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All one can talk is offense - is that really the problem?

Originally posted by dust-7:
Look at all the threads here saying - start Alex - wait'll Crabtree - here comes Frank - etc.

I say - wha?

I say - watch the game against Atlanta. How many points were scored by Atlanta? Does Brett Favre come in here and match that - Joe in his prime - Steve running for 1st downs?

How?

Let's face the problem head-on. It's the - DEFENSE!

Sure one can talk Chilo, or Frank's return, what will Crabtree do, those low-lying shotput tosses of Hill's, Morgan celebrating, Bruce dropping, all of that. But this offense is still trying to put it together, and with an O-line that's not letting them. Even so, they're putting up points.

Defense wins games. And look how many points were scored by Atlanta. Clements goes for the ball - and there's no support. Bly gives it right back after clowning around - for which he had to offer a long, public apology today.

You could say lack of a pass rush allowed that TD off the pick. You could say Clements should have knocked it down. A shutdown corner would. But next drive, again, no pressure. Much as one can criticize Clements, a lack of a pass rush makes even a Bailey or anyone look bad. A Ryan-type will find his receivers.

At that point, it caused me to wonder that people talk about coming up with a nickname for our 'top-rated' defense - WHAT DEFENSE?

It was right then, as I posted, that Coach Sing called his infamous 'rally round' timeout. Without that timeout in the 'bank', he has nothing to use when the refs blew Walker's call.

All 'pepped up', STILL time to throw next play - AND . . td. 14-0 looked bad at that point, mostly because it all looked too easy for Atlanta to move down the field, AND score.

Oakland Niner suggested - it's all Crabtree's fault. It was meant in jest. It wasn't till the end of the game when some posters offered that as a serious excuse for the loss.

Next series Willis looked great. Smith got some pressure later in the drive. Refs gave a 'generous' spot to Atlanta. But then came the Atlanta penalty on 2nd down. Accept put them back 20. Decline - 3rd and 9. We remember what Sing did. And Atlanta threw just far enough to get the 9. Burned. And still no consistent pass rush. Still, 49ers held.

Overall, it was a frightening first quarter. It wasn't a low 14 points. It was how easily they put those up.

And it was actually ironic that the 49ers had closed to FG range after D forced a turnover - but then where a THREE man rush put us back out of Nedney's increasingly questionable range.

Then of course - Clements goes for the pick, White spins around down the sideline, no support for Clements.

Clements having a real bad game, sure. But the 49ers offense put up 10 - really should have been 14. This was 21. 21-10, just 11 points. 49ers are in it. Bad defensive day, but still their game to win or lose.

And we come to the key play, perhaps. Walker's fumble. Now Coach Sing didn't have even one timeout. The refs blew the call. Atlanta now ready to go up to 28. Not too much for the 49ers. But much more? that would put it away for ATL.

Many on the board were ready to give up. "Carl" said - all on Crabtree," but had no smiley to go with it (anticipating end of game excuses).

28 wasn't too much. Again they'd gone right through a porous D. "Chief" had it - "35-10 halftime gameover. 28-17 halftime managable." I agreed.

Mod "49erWill" had it - "they can basically do whatever they want to our D."

And then, of course. They got their 35.

I said, then - this game is over. Done! I wanted to believe otherwise and continued to watch through the third quarter.

But 49ers were done. 35 points. To me - it was the D that stood out. The offense did struggle to put up 10, after all.

That was one game of 16, one of five we have to look at. The D has looked GREAT in all four other games, including the Minnesota game (aside from giving up too many 3rd down conversions). But even in that game they were in the game despite the Offense, not because of it. I think everyone can agree yesterday was just one of those games. Everyone played poorly. Even championship teams have a game like that in a season.
  • dust-7
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Originally posted by SybErkRimInAL:

Yesterdays' game, their first drive, we get them to 3 and out. Our first drive ends up in a pick. Now our D is forced to defend a short field.

So THAT's why the 7 points?

Mmm.

Must have been a lot of 'short fields' to account for 35.

Remember - the offense - this offense - yesterday - in reality - on a real football field - put up 10 points by the half.

The game was over. Defense lost it.

You can say it was just one game. You can say - move on, ignore it. You can say - pretend it never happened.

The same problems exposed by Atlanta might well show up again - against Indy, against Chicago, heck, maybe even AZ (even SEA is playing better).

You can't 'move on'. The team has to learn from this. The D IS a problem. Face it. Admit it. Just one fan's opinion, obviously. I don't know what they're planning at 4949. I hope they saw the same game. I don't know how they could miss such an obvious problem as they saw with the D, yesterday. That's all.

