Completely by accident, YouTube had this gem pop up in my feed: a preview of the 1981 San Francisco 49ers season. So I flipped on not expecting much but after watching it, it felt similar to the circumstances surrounding the current 49ers.
I’ve mentioned a few times that with Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch, it felt like history was repeating with the Bill Walsh regime. It wasn’t so much just the circumstances of the hire or the seasons they had, but just the overall feeling of the team going into the coaching staff being brought on.
Here’s a few parallels I found:
The 49ers have one of the “hottest” teams in the NFL
The 1980 49ers went 6-10. The 2018 49ers went 4-12. Both are not satisfactory in the slightest. The 2018 team was white hot coming into the season until Jimmy Garoppolo tore his ACL in Week 3. Everyone knew what was going to happen then. In 2019, the 49ers don’t have as much hype but they are still getting a lot of praise from analysts around the league. Hell, Sports Illustrated says their window for the Super Bowl has opened.
The city has been in a state of disbelief since moving to Candlestick Park
Yes, you read that right. Now remember how we miss the ‘stick. “It was a dump, but it was our dump,” as the late Dwight Clark would say. All it took was that catch from Clark to make the ‘Stick a memorable venue.
Now, how has that time at Levi’s Stadium been? About the same, to be honest.
It did not used to be that way, when the 49ers played in Kezar Stadium
Replace Kezar with Candlestick. Then see the above.
It is 49er fan tradition to hope for the best and expect the worst
Let’s see here. We all knew the Jim Tomsula hire was going to be a disaster, but were getting behind him as time went on. Chip Kelly was a strange study of a head coach, but thanks to us breaking down the offense and looking at how he scored points in Philadelphia, it sounded like a great hire. I don’t know about you, but deep down, I knew I was trying to convince myself that this was good.
Overall, this was rather interesting to watch and see the 2019 team. Are the 2019 team the same as the 1981 team? Right now, no. We were hoping for the playoffs last year and you saw where that got us (another case of hoping for the best). The 49ers have a great shot to have the same success as the 1981 team, but it’s one of those situations to see before we believe.
If you can’t see the video above, click here to watch it.