Game Day – The Big Early Test

This game will be a very good indicator of the talent of this team. In the preseason, the Niners were easily handled by the likes of NO and Hou. This is the real thing, though, and whether taht makes a difference remains to be seen. All we have heard about so far is what the Niners have supposedly kept under wraps, not what they accomplished last week. The O was vanilla. And even blander in the red zone. The D was straight up for the most part, and didn’t do much blitzing or trying to fool anyone. In other words, this was a Singletary game. However, it was a game that Sing usually lost. So, that alone is a plus for Harbaugh.

Truth be told though, hearing what these guys will do in an upcoming  game is also a Singletary thing that I couldn’t stand. Show it. Don’t talk about it. Hearing how well practice went, or how well Smith hit deep balls on the practice field usually makes me throw up in my mouth. Show it, and shut up about it. Harbaugh, to his credit, doesn’t talk much about anything regarding practice, injuries, or anything that could even mildly be construed as something the opponents can use against them, or the writers can write about.

So, another excersize in vanilla ice cream, or will Harbaugh unleash a bit of a down field passing attack? It would be nice to see the run game go as well, but you, me, and the watercooler all know Dallas will come out and crowd the line to force Smith to beat their D with some mid-range passes. Bubble screens, smoke routes, and runs up the middle won’t work until the Niners hit a few passes longer than 5 yards. Pass blocking is essential. Somethng that was a problem in the preseason. DeMarcus WHERE? is the key for the O line. Slow him down, and let Smith hit some passes, and the line should be able to get the run game going.

Beating Dallas, a good but flawed team, would be a big feather in Harbaugh’s cap. It would give the Niners confidence, and the fans a little hope, and hopefully swing the momentum for this team going forward.


About unca_chuck

Lifelong SF 49ers and SF Giants fan
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262 Responses to Game Day – The Big Early Test

  1. Del Mar Dennis says:

    Tony Romo vs Alex Smith? My BFF, Berger, would still take Alex.
    If I wasn’t too tired, I’d punch him in the goddamn throat.

    How bout dem Cowboys!

    I love Berger.

    • twinfan1 says:

      Chuckles, Birthin’ Denny, trolling with his “how bout dem Cowboys” crap might be worse than the threats. We’re all disappointed by a tough loss and Wet Brain is crowing about it.

    • phi fan says:

      Not the 30-21 blow up you predicted Del. Your boy Romo played well in second half otherwise the Cows lose. 9ers going to be learning to play to win for about half the season then they will win games like this.

      Even Alex made a few good plays but he didn’t call the plays or play defense.

  2. twinfan1 says:

    They passed well enough that you can’t put the lack of a running game on that. As unbiased reporters are saying- you might even, heaven forbid, have to look at Frank as being part of the problem. But the real bottom line- the defense gave this up,..the ten point lead in the 4th should have been enough. They weren’t worn down, they were giving up big plays in the passing game all day long.

    • Del Mar Dennis says:

      It not Alex’s fault.

      Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

      • twinfan1 says:

        Of course it wasn’t,no commentator thinks it was, and these are all guys who will blame him in a heart beat. There’s enough blame all around to simply conclude that Dallas was 3 points better. Now move on and act like a 49er fan, Death Threat Denny.

  3. Flavor says:

    This loss is a little more on Harbaugh, in my opinion.Even when they were up 14-0 ner the ned of the 1st half he was playing to run out the clock. Unimpressed right now with my main man from Walter Hays Drive…….
    But the bottom line is we went overtime with a team that has more talent than we do and we did it with Smith throwing to receivers who were barely on the depth chart the entire game.

  4. Del Mar Dennis says:

    My cat, Frank Sinatra, just woke up. That gives me one friend to talk to.
    That’s one more than I usually get on the weekend. :
    I take that back,Tony Romo just called me. He had this to say…
    How bout dem Cowboys!

  5. grumpyguy says:

    Gore gets lots of yards on a few big plays. He has never really had a very high median (as to opposed to average) yardage per carry. How much of this our O-line issues and how much is Moran Norris’s less than noteworthy blocking and how much is Frank is open to question.

    Harbaugh was WAY too conservative WAY too early. Momentum can shift quickly in a football game. Playing prevent with two minutes left can still get you beat; doing it with 30 left is crazy.

    Usually teams that lose the time of possession battle lose games. We were winning in the first half, then lost the rest of the way. And so went the game.

    This was a game that was there for the taking and we gave it back. The kind of game that leads to 7-9 seasons and a shitload of frustration.

  6. robd says:

    i know it’s dallas , but at least we had a good chance to win it !

    imho over the last 10 or so years , we would have gotten creamed today !

    to me it’s a step in the right direction , and like i said before … i just wish this game had been later in the season ! give us a few more games to work things out !

    my biggest bummer is not being able to get vernon davis more involved !

  7. twinfan1 says:

    Without the Diva and Edwards, I’d guess they had some pretty tight coverage on VD. Really crucial was Ginn cutting his route short of the yardage and then not maintaining possession. Way too much Ginn…

  8. robd says:

    without our two best WR’s we had a really big mountian to climb imo !
    maybe we can beat cincy next week … assuming we have both of those guys back !

