Jack Hammer's Latest Articles

  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 21, 2014 at 1:39 PM 8 comments
    "Just gotta execute." Anyone listening to a Colin Kaepernick interview since he became the starting quarterback knows that this is a common phrase he uses when asked about why the 49ers struggle in certain areas. It's a response that many don't like to hear, but is right on the money. Football is a simple game that many try to make complex. At the end of the day the team that executes the best is going to win, and we saw that play out on Sunday night in the 49ers loss to the Denver Broncos. Although the final score was 42-17, the 49ers had opportunities to make it a much closer game and possibly pull off the win. Unfortunately they failed to execute. It started on the Broncos first possession of the game. The Broncos had drove down into...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 19, 2014 at 10:10 PM 11 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers saw their record on the season fall to 4-3 as the Denver Broncos handed them the third worse defeat of the Jim Harbaugh era. For the second week in a row the 49ers saw their opponent race out to a quick 14-0 lead, but unlike the week before they would not be able to catch up to the defending AFC Champions. With the loss the 49ers fall to a game and a half behind the Arizona Cardinals for the NFC West division lead as they go into their bye week. Let's get to the answers for the 5 burning questions that I asked on Saturday. 1) Can the 49ers defense slow down Peyton Manning? - No. Manning torched the 49ers defense for 318 yards, 4 touchdowns and finished with a quarterback rating of 157.2. Manning's...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 17, 2014 at 5:09 PM 3 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers are set to take on the defending AFC champion Denver Broncos on Sunday night. The 49ers come into the game with a 4-2 record, and are coming off a very physical Monday night contest that saw them lose Patrick Willis, Jimmie Ward and Mike Iupati. As a result, rookie inside linebacker Chris Borland will be making his first NFL start against a future Hall of Fame quarterback and there will be some juggling in the secondary and along the offensive line. The Broncos come in with a 4-1 record, their only loss coming in overtime to the Seahawks in Seattle. In three games at Sports Authority Field in Denver, the Broncos have averaged 32 points per game. While the schedule makers didn't do the 49ers any favors by scheduling a road game after a Monday night road...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 16, 2014 at 9:48 AM 19 comments
    When the San Francisco 49ers defense came onto the field to start the second half on Monday night in St Louis their offense had just spotted them to a three point lead. There was only one small problem. Three All-Pro linebackers were missing. Aldon Smith and Navorro Bowman have been missing all season, but now Patrick Willis was out too. This brought rookie Chris Borland onto the field for his first meaningful defensive snaps. The 49ers defense responded by forcing the Rams to go three and out. In the process rookie Jimmie Ward was lost for the night to a quad injury forcing Chris Cook into the lineup at left cornerback and moving Perrish Cox into the slot. No problem. The 49ers defense gave up a first down, but that was it. In the second half...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 14, 2014 at 9:12 AM 15 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers started slow but finished fast on Monday night to defeat the St Louis Rams 31-17 and move to 4-2 on the season. The Rams built a quick 14-0 lead in the first quarter, but from that point on it was all 49ers as they outscored St Louis 31-3 from the second quarter on. The game turned on a sequence late in the second quarter with the Rams up 14-3. Facing a 3rd and 9, Austin Davis hit Jared Cook for a 21 yard gain which was wiped out by a very questionable offensive pass interference call. The 49ers then closed the half with an 80 yard touchdown from Colin Kaepernick to Brandon Lloyd to close the gap at the half to 14-10, and from there it was all 49ers. With the victory the 49ers moved ahead of the Seattle Seahawks for second place and a game...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 13, 2014 at 11:33 AM 9 comments
    Tonight the San Francisco 49ers take on the St Louis Rams in a clash of NFC West rivals. The 49ers come into the game with a 3-2 record and an opportunity to overtake the Seattle Seahawks for second place in the division. Despite the St Louis Rams bringing a 1-3 record into the 49ers need to be ready to play. St Louis head coach Jeff Fisher has proven that he can get his team ready to play under the bright lights of a national spotlight. Fisher has won 9 of 16 Monday night games in his career and last season had the Rams ready to challenge the eventual Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks, eventually losing 14-9 when they were unable to punch it into the end zone in the final moments. With that as a backdrop here are 5 burning questions to which the answers will...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 9, 2014 at 2:52 PM 13 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers offensive line has been widely regarded as one of the best in the NFL since Jim Harbaugh took over in 2011. That has definitely been true when it comes to run blocking, but pass blocking has been a different story of late. Through the first five weeks of the season ProFootballFocus has the 49ers ranked 27th in pass blocking. When you break down the numbers it's not pretty. The 49ers offensive line has given up pressure on 53 or 181 pass plays in 2014, or 29%. The only member of the group to not give up a sack so far has been Daniel Kilgore. The first year starter also have given up the fewest quarterback pressures with only 3. So what's the problem? Good offensive line play comes down to 3 simple things: footwork, leverage and...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 7, 2014 at 11:52 AM 10 comments
