17 articles listed

James Darnell

Contact

James Darnell's Latest Articles

  • By James Darnell
    October 12, 2017 at 5:11 PM
    The San Francisco 49ers have taken a knee on the 2017 season - and that's a good thing. No, that's not a reference to the often-discussed and overly-analyzed sideline protests of the National Anthem. It has nothing to do with oppression, political agendas, or the American flag. Thank goodness, because everyone is tired of hearing about that. The 49ers have been competitive, particularly defensively. The team has lost four straight games by three points or less, and has clearly shown that it is headed in the right direction despite the win-loss column being completely lopsided. Head coach Kyle Shanahan is gaining experience by the day, and appears to be the right man for the job. His team plays hard for him, often praises him for his football acumen,...
  • By James Darnell
    May 16, 2017 at 4:17 PM
    Let's engage in an exercise in futility, shall we? Close your eyes and think about the last time the 49ers had a shutdown cornerback. A guy who not only was relied upon to defend the opposing teams' top wide receiver but actually got the job done consistently. Keep thinking. The last notable contributor at that position was Carlos Rogers, but his production stemmed from being a great fit for Vic Fangio's aggressive defense, rather than being someone who quarterbacks feared throwing against. Before that? Nate Clements. He was paid like an upper echelon player at the position, but he was nothing more than solid. Other than Clements, guys like Walt Harris, Ahmed Plummer, and even Mike Rumph come to mind. Meh. Still thinking?...
  • By James Darnell
    January 3, 2012 at 5:23 PM
    Fans of the San Francisco 49ers have been on quite the ride the past nine seasons. Yet little do they know, after years of screaming "Are we there yet?" that their ride has just begun. Thanks to Silverado Stages and their SportsFanExpress shuttle service, you don't have to be left behind! On January 14, 2012, the San Francisco 49ers will be hosting their first playoff game in nearly a decade. Traffic to and from Candlestick Park stands to certainly be an issue. If you are a fan who plans on attending the game and wants to ride in style and comfort, then SportsFanExpress and their San Francisco Football Bus (http://www.sanfranciscofootballbus.com) is just for you! With over 20 locations within a...
  • By James Darnell
    August 15, 2011 at 6:56 PM
    It's that feeling of butterflies in your stomach. It's the smell of a charcoal grill. It's the sound of the crowd roaring in approval that gives you chills down your spine. It's football season, and the San Francisco 49ers want you along for the ride. Fortunately, Silverado Stages and the SportsFanExpress are offering a hassle-free way to enjoy 49ers' home games and be a part of that ride, sans Bay Area tollbooths, parking lot fees, and the overall headache that game day traffic provides. As it pertains to 49er fans, Silverado Stages and the SportsFanExpress have created the "49er Bus"(www.49erBus.com), to enhance the experience that fans have on game day, by providing packages...
  • By James Darnell
    May 12, 2011 at 12:42 AM
    It rarely happens like this. The San Francisco 49ers entered the 2011 NFL Draft in desperate need of a quarterback. That "Alex Smith Thing" never quite worked out after the team selected the former Utah player with the first overall pick in 2005, and first-year head coach Jim Harbaugh was looking to make his initial imprint on the franchise he was selected to champion. 23-year-old Nevada gunslinger Colin Kaepernick, a Milwaukee, WI. native turned Turlock, Calif. transplant sat anxiously in his parents' living room as Day Two of the draft began on April 29. Years of hard work, dedication and the writing of this letter, all prepared him for this one singular moment. ...
  • By James Darnell
    August 6, 2009 at 11:58 AM
    Step down from the ledge already, 49er fan. The teams' 2009 1st-round draft pick, Michael Crabtree, isn't going anywhere. But, that's the problem. Various media reports and internet chatter have cited Crabtree and his agent, Eugene Parker as saying that the former Texas Tech product will hold out from signing his rookie contract as long as possible to get the deal he wants, even if that means re-entering the draft in 2010. If that is indeed the case, then fans be ready to see Crabtree hit the practice field in Santa Clara real soon. If it is money that Crabtree is truly after, he will sign on the dotted line sooner rather than later. The consensus around the league is, that Crabtree's negotiations with the 49ers are the benchmark for...
  • By James Darnell
    April 26, 2009 at 6:03 PM
    In an era where economic woes are of plenty and job security is paramount, those that have prominent roles in their professions are considered one of the lucky ones. San Francisco 49ers' general manager Scot McCloughan may need to take a trip to the Las Vegas strip as soon as possible, because his efforts over the weekend of the 2009 NFL Draft single-handedly saved his job. Let the superstition begin with one of the most highly-anticipated moments of the weekend, when the 49ers unvieled their new jerseys to the rowdy crowd of 5000 crammed in the Santa Clara Convention Center on Saturday. Players from past and present - including the likes of Tom Rathman, Patrick Willis, Jesse Sapolu and Josh Morgan - were on hand to model the new home and away apparel. A mixture of new...
  • By James Darnell
    February 25, 2009 at 8:55 PM