  9. grumpyguy says:

    As a WR, Ginn is a really good return guy.

    I read somewhere (Maiocco?) VD had said that he was in blocking a lot. He was only whining about it a *little*.

    Cincy is a road game and will be tough for a team that rarely plays well on the road. On paper we should win, but you know how that goes.

    If we play to the same standard as today, we’ll lose the next three up to the bye. Philly is clearly a better team right now. Detroit is coming on and has a serious chip on their shoulder. TB is getting better and fought back tough today against the Vikes. We could be 2-4 or even 1-5 in a month.

    The conservative stuff has got to stop. We are not going to hold ppl all day long – our D is not THAT good. We have to at least *try* to score points in the second half.

  10. Del Mar Dennis says:

    ” Dallas was 3 points better..”

    That statement right there shows your ignorance to the the game of football. You’re a goddamn mook. And that’s a goddamn insult to my intelligence. I had my family pay for my schooling, DON’T insult my intelligence.

    Listen to me, and listen to me good, Michael Scott.

    Don’t fuck with me,
    Dennis Patrick

    Merry Christmas

  11. Kevin says:

    I see Doomin is still baiting Twin. Sometimes Twin you lower yourself to Doomins level. You should be above that by now. Any way BF you are right, Harbaugh went into play not to lose mode instead of go for the big play to win the game. And then it looked like the prevent defense at the end. Which doesn’t prevent shit.

  12. Del Mar Dennis says:

    addendum: Alex Smith takes it up up the ass.

  13. robd says:

    ” As a WR, Ginn is a really good return guy.”
    very funny imo … but look at it this way , for a 5th rd. pick , at least we have a good return man ! ( and a 4th or 5th option at WR imo !)

    • grumpyguy says:

      Personally, I’d rather have seen more of Kyle Williams towards the end, and less of Ginn.

      When we lost Dingletary for Harbaugh, I expected to see more offense. So far, it hasn’t really been that way.

      • NoFear49er says:

        I saw a little too much of Singletary when he got hung up on that penalty call as well. He didn’t make much sense after that and apparently forgot the goal is to win the game as he left Alex without a play called.

        If you’re going to make everything on the field go through you, it’s probably a good idea to keep your head, keep it in the game and don’t get derailed by the small shit.

      • Kevin says:

        rookie head coach, still twice as good as Singledummy

  14. twinfan1 says:

    Kevin, he’s just in his usual stupor.
    BTW, the comments from others have been reasonable, even if there may be disagreement. The constant question on the postgame was “step forward or step back?” I’m with step foward, of course. They’ll be facing Dalton next week, who was my choice as the developmental QB.Should be interesting…

    • NoFear49er says:

      step forward, yes but preparation has to be for sixty minutes not thirty. they adjusted to our game and we ran out of game. that’s coahing. Theirs beat ours, leaving alone the question of players’ executing… or not.

      You nearly had a convert there for a minute but it turned out to be a mirage again. Yes, I knew better, just some temporary foolishness on my part.

      My take away is we got let down by the coaches today more than anything. I’ll have to take a more serious look tomorrow or so when I can see it again.

  15. Kevin says:

    Yeah Twin, definetly a step forward, especially for Alex. For the most part it was a well played game. Like I said, Dallas made less mistakes at the end.

  16. twinfan1 says:

    Romanowski hates Smith, even he acknowledges Smith played well. By going back to Gore over and over, Harbaugh screwed up. Fact is, whenever they committed to the pass, they moved the ball.Last week they went to the run over and over on third down. In the first half this week they converted third downs- almost exclusively in the air. The he went JRaye again.

    • NoFear49er says:

      sorry twin, but Romanowski’s support may not be the strongest argument. He’s a bit rattled ya know.

      I’m not dumping this on Smith, but he ends up being a barely noticeable piece of the backdrop to Romo’s hero act.

      To lose after that big lead, at home, against a team so banged up, points to failures in all phases as well as coaching.

  17. barleyfreak says:

    NoFear at 8:05pm — I agree. JH lost it — and hurt the cause. I’ll cut him some rookie slack, but he better get over that shit, and fast. Frothing at the mouth was a SingleMoron specialty. JH is better than that — but needs to learn from it. I’m not expecting Rome to be built in a day, but after XX years in the desert, I’m fucking thirsty.


    • NoFear49er says:

      Yes, me too. and I hope he’s an honest enough critic of his own performance to see that error and correct it. Just a mistake, today, although costly. Turns out he’s just a man after all.

  18. NJ49er says:

    Back to back National games for Romo and Jerry J.O.? Think it was just a bit contrived?

    No excuses, we aren’t Columbia’s Team after all and, this was all about the drama of Diva Romo getting some sunshine blown up his skirt. We just played the fall guys.

    I have no regrets about how we stood toe to toe with them, we just aren’t ready for a shootout. We are a more confident Team I think, we just don’t have an OL worth the sh!t right now and everyone knows it. New Center, new system not withstanding, we will get better and Alex didn’t embarrass anyone today. If we are to stop seeing 8-9 in the box, throw them out of it.

