• By Brian Renick
    Mar 5, 2021 at 2:55 PM 1 comment
    The worst-case scenario for the 49ers this offseason would be seeing All-Pro left tackle Trent Williams leave in free agency. Last offseason, the team sent a 3rd-round pick to the Washington Football Team to acquire Williams, and then restructured his deal to give him a small pay bump and included language in the contract that stated they would not use the franchise tag on him in 2021. Looking at the pending free agents at the tackle position, it's easy to see that Trent Williams is far-and-away the best player available. Williams has stated that he would like to return to the 49ers, which is good news, but he also wants to test the market to determine his value, which could be bad news. There are enough teams flush with cap space, even with a cap-tightened season, and a need...
  • By Tim Sprinkles
    Mar 4, 2021 at 7:00 AM 4 comments
    Where there is smoke, there is fire, and there has been a ton of smoke coming out of Santa Clara concerning the 49ers, their quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, and the future of the two together. Don't get me wrong, the most likely scenario for who starts under center for the 49ers in 2021 is Jimmy Garoppolo, but GM John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan have made it clear that they are open to upgrading the position and moving on from Jimmy G. If the 49ers do move on from Garoppolo, they shouldn't look to mortgage the future by trading a haul of picks to move up into the top 10 or even top 5 for a quarterback. They should pick No. 10 from Alabama, quarterback Mac Jones, if he falls to the twelfth pick in the 2021 NFL draft. Mac Jones is rapidly moving up the boards...
  • By Chaz Inouye
    Feb 20, 2021 at 10:40 AM 0 comments
    If one scoured across the internet and 49ers' social media you would see that quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo, is the most polarizing and debated topic discussed. Garoppolo has been the starting quarterback since the end of the 2017 season, but missed most of the 2020 season with an injured ankle and was only able to complete two games in 2018 due to a torn ACL. There are other reasons why people want a change at quarterback, but his health seems to be his biggest concern, which is valid. However, Jimmy Garoppolo and his injuries are a microcosm of the 49ers' major issue: their overall team health. Garoppolo would be the poster child for this concern as he plays the most important position on the field, but his injuries, along with those to other significant...
  • By Don Atkinson
    Feb 19, 2021 at 4:44 PM 5 comments
    Winston Churchill once said, "There is nothing wrong with change, if it is in the right direction." This is so in football, as much as in everyday life. With a slew of free agents, a tight salary cap, and roster questions at many key positions, the 49ers are indeed about to change. Nowhere is that more true than at the quarterback position. Rumors suggesting the release of 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, a blockbuster trade for Houston's star quarterback Deshaun Watson, and a host of potential free agent signings have swirled since the close of the team's 2020 season in January. Nothing yet has happened, and in fact it may not any time soon. But ready or not, the NFL draft is approaching, and 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch will...
  • By Brian Renick
    Feb 18, 2021 at 12:54 PM 3 comments
    Carson Wentz was traded on February 18th, 2021, from the Philadelphia Eagles to the Indianapolis Colts, for a 2021 3rd-round pick and a 2022 2nd-round pick that can turn into a 1st-round pick if Wentz reaches 75% of the Colts' offensive snaps in 2021 or 70% of the offensive snaps and the Colts make the playoffs. With Wentz headed out of Philadelphia, there is not a single quarterback drafted in the first round from the 2012 through 2016 NFL drafts who is still with the team that drafted him (with some not even in the NFL anymore). That is an astounding stretch of incredibly poor quarterback drafting. It also highlights a very important fact about drafting a quarterback in the first round: there are significantly more busts than hits. The 49ers...
  • By Don Atkinson
    Feb 16, 2021 at 3:56 PM 0 comments
    When the 49ers' injury-driven 2020 season mercifully ended, the team took unwanted claim to the basement of the NFC West at 6-10 and began fielding a litany of questions about its roster future. A few of those questions have been resolved, but many more are still left open, and have become the topic of debate among both football analysts and the team's fan base. The greatest questions, of course, have revolved around whether the 49ers can ride out another year with oft-injured quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, who spent much of last season either hobbled on the field or watching from the press box. The fervor over whether Garoppolo can raise his play to a level needed to win a Super Bowl has continued to escalate, making his future with the team, at least to observers, seem shaky...
  • By Levin T. Black
    Feb 8, 2021 at 6:00 AM 10 comments
    There are a lot of things San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan does extremely well. Picking the quarterback to lead the franchise isn't one of them and his failures at doing so have already cost the the team one Super Bowl. It is wildly believed Shanahan was given final say over the decision. He can overrule general manager John Lynch and likely has at times since the two came together to turn around a flailing franchise in the post-Harbaugh era. The key to any offense is the quarterback and the duo leading the 49ers knew finding the right quarterback was going to be the biggest decision they faced following Colin Kaepernick's departure in the same offseason Lynch and Shanahan were hired. Despite the impossible-to-overstate importance of the quarterback,...
