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My latest article: B-A-L-A-N-C-E

Originally posted by GoFD74:
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
This team lost the ability to run the ball. Early in the year we we're doing OK. Not sure what had happened. My guess is team figured out how to defend the run. We all assumed going to the spread would create more room for Gore to run, but the problem ran deeper than that.

Teams are obviously game-planning to stop our run, figuring we won't be able to make enough plays in the passing game to beat them. With the emergence of Smith/VD/Crabs/Morgan, they will now eventually have to game-plan for our passing game (which will open things up in the run game)...otherwise, we'll be able to gash teams through the air like we have been the last 10 quarters.

Query: this may sound like heresy, and is not intended as an attack on a player who probably takes a loss as hard as any Niner, but is Gore past his prime, in your opinion?

He just doesn't seem to have the explosiveness, the burst, that he did. He's still a very versatile player, valuable in the passing game and in pass protection, but I sometimes wonder why he can't bounce a run outside, or to a different hole, and generate some positive yards sometimes when things get stacked up in the middle.
Originally posted by IdentityCrisis:
I glanced through the article, and I agree to a degree. Balance is needed for multiple reasons. I don't think running throughout the game would have netted a W, but I think situational running is important, such as our last drive, when he gained 8 on 1st, we should have run for the first twice either forcing them to take a TO, or we can use one after we get the first and have an opportunity to take more time off the clock. Bad play calling was just another issue with our whole team.[/quote]

I dont know what Sing/Raye were thinking. Doesnt this guy have one of those charts with all the down and distances on it? Those charts have detailed time and game management situations already pre thought out. I guess Sing doesnt have any charts.
Ghost and Oldniner:

I agree that the team made some big mistakes yesterday. The two most glaring were Gore's fumble, which cost us at least 3 points, and VD's drop in the endzone, which cost us 4 as we had to settle for a field goal. Yet...despite these, plus the botched punt return, the Niners still had a chance to pull it out late in the game.

That stated...on 4th and goal from the Seattle 1 yard line, we didn't even think about running the ball. On 3rd and 3 in a situation where a clock run off or a 1st down could have put the Niners in a position to angle for overtime or go for the win, we didn't even think about running.

I gotta tell ya, guys...the ability to run when we have to is critical to our long term success. Fixing this has got to become a priority.
Originally posted by oldninerdude:
Originally posted by GoFD74:
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
This team lost the ability to run the ball. Early in the year we we're doing OK. Not sure what had happened. My guess is team figured out how to defend the run. We all assumed going to the spread would create more room for Gore to run, but the problem ran deeper than that.

Teams are obviously game-planning to stop our run, figuring we won't be able to make enough plays in the passing game to beat them. With the emergence of Smith/VD/Crabs/Morgan, they will now eventually have to game-plan for our passing game (which will open things up in the run game)...otherwise, we'll be able to gash teams through the air like we have been the last 10 quarters.

Query: this may sound like heresy, and is not intended as an attack on a player who probably takes a loss as hard as any Niner, but is Gore past his prime, in your opinion?

He just doesn't seem to have the explosiveness, the burst, that he did. He's still a very versatile player, valuable in the passing game and in pass protection, but I sometimes wonder why he can't bounce a run outside, or to a different hole, and generate some positive yards sometimes when things get stacked up in the middle.

It's kind of hard to say that considering he's had some big runs this year. But I hear what you're saying...more recently, he seems to be unable to make people miss and gain much positive yardage. That could be the o-line, it could be defenses gearing up primarily to stop him or it could just be Gore losing a step (or a combination of the three).

IMO, Gore is probably still not 100%, and teams are stacking the line of scrimmage and daring Smith (not Gore) to beat them. The more success Smith has through the air, the more that "should" open things up for Gore...but we'll have to wait and see.
Originally posted by MadMartz:
The Line isnt built for the run. Gore has been held in check all year with the exception of a few long runs. Running behind this line is suicide!

But the line was fine at run blocking last season.

Could it be coaching? Scheme? Or the fact that our two best tackles weren't in the game yesterday?

I personally believe that it is a combination of coaching, growing pains for Chilo Rachal, and a lack of competent play from David Baas.
Originally posted by Legbreaker:
Ghost and Oldniner:

I agree that the team made some big mistakes yesterday. The two most glaring were Gore's fumble, which cost us at least 3 points, and VD's drop in the endzone, which cost us 4 as we had to settle for a field goal. Yet...despite these, plus the botched punt return, the Niners still had a chance to pull it out late in the game.