    When De'Anthony Thomas took a swing pass from Alex Smith 17 yards for a touchdown on the Kansas City Chiefs opening drive of the second half on Sunday there was reason for 49ers fans to be concerned. Up to that point in the game the Chiefs had scored on 3 of their first 5 offensive possessions and rolled up 228 yards of offense. So what happened? After that Chiefs touchdown the 49ers offense, defense and special teams suffocated the Chiefs. The San Francisco defense limited Kansas City to 37 yards on 13 plays over their final 4 possessions, only 5 of those plays coming in the fourth quarter. Let's take a look at a few plays that were key to the 49ers putting the Chiefs away. - With just over one minute left in the third quarter and leading 17-16, the...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 6, 2014 at 12:07 PM 26 comments
    The 49ers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs in using a formula that has become all too familiar since 2011. With a strong rushing attack, clutch passing and timely defense the 49ers improved to 3-2 on the season with the 22-17 victory. The win, coupled with an Arizona Cardinals loss in Denver cut the 49ers deficit to only one and a half games in the NFC West. Let's get to the answers for the 5 burning questions that I asked on Saturday. 1) Is Frank The Tank back? - Yes On Saturday I noted: "Since 2011, Gore has averaged 18.6 carries per game in 49ers victories. That number drops to only 11.6 carries in 49ers losses." Gore finished the day with 18 carries for 107 yards. He churned out big run after...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Oct 4, 2014 at 5:52 PM 9 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers are set to do battle on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs. The 49ers come into the game with a 2-2 record having defeated previously unbeaten Philadelphia a week ago in a contest that saw the defense hold an Eagle offense that came in averaging over 30 points per game scoreless. Like the 49ers, the Chiefs come into the game with a record of 2-2, having blown out the New England Patriots on Monday night. The last time these two teams matched up was during the 2010 season and the Chiefs blew out the 49ers at Arrowhead 31-10, the 49ers touchdown coming on the final play from scrimmage. The game also will be the first start in a regular season game against the 49ers for Alex Smith. The former number 1 pick of the 49ers was traded...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 29, 2014 at 9:30 AM 5 comments
    On Sunday afternoon the 49ers found their identity. They rode a dominant defensive performance and the legs of Frank Gore to a 26-21 come from behind victory to reach the quarter pole of the 2014 season with a record of 2-2. Let's get to the answers for the 5 burning questions that I asked on Friday. 1) Can the 49ers avoid penalties? - No. They were still penalized 10 times for 80 yards. The big difference is that for the first time this season the defense did not allow a first down as the result of a penalty. This played an important role in the defense being able to consistently get off the field for the first time all season. 2) Will the defense start to trust the man next to...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 27, 2014 at 3:30 PM 3 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers enter their game on Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles in a do or die situation. They come into the game with a 1-2 record, sitting two and a half games behind the NFC West division leading Arizona Cardinals. Another loss to an NFC opponent could bury the 49ers in a hole from which they cannot recover as they pursue their fourth straight playoff berth. The Eagles come into the game with a record of 3-0, with all three victories coming after trailing by at least 10 points in each game. Philadelphia has won five of the last six meetings between the two teams, with the lone 49ers victory being in their last matchup back in 2011. This game will also be the third time Jim Harbaugh and Chip Kelly have met up as head coaches. They faced each...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 21, 2014 at 12:14 PM 2 comments
    Welcome to the live blog for the San Francisco 49ers week 3 contest with the Arizona Cardinals. I will be updating up to and throughout the game with information and analysis. 12:14 - Vernon Davis is among the inactive players today for the 49ers. Since Colin Kaepernick took over at quarterback he is winless in games in which Davis either did not play or had to leave the game early. The 49ers lost 27-7 to the Colts in the last game that Davis did not play in. That was week 3 of last season. 12:18 - My prediction for today with Davis out of the lineup is Cardinals 17 49ers 9 12:19 - The other inactive players for the 49ers will be Vance McDonald, Anthony Davis, Tramaine Brock, Quinton Patton, Tank Carradine and Marcus Martin. 12:21 -...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 14, 2014 at 3:49 PM 5 comments
