People seemed to have rose colored glasses on at the beginning of the year and into much of the season, hoping for one thing and allowing that hope to cloud their judgment about what was realistic.
I called this team for 6-10 or 7-9 at the beginning of the year-and I am sure I wont miss by much.
The reason why I thought this record would correct was:
Things I knew at the beginning of the year:
1) Lack of a solid QB-which Smith may yet become. I never threw him under the bus like most-understanding the injuries and a new offense to learn every year took its toll. He deserves a couple more years in the offense, which will be painful, but necessary.
2) Lack of a solid O line-specifically at right tackle. You can think Mc Boo Foo for this one. He has chosen to ignore this need for years and it has come back to bite him time after time. The draft picks the team has made on the Oline have been high, most within the top 3 rounds (Staley, Baas, Rachel). These picks haven’t filled their potential and the team has suffered accordingly. Maybe they should've paid Smiley instead of letting him go. This is just another example of Mc Boo Foo dropping the ball.
3) Lack of a strong pass rusher. This was another need, which Mc Boo Foo failed to address in the draft. There is NOT 1 PLAYER that has more than 5.5 sacks on the team, or there are 41 other players that have more sacks than Lawson the top sack guy. That's pathetic when there are only 32 teams in the league. This lack of consistent pressure makes the secondary work harder than it has to, making players like Clements look mediocre.
Things I learned along as the season went on:
4) Balmer being drafted in the 1st round last year. This guy is quickly falling into the category of bust. I see guys like Desean Jackson who they passed on, who is lighting up the league and drafted 20 spots after Balmer. Caliais Campbell drafted 21 spots after Balmer also appears to be a much better pick. This is just further proof that Mc Boo Foo needs to go-he is a major reason for the team not drafting the right players.
5) Offensive play calling has been TERRIBLE. All we heard about was the Niners running the ball 60% of the time at the beginning of the year and Gore being the "cowbell." The team was going to play clock mgmt and strong defense, and THE SEASON WON'T IN DECEMEBER. What the hell happened along the way? I'll tell you- Jimmy Raye doesn't know his $%^ from a hole in the ground. The play calling has cost them at LEAST 3 games and is showing no signs of improvement.
I could continue on, but I think I have made my point. This season is over and I WISH the Niners lose their next 2 games to get a better draft position since they are already eliminated from the playoffs.
The future of this franchise will be determined on how well they address these issues.