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Niners making progress this season

Originally posted by BubbaParisMVP:
Very nice break down.

I agree with most everything you wrote, however I would appraise our coaching situation as "better," not "worse," going into the off season. I understand what you mean by saying the "magic" is gone regarding Sing, but while that's true for the fans it certainly doesn't seem to be the case for the players. There were several devestating losses this season during which Sing could hove lost the team, but they stuck with him suggesting that Sing's magic still works in the locker room, if not with the fans.

Beyond the intangibles, we've got a coach that has a full year under his belt now. The quality of the coaching, despite the odd hiccup from time to time, improved steadily over the course of the season and there's a pretty good argument to be made that given our dodgy O-line and QBs, Singletary coached the Niners to an over-achieving .500 record and established a strong foundation for 2010.

agree
Originally posted by littleken:
The 49ers should head to the offseason feeling better than they did last offseason. Here is a breakdown.

QB: (Better) The team has an undisputed starting QB in Alex Smith heading to the offseason, that was not the case last season.
RB: (Slightly Better) Frank Gore is still Frank Gore. Glen Coffee should be a solid backup next season. Last season there wasn’t a solid backup RB.
FB: (Slightly Better) Norris is still considered a good option in a 2 back formation. Last season, the team had Kearsey, who did not fit in the power running scheme
WR: (Significantly Better) With Michael Crabtree and the growth of Josh Morgan, as well as backup in Jason Hill and Brandon Jones, the receiving corp has significantly improved.
OL: (Worse) RT remains to be the weakness. The team also has to replace Bass, who I officially call him a bust. I had hope for Bass last season.
ST: (Worse) Joe Nedney, Andy Lee, and Brian Jennings continue to be solid if not great. The return spot is worse than last season as the team simply don’t have anyone who can field punts.
NT: (Significantly Better) Aubrayo Franklin has gone from a player who fans wants to get rid of to a franchise player
DE: (Better) Justin Smith is still Justin Smith. The 49ers fans must be feeling more confident that Sopoaga and Balmer can get the job done.
ILB: (Same) Nothing changed for Patrick Willis and Takeo Spikes
OLB: (Slightly Better) Haralson was the hope but has been disappointed. Heading to this offseason Ahmd Brooks is the hope for better pass rush. You have to think that the trio (Brooks, Haralson, and Lawson) can get a decent pass rush.
CB: (Worse) Shawntee Spencer rises, Clements falls, overall it is getter worse as Harris and Bly are free agent and expected to leave the team and I still doubt Spencer’s ability to stay healthy.
S: (Better) Dashon Goldson will only get better next season, and he is already an upgrade over Mark Roman. Michael Lewis remains to be Michael Lewis.
Coach (Worse): Mike Singletary had magic heading to last offseason, he no longer has that.

no way Sing is worse than Nolan, at least Sing can inspire players.

ILB is actually better, Willis showed improvement this year and with Wilhem/McKillop your depth was better

you forgot to mention TE which is way better with Davis breakout year and the team using Walker.

I agree with everything else
Originally posted by mrbadd1:
We were 1 game better thanks to our D and our schedule.

Defense progressed a lot. We had 5 games in which the D didn't give up a TD and 7 games were the D gave up 10 or fewer points. It did what it had to do and with a piece here or a piece there can be a dominate D.

The offense, if it did progress, did only marginally and it still wasn't very good. If not worst than last year. VD made some huge plays but those huge plays had both positive and negative effects for this team. I wonder what the record is for drops by a TE? Gore was great down the stretch but was underutilized most of the year. The O-line, especially the right side was pathetic. Crabtree and Morgan have improved our WR corp but still need to get better. I think they will. I'm not excited about Alex Smith at all. He is our QB next year, I accept that, but not excited about it. The fact is, Alex Smith is no better than Kyle Orton and I'm not going to get excited about a Kyle Orton type player. Think Alex is better than Kyle Orton, go look at their careers, the players they have surround them, and the years they didn't play. Pretty damn close. And the absolute reason we made little progress, Jimmy Raye. I loved how he attacked the powerful Lions and Rams defenses, quite pathetic. Yes lets all celebrate the progress to the level of mediocrity shall we...

