Ouch. Rough game. I had to rewatch that one fairly quickly to help get over it. Usually when I rewatch a game, its never quite as good or bad as I remember. This was no different
1) Kaepernick: As you might expect, the "bring back Alex Smith" peeps are out again. We will never know if Alex playing would have made a difference. I for one highly doubt it though as Alex does block on Field Goals or play defense. Kaep did not have a good game, but he wasn't the reason the team lost. He made some good throws, some bad throws and probably should have been intercepted more than he was. He also had issues again with the clock. I really think this has alot to do with the way they always try to snap the ball with very little time on the clock. They try to force the D to declare by doing that, but too often Kaep sees the change he wants to make at the line and then doesn't have enough time to make the change.
Yes, Alex Smith handles this better right now, but again, I don't think this is why they lost. This is just why it looked more ugly at times. Anyway, we can call this one a learning experience. These are the kinds of games that a young QB can really learn from. Remember...Russell Wilsons worst game as a pro came against the Niners in their first meeting. Through 6 games, Wilson had 5 TDs and 6 INTs. Since that game, he's been one of the best QBs in the NFL. This move to Kaep was made with January in mind. Their road may have gotten a bit harder, but this team always responds in a big way. This thing aint over by a longshot.
2) The "Pattern": I noticed this thing after week 6 as I'm sure many other have as well, but I've never mentioned it. Win-Win-Loss-Win-Win-Loss-Win-Win-Tie-Win-Win-Loss-Win-Win-Loss. This pattern would have the Niners lose (can't tie) in the second week of the playoffs. Could be the divisional round or the championship game depending on when happens in the GB-Minn game next week. I'm not saying this is what I predict...just saying that would be the pattern. I hope we break that streak, but its become enough of a pattern to make a mention of it.
3) Fatigue: I think the Niners likely would have lost this game regardless, but don't kid yourself...there was some significant fatigue from the Pats game last night...particularly on D. They were just a step slow all night. I'm not trying to make an excuse...they got beat...but they just didn't have the juice they usually do. It was painful to watch...but I think THEY knew it early on too. Seattle came out like this was the Super Bowl and the Niners were barely awake.
4) Justion Smith: This one has me really nervous. I thought the big deal that was made of losing him in the Pats game was overblown. Last night tho....WOAH. We need him back. That D just isn't the same without him. That plus the fatigue...yikes. We also better start looking for Justins replacement. NOW. If this is a sign of what this team will look like when he retires, then we may not sit at the top of the heap for long. The offense will improve and at some point we may not need to depend so greatly on the D to dominate, but we need to look at drafting his eventual replacement THIS YEAR. When that happens tho, I hope we don't hear in this forum about how the guy is a bust because he can't get any playing time. Sigh.
5) Vernon: I dunno if that hit was legal or not. Goldson was flagged AND fined for a very similar hit last week. It was not helmet to helmet, but he did lead with his head and put his head down. I think it was in fact an illegal hit, but I wouldn't bet anything on it. Rergardless, it took a player we could not afford to lose out of the game. They had something going there. If they score on that drive, Its 14-7. Instead the FG is blocked and its 21-0. HUGE difference. Delanie said they had to move him over to Vernons spot after he was hurt and that made a difference....but losing Vernon is a problem even if he isn't cathcing passes. It hurts them in the run game AND pass game. Defenses don't have to account for him deep. We need him back.
6) Manningham: Man, that sucks. Mario has been a clutch player for them this year. Several weeks ago people were complaining about the Niners first 2 picks. Well, now we can be happy that the Niners made them. James and Jenkins are both going to be on the playoff rosters. James is already contributing. Hopefully Jenkins can as well. I don't want to see Ginn playing WR.
7) Harbaugh/Caroll/Sherman: I've had just about enough of this. I dunno if Harbaugh honked at the bus at the 'stick. Frankly I don't care. I can tell you this though...I CAN'T STAND Richard Sherman. His big beef with Harbaugh is that Harbaugh switched him to DB when he wanted to play WR. Yeah...looks like Harbaugh was WAY off the mark on that one SMDH. That dude had a very good game last night and has turned into a very good player...but he needs to shuit the hell up. I never advocate hurting players, but I have to admit I wouldn't shed a tear if someone took out his knees. I guess I can just enjoy the knowledge that he'll be sitting at home when his team is eliminated from the playoffs. I am really annoyed tho that he was even allowed to play in the game. Its a joke that he'll play 3 fulkl games while appealing his suspension. JOKE. As for Carroll, him being portrayed as having class is another big joke. The guy jumped ship from USC just before they were hit with sanctions. Coincidense? I think not. He just ran up the score last week. This thig is going to get ugly at some point and I hope we see that team again in the playoffs...AT THE 'STICK. That stadium is a crazy homefield advantage. Gratz to them for having that, but the Super Bowl is on a neutral Field...so good luck with that.
8) Aldon: I don't quite know what to make of his play the last few weeks. Its easy to say that is drop in production is directly related to Justin not being in there, but I think that may be to simplistic. I think it has more to do with 2 slick tracks, Bradys ability to get rid of the ball quickly and that tempo which has Aldon GASSED, Fran Tarn...err....Russell Wilson, and the Seahawks running the ball ALOT with a big lead. I think he'll be fine, but sadly I think the record might be beyond his grasp. I tink he'll fall just short, just as he did with the rookie record.
9) The NFC West: I think the jokes are over. This division is ROUGH. Just ask the Patriots. I really hate the Seahawks and I hate to say it, but they are here to stay. The Niners had better find a way to beat that team in Seattle or they are going to be thorn in our collective sides for years to come.
10) Lets just chill out a bit: Embarassing loss. No doubt. I was all gloomy after the game too. We need to bounce back here. The Seahawks are a good team, but they aren't THAT good. Put this game in a different field and put Justin Smith in the game and it's a whole different story. If we win this week we still have a chance at the bye and even if we don't get it, that playoff game will be at home. Teams have taken much tought roads to the Super Bowl. Thisd ain't the end peeps...it's juys a bump in the road.
EDIT: ANYONE KNOW HOW TO PM THE MODS IN ORDER TO ASK TIS BE MADE OFFICIAL? THEY ASKED ME TO DO SO, BUT CAN'T FIGURE OUT HOW.
[ Edited by Marvin49 on Dec 24, 2012 at 10:55 AM ]