Our defense killed last year and is rated at or near the top this year (in most categories), the STs are OK but not as good as last year, and the offense is better but hasn't proven themselves over time or by winning a Super Bowl. So it is fine that the team is under estimated. Eli Manning is now the toast of the NFL but until he won a Super Bowl he was Peyton's little brother.
The niners have to settle into a more consistent offense and win big in the playoffs to be considered an elite team. And Smith must play at his high level to be considered an elite QB..
[ Edited by dtg_9er on Nov 17, 2012 at 9:47 AM ]