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Coach Singletary: A Thorough Discussion of Why He Lost Me Today

GREAT post and great breakdown and I agree with you 100%
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Originally posted by ninerfan21:
wow. Did you know historically top running teams are the ones that make the playoffs and go deep in the playoffs? This year, yes, seems to be a little backwards on that, but, it's not like his reasoning is bad.

Yeah if it didnt take atleast 3 Frank Gore broken tackles to run for mor ethen a yard I would agree. But again if being a top running team was that easy everyone would do it. Lats time I checked the Rams had one of the best running Backs in the league and they still can't win. A good running back does not make a good running game. Play do your strengths. Right now your strengths are Crabs, VD and the spread.

Stop the non-sense and play TO YOUR STRE NGTHS. Our O-Line is weak so stop trying to win the battle of the trenches. PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Originally posted by nj49erfan:
Originally posted by ninerfan21:
wow. Did you know historically top running teams are the ones that make the playoffs and go deep in the playoffs? This year, yes, seems to be a little backwards on that, but, it's not like his reasoning is bad.

Yeah if it didnt take atleast 3 Frank Gore broken tackles to run for mor ethen a yard I would agree. But again if being a top running team was that easy everyone would do it. Lats time I checked the Rams had one of the best running Backs in the league and they still can't win. A good running back does not make a good running game. Play do your strengths. Right now your strengths are Crabs, VD and the spread.

Stop the non-sense and play TO YOUR STRE NGTHS. Our O-Line is weak so stop trying to win the battle of the trenches. PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The reasoning isn't bad at all. However, when you can't run it, then you have to do things differently.
I go back to Singletary and his staff having a bye week before the Houston game and an extra 3 days off before the Green Bay game and they wasted it away doing nothing and in those games we came out totally unprepared and were outcoached and outplayed.

Singletary played his entire career under Mike Ditka who was a stubborn, conservative coach but he could get away with it for a while because he had a great defense, a good O-Line and good RB's. Singletary than coached his entire career under another stubborn, conservative coach in Mike Nolan and it is showing right now in the way Singletary is coaching and handeling the media.
Originally posted by NinerGM:
I’m sure this will be misconstrued with other posts and as being “negative” in view. Today Niner fans, Singletary has lost me because of three simple areas that I think every coach much accept:

- Accountability
- Willingness to Change Course Completely
- Reason (Football Logic/Understanding X and Os)

During today’s presser, I was looking for any of these three things, any way in which I could get some insight were the HC has a handle on the situation and knew exactly what was going on with his team. I will always support the 49ers, but even if they’re losing, if I understand those reasons and feel the coaches understand, I will support you 100%. However when reporters asked questions any lay fan would ask and some questions went beyond that with analysis and facts like:

Did you know that top passing offenses are at the top of their divisions….? (paraphrased)

Did you know that top rushing offense have losing records right now? (paraphrased)

All of these questions directly addressed as to why the 49ers seem to start every game the same; terrible, inept, predictable, conservative, run-based offense that opponents have obviously schemed to stop. We usually don’t convert 3rd downs and give the opposing offenses chance after chance, and eventually they score, resulting in being down by the half.

The question is about strategy; why do the 49er repeat their oft-proved unsuccessful offensive schemes during the first half? Why not start the game with offensive sets in the shotgun, a supposed Alex Smith strength? Who’s making this decision and who’s accountable?

Singletary doesn’t really give an answer. He says that the coaches can’t just throw everything away they used in training camp and going to a shotgun would do this. Really? Well since the team is at 4-6 and have very, very little hope of winning a game with the “training camp strategy”, maybe we need to treat the current time as if we were back in preseason, and games on Sunday are “live scrimmages”. When pressed further about teams who pass predominantly and their winning records, Sing says “they may look good now but they’ll have to run at some point.” Well it’s Week 10 and you need to start looking good before you can get to the playoffs right? Simple, unequivocal fact: you’re going to need to pass more to become balanced and do something opponents may not have seen on film.

When pressed again about if the 49ers will ever be considered a “passing team” and when given examples like the Colts as a successful passing team, Singletary says “I would necessarily call the Colts a passing team.” Here it is in a nutshell my friends: blatant denial. Sing is simply being stubborn and showing a complete lack of willingness to change in the face of all facts and evidence demanding he does so. Sing says “we need to achieve balance” but starts every half of football the same, as an unbalanced, run-oriented, dink and dunk offense that’s ineffective at maintaining drives. Sing doesn’t see that we fielding half of a team week after week when the offense is so blatantly ineffective for halves of games..

