For a lot of people, it’s hard for two things to be true at the same time. NBC’s Chris Simms has definitely been on the skeptical side when it comes to whether Trey Lance will ever put it all together on the football field. Having said that, he’s also picking the 49ers to make their second Super Bowl in the last four years.
“I just look at them as a team on a mission,” he said on the Chris Simms Unbuttoned podcast, “Maybe I’m overselling it a little bit, but I think between their roster, the way the year ended last year, Shanahan and that group out there, I love DeMeco Ryans at defensive coordinator. I think their offensive line is better. I think their defensive line is gonna be better. I think they’re gonna be a pain in the ass.”
For Simms, faith in the head coach and faith in the pieces around Lance made the 49ers his NFC West winner as well.
“Their roster is ridiculous. It’s redonkulous, it is, across the board. The only position you look at and go, ‘Oh, that’s not impressive,’ is corner, and they’re a team that doesn’t really put a lot of pressure on their corners anyways. They don’t expect you to be island man-to-man. I think they even got a little bit better in that area when Charvarius Ward is back and healthy.
I have faith in Shanahan, for sure. Trey Lance is a question, we get that, but the Shanahan tricks are going to be out early. When they play the first three games of this year, there’s no doubt they’re the best team on the field. There’s no doubt. The Bears, the Seahawks, and the Broncos, they are the best team on the field. Doesn’t mean their quarterback’s the best, but they’re the best team on the field.
I could see them getting off to an incredible start. I could really see them being 5-1 after the first six games.”
What if they don’t come out of the gate on fire and they start to struggle?
“That’s where Jimmy G. and the fact that they got him is gonna come in and save their ass. For sure. They don’t need the quarterback to be a superstar, they just need him to be good and not f*ck the game up. They’re literally in that category. We’ve seen that. They’ve won a lot of games with Jimmy Garoppolo where you go, ‘He didn’t really do anything, but he didn’t f*ck it up.’ Good by him, he made one or two throws and that’s all he had to do. And we’re good from there.”
I have heard a million analyses of Jimmy Garoppolo over the years, but that’s probably the most succinct of them all.
Time will tell where things ultimately fall, but it says a lot about the quality of the roster the 49ers have build that someone so skeptical of the team’s starting quarterback would still pick them to represent the Super Bowl from the NFC.
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