The positive spin I would put on your concern about the underutilization of Frank Gore would be, at least they didn't run him 400 times this year and wear him out for a .500 year. We all knew coming into this year that our offense would be average at best, it turned out to be far worse than average. I'm glad we will have a healthy Frank Gore for 2010.

For the previous poster who mentioned not trusting AS at QB....I couldn't agree more. He looked better than Hill because he had Crabtree to throw to. Giving him better tools than the previous starter does not make him "improved" in my eyes.
Originally posted by excelsior:
We all have our opinions, but we lack many of the facts. So much of the game and one-on-one battles are invisible to us.

Raye's playcalling often has me tearing my hair out, but part of it may have to do with his recognition of the OL's deficiencies. He often has Gore plowing into the line with little or no gain, but maybe he thinks if he does it often enough, he will break a long one for a TD. But when he fails, then it puts Alex into 3rd and long.

Alex is criticized for dumping the ball off for short gains too often, but how much of the time is it due to the WRs not getting open or the OL collapsing where he has no time to wait on his WRs?

There is much to be said about continuity, but if next year is just a continuation of what we saw so often this year, it is continuity that we can do without.

Good post. I agree with the continuity comment, I'd rather keep on looking for something worth continuing and not settle for anything less. You can't ever recoup what you've lost, just minimize losses and move on.
Originally posted by excelsior:
We all have our opinions, but we lack many of the facts. So much of the game and one-on-one battles are invisible to us.

Raye's playcalling often has me tearing my hair out, but part of it may have to do with his recognition of the OL's deficiencies. He often has Gore plowing into the line with little or no gain, but maybe he thinks if he does it often enough, he will break a long one for a TD. But when he fails, then it puts Alex into 3rd and long.

Alex is criticized for dumping the ball off for short gains too often, but how much of the time is it due to the WRs not getting open or the OL collapsing where he has no time to wait on his WRs?

There is much to be said about continuity, but if next year is just a continuation of what we saw so often this year, it is continuity that we can do without.

Well said. I just posted in another thread but I really feel the OL was our biggest weakness. This is a QB driven league but the game often is won in the Trenches - QB is not going to drive anything on his back - and ours was running around or getting pushed down far to often.
Originally posted by 49ers1:
finally some optimism. yes, niners didnt make the playoffs. but they have been making steady gains since the 2-14 season, and this year had the first non losing season. this team is better than ever, with problems that can be fixed with time and effort. they may not be a super bowl team next year, but playoffs are in sight. GO NINERS!

Originally posted by Sugatis:
Originally posted by excelsior:
We all have our opinions, but we lack many of the facts. So much of the game and one-on-one battles are invisible to us.

Raye's playcalling often has me tearing my hair out, but part of it may have to do with his recognition of the OL's deficiencies. He often has Gore plowing into the line with little or no gain, but maybe he thinks if he does it often enough, he will break a long one for a TD. But when he fails, then it puts Alex into 3rd and long.

Alex is criticized for dumping the ball off for short gains too often, but how much of the time is it due to the WRs not getting open or the OL collapsing where he has no time to wait on his WRs?

There is much to be said about continuity, but if next year is just a continuation of what we saw so often this year, it is continuity that we can do without.

Well said. I just posted in another thread but I really feel the OL was our biggest weakness. This is a QB driven league but the game often is won in the Trenches - QB is not going to drive anything on his back - and ours was running around or getting pushed down far to often.

I agreed that the trenches is very important. The team truely need to upgrade the RT position. I don't know if any team would throw big money to Sims, but I would love it if the team can bring back Sims to be the backup for both tackle spot for the right price and somehow fine a RT.

It is also problem for the 49ers to have an offensive line without one single lineman who can consistently rely on on the running game. I don't think the team can afford to have Baas back to the starting lineup. They need to spend the big bucks on a big time guard.