When pressed further, a reporter asked “can the 49ers run effectively out of the shotgun?” Singletary’s response verged on comedy. He says that Frank is the type of runner that needs to run downhill between the tackles. He’s (Frank Gore) not a slashing/perimeter (paraphrase) type of guy. If I were Gore, this would be embarrassed because clearly the coach isn’t familiar with Gore’s range of talents. All of Gore’s long runs came when he was able to get lost (temporarily), brake one tackle, get in the open field and make people miss, using that uncanny vision to the daylight, yet Singletary claims he watches tons of film. Gore also has the speed to run a toss well (scored a couple TDs) and has hands good enough to place terror in any receiver. He’s led the team in receptions before this season.

When asked what the “Spread” offense was, a reported needed to clarify that this was more than just an offensive formation with “more receivers.”Singletary shows a complete lack of reason here. He doesn’t understanding the fundamental X and Os. So it’s either Spread or Run, nothing in between. This is one of the many, but critical problems with the 49ers. Are the coaches so weak in their understanding and developing of the game, they aren’t even able to design game plans on offense that can capture the strengths of both the Spread but also effectively run? Furthermore, Singletary thinks in run/pass binary terms that make it impossible for any OC to innovate beyond what we’ve seen thus far.

Today Sing lost me as a supporter because he couldn’t be accountable for the fact that this Sunday’s loss was 80% on the coaches, then he displayed in the face of glaring facts an unwillingness to change at the team’s detriment and finally an inability to be reasonable in explanation as to why he supports a view that’s clearly not working. These are serious problems I had not seen before out of our head coach, but these issues will only grow as the team is again rebuilt with younger players. This team needs more than a determined attitude about winning. If you don’t play that way in the NFL you don’t need to be there. The 49ers need a game-planner, someone who can see the big picture from an X and Os standpoint. Chances are they’ll get outcoached every week unless they play, well the cellar teams of the NFL – but even they’re starting to catch up.

Solution? I really believe more than ever, Jed needs to clean house as in 2005. New GM, new coach, new staff. Despite the defense playing well, they haven’t been good enough to escape a complete coaching purge of this system if necessary. If the new administration decides to retain defensive coaches, then it should be their option. Jed needs to talk to his uncle and ask him how he put together his Niners of lore. I’m willing to bet Eddie still has ties out there in the NFL world. Lean on him, gets some expertise about the true rising stars out there at GM, VP and HC.


M Singlatary was a great player, but he lacks the ablity to keep up with the ever changing NFL. I've lost my faith in him as he has failed to "show me" over and over this season with poor game planning and lack of aggressive play calling.

Gore has absolutly been one of our best recieving threats the last few years, though VD and M Crabtree are starting to get a nice share also(when we are down by 20 and have to pass) Gore has the vision to make runs inside, outside as long as defenses aren't constantly stacking the box due to our overly conservative approach.

80% coaches fault for the loss is a fair assestment, the players seemed to be sleep walking through the first half and looked lost at times. A complete embarrassment!

Not sure about cleaning house at the end of the season, though a X's and O's head coach with prior head coaching experience is what i'd like to see. Then allow him to make his own staffing choices.

Great post NinerGM
"Everyone must go!" I hope that is what Eddie tells Jed next time they talk. This whole business of trying to make something work that doesn't is pathetic. You have a GM that doesn't talk to his coaches when getting a player. An HC that is trying but is hamstrung by outdated beliefs and really cool but useless slogans. An OC that is happy to have a job and doesn't want to rock the boat. A QB who's career was almost/maybe ruined by the inept combo of McCloughan and Nolan. And all this comes on the heels of Donahue and Erikson. No wonder everyone is pissed.
Originally posted by kem99:
I hear what you're saying but not sure if it is truly a fair assessment:

1. Accountability and willingness to change course

You cannot objectively look at this season and say Singletary has not been accountable, held the players to be accountable and showed a willingness to change course. He changed from Hill to Smith when it became obvious Hill was not going to take the 49ers where they needed to go. Once Crabtree was signed, he moved him quickly into the starting line-up once he proved he could handle it. He demoted Bruce in favor of Morgan. He even took Clements out of the starting line-up.

Maybe accountable about certain players, but that's not what this thread is about. This is beyond just being a position coach and singling out individual players. It's a similar argument I have with the McCloughan apologists who only talk about the draft: a HC can't take a myopic view of the team. He has to be accountable for ALL of it, including the offensive game plan. Changing QBs was so obvious because Hill was completely ineffective and didn't have the arm strength nor athletic ability to escape the rush constantly allowed by a dreadful OL. So my question to you is, then who's ultimately responsible for fielding this line? Who's responsible for the repeated failures and reoccurring ineptitude of the game plan? When asked about this his response wasn't "yes, I'm responsible for getting this right"... it was "Mike Johns, Alex Smith and Jimmy Raye are all talking." What about the HC inserting himself and saying "hey guys, this isn't working so you need to change this." But the reason why he can't do that is because he simply doesn't have the coaching (X and O) chops to constructively critique, much like the Nolan/Hostler situation.

