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2014: Thoughts on the upcoming season...

Originally posted by Thechamp2987:
Originally posted by Marvin49:
So......in order to be considered a premeire coach you have to be better than the guy who just won the SB?

I'm not saying he should be the top paid coach in the league. I'm saying he WILL BE the highest paid coach in the league.

Your standard is ridiculous. Of course we would rather he'd won the big one, but NOBODY expected three conference championship games in 3 years. NOBODY. To say he ISN'T a premeire coach because he hasn't won a Super Bowl yet is asinine.

Neither did Carroll. Neither did Belichick. Neither did Cowher. Neither did Parcells.

Harbaugh took over a talented team that had won 30 games in 6 years.

In his THREE years he was won 36 games and been on the brink of a SB appearance twice and on the brink of a title once. If that isnt good enough for you to view him as a "premeire coach" I think you need your head examined.
You are right, going to three NFC championship games and a super bowl loss is nice and all. Don't get me wrong. I am sure a lot of franchises would love to have two NFC championship loses and a super bowl lost. However, if they don't win it then what's the point? It just means that the 49ers are at home where the jaguars, titans and raiders are. A lot of fans here are happy with a NFC championship and super bowl loss. JH is a very good coach. He is a top 10 coach and a strong case could be made for top 5. Winning a lot of regular season games is cool, but they don't give out super bowl trophies for best regular season record.


......

OK, I think you are forgetting what it was like BEFORE Harbaugh. Not being able to get a Lombardi in the last three years doesn't mean he will NEVER be able to get one. Getting as far as he has isn't "good enough". That ain't the point here.

The point is that he's made the team a contender for the title EVERY SINGLE YEAR he's been a coach. Nobody wins them all. Walsh won 3 so that means he DIDN'T win 7. As a previous poster mentioned, Belichick hasn't won a title in a decade.

GREAT coaches don't win every year. Great coaches put their teams in the position to have an opportunity to win it every year. Harbaugh has done that in spades.
[ Edited by Marvin49 on Feb 4, 2014 at 10:39 AM ]
Originally posted by 24plus25er:
I have a creeping feeling that Sherman will hold out this off season, and IMO he is a fool if he does not. He's playing for pennies given his production and this teams success. He got injured at the end of a blow out in the Super Bowl, his agent has to be grinding him about this already. If Revis is making 13 mill, Sherman can easily ask for 15.

You know what's interesting about this is that I was talking to a "real" Hawk fan about this. Sherman can bolt for the big pay day and the Hawks would be fine. Seriously. Look how well Maxwell played for them. Thurmond, Browner, etc. They draft big, tall - 6'1+ CB's who are pissed off and who are very aggressive at the LOS and run much Cover 3. That's it. It's that simple. Nothing more. That's their scheme and that scheme works esp. in Seattle. They can literally plug-n-play. 9 out of 10 times the refs won't call anything more than a 5 yard pre-pass holding call anyhow (NOT a P.I.). It's genius. Remember the years and years of discussions on whether the player made the WCO or was it the scheme that made the player....plug-n-play! We never missed a beat...
Special teams, both coverage and return units, have let us down each of the last 3 postseasons. We can definitely upgrade at KR/PR but I don't know how you fix the coverage units except getting a kicker with a stronger leg (and refs calling holding would help also....). I'd rather keep Dawson even at his salary and age because he is about as reliable as they come. Seely was supposed to be one of the best, but maybe it is a coaching issue.

Seattle went out and signed Avril and Bennett for cheap last offseason. Everyone was focused on Harvin (and rightfully so in the end) but the reason they went from a great defense to an all-time defense is because they added pressure coming from everywhere.

We need to add that same kind of depth and quality of pass rush. Aldon is terrific but he can't do it by himself. Everyone else is good enough to get pressure but not enough to get sacks. Our next best pass rushers are probably Bo and Willis, but Fangio refuses to blitz them. No reason why they can't be racking up 10 sacks a year like Dansby and Washington down in Arizona.

