Game Day! Oh Shit . . . That’s Right . . .

We suck. This’ll be my first game at the new digs, and it’ll be a stretch to say the team is rolling, or even showing up prepared. Gonna meet up with Irish Kevin and grab a beer or 3. Bringing a couple of the kids as well. Fun? We’ll see.

As far as the game? Shit. Who knows? We look like a 3-13 team after another week one peak. Crazy enough, we were doing better last year. I thought last year’s defense was bad. This year’s version is flat awful. Yeah, they’ve been hurt, and losing Ian Williams is still hurting, but they give up 15 yard runs 8 times a game.

The offense? Well, the fact that we are on to Kaepernick says something about:

a) Gabbert;

b) A renegotiated Kappie contract

c) A molasses-like run game

Christian Ponder, get ready. I have a little hope that Kaepernick will improve as the season goes along, mainly because he’s playing for his future in New York. Or Denver. Both those teams are not in any better QB shape as they were when the season started.

The Tampa Bags? Another fairly unimpressive team that at the beginning of the year I thought would be a fairly easy win. For us, I mean. Now of course all bets are off. We are less than the sum of our parts. A collection of players with no direction, and no plan. A front office with no clue and no organization. A miasma of middle managers muddying up the works. I don’t know. I will say though that my son talked me into making a couple of bag to wear over our heads. Yes, an improvement, and no, its not a fly-by . . .

Go Warriors . . .

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Same As it Ever Was

Yes, here we are once again balanced on the knife-edge of futility as another season begins its inexorable swirl down the drain. Yes, we have done the coaching purge. Yes we have drafted a raft full of new guys who apparently are taxi-squad material. Yes, we have a new coaching staff that was hell-bent on speeding up the team. Yes, we have switched QBs. Yes, we have gone nowhere. In fact, we are in worse shape than last year. And this is an accomplishment in itself. So, what now?

Well, we still have the same owner. And we still have the same GM. And therein lies the rub. Something tells me this might be the problem. That being said, the owner, in his inimitable leaking fashion, has leaked out that:

“A 49ers source strongly indicated that general manager Trent Baalke is safe to remain with the team after this season, despite the team’s poor play so far. The 49ers defense has allowed more than 30 points in four of its past five games, but the belief by 49ers management is that Baalke is the right person to pick players for coach Chip Kelly going forward.”

Granted, these whispers can turn to shouts of derision pretty quickly, as Jimmy T got the same basic thumbs-up from the management last year at this time before he was booted. Another wrinkle to this tragicomedy is that Eddie D’s daughter Lisa pulled no punches in saying that Young Sir Jed Whispers-a-lot needs to go, in no uncertain terms.

This smacks of Baalke’s daughter tweeting that Greg Roman was on the hot seat ac ouple season back, but I think Eddie’s daughter Lisa’s comment carries a hell of a lot more weight behind it than Trent’s daughter.

Thing is, the team is not improving in any way shape or form. We are not a young, hungry team looking for a few key players. We are not a vet-laden team looking for a couple strong rookies to get over the hump. We are a collection of mis-labeled parts in search of a master mechanic. The talent that was there 3 short seasons ago has evaporated. The drafts have given us little in the way of impact players. Although we have the All-ACL team of all-time.

Trent Baalks-a-lot has ignored the offense for 6 years now at the cost of building the 30th ranked defense. Stop me if I’m not optimistic. I know we have some very good players, but after watching mediocre teams like AZ and Buffalo walk all over us, I have misgivings. After watching WR after WR drop off the board as we draft yet another ACL prayer, I get pissed. After drafting a punter no one wanted in the 5th round, I get flummoxed. Baalke is very good at gathering a boat-load of picks, but he wastes them like Bonnie and Clyde waste bullets.

At some point, Jed needs to see what the problem really is. And it is his GM.

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When the Going Gets Weird . . .

