• Bret Rumbeck
  • Written by:
    Bret Rumbeck
    Bret Rumbeck has been writing about the 49ers since 2017 for 49ers Webzone and 49ers Hub. He is a Turlock, CA native, and has worked for two members of the US House of Representatives and one US Senator. When not breaking down game film, Bret spends his time seeking out various forms of heavy metal. Feel free to follow him or direct inquiries to @brumbeck.

Bret Rumbeck's Latest Articles

  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Dec 14, 2019 at 6:45 PM 0 comments
    The 2019 NFL season will have a variety of storylines, but one will be the revival of the San Francisco 49ers' offense. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo and the ten men in the huddle deserve a hat tip for execution, but head coach Kyle Shanahan should be in the running for coach of the year. Shanahan has shown not only a mastery of any game situation but an ability to adapt his calls and strategy as the game progresses. When a game called for a ground attack, he grabbed running plays from a distant sandlot and put up 275 yards on the turf. When Garoppolo was heating up, and the 49ers' defense struggled, Shanahan leaned on the pass and...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Dec 6, 2019 at 6:00 AM 0 comments
    Generally, I'm unpleasant to be around following a San Francisco 49ers' loss. While the Week 13 loss to the Baltimore Ravens was equally heartbreaking and frustrating, I was not upset to see the 49ers take one of the NFL's best teams down to the wire. I'm harboring one naïve irritation from the 49ers' loss. The whole football universe was aware of how well Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson runs his offense. He can attack a defense with his arm and, like a sharp pendulum, cut it into ribbons with his legs. Yet, the 49ers' defense often reacted as if Jackson's skill was brand new. Throughout the game, the defense made the same mistakes, often leaving the edge exposed for Jackson to gain yardage. Defensive coordinator Robert Saleh did make...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Nov 24, 2019 at 5:00 AM 0 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers are hours away from entering a grinding 21-day stretch, facing three teams that have a combined win-loss record of 24-6. As ESPN's Nick Wagoner pointed out, this has not happened this late in an NFL season during the Super Bowl era. Mentioned this just now on @KNBR and story for Friday: #49ers about to play the toughest 3-game stretch this late in the season in NFL history. No team has played three straight games against teams with an .800+ winning percentage this late in the season in the Super Bowl...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Nov 10, 2019 at 8:00 AM 0 comments
    It would not matter if the San Francisco 49ers were winless, the Week 10 match-up against the detestable Seattle Seahawks would be a big game. Luckily for the Faithful and all of football America, the 49ers enter Monday evening undefeated and standing atop the NFC West. The 49ers were nearly a tale of two teams during Weeks 8 and 9. After playing almost flawless football against the Carolina Panthers, the 49ers had to put up a bit more of a fight to top the Arizona Cardinals. Fortunately, quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo guided the team to a three-point victory in Arizona, throwing for 317 yards and four touchdown passes. I've pulled a few of my favorite plays from both games, along with one area of concern. Week 8: San...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Oct 26, 2019 at 7:00 AM 0 comments
    For the past few seasons, I've hoped the San Francisco 49ers' defensive line would be the team's north star. My hope went unfulfilled until this season. It is clear defensive coordinator Robert Saleh was missing pieces to the defensive puzzle, mainly aggressive edge defenders and a capable inside linebacker, to create a fully operational and dangerous defensive line. Two men, fifth-year veteran Arik Armstead and third-year veteran Solomon Thomas, have played vital roles in the defensive line's major transformation. Below are a handful of moments showcasing what Armstead and Thomas bring to the 2019 49ers. Arik Armstead Last year, a professional football writer noted that Armstead wasn't playing good football. It was an...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Oct 13, 2019 at 7:00 AM 1 comment
    Last Monday night felt like everything was finally right and good with the world. As the sun dropped into the Pacific, the nation watched the San Francisco 49ers dismember the cursed Cleveland Browns. The 49ers' offense could make up running plays in the huddle and gain five or six yards, while the defense spent the evening making quarterback Baker Mayfield look like a second-string junior varsity player. Then, the next afternoon, the anvils began to fall from the sky. Not only did fullback Kyle Juszczyk sustain an MCL sprain, but the team also announced second-year tackle Mike McGlinchey...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Oct 6, 2019 at 7:00 AM 1 comment
