Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports


First and Goal: 40‘s in Shorts Review

Feb 27, 2015 at 7:02 AM


Welcome to 'First and Goal', your guide to everything Niners. I know what you're thinking. Is this Bill's 4th cousin? Maybe. Maybe. Every week, we'll get into all the pertinent information regarding your favorite football team and the NFL at large. Be sure to also check out our 'Hero of the Week'. If there's time for world peace, we'll explore that too.

Let's get to it!

The Mother of all Combines

Peter King recently spoke about the obscene amount of news coverage the 2015 NFL Combine has received during his tenure, indicating an increase of 5300% in the amount of reporters on hand. If so, can anyone help Baalke find a WR? I kid, I kid, but the reality is, the 2015 NFL draft will be an important one for our Niners. Months of games have been pored over, and now our scouts have the ability to match 40-yard dashes to what they see on tape.

Some reporters have noted that our team has sent fewer coaches to the Combine than other teams. Maybe they haven't heard, but we recently let go of this Jim guy and we need to design whatever playbook the coaches are going to run. I felt it was another cheap shot by the media, who have been quite critical of our coaching changes. Regardless of your own sentiments, I still believe the team is working extremely hard together to make this season the best it can be.

So who is going to provide the next wave of Niners Greats? If I knew, I'd be a GM and not talking to the likes of you. A few things are shaping up to be quite Niners-friendly. First of all, we're drafting much higher than normal. At pick #15, there might be a blue-chip WR or DL that falls to us. Second, it seems that this draft is deep in positions of need, like DL and RB. If Baalke has taught us anything, it's that he'll go BPA. If he's taught us a second thing, it's that he'll also probably trade up and down. Being up against the cap means that we're due for another youth movement, just like last year. No one thought Baalke would draft as many players as he did last year, and I think this year will be more of the same. We need to get younger and cheaper, and the draft is where you do it. Find out how your favorite players did here.

Some Combine performances of note:

Kevin White WR, WVU: Ran right out of the top 15 and into the top 8 with a blistering performance on many levels.

Chris Conley WR, Georgia: 6'2", 213 lbs and the kid runs a 4.35; tie that together with the 3rd best broad jump and 3rd best vertical in the Combine's history, and this UDFA just slipped into the middle rounds.

DBG WR, Oklahoma: Fits the yearly profile of a talented kid with a checkered past. He's certainly got the measurables to go round 1. Best case scenario, someone else takes him and that drops another good player to us.

David Johnson RB, Northern Iowa: Size, speed and hands galore. Might be the best pass catcher out of all the RBs this year. Long strides make that 4.50 forty look even better. With the RB class being so deep, someone like DJ may be available in the 3rd round.

Byron Jones DB, UConn: We know Baalke likes athletic DBs, and Jones just set a combine and new world record broad jump of 12'3". Standing 6'1" at 200 lbs, the senior Husky confirmed his top 50 status, possibly sneaking into the 1st round. While Baalke has hit on CBs later in the draft, maybe Jones will be reachable in a trade up from our #46 pick.

Free Agency ain't Free

Free agency kicks off two weeks from now, so teams are starting to shed some dead weight. Reggie Bush and AJ Hawk have already been let go, exemplifying the meat grinder that is the NFL. There are some notable free agents this year, but here at 'First and Goal', we only really care how it affects our rivals. We're glad to see the Broncos possibly having to make a choice between Demaryius Thomas and Julius Thomas. We're glad that the cash-strapped Cowboys are looking at a mega-contract for Dez Bryant.

And most of all, we're really, really happy to know that Russell Wilson will most likely get a nice fat contract. This will help squeeze the bottom of Seattle's roster, preventing them from signing those extra few guys that helped make them the deepest team in the NFL the last two years.

Many Niners fans have looked at our cap situation and deemed it less than ideal. We remind you that Baalke has yet to make any moves of his own. There are candidates to cut, and candidates to extend on our team. Look for Baalke to dip his pinky toe into the Free Agency waters, locking up some veteran on a low-budget, one year rental. That's the life of a GM who continues to hit more than he misses. If we were the Raiders, we'd have plenty of cap room!

See all the NFL free agents for 2015 here.

Hero of the Week!

We here at 'First and Goal' believe in mankind. We believe in the power of persistence. So for our first HOTW, we pick someone who best exemplifies these sentiments and we didn't have to look far, either. He's labored tirelessly for everything he's ever received. He keeps advancing, despite his unorthodox path to the NFL. When people who know him talk about him, all you ever hear is what a tremendous human being he is.

