Here in Nebraska we received a decent amount of snow overnight, much like other parts of the midwest are getting today and the northeast and Canada may see down the line. Well that has made for a relatively slow work day with customers and some employees unable to get to work from their rural locations due to blowing snow.
I decided that in order to liven things up a bit I would take to twitter and solicit questions, then answer them here, in this post. If you're not on twitter, you should be. News breaks on twitter before it hits the airwaves, television, or blogs. There is also some excellent discussion that goes on there on a variety of topics. Sign-up today! (I swear I don't get royalties, but that would be awesome if I did. Getting paid to tweet is a life-goal of mine, seriously.)
On to the questions!
@tre9er what is the issue with the 49ers every 3rd game.Just seems odd how bad they've been playing in those.— Jason Cardenas (@jcdoeslife) December 20, 2012
The Mayans predicted this as part of their apocalyptic prophesy, actually. OK, not actually. My theory all along is that the team get's a head-of-steam from a confidence standpoint and then is unable to maintain the emotional high for the third game.
I think the Giants game is the outlier of the bunch, though. The other losses (and the tie) were against teams that most people expected the 49ers to win. The Giants game should have been one of those games where they played-up to their competition and did "the unthinkable" like they've done vs. the Bears, Patriots, Packers, etc. I'm hoping that the scope of this week's game against Seattle will prevent any loss of focus or overconfidence, though.
I will also say that previously the 49ers came out trying to pass against the Vikings and Giants, which didn't go well. Thus far in Colin Kaepernick's five starts, he seems to handle the passing game much better, though, whereas I think Alex Smith was more comfortable making plays when the run game was already established, so the pressure wasn't really on. That's my gut feel here, though...entirely unscientific.
@tre9er Do u think LMJ is outside threat only, and not having hunter hurts to giving gore the proper rest during a game like this sunday?— Chris Rutherford (@CRudd22) December 20, 2012
I've seen LaMichael James run between the tackles this year and he looks fine there. I even have witnessed him lowering his shoulder to finish a run, and dragging defenders on a few occasions. He might not look like he can handle inside running, but unless you're talking about goal-line type situations, I think he's fine there.
@tre9er will we see more deep throws against SEA like we did against NE?— Paul Fernandez (@paulfernandez) December 20, 2012
I think Kap has shown the ability to consistently place the ball on deep throws, and he's completed a bunch of them already, too. Take away a few drops, maybe a faster route here and there, and the numbers would be off-the-chart. I don't expect the deep throws to cease at all. It's Kap's style and he's looked good doing it.
@tre9er I'd be interested in your opinion on whether Kap ready for playoffs and how you think he will do in them.— The Borch (@theborchbrain) December 20, 2012
I think this week will be a huge test and might help further answer that question, although nothing short of actually performing in the playoffs will really answer it. Thus far, though, he's beaten New Orleans and New England on the road, tough places to win against elite quarterbacks, plus a convincing victory over Chicago's then-vaunted defense.
The latter two were in prime-time, as will this week's tilt against Seattle. This is as close to a playoff simulator as you can get. Bottom line is that I have confidence in Kap under the lights, when the game is on the line, against some of the NFL's best competition.
@tre9er Got one: Should offense worry about their difficulty consistently extending drives? Or does big-strike ability negate that concern?— Brian Massey (@imajackhammer) December 20, 2012
This seems to rear it's head when they're up on the scoreboard more than anything. I tend to think play-calling and sense of urgency are to blame here. They need to work on not shifting gears when they feel comfortable. If you only make plays when your back is up against the wall, sooner or later that could really bite you.
@tre9er if your gm what do you do with alex smith at end of season?— Gavan McLaughlin (@Gavan_Mac) December 20, 2012
There's no way he would restructure his deal to stay, but if he would, and wanted to, that would be the most ideal situation. As it stands, though, I think trading Alex before his bonus money kicks-in will be the first course of action, if possible. I'd take about a 4th rounder for him, seeing as how Kevin Kolb netted a 2nd and has turned out disastrously for the Cardinals. QB-desperate teams should be willing to pay that, but they also know the 49ers aren't going to pay Alex that bonus. The reason they pull the trigger on the trade, though, is to make sure THEY get him, not another team.
For all intents and purposes the 49ers cannot extend Dashon Goldson at this time due to the rules of the Franchise Tag (below). They must wait until after the season is over to negotiate with him. Goldson will likely do what he did last year and test the market first. I'm betting the market will be good for Goldson and he'll get some solid offers after two-straight solid years. He also has leverage over the 49ers knowing there isn't a clear-cut replacement for him on the roster, and that rookie safeties can struggle significantly early-on.
I'm not sure how this one will play-out. Goldson fits well here in SF and I like his physical style, ball-hawking ways, and how he works with Donte Whitner. Still, he's going to want a lot of money and will probably get it elsewhere. I'd like him back, but I wonder if it will happen. The 49ers may very well be drafting a safety early in the 2013 draft.
Well, that's it for this twitter Q&A, folks. I enjoyed doing it, so look for more posts like this in the future! Remember to join twitter so you can submit questions not only to me, but the likes of the beat writers and even 49ers players!