to be in a bit of hurt for a while. The Broncos tied their fortunes to a quarterback who has seen better days pretty far back in the mirror, the Rams sold their souls to the Devil for a Super Bowl victory, but have now cratered to the bottom of the NFC West, and the Factory of Sadness shall remain the Factory of Sadness.

Russell Wilson cost a fortune but did nothing to fix the ongoing issue of John Elway and Co to find a QB worth a damn. I mean, even Manning was pretty much a shell of himself at that point and simply was tasked with not losing games. It finally ended up in Elway being shown the door. The Rams? Well, they threw tons of money at free agents, and got one decent season out of Matthew Stafford, and if for a dropped pick in the NFC championship game (fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck), would have been a misguided attempt at relevance.

All the up-front money caused the Rams to jettison a lot of talent, and they’ve sunk like a stone to the bottom of the West as Stafford’s propensity to throw picks has come back to haunt the Rams. Cleveland went eve deeper into the seven circles of Hell to drag out the virulent spectre of DeShaun Watson. The guy who was punished for his deeds by getting a 5 year / $230 million contract. He completely lived up to the deal by going 3-3, 58% completion %age, 7 TDs, 5 picks, and a lowly 6.5 yards/attempt in his shortened season.

Miami and the 49ers at least look like they are gonna go somewhere this year. But that isn’t even set in stone. More like sand. Miami is struggling with keeping their QB healthy after some scary shit on the field, and we were even worse at keeping QBs healthy.

Which means of course that we should focus on getting O line help in a big way. The O line eventually settled down pretty nicely. Interior O line at least. The killer Bs in Brendel, Banks, and Burford settled in and became a solid interior line, and the run game did well. The weak link, at least in pass pro, was RT Mike McGlinchey. He of course went to browner pastures (and a greener bank account) in Denver. Our new RT as of now is 3rd year guy Jaylon Moore, our 5th round pick in 2021.

So, we need to draft a RT, a center for depth, and a CB or 3. Get a backup TE, a safety in the Hufanga vein, and QB and WR for depth.

As we know all too well, this braintrust seems to find gold in the 3rd to 7th rounds, and leaves the turds in the first 2 rounds. So I guess we are in the catbird seat.

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