  • By Winston Chung
    Feb 1, 2021 at 9:39 PM 0 comments
    Emerging from a year in which individuals and communities have been devastated by the effects of a global pandemic and political instability, the nation is due for a distraction and many will find it in one of the most anticipated weeks and sporting events of the year in Super Bowl LV. Here we discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective. Who: Kansas City Chiefs at Tampa Bay Buccaneers When: Sunday February 7th, 2020 at 3:30pm PST (CBS) Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa Bay, Florida Line: Kansas City -3.5, over/under 56.5 Kansas City Chiefs After failing to cover the betting spread for nine straight weeks, the Kansas...
  • By Winston Chung
    Jan 31, 2021 at 1:54 PM 12 comments
    Following a season of inconsistent and mostly poor quarterback play, Niners fans have developed some intense desire for free agent quarterbacks, which in turn caused a rift on 49ers Twitter between those who fear missing out on a quality free agent quarterback and those who aren't quite ready to discard Jimmy Garoppolo with reckless abandon. But after the dopamine surge that accompanies the novelty of a new quarterback wears off, the Los Angeles Rams will find themselves sobered by an uncertain future and the pressure to win a Super Bowl immediately. After trading their 2020 and 2021 first-round picks and a 2021 fourth-round pick for Jalen Ramsey in 2019, Los Angeles gave up another two first-round picks, a third, and Jared Goff for Matthew...
  • By Allan McBride
    Jan 29, 2021 at 2:30 PM 3 comments
    What a difference a year can make in the NFL. This time last year, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was preparing to start Super Bowl LIV. Garoppolo was coming off a strong 2019 regular season, during which he ranked among the top twelve quarterbacks in many statistical categories. It had appeared the 49ers made the right decision trading for the former New England Patriot, as he was already living up to the high expectations set forth by the organization. Just a short year later, the narrative has flipped on Garoppolo as he is finding himself surrounded by rumors and speculations that the 49ers should trade him for another quarterback, or simply cut ties with him to free up salary cap space and draft a quarterback for the future. The primary...
  • By Brian Renick
    Jan 26, 2021 at 8:39 AM 10 comments
    Once upon a time, Kyle Shanahan had a mobile, playmaking quarterback leading his offense. His name was Robert Griffin III, and he took the NFL by storm his rookie year, leading his team to the playoffs and winning Offensive Rookie of the Year. Then, in the team's first playoff game, against the Seattle Seahawks, RGIII tore some ligaments in his right knee and broke Kyle's heart. And just like a spurned lover, he vowed never to have his heart broken like that again. As George W. Bush once famously said, "fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again." Before, and since, the ill-fated RGIII experiment in Washington, Kyle Shanahan has had a very specific flavor of quarterback leading his offenses. They're all shades of Kirk Cousins,...
  • By Bill Brown
    Jan 23, 2021 at 5:46 PM 5 comments
    I remember sometime in the early nineties I had a discussion with a friend about who the best wide receiver in the NFL was. I expected him to name Jerry Rice as the greatest. Even at that stage, Rice had left monster receiving numbers in his wake. My friend, an Atlanta Falcons fan, calmly informed me that Jerry Rice really wasn't that good, that Andre Rison was actually the best receiver in the NFL. You see, Rice had Montana and Young as his quarterbacks to pad his numbers. Rison did not. Rison had innate athleticism and blazing speed. Rice did not. In his twisted logic, my friend convinced himself Rison was the better receiver because his potential was greater. After I spit my coffee all over him (okay, not really, but I should have!), I thought to myself,...
  • By Brian Renick
    Jan 21, 2021 at 11:52 AM 2 comments
    Last offseason, the San Francisco 49ers had a brief flirtation with Tom Brady. The Bay Area native was a free agent for the first time in his career, but the 49ers had just come off a Super Bowl run with Brady's former heir apparent Jimmy Garoppolo under center, so the flirtation was brief. Eventually, Brady signed with the Tampa Bay (Tompa Bay?) Buccaneers, who will be playing in the NFC Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers (fun tidbit: Tom Brady has been to more NFC Championship games in the last 25 years (1), than the Dallas Cowboys). Even though the future Hall-of-Famer didn't sign with the 49ers, he still could help the team in the 2021 season. Jimmy Garoppolo learned a lot under Tom Brady in New England. One of Brady's best attributes as a QB is his...
