Alert Follow us at @49erswz until Twitter fixes the issues with our official account.

Playoff Run Starts With Blind Side

Jul 15, 2007 at 9:42 AM

Nate Clements, 8 years, $80 million. Michael Lewis, 6 years, $30 million. Tully Banta-Cain, 3 years, $8.7 million. Aubrayo Franklin, 3 years, $6 million. Ashley Lelie, 2 years, $4 million.

While these names should be mentioned in any conversation about the 49er's playoff chances this season, a few others should not be forgotten as well.

Tarik Glenn, Marvel Smith, Matt Light, Roman Oben, Jonathan Ogden, Orlando Pace.

These are the men protecting the blind side of the last six quarterbacks to win the Super Bowl. While only Ogden and Pace stand out as elite performers, all have been steady, reliable and healthy during their teams run to the Super Bowl. So while Clements, Lewis, Banta-Cain and others grab headlines this offseason as evidence of an improved, playoff ready San Francisco team, the man still on the hot seat remains Jonas Jennings.

While Jennings did suit up for 13 games in 2006, 10 more than the previous season, he has yet to play a full season during his six years in the NFL. But this is not to say he has been a bust. With a healthy Jennings along side future hall-of-famer Larry Allen, the 49ers have a left side of the line equal to the most talented in the league, making it all the more critical for Jennings to stay away from the training table and in the face of 70 million dollar defenders.

While the 49ers do have the third easiest schedule in the league this season, it is not without its challenges. The 49ers play half their schedule against teams that ranked in the top 12 in the league in sack totals last season, two of which – Seattle and Arizona – play in the NFC West. The season could come down to a stretch of seven games - between September 23 and November 12 - when San Francisco plays five of these teams.

Fortunately, the 49ers are equipped with better insurance than in years past with offensive line depth that has not been seen since the Super Bowl era. Adam Snyder could very well push Kwame Harris for the right tackle spot, but if Harris remains the starter, will provide an excellent fill-in when the inevitable injury bug plagues Jennings again. Also, the 49ers landed Central Michigan tackle Joe Staley, who although still a raw project, could be ready by mid-season as an adequate spot starter. However, the thought of Staley lining up against Julius Peppers or Simeon Rice should make even the toughest of 49er fans to cringe.

While 49er fans should hope for plenty more end zone appearances from Vernon Davis, Arnaz Battle and newcomers Darrel Jackson, Jason Hill and Lelie, the key to the Super Bowl castle lies directly in the hands of Jonas Jennings.
The views within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


  • No Comments

Facebook Comments

More San Francisco 49ers News

49ers injury news: Dee Ford sighting (on a side field) during Friday practice

By David Bonilla
Oct 23, 2020

There's been a Dee Ford sighting at the San Francisco 49ers practice facility. Chris Biderman of the Sacramento Bee spotted the veteran pass rusher pushing a sled on a side field at the start of Friday's practice. As noted by the beat writer, Ford has not played since Week 1. Spotted for the first time in a while: DE Dee Ford (back) pushing a sled on the side field. He hasn't played since Week 1. #49ers— Chris Biderman (@ChrisBiderman)

Read the Full Article

'Staying in the playoff hunt will be a challenge': 49ers plummet in power rankings after 2-3 start

By David Bonilla
Oct 14, 2020

The San Francisco 49ers lost their second consecutive game and remain winless at home as the team fell to 2-3 in the standings. The latest embarrassment came courtesy of a 43-17 beating at the hands of the visiting Miami Dolphins on Sunday. The 49ers are exiting what many considered to be the easier portion of their schedule and now embark on a five-game stretch that includes the New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks, Green Bay Packers, and New Orleans Saints. First, they will host the Los Angeles Rams before playing three of four games on the road before the bye week. With San Francisco's Super Bowl hopes becoming less and less realistic, the team's playoff hopes also diminish with each loss. Kyle Shanahan and the 49ers need to turn things around and start

Read the Full Article

Shanahan: 49ers WR Deebo Samuel's game-clinching run 'as impressive as I've ever seen'

By Kirk Larrabee
Oct 18, 2020

With the game on the line for the San Francisco 49ers in their 24-16 win over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday night, it was wide receiver Deebo Samuel who stepped up with what might go down as one of the team's biggest plays of the year. Coming out of the two-minute warning, the 49ers faced a third-and-seven from their own 38-yard line with no Rams timeouts remaining. A first down meant the 49ers would be able to run out the clock and earn a huge win after a demoralizing 43-17 loss to the Miami Dolphins the week before. Enter Samuel, who got the ball on a flip pass play the 49ers had been running with success throughout the evening. Samuel weaved his way through the Rams defense close to a first down, then plowed through some defenders to make sure the job got

Read the Full Article


More Featured Stories

More by Matt Faust

All Articles by Matt Faust

More Articles

All Articles
Share 49erswebzone