    It was a bit odd to have a bye week so early in the 2019 season, but it was enough for me to repair my broken fence and look into the San Francisco 49ers' victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. Below are four Week 3 plays that I found interesting, and how head coach Kyle Shanahan and defensive coordinator Robert Saleh can similarly attack the vulnerable Cleveland Browns. 1st Quarter – 2nd and 5 at the SF 30 (14:29) Last week, I noticed a bit of social media debate on the play above, focusing on why quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo did not wait a bit longer to hit wide receiver Marquise Goodwin on the deep...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Sep 21, 2019 at 8:00 AM 0 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers left the Buckeye State with a top-three offense and top-ten defense, feeling ready to take on the cream of the National Football League. Nearly everything was perfect until veteran tackle Joe Staley broke his fibula late in the Week 2 game against the Cincinnati Bengals. It's estimated he'll miss up to eight weeks of football. As noted in previous commentaries, my desire for the 49ers is a top-tier offensive line with three men in reserve with the talent to fill-in for a starter if necessary. The world does not often fulfill such a concrete...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Sep 14, 2019 at 7:00 AM 1 comment
    The world does not need another negative review of the San Francisco 49ers' Week 1 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. All week I watched the vultures swooping down from a dead, crooked branch to rip every last scrap from the carcass to feed click-bait articles and artificial television commentary. Indeed, everyone wants to see a team play a perfect football game and blow out the hated opponent. But success like that can be a false leader. Failure, flaw, and struggle can build character and wisdom in younger teams. The 49ers had moments last week they can take into tomorrow's game against the Cincinnati Bengals. I've pulled three instances that head coach Kyle Shanahan and defensive coordinator Robert Saleh can continue and build upon in Week...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Sep 6, 2019 at 9:00 AM 2 comments
    The stretch between pro football seasons is a slog. It's bloated with speculation and baseless theories on who might win a Week 4 match-up, despite no team with a final 53-man roster. We've made it nine months without the Sunday afternoon sounds of crunching plastic and cleats kicking up black rubber on a hot artificial surface. More importantly, we have enough substance and fact to make educated guesses as to how the San Francisco 49ers' 2019 season might fare. Faith in the Starting Offensive Line; Fear of the Reserves I don't know if there is a fanbase that has absolute praise for its team's final 53-man roster. The 49ers' roster isn't perfect, and while the 49er executives did make some notable additions to the...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 23, 2019 at 8:00 PM 3 comments
    Following a lackluster performance against the Denver Broncos, the projected San Francisco 49er starters will have to maximize 30 minutes of live football to prepare for the opening game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Tomorrow evening, chill the beverages and fill your appetizer plates to the edge because this is the closest thing we'll get to live football for two weeks. Here are a few things to watch for on Saturday evening. Garoppolo Throwing the Route Tree Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's five-interception practice, followed by a one-for-six performance against Denver drew a wide variety of reactions from the press and faithful fans. Both performances are open to your interpretation; One: Garoppolo has to overcome large and small...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 10, 2019 at 10:36 PM 3 comments
    Sitting 28 players for the first preseason game is a bit shocking, but finishing the game with 18-penalties for 216 yards and squeaking out a victory is something of a football unicorn. When asked about the penalties after the game, San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said, "Anytime you have a game where you have 18 penalties, and the other team has five, you should look at it hard, and it's very hard to win that way." He went on to note he and the coaching staff would review the tape to see if any were penalties the team could control. I expect to see flags for illegal shifts or twelve-men in the huddle throughout the preseason. But the 49ers' ugly evening evolved from silly mistakes to pointless flags throughout the game. Left...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 10, 2019 at 9:26 PM 0 comments
    Earlier in the week, San Francisco 49ers' head coach Kyle Shanahan noted he'd prefer having just two preseason games to evaluate players. His comments foreshadowed an injury-laden game. The 49er injuries started early in the game when tackle Shon Coleman was carted off the field with an ankle injury. Coleman was seeing his first live-action since the end of the...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 10, 2019 at 8:44 AM 1 comment
