What a Rush
October 2, 2001 at 12:00 AM
Stereotypes are hard to break down, even in sports.
Why did the gameplan for this game, according to every sports reporter, call for the 49ers to bring a high-flying offense vs the Jets pound it down your throat running game? Why is it that people still talk about the 49ers defense as young and susceptible? Has anybody bothered to watch the 49ers offense the last five years? Has anybody watched their defense the last nine games?
Apparently not, because the 49ers have been a team that relies on power rushing since Hearst arrived in 1997. They led the league in rushing in 1998. They like big bruising backs. Roger Craig was a fullback in college. Kevan Barlow weighs as much as a linebacker. San Francisco has been doing what they did against the Jets for a long time now, and yet people still see them as the aerial assault offense they were in the late eighties and early nineties.
As for the defense, this unit has been playing quality football for the last nine games, dating back to the win at home over Kansas City. If you take away the loss to an inspired Denver team fighting for a playoff spot at Mile High Stadium’s last game, the 49ers have held opponents to 15 points a game over that nine game span. And the unimaginative Jets were supposed to come in and run all over us? Please. Placing the West Coast Offense in the hands of a quarterback like Vinny Testeverde, who has never been a great cerebral player, is an oversight, if you ask me.
Other Game Notes:
The criticisms I have: there were definitely some struggles in the Red Zone. This should have been a 27-17 game. The 49ers really kept the Jets in it despite the fact that they dominated…The play calling was a little conservative, but when the running game is working, you go with it…What kind of prevent were we playing? The Jets just marched down the field. I hate it. Just play your standard front, for crying out loud. The Jets rolled off three 20-yard passing plays in five snaps and were in the endzone in less than two minutes. What a joke. If we want to play prevent defense, let’s try and prevent something.
Final Word on Owens’ Pouting
You can count me as someone who was disappointed by Owens' response to his four drops against the Rams. It is one more failure in maturity from a player we have come to expect it from. It is becoming increasingly obvious that Terrell Owens will never be able to lead this team the way a Bryant Young does.
All players hate having a bad game, but to sit and sulk for an hour in front of the media is not a very mature way to handle the situation. Like one writer said, why didn't he sulk in the trainer’s room? Why not sulk when you get home? He wanted the media to see it, that's why. He wanted to make sure that people were aware that he was upset.
Owens should just worry about himself and stop fretting about how people perceive him. What Steve Young did after that 1994 game vs. Kansas City was the right thing - hold your head up, answer the questions, and then leave. I'll bet Steve Young sulked, but he wouldn't do it in front of the media. Adults hold their head up, compose themselves, and take responsibility. Children sit in the corner and sulk.
NFC West the Best?
People have been downgrading the Packers 3-0 start because they’re in an easy stretch of their schedule. But when does it get hard? This is not the NFC Central of two years ago. The Vikings, Lions, and Bucs all look very shaky. The Bears look decent, but their offense is still no juggernaut. I have to believe that the NFC West – with the 49ers, the Rams, and the Saints – is considered a better division this year. The Falcons and Panthers have had their moments, too. Having seen how Chris Weinke is playing, I don’t believe the Panthers will be the 3-13 team I thought they would be. The NFC East has New York and Philadelphia, but they also have the three worst teams in football right now – Dallas, Washington, and Arizona. I think the Packers should have a great year.
The views within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.
- No Comments