Quote:
The 49ers are currently tied for last with the Bears for least number of rushing attempts, which is a staggering statistic given what was expected this year and what you read on these boards. One would think that notwithstanding the score, the 49ers have stuck to the 60/40 run/pass ration they aimed for at the start of the season.

The problem isn't the philosophy, it is the execution.

There's a simple and alarming explanation for this. The reason why the 49ers and Bears are last for the least number of rushing attempts because now in the majority of games, both teams are well behind and can't afford to run the ball to win. They HAVE to pass to catch up. This means your rushing attempts are going to tank and you have no balance in the 2nd half.

Quote:
2. Football logic/understanding of X's and O's

The gist of this point seems to be that the team has to be a passing team to win in today's NFL and Singletary doesn't understand so the 49ers are getting beat. In 2008, the 49ers were a passing team with Martz as the OC. They averaged 21.2 points per game, threw 31.8 passes per game, has a 21/19 TD/INT ration and a QB ratio of 81.4. In 2009, the 49ers are averaging 20.8 points per game, attempting 31.1 passes per game, have a 14/9 TD/INT ratio and a QB rating of 80.3. The numbers are pretty similar across 2 philosophies from 2 different OC's.

In 2008, 9 of the top 12 teams in terms of pass attempts per game did not make the playoffs. In 2008, 8 of the top 13 teams in terms of yards did not make the playoffs and one of the 5 that did was the Chargers who were 8-8.

This year, the QBs whose teams are near the top in passing and are at or near the top of their divisions are: P. Manning, Brady, Warner, Brees, Rivers, Favre and Romo. The other division leader is C. Palmer despite the Bengals being 20th in terms of passing yards. By comparison, the 49ers have had a combination of S. Hill and A. Smith.

Points per game mean nothing if your opponents score more points than you do. Yes, the 49ers score on average 20.8 points a game but giving up an average of 21 points a game. This is because during the first half of most 49er games, the opponent has scored more points. And what cements this fact? 3rd down conversion. The 49ers are 28th in 3rd down conversion percentage, joining Cleveland, Oakland, Buffalo and KC. That tells me the offense is not sustaining drives and explains why they're 23rd in the league in TOP. Furthermore, most of the 49ers scoring comes in the 2nd half of games - again proving that the offense led by Raye, accountable to Singletary is repeating the same repeatedly proven, failed offensive strategy.


Quote:
Those criticizing the offense for its scheme and calling for a full-time use of the spread point to Smith's better numbers using that offense but never address exactly how many teams in the NFL run that kind of offense successfully. The Patriots probably use the shotgun-spread offense as much as anyone but, again, they have Tom Brady, have run it for a few years and have experienced receivers named Moss and Welker. The 49ers have Smith/Hill, are being asked by the fans to make it work on the fly when they prepared the entire off-season to run another offense and their best receivers are young and have had little time with their current starting QB. Even the Cardinals have been at their best, including their SB run, when they ran the ball well and had Warner under center more than in a shot-gun.

All of this is to say, it is not as easy to say the 49ers are behind the times in wanting to be a running team in a passing league and everything would be better if they just let Smith throw the ball more. What they are finding out is that they probably do not have the personnel to run the kind of offense Singletary wants. The OL is just not as good in its run blocking as it was in 2006. It is not the scheme, it is the execution. The OL has not run blocked or pass blocked consistently well.

This argument seem contradictory to me. You say the 49ers can't just become a passing offense, yet you argue above that the scoring average is up despite running less. Wouldn't that prove this argument moot? Don't your statistics prove that the 49ers are more effective when they pass vs when they get into a "Tiger" formation or I and try to pound the ball? Most of the 49ers TD have been receiving TD, not passing (Davis at one time lead the league in TD receptions). And it would seem you fall into the same trap as Singletary:

There is no RUN or PASS binary logic in the NFL. Teams adapt and (should) scheme to what accentuates their abilities the best. The 49ers most effective offense including Smiths TDs come mostly when he's out of the shotgun to Davis, the perfect seam pass between the safety, over the LB to the TE. When Alex reads this coverage, he's been almost money every time. Is it not possible as one reporter asked to run out of the shotgun? Singletary never answers this, but should be a question we all as fans ask of a long tenured OC. Can he be more creative to weave in runs with the shotgun formation? Where's the rule that you MUST run out of a running formation effectively and you MUST pass out of a passing formation effectively. Creativity is needed here. As long we convince ourselves that somehow the offensive strategy is limited to what we've seen, we buy into the same limited approach this coaching staff has taken.