We need to play more aggressive on defense, because if you play bend or break, at some point you will break and it happened each of the past two postseasons with huge 40+ yd plays wiping out all the good work done on all the other plays. Unfortunately as long as Fangio stays, I don't see this changing so it's up to Baalke to get more pass rush. Skuta looked pretty good in his limited time, but Lemonier looked like a one trick pony much like Brooks. Given our cap constraints, it's gonna have to come through the draft.
[ Edited by znk916 on Feb 4, 2014 at 10:47 AM ]
Originally posted by thl408:
About the upcoming draft.

Many have said, and I agree, that this team is built with the Oline and Dline (front 7) as its foundation. The RBs and DBs are the beneficiaries of this. Meaning the RBs and DBs should be plug and play while the team continues to keep the Oline and Dline strong. If anyone subscribes to this thinking like I do, then I question the use of high draft picks on need positions such as WR and SS. Not because I don't think there is a definite need to fill them in order to continue success into the 14-15 season, but because once it is time to extend these guys (Reid, soon to be rookie CB/SS/WR with a high pick) the cap allotment may shift from Oline/Dline to WRs/CBs/DBs, which doesn't jive with how the team philosophy.

There is a lot of cap being spent on Oline and defensive front 7 right now. I am very fine with this. I fear that spending high picks on the 'ancillary' parts will cause a shift in cap allotment that will see the Oline/Dline suffer as WRs and DBs are extended. I may be thinking 3 years into the future, which may be out of the scope of this thread. Just wanted to see what others thought.

I absolutely LOVE this perspective. I'm in the same mold as the front 7 and OL greatly dictate how the back ends play!
Originally posted by Marvin49:
......

OK, I think you are forgetting what it was like BEFORE Harbaugh. Not being able to get a Lombardi in the last three years doesn't mean he will NEVER be able to get one. Getting as far as he has isn't "good enough". That ain't the point here.

The point is that he's made the team a contender for the title EVERY SINGLE YEAR he's been a coach. Nobody wins them all. Walsh won 3 so that means he DIDN'T win 7. As a previous poster mentioned, Belichick hasn't won a title in a decade.

GREAT coaches don't win every year. Great coaches put their teams in the position to have an opportunity to win it every year. Harbaugh has done that in spades.
Trust me I remember what those years were like. I remember thinking Cody Pickett was going to be our savior. When a team has to start Trent Dilfer you know things are bad. Walsh may have lost seven, but he still won 3. JH has lost three and has won zero. Now, he may win some in the future and he may not. We don't know because we are not fortune tellers. If JH wins two I would hands down be happy with his 10 year tenure with the 49ers. If he wins one I suppose I could live with that. However, if he wins none then he was never as good as we thought he was. Like I said, we won't know what he is going to do because the games haven't been played yet. But with all the talent these 49ers teams have its just a shame to watch it go to waste. Belichick hasn't won one in ten years, but again he has won, and multiple times at that.

And what is up with all these superbowl seahawk ads . Man i would rather pay a member fee than see this garbabe.
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by 24plus25er:
I have a creeping feeling that Sherman will hold out this off season, and IMO he is a fool if he does not. He's playing for pennies given his production and this teams success. He got injured at the end of a blow out in the Super Bowl, his agent has to be grinding him about this already. If Revis is making 13 mill, Sherman can easily ask for 15.

You know what's interesting about this is that I was talking to a "real" Hawk fan about this. Sherman can bolt for the big pay day and the Hawks would be fine. Seriously. Look how well Maxwell played for them. Thurmond, Browner, etc. They draft big, tall - 6'1+ CB's who are pissed off and who are very aggressive at the LOS and run much Cover 3. That's it. It's that simple. Nothing more. That's their scheme and that scheme works esp. in Seattle. They can literally plug-n-play. 9 out of 10 times the refs won't call anything more than a 5 yard pre-pass holding call anyhow (NOT a P.I.). It's genius. Remember the years and years of discussions on whether the player made the WCO or was it the scheme that made the player....plug-n-play! We never missed a beat...

except D. Thomas set a superbowl record catching against everyone else. I wouldn't underestimate the value of Sherman. He is a legit shutdown corner on any team as much as I hate to say it.
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by 24plus25er:
I have a creeping feeling that Sherman will hold out this off season, and IMO he is a fool if he does not. He's playing for pennies given his production and this teams success. He got injured at the end of a blow out in the Super Bowl, his agent has to be grinding him about this already. If Revis is making 13 mill, Sherman can easily ask for 15.