  • By Tim Sprinkles
    Jan 19, 2021 at 11:37 AM 4 comments
    Jimmy Garoppolo's career with the San Francisco 49ers has been called into question recently. 49er fans and media speculation have various quarterbacks replacing Garoppolo under center, ranging from a trade for the Texans' Deshaun Watson or the Lions' Matthew Stafford, to trading up in the 2021 draft to select a QB from the college ranks. While all of these scenarios are still on the table, I believe the recent hiring of Rich Scangarello as quarterback coach, a return to the role he had on Kyle Shanahan's staff from 2017-2018, is all the evidence needed to convince me that Shanahan and Lynch want to run it back with Jimmy & Co. one more time. At first glance, this may not seem like a big deal, but if we look back at how Garoppolo played in the final five games of the 2017...
  • By Levin T. Black
    Jan 17, 2021 at 1:02 PM 4 comments
    Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson isn't happy. This has been known for a while at this point with reports of Watson not returning calls and being upset over the team's hiring process for both the general manager and the head coach. Watson was told he would get to have input but it's been reported that Watson either never got the chance or the input he gave was completely ignored by the Texans. The possibility that Watson could force his way out went from possible to a near lock on Sunday. ESPN's Adam Schefter dropped a bomb that will likely dominate sports talk all off-season. It came via a...
  • By Levin T. Black
    Jan 16, 2021 at 1:05 PM 0 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers don't have a secondary at this time. That's not an exaggeration. As of right now, the only player from the secondary to play significant minutes who is not a pending free agent is free safety Jimmie Ward. Here's a list of the players from the secondary who played at least 100 snaps in 2020 but would have to get new contracts if they were to play for the 49ers again: Richard Sherman, Jason Verrett, Jaquiski Tartt, K'Waun Williams, Emmanuel Moseley, Akhello Witherspoon, Marcell Harris, Dontae Johnson, Jamar Taylor. Only one of these is not an unrestricted free agent. Moseley is an exclusive restricted free agent, meaning the 49ers will be able to re-sign him if they choose to. As long as the 49ers offer him a league minimum contract, Moseley is...
  • By Brian Renick
    Jan 10, 2021 at 12:40 PM 14 comments
    The smoke that began rising on Twitter earlier this week about Deshaun Watson being unhappy in Houston has consistently gotten thicker as the week has progressed. Typically, where there's smoke, there's fire. The 49ers absolutely must pursue all avenues available to them to bring Watson to Santa Clara. He would instantly transform this 49ers squad into a perennial Super Bowl contender. Watson finished the 2020 season as the second-highest rated passer in the league behind likely MVP Aaron Rodgers. He accomplished this on a team that was relatively bereft of talent on the offensive side of the ball, and was mired in a terrible coaching situation (Bill O'Brien was fired after four straight losses to start the season). Despite the dysfunction, Watson still led the...
  • By Tim Sprinkles
    Jan 4, 2021 at 12:31 PM 0 comments
    The 2020 season has tormented 49ers fans with an unprecedented and shocking number of roster moves and free-agent signings due to injuries, COVID, and poor performance. When the season began, there were dreams of pursuing a sixth Lombardi Trophy, and now, after a Week 17 loss to the Seattle Seahawks that dropped their record to 6-10, the 49ers and their fanbase have shifted their focus to the offseason and the 2021 NFL Draft. With 38 scheduled free agents on the roster, there is one player who John Lynch shouldn't question re-signing: Taybor Pepper. Early on in the season, the 49ers had a crisis at the long-snapper position. Kyle Nelson, the longest-tenured member on the roster after Joe Staley retired, was having trouble with his snap accuracy, at some points even bouncing...
  • By Brian Renick
    Jan 2, 2021 at 12:10 PM 12 comments
    49er fans have been spoiled by the Joe Montana and Steve Young eras. From 1981 (Montana's first year as a starter) to 1998 (Young's last full season), fans grew accustomed to having an MVP-level QB starting for their team each season. Every quarterback who has started for the Red and Gold since 1999 has been judged, fairly or not, against the success of those two legends. One year removed from a Super Bowl run, and after another season derailed by an injury, a majority of fans and 49ers' Twitter have determined that Jimmy Garoppolo is not the future. They have been clamoring for the team to trade up in the 2021 NFL Draft to get one of the top 4 QB prospects coming out of college: Trevor Lawrence from Clemson, Justin Fields from Ohio State, Zach Wilson from BYU, or Trey Lance...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Jan 2, 2021 at 10:51 AM 4 comments
    One of the few joys during the dull months of a football offseason is going back and distilling what happened to a team. There are many reasons why the San Francisco 49ers did not have a repeat performance from 2019, but chief among them was the Grim Reaper's sanguine addiction for knee ligaments and soft ankles. A fully-loaded and healthy roster would have at least had the 49ers fighting to play postseason football. A fresh set of eyes and time to watch tape will make one element of a disappointing season clear. Right tackle Mike McGlinchey was not the reason for the misfortunes of the offense. Indeed, McGlinchey's errors and mental miscues seemed more magnified this season. His pass blocking technique seemed off and the whiffed blocks stood out...
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