Furthermore, what do you have to lose at 4-6? Really. Risk? Are you serious? Why NOT make it up on the fly. Who cares about statistics here. You're a team that's two games below .500 and 3 games out of the division title, and a very small chance of making it to the playoffs without some extreme help. Why not risk it? Why not become creative? Again this cements what we've seen - the "play not to lose" philosophy vs playing to win. I'd much rather have a loss and the team trying to execute a great game plan for 60 minutes than some hurried, sudden realization that what hasn't been working for 30 minutes needs to be re-evaluated. It will always create the question: "why didn't we do that from the start?"

Quote:
I felt from the beginning of this year that the most important thing to come out of this season was for the 49ers to find out if their QB of the future was on the roster or they needed to go get a new QB. That is still the case and it is still an open question on Smith. Until the 49ers solve that question, seasons like this are going to continue regardless of who the coach, GM or OC happen to be.

And this is where we disagree. I don't think it's just a player problem. My hope from the beginning of the season is that the 49ers would win - at all costs despite who was on the roster. I hoped that our GM would answer the questions set forth at the beginning of the off-season (RT, pass-rush, safety). I hoped that Jimmy Raye would actually be creative. I hoped that Singletary would have enough football knowledge to recognize when he could or could not implement certain philosophies given his team's abilities before declaring an approach. I had hoped he wouldn't keep starting damn Chilo Rachal! I had hope the HC would not have cut our best option at KR before solidifying his replacement. That act alone cost us at least one win (Houston).

I was, was a Singletary supporter. After today's presser however, he had no answers. He had no explanation. He had nothing but a motivational speech about "we will do it" but can never tell you how.

That's what we call where I'm from an empty sales pitch.
[ Edited by NinerGM on Nov 23, 2009 at 7:49 PM ]
wow some of you write wayyyyyy to much. Just say I don't like Singletary anymore because he is a big poopoo head. No need to write the next twilight novel
Originally posted by Ronnie49Lott:
"Everyone must go!" I hope that is what Eddie tells Jed next time they talk. This whole business of trying to make something work that doesn't is pathetic. You have a GM that doesn't talk to his coaches when getting a player. An HC that is trying but is hamstrung by outdated beliefs and really cool but useless slogans. An OC that is happy to have a job and doesn't want to rock the boat. A QB who's career was almost/maybe ruined by the inept combo of McCloughan and Nolan. And all this comes on the heels of Donahue and Erikson. No wonder everyone is pissed.


Well Eddy D wanted to fire Bill Walsh after his first season and was talked out of it by Carmen Policy, im just saying...
What I wanted to hear today was singletary taking full responsibility for that lose yesterday. What I got was more of the same "We are going to turn this around because I see something in our guys" or "We just need to do a better job of executing". I was very disapointed today. I still beleive in coach Sing, but not with the people he has surrounded himself with. Come on Niners, get this figured out now!
Originally posted by backontop:
wow some of you write wayyyyyy to much. Just say I don't like Singletary anymore because he is a big poopoo head. No need to write the next twilight novel

Is it the amount of words, or what they are saying that gets your dander up? If it is the amount of words, there are special schools that can help.
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Originally posted by MadMartz:
He lost me today too. He just looked like a fool today.

Hmmm. I never knew he had won you over.
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So if Sing goes 7-9, 8-8, and NO playoffs, he's supposed to be fired your saying? You mentioned Scott MC, well, what GMs took a trash ass team like the 2004 roster, and brought them to the playoffs in 5 years. Who can you compare to what that track record looks like?

Just asking...
Geez...This board gets me a little ticked at times.

I only see a frustrated head coach. When any head coach gets to this point, words are useless. He was given a big fat zero improvement to the team this year. Name me one impact free agent. Tell who the big name QB is. Give me one dog gone name on OL that was to be a starter to improve it. And don't say Marvel.

Our GM did absolutely nothing to help him. Last year's draft didn't help him, this years didn't until Crabtree started.

And we expect him to work miracles? If this was a situation at work, I would say Sing was setup to fail. Is there any other explanation? Did Scot get us a Pass Rusher? Did we improve our Secondary? I see Roman is still on the team. Ulbrich was still on the team.

I am in Sing's corner. He has made changes when he could. He has less than zero to work with. Could any of you critics do any better? I bet most would have told Scotty off and walked
winning cures all. He is still a rookie head coach and he will learn from these mistakes but he himself has not been the reason why we have not won lately. We are not executing and that could be on the coaches but the players have also shown they can't execute in the running game. Bottom line is this team needs a better oline and consistency with a system and QB.