You know what's interesting about this is that I was talking to a "real" Hawk fan about this. Sherman can bolt for the big pay day and the Hawks would be fine. Seriously. Look how well Maxwell played for them. Thurmond, Browner, etc. They draft big, tall - 6'1+ CB's who are pissed off and who are very aggressive at the LOS and run much Cover 3. That's it. It's that simple. Nothing more. That's their scheme and that scheme works esp. in Seattle. They can literally plug-n-play. 9 out of 10 times the refs won't call anything more than a 5 yard pre-pass holding call anyhow (NOT a P.I.). It's genius. Remember the years and years of discussions on whether the player made the WCO or was it the scheme that made the player....plug-n-play! We never missed a beat...

I agree. It's like the Pats offense, scheme > players.
Originally posted by Thechamp2987:
Originally posted by Marvin49:
......

OK, I think you are forgetting what it was like BEFORE Harbaugh. Not being able to get a Lombardi in the last three years doesn't mean he will NEVER be able to get one. Getting as far as he has isn't "good enough". That ain't the point here.

The point is that he's made the team a contender for the title EVERY SINGLE YEAR he's been a coach. Nobody wins them all. Walsh won 3 so that means he DIDN'T win 7. As a previous poster mentioned, Belichick hasn't won a title in a decade.

GREAT coaches don't win every year. Great coaches put their teams in the position to have an opportunity to win it every year. Harbaugh has done that in spades.
Trust me I remember what those years were like. I remember thinking Cody Pickett was going to be our savior. When a team has to start Trent Dilfer you know things are bad. Walsh may have lost seven, but he still won 3. JH has lost three and has won zero. Now, he may win some in the future and he may not. We don't know because we are not fortune tellers. If JH wins two I would hands down be happy with his 10 year tenure with the 49ers. If he wins one I suppose I could live with that. However, if he wins none then he was never as good as we thought he was. Like I said, we won't know what he is going to do because the games haven't been played yet. But with all the talent these 49ers teams have its just a shame to watch it go to waste. Belichick hasn't won one in ten years, but again he has won, and multiple times at that.

And what is up with all these superbowl seahawk ads . Man i would rather pay a member fee than see this garbabe.


I think the point I'm trying to make here is that nobody ever expected them to even have anything resembling a hope of a Super Bowl within 3 years on the day Harbaugh was hired.

He's had this effect on the team when they weren't even supposed to be competitive yet.

The question here is who gives them the best chance moving forward to ciontinue this run and be in position to win a title every year.

Year 1: Strike Season. This was supposed to be a rough year. Everyone critical that he kept Alex Smith as the QB. NOBODY saw 13-3 coming and most thought there was no chance they'd beat the Saints. Yet there they were...a fumble away form a SB appearance. Flawed team that still advanced that far.

Year 2: Still a flawed team. I was an Alex fan, but it was clear that the passing game with him at the helm was an issue. The Giants game was evidense of that. Harbaugh had the courage to leave Kap in after he played well in Smiths adsense and was roundly criticized for it. That call put them in the Super Bowl. They weren't able to pull off the win, but in my opinion it was almost a case of them simply not being ready for that game. It was TOO early. Its was Kaps 10th NFL start for gods sake.

Year 3: Kap clearly having issues. Still learning. Injuries all over the place....yet they STILL got to the title game.


On most teams with a new coach who has success, there is a slow build. They get a little better every year.