And yes, ST and O are also a problem. This is a team far from peaking even this year. But haven't they already effectively swapped Wragge for Rachel? The froze out Rossum and finally cut him, today. So they're doing something even as YOU complain about the O and ST.

What about D?

[ Edited by dust-7 on Oct 12, 2009 at 17:08:59 ]
  • Otter
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Originally posted by dust-7:
Originally posted by matt49er:
the entire team sucked yesterday.

I don't see it that way. A bad offense - yes - managed to score 10 points . . somehow.

A - BAD, AWFUL - defense gave up 35, in the same first half.

People don't want to see this. But read above. That's how it happened. And that's what happened.

There's been too much hype, here. It was only four games into the season. Games 5-7 are where you get a better sense of where a team is going, and why.

Roman didn't support Clements. Clements had numerous bad plays, including that one. No pass rush allowed Ryan to play like Favre. And see above. It's not 'conventional wisdom', maybe. It's not what you've been told. But it's what one sees on the field.

Swing and a miss, strike two.
  • dust-7
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Originally posted by CRH49:

Swing and a miss, strike two.

What were you trying to hit? Must have seemed like a basketball coming toward you. Truth can be like that.
I challenge anyone to explain why our defense flew to the ball and played with intensity during the first four games. The Fox announcers started by declaring their admiration with what they had seen in reviewing the tapes of the earlier games. Then they all were astonished and could not explain why the defense was not playing in the manner they had come to expect.

What happened during the week? I really wonder if the Crabtree signing was the defining moment. It could explain why the players played as if they didn't care, as if they were in open rebellion with 49er management.

Remember, the team took pride in how hard it worked during training camp, preseason, and the first four games. Then this twit who had not even broke a sweat, not even played one single down in the NFL, gets paid ... whatever.

Do not underestimate the pyschological effect of that.
  • B650
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Originally posted by excelsior:
I challenge anyone to explain why our defense flew to the ball and played with intensity during the first four games. The Fox announcers started by declaring their admiration with what they had seen in reviewing the tapes of the earlier games. Then they all were astonished and could not explain why the defense was not playing in the manner they had come to expect.

What happened during the week? I really wonder if the Crabtree signing was the defining moment. It could explain why the players played as if they didn't care, as if they were in open rebellion with 49er management.

Remember, the team took pride in how hard it worked during training camp, preseason, and the first four games. Then this twit who had not even broke a sweat, not even played one single down in the NFL, gets paid ... whatever.

Do not underestimate the pyschological effect of that.

Could be. Or maybe they just got burned out from having to bail out the offense time and time again.
  • dust-7
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Originally posted by excelsior:
I really wonder if the Crabtree signing was the defining moment.

When this was first suggested, as I noted in the OP, it was done so tongue in cheek. It wasn't meant seriously.

Then you could see as the game went on that the smileys were being omitted. At the end of the game, you were seeing essays about how this was all Crabtree's fault.

Well, if our D is so easily distracted - then the 49ers don't HAVE an NFL D, period. If that's all it takes.

That wasn't it. Coach Sing said - today, it's on me as Head Coach, and it's on our coaches. We were NOT prepared. So our player weren't. Difference between then and now - Walsh had it as part of his banner, if you will, go to sleep on Saturday KNOWING you've done everything possible to prepare for the game!

There are systemic problems on D, however. What always popped up in series after series was the lack of a consistent pash rush.

It's been the promise of the franchise, since before Nolan came in that - oh yeah, this year - we get a pass rush. We all remember Dean and Haley, don't we? We remember 49ers teams that could bury a QB.

And then 11 OCT 2009 - at HOME? Sure, as I said, Smith got mentioned some. He comes to play. But more often than not it was Ryan back there with time to proof-read a few pages of his autobiography, and then throw to the open man.
The defense had a really bad, ugly and out of character game for this season.
The offense had a really bad, ugly and in character game for the season.

Defense has 1 bad and 4 good performances this year.
Offense has 5 bad a 0 good performances this year.

At this point in the season I know exactly who I place the blame for our problems on.

If the ATL game becomes a trend, then you may be onto something. Until then the offense is the cause of all our woes.
You are absolutely correct. I'm not sure how we can justify such a crappy defensive performance by trying to focus on the consistently poor offense and the myriad of reasons for that.

