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Q&A with MoveTheSticks.com’s Daniel Jeremiah

Oct 3, 2009 at 7:51 PM

Daniel Jeremiah, a former Ravens and Browns scout with six years of experience operates MoveTheSticks.com, a site that gives a scout's eye to the ongoings in the NFL. He is very active on twitter keeping football fans up to date with insights and analysis.

His Ask5 feature, where Daniel asks 5 NFL execs/scouts/coaches a question and posts the results, is a great way to find out where NFL personnel fall on the questions fans debate amongst themselves.

Daniel took the time to answer the 49er-specific questions posed by our forum members here at 49erswebzone.com. His answers are listed below.

We've got a few Shaun Hill questions so I'll group them.
wwrivers asks: Can Shaun Hill lead this team deep into the playoffs? Will he be good enough the team doesn't go looking for a franchise QB next year?

@jamiemiller74 asks via Twitter What is your opinion of Shaun Hill? Is he a legitimate starting QB in the NFL?

How many seasons do you think Shaun Hill can be starter for the 49ers? Will a run in the playoffs win him another year?

DJ: I think Shaun Hill is a good fit for what the 49ers are asking of the QB position. It's a cliche but he is a perfect "game manager" type QB. With their defense and running game, his main job is to protect the football and he does that well. Having worked with Coach Singletary in Baltimore, I think he will continue to build up the 49ers defense while sticking with Shaun Hill for another season. He won a Super Bowl with Jim McMahon and a dominant defense. I think he appreciates the toughness and savvy that Hill brings to the table. Eventually, I think he will look to upgrade the talent level but not before taking the few steps left to make this defense truly dominant. I could see this team getting to the playoffs and winning a game with Hill at QB.

We've also got some GM questions and I'll group those: 
rxrunner asks: Do you think the Niner would be better off firing Scott
McCloughan and hiring Mike Holmgren at the end of the season?

How has Scott McCloughan done in drafting talent to the 49ers? He's hit on Willis and Gore, but missed badly on players like Smith and potentiallyCrabtree.

What's the verdict on McCloughan as a GM?

DJ: I am not convinced Holmgren has coached his last game in the NFL. I think you are more likely to see him on an NFL sideline next season as opposed to in an NFL front office. I think that McCloughan and Singletary have a good relationship and are in sync with what type of players they are looking for. They have missed on a few 1st RD picks but they have made up for it by hitting on several 2nd day picks.

The other questions:

The consensus in the NFL seems to be that the 49ers are a "tough" team. In your experience, does "toughness" win you games when talent doesn't?

DJ: Toughness goes a long way in the NFL. The 49ers have developed a reputation under Singletary as a team that plays snap to whistle every single play. When I was in Baltimore, we used the phrase, "Building a Bully". I think Singletary has brought that same mentality and philosophy with him to SF. The 49ers aren't one of the ten most talented teams but their toughness makes them a legit playoff contender.

Are the 49ers talented enough to win any other division than the NFC West?

DJ: I would say no... They are situated perfectly in a finesse division as the only power team.

Mike Nolan is working wonders with the Denver defense. His stint as head coach with the 49ers did not yield similar results. Why the big difference?

DJ: Apples and oranges when comparing how someone does as HC vs DC. Also, the Broncos have 3 wins, 2 of which came against CLE and OAK. It is a little early to make any judgments on the Denver Defense.

Is Manny Lawson a decent 3-4 outside linebacker?

DJ: Ideally, you would want more pass rush ability in that spot. He is a great athlete but not a pure football player.

Valrodd33 asks: Do you think Nate Davis has a future as a starting QB or do you see him as a career backup?

DJ: It's way too early to tell on Davis. He has an NFL arm and can make plays with his feet. How he learns and works will go a long way in answering that question.

cgida asks: Does Tony Pashos provide an upgrade to our O-line or are we looking at another Barry Sims on our roster?

DJ: Pashos is an ideal 6th lineman. He can play either OG spot and RT. He is a brawler in the run game and limited in pass pro. You want better as a starter but excellent intangibles/toughness.

D_Niner asks: Presuming Crabtree re-enters the draft, where would Crabs get drafted with all the baggage he brings?

DJ: I would be surprised if he was picked in the top 20 if he re-enters the draft. It is shaping up as a deep draft and he has turned off a lot of teams.

redrathman asks: From the 49ers 2009 draft class, who's making the biggest impact in NFL four years down the line? This questions doesn't preclude players who may or may not be on the team in four years, just those picked by the 49ers in 2009.

DJ: I really like Glen Coffee. He is a three down back capable of carrying a heavy workload. He should be right in his prime 4 yrs from now.

miked1978 asks: With 2 first round picks coming up in the NFL draft, do you think the 49ers will target one of the big named QBs? If so who?

DJ: That depends on how Shaun Hill plays throughout the season. He is playing well enough right now to consider other spots. I think they would like to find a dominant DT. This draft has 3-4 big time players at that position.

domesik asks: What do you think of Kentwan Balmer's development so far and how good do you think he can eventually be?

DJ: I'm not a big Balmer fan. He has the size and strength to hold the point of attack against the run but really struggles to locate the football and make plays. I think they could upgrade at that spot in this next draft.

teeohh asks: Do you think there is a possibility Frank Gore's talent is declining and the 49ers should invest in drafting a running back early in 2010?

No. I think Gore and Coffee are a great combo. Gore has plenty of gas left in the tank.

For more from Daniel, visit movethesticks.com or http//:twitter.com/movethesticks
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.


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