    Welcome to the live blog for the San Francisco 49ers week 2 game against the Chicago Bears. I will be updating with information leading up to and throughout the game. 3:48 - It looks like the turf may be an issue. Large chunks have already begun to come up. 3:51 - Per Adam Schefter, Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall will be active tonight. He was injured last week in their loss to Buffalo. 3:54 - Per Michael Wright, the Bears reporter for ESPN, Alshon Jeffery will also be playing. There was a lot of speculation throughout the week that both Marshall and Jeffery would be out. Both will play. 4:22 - The 49ers inactives: QB Josh Johnson, WR Quinton Patton, WR Brandon Lloyd, CB Tramaine Brock, C Marcus Martin, T Anthony Davis, DT...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 11, 2014 at 7:38 PM 9 comments
    When the San Francisco 49ers take on the Chicago Bears on Sunday night in the first regular season game ever at Levi's Stadium, they will have history on their side. The Bears have not won a game on the road against the 49ers since the season that saw the birth of "The Fridge" in 1985. Among those losses is a 32-7 thumping the 49ers put on the Bears in Colin Kaepernick's first ever NFL start. The theme all week out of Chicago has been that this is time for them to get payback for that blowout. With that as a backdrop here are 5 burning questions to which the answers will be key to the outcome of the game. 1) Can the 49ers force Jay Cutler into mistakes? – Jay Cutler is a great fantasy football quarterback. Week after week he puts up...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 10, 2014 at 6:39 PM 5 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers opened up the 2014 season with a dominating 28-17 victory over the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday. The 49ers jumped out to a 21-3 lead by the end of the first quarter and cruised the rest of the way. It is always good to start the season with a win, but what did we really learn about the team? The first thing we learned was just how meaningless the preseason is. Many fans and members of the media were concerned about the fact that the first team offense had been held without a touchdown through three preseason starts. The offense put those concerns to rest by going 80 yards on their first 3 play for a touchdown. They then put together another touchdown drive right before the half, going 64 yards in only 3 minutes. In 2011 the 49ers were one of...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 7, 2014 at 8:31 AM 4 comments
    NFC: 49ers Seahawks Cardinals Saints Eagles Packers AFC: Broncos Patriots Ravens Colts Chargers Dolphins Who do you see in the playoffs in...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Sep 5, 2014 at 11:48 AM 2 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers will look to start their march towards another deep postseason run on Sunday when they open up the 2014 season against the Dallas Cowboys. The 49ers are coming off a regular season that saw them post 12 wins and a wildcard berth in the NFC playoffs. The Super Bowl drive ultimately fell 6 inches short. The Cowboys are coming off an 8-8 season which saw them once again miss the playoffs with a loss on the final week of the regular season. In 2013 the Cowboys had one of the worst defenses that the NFL has seen in a long time, giving up 30 points or more on 6 occasions. The rivalry between the 49ers and Cowboys has been one of the best in the NFL for many years and the series record is currently deadlocked at...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Aug 31, 2014 at 11:42 AM 24 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers had quite the offseason. They had four players arrested and two others involved in an investigation into a suspicious incident and with each the 49ers have given the same boilerplate statement, only the name of the player being changed. Through all of this, one voice has been missing leading to the question: Where's Jed York? It appears that he is doing an impersonation of Clark Griswold. You know the scene from National Lampoons Vacation where Sparky is driving late at night and falls asleep. The family station wagon going down a random off-ramp only to miraculously not hurt anyone and end up in a hotel parking lot. That's Jed York, or should we call him Sparky? From 2000 to 2010 the 49ers had only nine players...
  • By Jack Hammer
    Aug 29, 2014 at 8:46 AM 10 comments
    Now that the preseason is officially behind us let's get ready for the 2014 season. We'll use this open thread for a discussion of the team as cut-down day approaches. Any and all football related questions are fair game. A few questions to kick it off: Which rookie(s) are you most excited to see in the regular season? Which bubble players make the roster? Can this team win a game if Blaine Gabbert has to start? Bring it on! Let's chat 49ers football. Update - 1:00 Roger Goodell has suspended Aldon Smith for the first 9 weeks. Now that Smith's suspension has been handed down I thought I would link to a piece I wrote last season about the performance of the defense in his absence. Here you...
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