That stated...on 4th and goal from the Seattle 1 yard line, we didn't even think about running the ball. On 3rd and 3 in a situation where a clock run off or a 1st down could have put the Niners in a position to angle for overtime or go for the win, we didn't even think about running.

I gotta tell ya, guys...the ability to run when we have to is critical to our long term success. Fixing this has got to become a priority.

Totally agree with this, though I'm not sure how they can fix this...they have some big guys up front, especially in the middle of the 0-line (Heitmann, Baas and Rachal are all big, powerful dudes). Seems more like teams are committing to stopping the run and taking their chances with our passing game...that was a gamble that Jax took but lost, while the Seahawks got lucky (VD's drop and Crabs miss).
  • fryet
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 2,840
I both agree and disagree with the article. The 49ers do need balance, but they don't have the personnel to execute it. So long as our OL can't run-block, our best chance to win is to pass the ball. In Gore's 9 carries, he averaged less than 3 yards a carry. Believe me, if he had been averaging 5 yards a carry, or even 4, he would have been getting the ball a lot more. Until that happens, the best thing that coaches can do is choose to pass the ball on most downs. In the offseason, though, seeking personnel that can allow the team to be more balanced (i.e. OL) is an important priority.

One thing to note, though, is the fact that we passed the ball so much, was because the Seahawks were playing their base defense instead of a nickel. Normally for pass heavy teams, teams play a nickel defense, daring them to run the ball. So long as teams stay in a base defense, I see no reason not to throw the ball 80% of the time. Now if a team does switch to a nickel defense on first down, then we had better be able to run the ball, and hopefully could (still not sure due to our OL issues).
I think appropriate balance is always helpful. So the question is was the balance yesterday correct? If Gore does not fumble, if VD catches the pass, if Crabtree is aware that he is playing to win, if we don't fumble the punt, if we score on the first Redzone trip, then we would all say, it was not a pretty, idealistic balance but it was a winning balance, and that is what we all are looking for, winning balance. We were in position to win. Smith did his job, well enough to win. We had other failures yesterday, and we lost. Like always we need to win in all phases of the game. Yesterday we did not cover our bases and we lost.
Another thing to note is, that when a team is not passing well...a poor run avg can be defended. But even when the Spread started becoming very effective, the run avg did not improve.

This tells me that the running game is undefendable. I will give Gore a pass...he has EARNED it. As for the O-Line, this same line use to be good at run blocking. But I don't think it is coaching, I think many or our lineman suck at being versatile, they can only concentrate on one or the other.

I would like to see 3 new starting linemen next year.....and at least one of those 3 to be a rookie high draft pick
right on
  • fryet
  • Veteran
  • Posts: 2,840
I think the reason why we were more effective in the running game last year was that teams were expecting us to pass. Right now, teams are expecting us to run, although I doubt that will last much longer. But while we continue to see base defense on first down, I can't fault the 49ers for opting to pass the ball to our TEs which are a mismatch against LB.
I was skimming the thread titles and when I skimmed yours, I mistakenly read it as, "My left testicle."

Originally posted by ghostrider:
I was skimming the thread titles and when I skimmed yours, I mistakenly read it as, "My left testicle."


LMFAO!
Originally posted by Norwalks_Best:
Originally posted by IdentityCrisis:
I glanced through the article, and I agree to a degree. Balance is needed for multiple reasons. I don't think running throughout the game would have netted a W, but I think situational running is important, such as our last drive, when he gained 8 on 1st, we should have run for the first twice either forcing them to take a TO, or we can use one after we get the first and have an opportunity to take more time off the clock. Bad play calling was just another issue with our whole team.

It was not play calling it was bad decision making by our QB on our last drive.

Heh? Smith wasn't the one who decided to call a pass play twice. Sure his throw was ill-advised, but that has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that the coaches should have called a run...
Originally posted by oldninerdude:
Interesting read. Very well written.

I agree with GoFD, tho, it was mistakes, not lack of balance, that lost the game.

Going forward, tho, I have to agree with your opinion that we saw a QB who can excel in a hostile environment. With a full off season and TC, I'd expect to see alot fewer mistakes and alot better execution--next year.

Good job. I enjoyed reading the article.

Good post & completely agree.