    Preseason football is the best and worst of times. It's a flirtatious wink that football is back, or at least, better football is just a few weeks away. Plus, it's interesting to see a journeyman or undrafted free agent come out of nowhere to create a spot on the final 53-man roster. On the flip side, fans are stuck watching mistake-laden football, especially during the second half. Like many other teams, the San Francisco 49ers will not play some of their star veterans tonight. But we will get to see the team stretch its legs against a new opponent, along with testing new schemes or ideas. Here are a few things I'm watching for this evening. Offense Assuming head coach Kyle Shanahan limits most of the projected starters to a...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Aug 2, 2019 at 8:00 AM 3 comments
    Professional football coaches often find themselves at the center of a debate with no beginning or end. Frenzied fans on one side may heap accolades on the coach's philosophy, style, and scheme. At the other end is an equally radical group ready to pounce at any scent of an error - a bad draft pick, wrong trade, or call in the red zone. Skip social media and find a barstool in a football-hungry town; I guarantee you'll overhear people discuss this very topic. The greyed truth is somewhere in the middle of the endless debate, as no coach finishes an NFL career with every play call being perfect, and every roster move...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Jul 26, 2019 at 8:00 AM 2 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers have won a total of ten games and had flashes of success during the Kyle Shanahan era. No player, coach, or executive is hanging his helmet on these small accomplishments. Therefore, everyone in the organization comes to 2019 training camp under some pressure or with something more to prove. I have no doubt quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo wants to prove to himself, the 49ers and the fans that he is a franchise quarterback. Veteran cornerback Richard Sherman played well last season but did not pick off a pass. He's not under pressure to make the team, but I have no doubt he's putting pressure on himself to improve his overall play from 2018. Here are five 49ers heading to Santa Clara under pressure to perform or with something to...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Jul 17, 2019 at 10:00 AM 0 comments
    The San Francisco 49ers enter the 2019 season with a questionable interior offensive line. The upside: starting guards Laken Tomlison and Mike Person, along with starting center Weston Richburg, will all keep their roles with the first-team offense this season. Consistency and communication are intangible assets that can overcome deficiencies in combined skill. The downside: the projected interior starters are average players, and the 49er brass did little to bring in new talent to deepen the roster. It was an odd strategy considering head coach Kyle Shanahan saw firsthand what happens when terrible reserve linemen fail to play at the same level as the starter. There are thousands of reasons general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    Jun 21, 2019 at 9:00 AM 2 comments
    In the depths of the cavernous Twitter-takes dungeon, there is a secret room where some hot takes actually became a reality. Somewhere, someone is mining through cat memes, facepalm gifs and arguments over fast-food restaurants looking for that shining moment where he/she correctly predicted how well linebacker Fred Warner's first NFL season would be. Warner proved to be a diamond in the rough for the 49ers, starting all 16 games his rookie year, playing 1,060 snaps and racking up 124 combined tackles – ranking him 12th in the NFL. One of Warner's best games last season was in Week 1 against the Minnesota Vikings. He led all defenders with 12 combined tackles, had one tackle for a loss, one pass defended and forced a fumble. Warner played every...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    May 31, 2019 at 8:00 AM 0 comments
    Philosophically, has your defense changed at all with the change at defensive line and the talk of more wide-nine? Has anything changed from your standpoint about what you want to get accomplished? "No. We might look different, but philosophically, the overall foundation of the defense hasn't changed." Robert Saleh. May 29, 2019 Since the San Francisco 49ers hired defensive line coach Kris Kocurek, the rumblings of a "new" wide-9 defense have been floating through the sports page and Twitter timeline. The wide-9 technique is not a new addition to defensive coordinator Robert Saleh's defensive...
  • By Bret Rumbeck
    May 24, 2019 at 8:00 AM 4 comments
    Organized Team Activities (OTAs) mark a significant shift on the professional football calendar. The draft feels like it was months ago, and teams have moved beyond over-hyping the 2019 schedule. The San Francisco 49ers enter the 2019 season with five offensive linemen who played the bulk of the 2018 season together, building a bond and learning how to communicate in loud, raucous stadiums. There's no point in the coaching staff creating artificial position battles; last year's first-team earned the right to come back and start this fall. Here are my projections, including the back-up linemen. First-Team Left Tackle: Joe Staley At some point in the distant future, someone will write a comprehensive history of the 49ers...
Share 49erswebzone