Originally posted by Marvin49:
Sorry for the lateness of this, but as I said last night we lost a member of our family Monday morning. More on that later.
1) Kap: I think it's important to keep in mind who they were playing. That's the best secondary in the NFL they were up against. I HATE those guys, and one in particular (more on that later), but they are damned good. Kap tried to make a few of those back shoulder throws that he's becoming adept at throwing in the past few weeks and they were very well defended...and maybe even illegally defended.
The INT...it;s really easy to put that one on Kap and he did so himself, but there is a part of me that wonders if the design of the play was supposed to be that Crab go up over the defender to get the ball. Kap threw one just like it last week to Boldin. What further makes me wonder that is the reaction of Crab himself right after the play and in his tweets after the game. He blames HIMSELF on that one...not Kap.
Anyway...not a great game but by far the best game Kap has played vs Seattle.
2) Gore: Wow. It wasn't the running that has me wowed. It's the SMARTS to get down in bounds. Those small decisions are huge and are all the difference between winning and losing.
3) Sherman: You can always count on good ol' Dick Sherman to say something stupid and act like he knows something nobody else knows. So damn arrogant. So damn false. "This is a glorified practice". "They got the calls". "We expected a blowout". It amazes me constantly how Seattle fans go on and on and on and on about how big a "douche" Kap is and how Harbaugh is the antichrist and then turn a totally blind eye to the biggest a$$hat in the NFL who resides in their own secondary. The guy is good. Check that...the guy is GREAT. For a fanbase that states the 49ers have no "class", its 100% hypocrisy claim that and then support Dick Sherman.
4) Crab: Clearly not all the way back, but making strides. A bit better every week. Still sometimes seems to be playing out of control, but I think that's more rust than anything else. He seems to have much more strength and confidence in that leg than I'd anticipated he'd have at this point.
5) Boldin: Godsend. Still slow as molasses, but just so damn tough and smart. Crab coming back is preventing teams from doubling him and we are going to see more and more of him running open than we did earlier in the year.
6) Bowman: This just in - He's good. The speed that he closed on Wilson with shocked even Wilson. It doesn't look like he's moving that fast but he's flyin'.
7) Dawson: GREAT signing. Remember that feeling of dread last year whenever Akers would trot on the field? Gone.
8) CB: I think it's fair to say that Rogers is playing in his last few games in SF. We'll have to see on Brown. Brock has continued to look really, really good though. Wright is just getting himself back into playing again so it'll be interesting to see what happens with him. Culliver should also be back next year and I'd expect to see the 49ers draft a CB or 2 to compete.
9) Playoffs: It looks like the 5 seed might be a possibility. Dead heat with Carolina, tho they own the tie-breaker. They still have to play NO again tho. That would change things a bit. Niners look like they'd go to Detroit in round 1 and then go to NO in round 2. Those are both winnable games. The Panthers would have to go into Philly and if they won go to Seattle. That would give the Panthers a shot to knock off Seattle in Seattle. If the 'hawks win, that sets up a 49ers-Seahawks NFC Championship game in Seattle. That could be fantastic. Its a rough game, but it'll be worth the shot to knock them off in their house.
10) Grace: This one is purely selfish and has nothing to do with football. Many of you have already offered your condolences when I mentioned that we were forced to put our Siberian Husky Grace to sleep Monday morning. For that, I thank all of you.
RIP Grace Aspen Steele
Sorry to hear about your dog, been there myself and it's tough, never been able to have another.
1) Kap - managed the game well enough to let us win. I still question a number of Roman's play calls but we got it done against a very, very good defence. Worth noting that the messianic Russel Wilson had equivalent passing statistics though for more yards, whilst Kap actually outproduced him slightly when you add in his rushing. I think a lot of his throws were game planned to be lasers to prevent the Seattle seconday making plays on them. I think the message to him was to fire it in there and trust Boldin, VD and Crabs to catch it as opposed to week 2 where he lofted more passes and got intercepted more. I think it was a deliberate part of the plan to try and nuetralise their secondary.
Pass to Crabs, I think you're right on the back shoulder from Crabs' reaction and the fact it was also arced a bit. I'd only suggest in that case Kap might have wanted to put it to the end zone corner as Crabs might have been able to reach it there.
2) Gore - he came through and probably for the best that he couldn't take that run to the house, he put us in a position to win the game leaving Seattle no time to counter. If he'd scored that, Seattle would have had the ball with around 4 mins and 2 time outs.
3) Sherman has met his match in Boldin I think. This wasn't week 2 where they could double Q, it was mano-e-mano and Q made him look like a kid. The great news is Sherman has provided plenty of notice board motivational material for the team if we meet them in the play-offs.
4) Crabs looks like he's been conspiring with Boldin and taking some lessons on physicality, he's most definitely not 100% yet but he looks far more willing to go into contact Boldin style and out muscle the CB - when he gets to 100% he could be even better than last year when he adds that to his game. He's always had great hands, now he looks like he'll fight more and use his body better to go up for the ball. I think he's absorbing some of Q's mentality.
5) Boldin is rapidly becomming one of my favourite players. Yeah he's slow, but most tanks are. Kap trusts him completely. We must resign him to the end of his career, pay the man as he's good for at least 3 or 4 years and as he's never relied on speed or quickness, I can't see his productivity dropping off.
6) Doublemint twins, nuff said.
7) Agreed, we know if it goes to the wire in a tight game and it's a 48 yard FG needed to win it then we have a good shot with Dawson.
8) This is actually beginning to really concern me. Rogers has been looking lazy the last few games and he's allowed a number of 3rd down conversions by allowing huge cushions to the WR.
9) I think we will take 5th seed, NO look to have the Panther's number and I think they will win in Carolina. If the weather is good then I think Brees will pick them off. I also think though that Carolina has the defense to beat Seattle in CLink, if we take 5th seed I think there's a reasonable chance we could see a 49ers vs Panthers rematch at Candlestick for the NFCC.
Some more thoughts of my own:
Our DLine did an excellent job containing Lynch and I think it's only going to improve as Dorsey gets more Jim T training and builds confidence. Wright is looking like he could be a good contributor in the secondary, to the extend I might be tempted to drop Rogers from the starting line up. I'll go a step further and say I think we have the best defense in the NFL at the moment, regardless of the stats. For the teams we've played, the injuries we've had (Willis, RayMac, Brown) we've been incredibly consistent. I think the turnover olives could be falling out the jar again in the play-offs.
Kap is continuing to improve. He was going through progressions, making reads, stepped up into the pocket a few times and managed the game well. He audibled that 51 yard run for Gore having checked out of it previously, showing good decision making. I think along with us and Carolina who rely on the front 7 for pass rush, this Seattle defense is obviously one of the best three in the league. We won and we left plays out there, that speaks volumes. I think there could be some major wrinkles and surprises unveiled in the play-offs.
Hunter/LMJ - we need to get them more involved just to save some of Frank G's wind. I also think we can use that change of pace to vary the running game as we are looking a bit predictable/stale.
Oline - I'm not happy with it at the moment, Snyder is not up to par and the recent roster moves imply that Iupati's injury might be a bit worse than we hoped. Our run blocking and pass protection has been less than stellar and I think they have to massively improve if we're going to stand a chance of winning it all.
Special teams - looking superb, even that Tate return was the result of a slip and we managed to stop him taking it to the house.
Manningham - whether his knee is not quite 100% or it's just his confidence in it, he has been poor the last few games. I think we need to activate Patton and get him in there to see what we have.