    And Del……F*ck The Cowboys…..FOREVER.

  19. NJ49er says:

    Let’s all remember the age old axiom, necessity is the mother of invention.

    Harbaugh knows his plans will take time to implement and execute. It’s Game 2. We aren’t expected to compete for SB title like the Cowpatties are.
    If I were them, I’d be concerned before I got too full of myself. Sure they were short handed, on the road, etc, but the pressure is on them. They’ve got plenty of holes too, we just weren’t able to exploit them when it mattered.

    This goes as much on the play calling as the lack of execution.

    And, I would have taken the points off and continued the drive for a possible 6.
    But, hindsight is always 20/20 isn’t it? Gamble a little, makes the Team feel better if you show some faith.

  20. grumpyguy says:

    So after two games we basically know what we already knew.

    Alex Smith keeps showing signs of improvement. Whether through his own fault or the shortcomings of the game plans, he continues to not quite put together a full 60 minutes. I would sorely love to see Alex throw more, for the whole game, to get an idea of what he can actually do and where his limits are.

    Frank Gore into the middle means lots of one and two yard gains and punts, and the occasional misleading 60-yard TD run. It’s a recipe for 6-10.

    The offensive line continues to draw praise from idiots like Billick while managing to perform badly in both the running and passing game. And someone – Harbaugh, Smith, Goodwin, SOMEONE – needs to be beaten with a stick for leaving DeMarcus Ware unblocked on that one play. WARE. UNBLOCKED. FUCKING GODDAMNED REALLY?

    Our rookie head coach is still pretty much an unknown. Fire is nice, but cold and calculating is far better. Shit fits might make for good TV, but delay of game penalties, not so much.

    Our defensive backfield has been remade here, and is prone to sudden horrific breakdowns. This one is no surprise to me, and may not be fixable for a while.

    Hopefully some of this will get fixed by the bye week. But some of it likely will still be an issue at the end of the season.

  21. Spitblood says:

    I think Alex Smith played fine, and I think Jim Harbaugh and his coaches put together a great game. I think the secondary lost this game. I think our offense played well – our offensive line, our qb, our running backs and our wide receivers. I think our defensive front seven played well. I think our secondary played good underneath, but terrible over the top – and that’s what lost us the game. In my opinion, free agency is like our recent financial bailout. It temporarily infuses strength into a broken system that, in the long run, is ultimately weaker. Maybe in time they’ll defend the slants and deep passes better as a unit, but right now our our secondary play, and more specifically our free safety play, is killing this team. Good game by Alex Smith. Good game by the line. Good game plan by the coaches. A lot to build on and learn from.

    After two weeks it’s clear to me the Niners are the best team in their division. It’s also clear to me the Cowboys are the worst team in their division. Onto next week. A lot of positives to take from the Cowboy game.

  22. unca_chuck says:

    The play at the end of the half, and the play to start Dallas’s 1st OT drive killed their chances. Both blown coverages. both times the safety was completely out of the picture. These are things that can hopefully be fixed. This was a good game, and when you look at the yardage, you have to wonder how it was even close.

    The pisser? Gore gets 20 carries for 47 yards. There in no reason on Gods green earth why Gore should have had that many shots. The 2nd half play calling was not up to par. Closing the 1st half wasn’t. But, hey, Harbuagh should learn. At least I hope so. With all of Dallas’ problems in the secondary, I think the Niners should have tried to exploit it more. Even with the shakey blocking.

    This offense still looks too much like the last 2 regimes for my taste.

  23. unca_chuck says:

    Kevin, I don’t know why some of your comments ended up in the spam filter . . .

    I put them back . . .

  24. Del Mar Dennis says:

    Thank frank Gore contract extension is looking like a huge mistake.
    Either that, or our OL is an even bigger one.

  25. twinfan1 says:

    It seems that VD was utilized to block Ware, and he was handled reasonably well. But with the two best wide outs out, I don’t see how they could take Davis out of the passing game, as well. It’s a bit of a Catch-22, he’s the best receiver and also the best blocker and Ware is a guy who has to be contained. But it severely limited Smith’s options… they need someone other than VD to handle the top pass rushers..

  26. Del Mar Dennis says:

    We only had 206 TOTAL yds on offense. That’s even less than last week, and Spit thinks Alex and Harbaugh did a good job.

    Leave it to the fucking mook.

  27. Del Mar Dennis says:

    “But it severely limited Smith’s options…”

    He doesn’t need any outside help in that dept.
    He does a fine job limiting his own options.

    • twinfan1 says:

      Dennis, shut your goddamn mouth and get over to the Dallas blog…
      BTW, a doctor friend of mine at one time was supposed to do brain surgery on a prisoner who suffered from your affliction. After the incision was made and the flap lifted, she said it was the first time she’d seen an entire OR staff become violently ill. “Wet Brain” truly is just that, and this man’s case was so advanced that his brain was scoopable, it was like oatmeal. They quickly zipped him back up…his last words were “How ’bout dem Cowboys??!!”

  28. unca_chuck says:


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