On Friday, yours truly with the help of Aaron Malone (@GafflezMalone) and our guest @BetterRivals took to the Twittersphere to start up our season long #Channel49 Q&A. We had a great first week and would love to see you participate next Friday at 2 P.M. PT. Just send in your questions and we will tackle them all like Patrick Willis.
Injuries are always a concern in football, as it really is the nature of the game. Bumps, bruises, and worse are bound to happen and a big part of any teams championship run will be because the team has stayed relatively healthy as a whole. Losing Kendall Hunter for the year is a loss, as he has shown to be a solid contributor to the football team. LaMichael James is banged up for now but he should be back by the season opener, and all the other injuries on the team so far have been minor.
A more concerning injury is the torn bicep of Glenn Dorsey. Dorsey was a clog in the middle of the line last season and had a great year. The next logical choice is Ian Williams but he is on the PUP list and still not 100%. We're looking at Quinton Dial stepping in for the time being. Injuries are very concerning but the good news is the 49ers are a very deep team at nearly every position on the roster, so if/when there is an injury the next man up has a good chance at helping the team win. Let's just hope for a healthy season from now until the snow falls in February, no team can afford too many players going down to injury.
@Woods49ers Kap Over/Under 3600 yards 59% completion percentage?— Justin Sisco (@JustinSisco) August 1, 2014
Last season Colin Kaepernick threw for 3,197 yards and had a completion percentage of 58.4 percent. Both of these numbers should go up from last year, when Kap had to rely on receivers such as Marlon Moore, Kyle Williams, and Mario Manningham to get open. This year Michael Crabtree will be back week one, along with the always reliable Anquan Boldin, a pro-bowl receiver named Stevie Johnson, and some other intriguing options in Bruce Ellington, Quinton Patton, and Brandon Lloyd. The depth at receiver is going to be much better than last year, and tight ends Vernon Davis and Vance McDonald are a solid duo as well. I'm not sure if Kap gets over 3,600 yards but that range sounds about right, and he definitely should have a completion percentage over 60%.
The 49ers came oh so close to beating the Seahawks up in Seattle at the most hostile venue in football, but do they really want to go up there for round two? The goal is to win as many games as possible and to have playoff home games at Levi's Stadium, getting the 49ers fans involved and putting opposing teams against the ropes. Although the 49ers bow to no man and willingly would trek up to Seattle or any other city, the goal is to play at their new home as many times as possible. The 49ers can get it done being a wild card, but the better path is certainly as division champs.
They're looking to extend someone. The 49ers reached out to holdout Alex Boone but nothing has came of that yet and he continues to hold out. My guess would be they want to extend Boone first, but the 49ers only will do so when he reports. This could turn into another player such as Crabtree or Iupati getting an extension instead. It might be wise for Boone to join his teammates, he might get what he wants. Out of those three players, Crabtree is probably isn't rushing to get an extension done, he's willing to bet on himself putting together a good year and staying healthy.
Dan Skuta and Corey Lemonier both played well last season when Aldon was away from the team, I expect both players to do the same again this year.
Michael Wilhoite is in the lead right now. Rookie Chris Borland has been inconsistent thus far in camp and will have to eliminate errors quickly this preseason to get the job. Dan Skuta also has experience as an inside linebacker so he could get some looks there as well, my money is on Wilhoite though.
Only if Marcus Martin is ready. His play in preseason in practice will have a big say in if he is starting week one. Daniel Kilgore has knowledge of the 49ers scheme and experience in the pros, but by all accounts it sounds like Martin is a gamer and mauler along the offensive line. As long as Martin doesn't make many miscues leading to a 49ers quarterback getting leveled, he has a good shot to win the starting center battle before the regular season starts. He has to prove he is ready first, no growing pains or learning on the job when the team you play for is a championship contender.
Do I really have to limit this to five? Fine. Bruce Ellington, Jimmie Ward, Vance McDonald, Tank Carradine, and Carlos Hyde. Can't wait!
Is Conan.....I mean Vance ready to contribute? #Channel49— Michael Richards (@therealspike13) August 1, 2014
He's ready for a bigger role. Vance has shown he is tough and can get open, drops have been an issue and continue to be, if he can limit his drops he has the potential to be a dangerous player in this offense.
It's going to be big! The Harbowl on Thanksgiving was pretty huge, as was Candlestick's last game, but this takes the cake if the game turns out to be epic. "How was your Thanksgiving?" people will ask me, and that will depend on the outcome of this game. Turkey and Football, America can be pretty cool.