Barring a complete and utter meltdown, the 49ers are going to the playoffs. Even though they’re in the dreadful NFC West, and are still not taken very seriously, they’ve beaten Cincy (5-2), Tampa (4-3), Detroit (6-2), Philly (3-4), and Cleveland (now 3-4). Their wins are against teams that are collectively 21-15. Well that, and Seattle (2-5). It’s not like we’re beating cream puffs. If they coast home and go 5-4, they’ll be 11-5. I don’t think they’ll coast, so 6-3 (or better) is doable with all the division games they have left. I’d think that would get them the 2nd seed, seeing as all the other teams have tougher intradivision games left to play.
At this point in the season, the ‘no respect’ card carries a lot of weight. Most of the talking heads out there don’t think this team is much more than a fluke at this point. Mainly because of the QB currently under center. The national media laughs at (and mangles the names of) guys like Ice Sopoaga, completely ignores guys like Ahmad Brooks, Aldon Smith, and the improvememnt of our defense, and yells things out like, “Can Alex Smith win the Super Bowl? NO!!! As usual, the media will catch on next year.
The funny thing is, this team is fairly similar to the Steelers of the 70s, or baltimore for one shining season. Throw for 180, run for 200, and let the defense shut down the other team. It really is the team that Singletary envisioned but couldn’t bring to bear. If Sing had shut the fuck up about “Not gonna fool anyone” and just played, he might have gotten better results. Instead, his mantra was Gore is the focal point of our offense. We are gonna run Gore all the time. Kinda like what we are doing NOW. 31 carries is the most of Gore’s career. It’s like playing Texas Hold ’em with only your cards face-up. Sing was not shy about telling people how to stop our offense. Harbaugh isn’t playing his cards face-up. He’s mixing in enough passes to keep defenses from packing the line. He doesn’t say shit like we are running the ball up the middle 20 times a game. Say wha you will about the QB, but Alex Smith played another solid, error-free game, got 174 yards passing, and a TD pass, and the 49ers won going away. Yes, they aren’t perfect by any means, but there’s a lot of season left to work out the kinks, and send Soap on some deep seam routes (!). Winning ugly at this point is more than fine, and a hell of a lot better than what’s gone on in recent memory.