I have been talking about how a good team will expose our defensive weakness.
1. Poor pass rush from the OLB's
2. Predictable and vanilla 3-4 (OLB's always rush from the same pseudo-DE spots, wasn't using the ILB's to blitz, CB's/Safeties to blitz, etc.)
3. NT position was still very subject
4. Willis is weak in coverage as is our secondary in the middle of the field
5. I also talked about how a good defense is defined in short yardage and on 3rd downs/points

In this post 3-4 OLB's/Sacks I talked about how while Franklin is more visible, the fact remains he is still 16th against the run. EXPOSED. We have ZERO pass rush from Lawson/Haralson. EXPOSED. Gonzalez/White in the middle of our field? EXPOSED. Their offense against the same defensive scheme? EXPOSED. Our short yardage and 3rd down defense? EXPOSED.

The bottom line is that a good team, esp. with time to prepare, would expose this defense. We were getting away with it with solid team defense (9 other guys getting sacks and pressure) and Willis/Spike covering up Franklin, secondary making huge plays to stop 3rd downs, etc. but eventually, all weaknesses will get exposed. Yesterday, ALL of our major weaknesses were exposed in one game.

B/c our offense appears worse then our defense is no justification for ignoring the glaring weaknesses we have on defense, IMHO.
Originally posted by DynastyChile:
Dude this is the poorest evaluation i have ever seen
What we need is Tenacious D.

CAUTION!!! NSFW!!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vOBKxUT9Da4

[ Edited by SanFranAddic on Oct 12, 2009 at 17:56:43 ]
Originally posted by NCommand:
You are absolutely correct. I'm not sure how we can justify such a crappy defensive performance by trying to focus on the consistently poor offense and the myriad of reasons for that.

I have been talking about how a good team will expose our defensive weakness.
1. Poor pass rush from the OLB's
2. Predictable and vanilla 3-4 (OLB's always rush from the same pseudo-DE spots, wasn't using the ILB's to blitz, CB's/Safeties to blitz, etc.)
3. NT position was still very subject
4. Willis is weak in coverage as is our secondary in the middle of the field
5. I also talked about how a good defense is defined in short yardage and on 3rd downs/points

In this post 3-4 OLB's/Sacks I talked about how while Franklin is more visible, the fact remains he is still 16th against the run. EXPOSED. We have ZERO pass rush from Lawson/Haralson. EXPOSED. Gonzalez/White in the middle of our field? EXPOSED. Their offense against the same defensive scheme? EXPOSED. Our short yardage and 3rd down defense? EXPOSED.

The bottom line is that a good team, esp. with time to prepare, would expose this defense. We were getting away with it with solid team defense (9 other guys getting sacks and pressure) and Willis/Spike covering up Franklin, secondary making huge plays to stop 3rd downs, etc. but eventually, all weaknesses will get exposed. Yesterday, ALL of our major weaknesses were exposed in one game.

B/c our offense appears worse then our defense is no justification for ignoring the glaring weaknesses we have on defense, IMHO.

all our weaknesses were exposed because the entire team played like crap man. No ILB is great in coverage but Willis is about as good as they come, going into yesterday's game the 9ers were 7th in the NFL in sacks and in the top 5 against the run. Franklin has played really well all year, J.Smith has been amazing and Willis/Spikes have been great. We cannot measure our team on yesterday's performance since everyone sucked it was just a bad game.
Originally posted by SybErkRimInAL:
Originally posted by B650:
Yes, it's the offense. And as a result, the defense is starting to suffer.

Just like the San Francisco Giants.

perfect example. Yesterdays' game, their first drive, we get them to 3 and out. Our first drive ends up in a pick. Now our D is forced to defend a short field.

+1

The strategy for a W for this team is a strong running game - IE, Time of Possession (read hear best defense is to keep the opposing offense off the field), a tenacious defense to force 3-and-outs or turnovers to do what? Give your offense the ball to chew up the clock, physically beating your opponent down.

This formula doesn't work when you can't sustain drives and can't muster an offense. The defense isn't (clearly) good enough to carry this team EVERY GAME. Just like you can't expect a QB and an offense to have 400 plus yard games every week, you can't always expect a defense to completely shutdown an opponent and give our run-into-a-wall, three-and-out offense 6 possessions and wait for an opponent's defensive breakdown to score.

That will happen more likely against bad teams, but AGAIN as it proved this past Sunday, equally or superior talented and better coached teams will find ways to counter our strategy and win - even at the last minute (Minnesota).


--- but all that said, the D played poorly,

[ Edited by NinerGM on Oct 12, 2009 at 18:03:12 ]
This is the same defense that did most of the heavy lifting up to yesterday. Bad game.
It's not so much the offense as it is the philosophy.

We're don't have a strong enough offensive line to tell our opponent "We're going to run, stop us." We need to be more creative.

-9fA