. . . the weird turn pro. My old neighbor Hunter Thompson would be highly amused by the NFL these days. At le4ast with the state of the 49ers. Hunter, who at one point talked football on the press plane with Richard Nixon while vilifying him in his Rolling Stone articles, recounted the story of Nixon recommending a few plays to then Redskins coach George Allen. Turns out they lost 6 yards and field goal position and ended up losing the game.

Ooops. Sounds familiar, eh? The new up-tempo offense, and the revamped coaching staff has produced the same result so far as last season. Well, actually, no. We managed to beat Baltimore while my wife and I were driving around the Tuscan region of Italy last year, so we had the stellar record of 2-4 last year. So we are a game worse. Changing QBs didn’t help things much, but then again, the injury depleted defense was ripped to shreds by LeSean McCoy. Someone who seemed to want to prove something to his ex-coach. To the tune of 140 rushing yards.

Colin Kaepernick looked weak and rusty as he missed passes and couldn’t seem to get into the flow. Then again for a guy who is 4 months behind Gabbert, he looked just as mediocre. Which is good, I guess. He’s playing for his ticket out of here, so we’ll see how this goes the next few games. He did extend some drives with his legs, and did hit Torrey Smith for a deep TD for a change, but all in all a sub-par game.

For all the shitty play though, the Niners were still in the game midway through the 3rd quarter, down by 4 and driving after a 26 yard scramble by CK. On 3rd and 1, we tried a run up the middle. of course we tried the same thing on 4th and 1 to the same result. From that point, Buffalo took control.

And this is where I get pissed about play calling. Chip HAS to know that if he doesn’t get the 1st down on 3rd and 1 that he is going to go for it on 4th down. If that is the case, then take a shot on THIRD down. Play action 5 yard pass to a TE or some shit. Something more imaginative than 2 runs up the gut. As it was, Buffalo took over, and 4 plays later scored a touchdown, putting them up 24-13.

Folks will call the game a blowout, one we didn’t have aa chance in, but the game turned on that 4th and 1 stop. Even the beginning of the 4th quarter, the Niners were down one score (24-16) after the FG to start the 4th. As usual, the Niners got Buff into a 3rd and 8 initially, and the defense did its stellar job of giving up an easy 1st down to continue the drive. The clown-car act of the 4th quarter sealed the game. Fumbled kick return, offsides penalty on a punt for a 1st down, on and on. Once again, a game that looked like a stupid performance, but per usual, was determined by a couple stupid plays on a crucial drive.

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Days of Future Passed . . .

Journey Through the Past? Back to the Future? Return to Forever? Well, anyhoo Colin Kaepernick, newly freed from his injury-guaranteed contract, is magically healed and ready to play despite the talk that he needed to bulk up and get more ready. I guess a 1-4 record doesn’t engender confidence in the guy who was supposed to be better than CK.

Either way, I guess we get to see what I thought could be interesting oh so many months ago when Jimmy Bag-of-Donuts farted his way out of the locker room. And that is for Chip Kelly and Colin Kaepernick play their style of up-tempo football. Whether it’s one, done, and dash remains to be seen, but bet your bottom dollar that Kappy will get 10 x the scrutiny that the 33rd best rated AB in the NFL did.

And therein lies the rub. Colin and his kneeling for the anthem actually has generated a lot of talk, and controversy around the country, and even the world. He himself, then team, and one of his teammates have donated a cool mill each to various inner-city charities, so there’s that. So, whether you agree with the protest, it has done some good.

Oh yeah. The game? Shit, I don’t know. Buffalo on the road? Rex Ryan and his hard-hitting D? It’s pretty tough spot to put Kappy in, but there’s nothing easy about being an NFL quarterback. Trial by fire I suppose. The biggest difference between last year and this is the line is nominally playing better in the passing game. They were doing fine until last week’s debacle and subsequent passing every down and cratering.

Buffalo famously shit-canned OC Greg Roman, and for some reason the defense got better. And, shockingly the run game as well under Tony Lynn. Then again they have beaten the Rams, the Brady-less Pats, and the Cards. They did lose to the Jets (?!?). Who knows. Tough roadie for sure.