We'll see if he's made to handle the rigors of being an NFL head coach. Until he proves otherwise, this man is getting all my support. Your HOTW is Jim Tomsula. To the Niner faithful, see you next week.

Ezra Shaw-Getty Images

The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


6 Comments

  • RishikeshA
    Finally a breath of fresh air after all the doom and gloom of last season. Look forward to your upcoming articles Phil.
    Feb 27, 2015 at 6:54 PM
    0
  • Chantos
    Great writting style! Good positive vibe as well. Good for you phil.
    Feb 27, 2015 at 1:31 PM
    0
  • 'First and Goal'
    Thanks for the input guys. Come back every Friday morning for more. In the meantime, We at 'First and Goal' are accepting any and all bribes in regards to our HOTW. We're pretty sure it's more prestigious than a Nobel and would look great on anyone's resume!
    Feb 27, 2015 at 9:45 AM
    0
  • Scott
    Thanks for something positive from the press.
    Feb 27, 2015 at 9:21 AM
    0
  • alec
    nice article. Like the style of writing. give us some more...
    Feb 27, 2015 at 8:33 AM
    0
  • Lucky Phil
    I like your style Phil. Can you put me down for HOTW next week? I feel next week is gonna be a strong one, real strong.
    Feb 27, 2015 at 7:53 AM
    0

Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



Kyle Shanahan explains how the goal of 40 runs vs. the Rams changed the 49ers' mindset

By David Bonilla
Nov 18

At one point, head coach Kyle Shanahan regretted telling his team that the goal heading into Monday night was to run the football 40 times against the Los Angeles Rams. That's a lofty goal for any NFL team, much less a struggling San Francisco 49ers squad that entered the game with a 3-5 record. "I can't lie," Shanahan said on KNBR's Tolbert, Krueger & Brooks show. "When I told them we're going to run the ball 40 times, then I got up to my room later that night, I was like, 'What was I thinking? That's going to be so hard to do.'" The Niners finished the game with 44 carries and routed their division rival 31-10. Even if the team hadn't accomplished the goal, Shanahan was eventually glad that he set it. San Francisco had



Can the 49ers handle the improving Vikings to make it 3 straight wins and covers? Week 12 betting odds and pick

By Winston Chung
Nov 23

The San Francisco 49ers won consecutive games for the first time since Week 2 and will attempt to win consecutive games at home for the first time since 2019 when they host the surging Minnesota Vikings in a Week 12 contest with significant implications for a potential playoff berth. Here we discuss the odds and analysis from a betting perspective. When: Sunday, November 28th, 2021 at 1:25 pm PT (FOX) Where: Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara, California Line: 49ers -3, over/under 48 Minnesota Vikings The Minnesota Vikings beat the Green Bay Packers 34-31 as one point underdogs for their second straight win as an underdog and third straight against-the-spread (ATS) cover. After eleven weeks, Minnesota ranks



Jimmie Ward's first interceptions in five years set tone for 49ers in big win

By Kirk Larrabee
Nov 16

Monday night's 31-10 win for the San Francisco 49ers over the Los Angeles Rams was a good example of what's referred to as "complementary football", meaning that players in each phase of the game make plays that help set up the other players to more effectively do their job. The offense played a significant part in helping the 49ers reach that status Monday night, holding onto the ball for almost 40 minutes of game time while converting 8-of-14 on third downs with zero turnovers. But it was the defense that set the tone for the offense early, thanks in large part to two interceptions from safety Jimmie Ward. The first interception came on the first possession of the game for the Rams when quarterback Matthew Stafford launched a deep pass intended for wide



Deebo Samuel becomes the first 49ers wideout to surpass 1,000 receiving yards since 2014

By David Bonilla
19 hrs

Deebo Samuel has become the first San Francisco 49ers wide receiver to surpass 1,000 receiving yards since 2014. The third-year wideout reached the milestone during the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Minnesota Vikings. The last 49ers wide receiver to accomplish the feat was Anquan Boldin, who recorded 1,062 receiving yards with the team in 2014. Tight end George Kittle registered over 1,000 receiving yards in 2018 and 2019, but Samuel is the first 49ers wideout to do so since Boldin. Samuel entered Week 12 with 994 receiving yards and five touchdowns, needing just six yards to reach the 1,000-yard mark. The reception that put him over was a 12-yard catch off a Jimmy Garoppolo pass. As of this post, Samuel also has 72 rushing yards and two rushing


Featured

More by Phil Walsh

More Articles

Share 49ersWebzone