Well there it is, granted by Matt Maicio(sp?), who altho not a homer, is very 49er friendly. This is the first, probably of many , to pick the 49ers to win the SB this yr. There will be others,, some not locals, who do the same thing, but it still seems strange to read it...that which has been on every 9er fan's mind since that NFC title game just 5 mos ago. Even if I think it, I hate to say that the 9ers are going to win it all this yr. Yeah, I feel that way, but I sure hate to say it to anyone, for fear of jinxing us. Now, Matt M is not a nationally known sportscaster, but there will undoubtedly be others. Right now I am thinking the same team that beat us could do so again. So could the team we surprised and beat, the Saints. So could Aaron Rodgers and the rest of the Pack. Then there are the Ravens, the steelers, the Pats(obviously), and a couple not high on anyone's list at present.
So here's a quick peek:
Giants: great team, lost a couple of players(to us no less), with great qb, ok coach, aging D but good .Probably the real 1st choice
Saints: no need to explain this with HC out a yr, new replacement coach out 8 games, starting LB out all yr, Qb having contract issues with owner,
GM out 8-12 games, and #2 pick taken away this yr. Not so bright an outlook.
Summary: this team is going to be lucky to win half its games this yr. Loss of GM and HC , plus LB, is going to be way worse than many are thinking.
Packers: first 6 draft picks all D...and boy they needed them. Bad news is they all seem to be very good players. Now leagues best qb may have a very good D, also. These guys are top of the list contenders.
Ravens: Getting older, esp on D, but some of O is older too. Great coach, a real match for the 9ers. This next time will be different however.
Pats: Almost all drafts were D...and again, they needed them. Great coach and Qb, always a contender, this time with a D.
Steelers: Rottenberger struggling with new OC and is p.o.ed about it. Sorry Ben, you are on the downside of your career. As far as new OC, ever think about alex and his 7 new OCs in 7 yrs? No sympathy from us. Besides, Ben, the moaning about us beating you because of your bad ankle...guess again, you are on downside of your career.
And that leaves the imponderables: Eagles ...who is going to show up? Great coach, but I don't see them in playoffs.Cowboys: nice pick for your first one, but as long as big Jer owns, runs, manages and playcalls(oh yeah), these guys, fuggedaboudit. Texans...without Mario, they are just another D. Good Qb, but not getting out of playoffs . Buffalo...got some real players, esp Mario, but i think he has been traded to a dead end team.. Redskins... interesting, in that besides RG3, they got a RB, and some receivers. OL i am uncertain about. Denver... too much money in one guy but Elway did bring some talent in around him. Good 8-8 team. NYjets... mass pandemonium, with at 2 headed qB, and I bet they handle it poorly. Better than last yr, but not good enough.
Leaving the 49ers. Sure we could be in the top 5 tier, based on our intact D and ST alone. But we really beefed up O with 2,, maybe 3 starter type O linemen, one of whom will start. WR? Whew AJ, mario, moss, with TEs vernon and delanie, frank/hunter as good or better than last yr, and a scatback La Michael, there solely to move the chains on 3rd down and in RZ. We got depth, with 2 best ILBS in league, one of top 3 DEs in league, a Dbackfield that ended the season playing great, and then there is JUSTIN....nothing else need be said.
Sure we are top 5, maybe top 3, but this will be a tougher season, with everyone having the SF game being the game they are pointing for. No let up for us this yr...anywhere. It will be a tough slog. 11-5 probably, but end of season is what will count. With AJ out wide, crbtre in slot, and mario/moss the WR to far side, add in La Michael, and if alex can learn to go thru his reads bing, bing , bing, then this will be a O season like we have not seen in over 30 yrs. Plus top GM and top Coach, plus a newfound owner who backs us all the way....and stadium is being built...finally. Things look rosy from here, but it is always better to be thot of less by your opponents than more. As Maico said, "we aren't sneaking up on anybody this yr" . And altho MM favors the Pack in game one, I give us a shot to win it.
Whatever, a great season to look forward to, depth all around...literally....a superior coach and staff, and a new yr to have a shot at the whole enchilada. I think we make it all the way and win SB, also. But it will be a lot harder than last yr... and frankly, I would feel much better if ESPN or others favor NYG for SB win. It's tough to be expected to win, esp in NFL. But player by player, we match up well with everyone. But that's just on paper....