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Crank Up the Roulette Wheel

As we play the latest version of quarterback roulette. This was kind of how last year went as the front office bad-mouthed and whispered down the ability of Colin Kaepernick amid a team that lost all cohesion in the coaching staff and players.

The savior was of course the guy who is sucking now. Blaine Gabbert. A guy who has plenty of time and little to show for it. Kaepernick’s detractors have gone awful quiet as Gabbert has missed wide open guys, thrown ill-advised picks, and skipped passes on his way to a 1-4 record. All the while getting better than average protection.

With Kaepernick’s restructuring, the team is suddenly talking about letting him play. This after stating for the past 2 months that Kappy isn’t ready. Really. Frankly i don’t give a shit who plays, as long as it isn’t Gabbert. He has lived up to his 9-33 record.

And the Bills? God only knows. They fire Roman, and their defense plays better. The Von Ryan Express always has the possibility of becoming a train wreck in its own right. Huzzah! Kappy is playing for his NFL life at this point.

Hey, Badford is suddenly the hottest guy in the league. It could happen.

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Blaine Gabbert Must Go

If I hear another presser from Chip Kelly praising his QB, I’m going to buy a pitchfork and a few torches. By just about every measure, Gabbert sucks. He has had a much cleaner pocket than Kaepernick ever had, and he still misses wide open guys and throws killer picks. He missed two passes in the 1st quarter that would have netted 80 yards at least and cost us a TD. Yeah, there were drops, and can we find a TE that can catch? But other than that, even in this game Gabbert had a clean pocket and had some nice passes through most of it, until the Niners were in desperation mode.

Some don’t cut it though. Yeah, we turned the ball over. Yeah, Hyde made a very stupid move in flexing (yeah, spearing is OK, dying in the streets of undiagnosed CTE is OK, but show some emotion? Fuck you. Two get you thrown out) as it led directly to the turnover on the tipped pass, and subsequent TD., and yeah, we fucked up again by roughing the kicker on a FG, and fumbled a kickoff.

Even still, the Niners got the score to 21-14 as the 3rd quarter ended. They even got the ball back. But just like the Dallas game, Gabbert threw a horrible INT to give the game away. AZ didn’t look back. And yet another struggling team got healthy on us. That being said, AZ sucks. They are not going to even sniff the playoffs this year.

So I don’t want to hear anything from Chip other than “we have to make a change at the QB position.” 1 and fucking 4 is not anything that should keep Gabbert starting. These last two games were eminently winnable, and we had the lead in both of them, yet shoddy undisciplined play, turnovers, and highly questionable play calling led to the lead being pissed away. Even the fucking Carolina game, we had our chances despite mistakes.

Fuuuuuuuck this. I’m getting real frustrated.


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Game Night! AZzzzzzzzz . . .

First off congrats to Connor Gillaspie and the San Francisco Giants in their quest for 4 in 7. Madison Bumgarner is a man among midgets when it comes to postseason baseball.

Wish the 49ers had a QB to match him in fortitude and demeanor. As it is, we have another game that we can conceivably win as the hands of a vasty overhyped Cardinal team that has staggered off to a 1-3 start. Yeah, our division has a tough schedule. Tough shit. I ain’t holding my breath. We seem to be the enablers that teams like AZ (and Seattle before them) get healthy on. Throw in the devastating injury to NaVorro Bowman, our NT position is failing miserably, and Buckner is out as well, so AZ will likely run amok. And by that I mean run.

We could possibly outscore them, but that would mean getting 4 quarters from our quarterback. Something that hasn’t happened yet. We had the game in hand last week, and we even looked like we had a shot to retake the lead in the 4th quarter with great field position. But Gabby missed a wide open Torrey Smith and there went the game.

Tonight? What the fuck. In honor of the Giants, we win 3-0.

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