And where were you all game?!
In some regards, I may be writing this article more for myself than for you guys and gals. I need to convince myself that what I saw on Thursday was not what I am going to see for the rest of the season.
What I saw on Thursday night was pathetic, pitiable, and embarrassing. I haven't been so embarrassed since I realized that no grown man has any reason to watch American Idol. I hate pop music; I tell everybody that I hate pop music; and yet, I was watching a show designed to generate the next pop single that would send me into some sort of "get-off-my-lawn" mode. I can't explain it. Except for the fact that I have a soft spot for snarky British people. Oh Simon, how I miss you...
Ahem, but yeah. Chest beating football. Hairy chest beating football. I hate pop music (but Simon is- shut it other Wes. You are embarrassing yourself).
So forgive me for being absolutely revolted in lieu of Thursday. Never before have I sunk so low into the couch of despair as I have except during this game and my epiphany of American proportions. And anytime football makes me think of American Idol, it's some bad football.
There's no need for me to break down everything that went horrible, especially since literally my last post on this blog was called "The 49ers' Offensive Line Which, by the Way, Doesn't Suck." Well sorry guys: if that isn't the biggest jinx ever ever ever. I screwed the pooch on that one.
Rather, here is my main goal: I want to mediate whatever slight demarcation exists in my soul between the resonant despair of 2002-2011 and the reverberating hope of 2011 onward. Quite frankly, I have come to expect a lot from the current guys we have. I expect them to play competent, smart football each and every week. I expect them to do their jobs. On Thursday, the old ghosts of the last decade found their way into my head. It was uncomfortable.
I cannot remember the last time I have seen such poor offensive line play. Protection packages? Eh, we don't need them. Fundamental blocking skills and techniques? I mean, we can just get by on talent. It was as if every o-lineman decided that they wanted to forget everything worth knowing for the completion of their job.
It's not like the wide outs were doing them any favors. Even when the Ravens brought max blitz, it still seemed like the receivers could not get open! Kyle Williams drops an easy bubble that could have sprung for at least a first down. Braylon Edwards continues to make a case for why he sucks. Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker - did they even play in this game? Crabtree? Well, he did alright. And just in case we didn't already know this, Ted Ginn Jr. cannot even catch the flu, let alone a football.
And Alex. Well this particular player deserves more of a nuanced review than a single, snarky paragraph. So let me just say that I vacillated between thinking that he was going to die from multiple concussions and spine injuries and wishing that he would because JUST RIGHT THERE WAS AN OPEN MAN RUNNING DOWN THE MIDDLE OF THE FIELD YOU STUPID IDIOT PAY ATTENTION ALEX THIS IS SO LIKE YOU WHAT IS SINGLETARY YOUR COACH AGAIN I CANT STAND YOUR FACE EVEN GROW UP YOU SUCK WHERE'S CARR?!
Yeah, it was a frustrating game to say the least. A lot of things went wrong, especially offensively. But, amongst all of this angst, I think that there are a few reasons to be optimistic. There are a few reasons to think that this game will be the anomaly going forward and not the typical. Well, for one, we play the Rams this week.
But seriously, the fact that we even had a chance to win that game in the final minutes is all due to our defense. We have one of the most incredible defenses in the league, and even when the offense wants to throw their feces at each other, we will be in close games. With this defense, we will always have a chance to win late in the game, and that is pretty cool.
Also, how awesome were Lee and Akers? With special teams like that, who needs good offensive play (/cough: we do)?
No, there are reasons to step away from the precipice. There are reasons to pull oneself from the couch of despair. Going forward, things will get a bit easier (until they get harder). We don't have to fly to the East Coast like a hundred more times this year (by the way, we have like the most insanely stupid schedule this year). Let's just get ourselves into the playoffs and go from there.