This is another one of what they call statement games. The 49ers are facing a very pissed off Houston team who on the face of things could be 3-1. They pissed away the Seattle game last week, their QB is under fire for fading in the face of adversity at the end of games, and the end of seasons, and the head coach went all Mad Mike Martz last game to play his part in the stupidity.
The Niners? Well, they are at home. They are supposed to be an elite team. This game was marked as a win before the season started. These home games are usually supposed to work out in our favor. The problem is, this team has looked anything but elite in the face of strong defenses. Seattle and Indy silenced this offense pretty easily. So, it’s time for this team to make a statement, or be exposed as a team that may have rested on its laurels this last offseason. Lose another at home, and this team is in big trouble. Gone will be the division, and they likely are looking at 4-4 at the break, and losses to the Saints, Hawks, and Falcons would be the least of the troubles for this team. 9-7 would be the likely outcome, if not worse.
Win the game, and a semblance of balance is restored to the team. They need to prove to themselves at least that they can beat a quality team at home. Even with the win they are going to find it hard to win the division without some help, and a home win against Seattle. A game a couple months off, but ooming large on the horizon. For the time being at least. Hence the title of this thread. This team has a chance to prove to itself, and the NFL, that they ARE bona fide contenders, and not pverhyped pretenders. All the commercials, accolades, back-patting, and media fawning can come crashing down on this team very quickly. As we all know, the NFL is paved with one-hit wonders, and teams that have fairly quick shelf lives. I think this team is built for the long haul, but with the mercurial nature of our head coach, and the general idea that it doesn’t take much to get knocked off the pedestal (just ask the NY Giants and the Pittsburgh Steelers), and you have a recipe for backsliding.
Note: Just saw on the NFL channel that Patrick Willis is a ‘greater than 50-50 chance to play tomorrow’ per Vic Fangio. Joe Staley is fine for tomorrow, but still and all this game worries the shit out of me. Time to play big instead of small.