I guess my issue with the way you think about this is that Harbaugh got the 49ers to the verge of the Super Bowl long before he was expected to. Instead of being amazed that he put flawed teams in the position they were in, you are choosing to see the negative that he couldn't win the big one. IMO the narrative should be how freakin' amazing it is that he's gotten them this far this soon on teams that clearly had offensive limitations.

Kap is nowhere near as good as he WILL be. This team is going to undergo a transformation as Kap gets better and better and we sit here at the BEGINNING of this run, not the end. I think people who have issues with Harbaugh these last three years for not winning are missing the point.
Originally posted by znk916:
Special teams, both coverage and return units, have let us down each of the last 3 postseasons. We can definitely upgrade at KR/PR but I don't know how you fix the coverage units except getting a kicker with a stronger leg (and refs calling holding would help also....). I'd rather keep Dawson even at his salary and age because he is about as reliable as they come. Seely was supposed to be one of the best, but maybe it is a coaching issue.

Seattle went out and signed Avril and Bennett for cheap last offseason. Everyone was focused on Harvin (and rightfully so in the end) but the reason they went from a great defense to an all-time defense is because they added pressure coming from everywhere.

We need to add that same kind of depth and quality of pass rush. Aldon is terrific but he can't do it by himself. Everyone else is good enough to get pressure but not enough to get sacks. Our next best pass rushers are probably Bo and Willis, but Fangio refuses to blitz them. No reason why they can't be racking up 10 sacks a year like Dansby and Washington down in Arizona.

We need to play more aggressive on defense, because if you play bend or break, at some point you will break and it happened each of the past two postseasons with huge 40+ yd plays wiping out all the good work done on all the other plays. Unfortunately as long as Fangio stays, I don't see this changing so it's up to Baalke to get more pass rush. Skuta looked pretty good in his limited time, but Lemonier looked like a one trick pony much like Brooks. Given our cap constraints, it's gonna have to come through the draft.

Ummmm wha???? You do realize he lead the post season with 4.5 sacks, had a couple big hits on Wilson, personally stuffed TWO goal lines attempts that lead to 3 points against Carolina, is damn near impossible to run on, had 8.5 sacks in the regular season, INT's, can cover zones...and all this as a SAM LB in the 3-4. 13 sacks alone for a SAM is like 22+ sacks for a WILL d/t responsibilities.

I do agree we play pretty vanilla and probably aren't playing Willis and Bowman down hill enough...WAY too much time in coverage. And I still can't stand the off-coverage at times.
Originally posted by 24plus25er:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by 24plus25er:
I have a creeping feeling that Sherman will hold out this off season, and IMO he is a fool if he does not. He's playing for pennies given his production and this teams success. He got injured at the end of a blow out in the Super Bowl, his agent has to be grinding him about this already. If Revis is making 13 mill, Sherman can easily ask for 15.

You know what's interesting about this is that I was talking to a "real" Hawk fan about this. Sherman can bolt for the big pay day and the Hawks would be fine. Seriously. Look how well Maxwell played for them. Thurmond, Browner, etc. They draft big, tall - 6'1+ CB's who are pissed off and who are very aggressive at the LOS and run much Cover 3. That's it. It's that simple. Nothing more. That's their scheme and that scheme works esp. in Seattle. They can literally plug-n-play. 9 out of 10 times the refs won't call anything more than a 5 yard pre-pass holding call anyhow (NOT a P.I.). It's genius. Remember the years and years of discussions on whether the player made the WCO or was it the scheme that made the player....plug-n-play! We never missed a beat...

I agree. It's like the Pats offense, scheme > players.

I do agree he is a great CB and technically sound and has suddenly added 30 pounds of muscle while now running a 4.3 to the point even VD pulls a hammy but their scheme and defensive philosophy is flawless. Put Sherman on OUR defense with the off-coverage and intricate coverage schemes, I don't think he's as successful, personally. But they will have to consider him for #1 CB money now though! Hahaha
There are many posts and some threads about what needs to be fixed in 2014 season, in order to win SB 49. I thought, I would just offer my 2 cents and recap -

1) It has to start with Kap. He does have an issue leaving plays on the fields, not going through progressions, not seeing open receivers, not taking what the defense gives you, relying too much on his athleticism, etc. Others have mentioned this in various posts - he needs to spend less time building muscles and more time studying films. I understand that play calling may not always be upto par, but he needs to take better advantage of throwing short and intermediate passes, that will create a good offensive flow/rhythm, increase time of possession, etc.

