Since coming to Niners Nation in 2015, I’ve said constantly during a loss, it’s not that the 49ers lose, it’s how they lose. If you were one of the unlucky souls to see the “product” the 49ers gave us during the Jim Tomsula and Chip Kelly regimes, you’d know exactly what I’m talking about. Screaming from our seats at the terrible play-calling, horrible scheme, and personnel decisions on game day, losses were expected and even more frustrating because the 49ers seemed like they didn’t know what the hell they were doing.
Not the case any more. I was quite impressed with the way they played even in their rough stretch of 2017 until the emergence of Garoppolo and even Sunday, frustrated at stupid mistakes (thanks again, Solomon Thomas), the 49ers were playing a superior foe. The Vikings are a team many think are going to go to the Super Bowl, and the 49ers didn’t get blown out. They were able to stick with the Vikings until the end of the game, despite four turnovers.
That’s right. Four turnovers. The 49ers had no business sniffing the win, but still were in the thick of things.
Is this a moral victory? No. There are no moral victories. The 49ers now need to get things going immediately against the Detroit Lions before things get very bad, but if you compare their Week 1 performance against the Vikings to their 2017 Week 1 home game against the Carolina Panthers, you see so much progress, it’s not even funny. The 49ers went into a hostile environment against one of the NFC’s best and hung in there for 60 minutes despite shooting themselves in the foot multiple times. It wasn’t a blowout and it was definitely frustrating to see fumbles and interceptions happen, but to lose to one of the best teams in the league by eight points, in their house, with a roster that was in shambles just one year before shows a lot of promise.
The sky isn’t falling and things are not terrible. The 49ers hung in there and weren’t blown out, or subjected to multiple bad offensive play calls. They have a lot to clean up and a win is all the more important than Week 2—but the 49ers showed some reasons for optimism.
Stay faithful, my friends.