The folks at NFL.com are making the rounds of each team to preview their respective training camps. Late last week they got to the San Francisco 49ers, and the rest of the NFC West. They looked at the offseason in a nutshell, a player to watch, asked three burning questions, and offered a “way-too-early season prediction.”
It is no surprise that Chip Kelly is the offseason in a nutshell, but they also are not overly enthused about the 49ers prospects in 2016. Here is what they had for their way-too-early prediction:
Minor Chip Kelly obsession aside, this is a team lucky to win seven games in 2016, but one that will hopefully show enough flashes to merit Kelly staying another season. Two bridge coaches would sink this franchise into pre-Gus Bradley Jaguars territory.
This thing could turn into a dumpster fire resulting in Chip Kelly leaving or being fired, but it just seems highly unlikely in year one. Well, that and I really hope it does not happen because that would be rather miserable. If the 49ers were going through the hiring process for the third time in as many years, I don’t really know how I would react.
The three questions NFL.com provides include one obvious one, and two that we wouldn’t normally see in a general national preview. They of course ask whether or not Colin Kaepernick will turn things around. The other two questions are 1) can Eric Rogers build on his impressive 2015 in Canada, and 2) will Ahmad Brooks make the team. Those are very pertinent questions, but again, it’s just surprising to see a national outlet running with them.
The wide receiver corps is loaded with question marks given the lack of experience. Rogers lacks NFL experience, but the CFL could be the kind of finishing school that helps him take a big step forward in the NFL. He signed as a UDFA out of a Division III school, and while the CFL is not on the level of the NFL, leading that league in the major receiving categories is still not something to which we should turn up our nose. And with no clear-cut No. 2 receiver on this team, it’s a huge opportunity for Rogers.
The Brooks stuff has been a topic of discussion for who knows how long. I wouldn’t say since he signed his contract like the article states, but it has certainly been a topic of discussion for much of the contract. Given how it has all played out, I fully expect at least another year of Brooks on the roster. But, if Eli Harold and/or Tank Carradine take a sizable step forward through this year’s training camp and preseason, who knows what Brooks’s future might hold. I think he sticks around in 2016, but it could grow considerably