2) Red zone offensive strategy and play calling are way below acceptable.

3) Baalke needs to get on the same page as Harbaugh and what the coaching staff is trying to implement, especially offensively. That goes for both the draft and free agency. Baalke's strengths are cap management and contracts (along with Paraag), and draft day wheeling-dealing, but he seems to try too hard to find the diamond in the rough. He has been through 3 drafts and the only super star that he has drafted is Aldon Smith. More often than not, he ends-up with just adequate players in draft and free agency.

If we take care of these 3 things, we will beat Seattle. 7 months to take care of these items shouldn't be too much to ask. The window to win a SB will not turn out to be as wide as people think.
Originally posted by astro_niner:
3) Baalke needs to get on the same page as Harbaugh and what the coaching staff is trying to implement, especially offensively. That goes for both the draft and free agency. Baalke's strengths are cap management and contracts (along with Paraag), and draft day wheeling-dealing, but he seems to try too hard to find the diamond in the rough. He has been through 3 drafts and the only super star that he has drafted is Aldon Smith. More often than not, he ends-up with just adequate players in draft and free agency.

I like this point a lot. Let me ask you fans...based on what our offensive philsophy really is, if you were Baalke, what more does Harbaugh really need on the offensive side of the ball?

QB - Groom a young QB with similar skill sets as CK?
OL - Staley, Davis, Boone, Iupati, Kilgore, Looney, etc.?
TE - We brought in McDonald to pair with VD and Celek? We had 3 (on paper) pretty dynamic H-backs and let all of them go.
FB - Miller is the best in the game. We never had a pure FB training behind him and then we let Owen go.
WR - Boldin, Crabtree and Patton? Do people seriously expect to use more 3-5 WR sets "with" VD also on the field?
RB - Gore, Lattimore, Hunter and James plus Hampton (who I really liked - is he still on contract?)

So unless Baalke goes FA to provide CLEAR "upgrades" over these guys, what more can he bring in here?

People focus on a deep threat @ WR, esp. one who can provide true, dynamic KR duties? FYI: we had Moss, Ginn and Moore (even Lockette) and never used ANY of them on deep routes so is that really the solution?
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by astro_niner:
3) Baalke needs to get on the same page as Harbaugh and what the coaching staff is trying to implement, especially offensively. That goes for both the draft and free agency. Baalke's strengths are cap management and contracts (along with Paraag), and draft day wheeling-dealing, but he seems to try too hard to find the diamond in the rough. He has been through 3 drafts and the only super star that he has drafted is Aldon Smith. More often than not, he ends-up with just adequate players in draft and free agency.

I like this point a lot. Let me ask you fans...based on what our offensive philsophy really is, if you were Baalke, what more does Harbaugh really need on the offensive side of the ball?

QB - Groom a young QB with similar skill sets as CK?
OL - Staley, Davis, Boone, Iupati, Kilgore, Looney, etc.?
TE - We brought in McDonald to pair with VD and Celek? We had 3 (on paper) pretty dynamic H-backs and let all of them go.
FB - Miller is the best in the game. We never had a pure FB training behind him and then we let Owen go.
WR - Boldin, Crabtree and Patton? Do people seriously expect to use more 3-5 WR sets "with" VD also on the field?
RB - Gore, Lattimore, Hunter and James plus Hampton (who I really liked - is he still on contract?)

So unless Baalke goes FA to provide CLEAR "upgrades" over these guys, what more can he bring in here?

People focus on a deep threat @ WR, esp. one who can provide true, dynamic KR duties? FYI: we had Moss, Ginn and Moore (even Lockette) and never used ANY of them on deep routes so is that really the solution?

I don't think that the roster is not talented, but it seems that the talent is not always used well or is let go to prosper elsewhere, making me think that Baalke and Harbaugh are not on the same page.
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by astro_niner:
3) Baalke needs to get on the same page as Harbaugh and what the coaching staff is trying to implement, especially offensively. That goes for both the draft and free agency. Baalke's strengths are cap management and contracts (along with Paraag), and draft day wheeling-dealing, but he seems to try too hard to find the diamond in the rough. He has been through 3 drafts and the only super star that he has drafted is Aldon Smith. More often than not, he ends-up with just adequate players in draft and free agency.

I like this point a lot. Let me ask you fans...based on what our offensive philsophy really is, if you were Baalke, what more does Harbaugh really need on the offensive side of the ball?

QB - Groom a young QB with similar skill sets as CK?
OL - Staley, Davis, Boone, Iupati, Kilgore, Looney, etc.?
TE - We brought in McDonald to pair with VD and Celek? We had 3 (on paper) pretty dynamic H-backs and let all of them go.
FB - Miller is the best in the game. We never had a pure FB training behind him and then we let Owen go.
WR - Boldin, Crabtree and Patton? Do people seriously expect to use more 3-5 WR sets "with" VD also on the field?
RB - Gore, Lattimore, Hunter and James plus Hampton (who I really liked - is he still on contract?)

So unless Baalke goes FA to provide CLEAR "upgrades" over these guys, what more can he bring in here?

People focus on a deep threat @ WR, esp. one who can provide true, dynamic KR duties? FYI: we had Moss, Ginn and Moore (even Lockette) and never used ANY of them on deep routes so is that really the solution?


I think they need a TE who can get verticle (similar to Walker), a young speed receiver (speed is for obvious reason, but even if Boldin comes back they need to start planning for NOT having him), and another RB to compete for Franks spot when he's done.

As for the question you were addressing, the personnel they have matches almost perfectly. That was one of the reasons Harbaugh came here to begin with.

They need Crab for the whole year, they need McDonald to improve as a receiver and route runner, and they need Kap to inprove his play as a pocket passer.
Originally posted by astro_niner:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by astro_niner:
3) Baalke needs to get on the same page as Harbaugh and what the coaching staff is trying to implement, especially offensively. That goes for both the draft and free agency. Baalke's strengths are cap management and contracts (along with Paraag), and draft day wheeling-dealing, but he seems to try too hard to find the diamond in the rough. He has been through 3 drafts and the only super star that he has drafted is Aldon Smith. More often than not, he ends-up with just adequate players in draft and free agency.

I like this point a lot. Let me ask you fans...based on what our offensive philsophy really is, if you were Baalke, what more does Harbaugh really need on the offensive side of the ball?

QB - Groom a young QB with similar skill sets as CK?
OL - Staley, Davis, Boone, Iupati, Kilgore, Looney, etc.?
TE - We brought in McDonald to pair with VD and Celek? We had 3 (on paper) pretty dynamic H-backs and let all of them go.
FB - Miller is the best in the game. We never had a pure FB training behind him and then we let Owen go.
WR - Boldin, Crabtree and Patton? Do people seriously expect to use more 3-5 WR sets "with" VD also on the field?
RB - Gore, Lattimore, Hunter and James plus Hampton (who I really liked - is he still on contract?)

So unless Baalke goes FA to provide CLEAR "upgrades" over these guys, what more can he bring in here?

People focus on a deep threat @ WR, esp. one who can provide true, dynamic KR duties? FYI: we had Moss, Ginn and Moore (even Lockette) and never used ANY of them on deep routes so is that really the solution?

I don't think that the roster is not talented, but it seems that the talent is not always used well or is let go to prosper elsewhere, making me think that Baalke and Harbaugh are not on the same page.


Who "prospered" elsewhere? Ginn? Whom else? Ginn had his chances here. He didn't take advantage of them.