    Having worked at the Vacaville Reporter newspaper in Vacaville, CA, I was able to accumulate some good contacts within the National Football League. Luckily, one of those contacts is a local athlete who was kind enough to address some of the biggest questions that 49er fans have about new offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye. New York Jets' offensive lineman Kyle DeVann conducted an email interview with yours truly, giving some candid answers to some of the most pressing questions about the teams' new signal caller. WZ: What will Jimmy Raye bring to the table for the 49ers? KD: Jimmy brings a lot of passion and pride. He had a relationship with not only the RB's but with the entire team. He can be the counsler, the coach, the everything. He sees...
  • By James Darnell
    November 26, 2008 at 1:21 AM
    In approximately 24 hours from now, families across the United States and in many parts of the world will be gathering to celebrate a yearly tradition, giving thanks and showing gratitude toward issues that are deserving. Fabulous dinner spreads mixed with relatives and the like, huddled together in an attempt to stuff themselves into submission. This Thanksgiving however, fans of the San Francisco 49ers may be hard-pressed to be thankful for much of anything that has occured since early August. The negatives are too glaring to ignore. Another "offensive" coordinator walks through the doors in Santa Clara, bringing the possibility of change and improvement. But like the five that preceded Mike Martz, there have been more questions produced than answers or results. Yet another...
  • By James Darnell
    September 1, 2008 at 12:37 AM
    The following is an article I wrote for the Sacramento Union: San Francisco 49ers' quarterback J.T. O'Sullivan has to be pinching himself right now. O'Sullivan, 29, was born and raised a 49er fan while growing up right here in Sacramento. This Sunday, the 6-year NFL veteran will not only be making the first start of his career, but his childhood dream come true as well. Having bounced around the league and the world during the course of his professional career, getting the chance to play for the 49ers had to of been placed on the backburner in favor of just sticking to an NFL roster. But now that he is about to lead the 49ers into their regular-season opener against Arizona at Candlestick Park this weekend, you'd think he would be completely...
  • By James Darnell
    August 3, 2008 at 9:37 PM
    It has been widely publicized that the San Francisco 49ers are in talks with the City of Santa Clara in regards to a possible stadium relocation to escape the dwelling that once was a football mecca in San Francisco's Candlestick Park. The team is also contemplating purchasing Great America theme park, which is adjacent to the 49ers' current headquarters and practice facility in Santa Clara. But with all these efforts, it seems as if the team could be attempting to actually leave the city - partially. According to sources within the organization, the 49ers are discussing the possibility of changing the location of their training camp. One of the rumored destinations could be in the Sacramento area. Though a specific site has not even begun to be thought of, the...
  • By James Darnell
    June 23, 2008 at 12:04 AM
    San Francisco 49ers' rookie linebacker Larry Grant is quite the home-body. Selected in the 7th-round of the 2008 NFL Draft this past April, the Bay Area native who graduated from Foothill High School in 2004 and played at the collegiate level for City College of San Francisco as well as Ohio State University, is coming back to where it all started. Born in Santa Rosa and living throughout Northern California including right here in Sacramento, Grant was raised a 49er fan. So naturally, receiving the phone call on draft day from 49ers' head coach Mike Nolan was an amazing experience. "It was a great feeling. It was actually a feeling I've been waiting to feel all my life. Just growing up a 49ers fan and actually die-hard. Not only me, but my whole...
  • By James Darnell
    June 1, 2008 at 5:34 PM
    There is no denying Frank Gore's talent. Even more so, there is no denying his ability, history of on-field production, and his value to the San Francisco 49ers' offense. But what Frank Gore has been denied of, is something of which he is most deserving. A quality supporting cast that is capable of sharing the load offensively, that can aid Gore in carrying the 49ers to their first winning season and trip to the playoffs since the 2002-03 season. Sure, his numbers speak for themselves, but they also speak for the 49ers team as a whole. In 2006 - Gore's first season as a starter - he rushed for a franchise-record 1,695 yards, while also leading the team in receptions with 61. But consistency and production elsewhere offensively was scarce, resulting in a 7-9...
  • By James Darnell
    May 24, 2008 at 12:20 PM
    With just a few weeks remaining until the official start of the fantasy football calendar year, all would be wise to purchase eye drops as soon as possible. Once the plethora of leagues commence this June, it is a safe bet to assume that many will suffer from dry eyes due to countless hours of studying, planning, and drafting their teams, all the while obsessively gazing into a computer screen. That doesn't even begin to cover the occurrences during the 17-week fantasy football campaign, when jobs, family, and friends take a backseat to a chance at internet glory. With that being said, it is never too early to begin dissecting the fantasy outlook for the 2008 San Francisco 49ers. With the 49ers' '07 fantasy statistics being an accurate yet poor...
  • By James Darnell
    April 23, 2008 at 6:40 PM
    With the 2008 NFL Draft just a few days away, you can almost feel the electricity in the air. The NFL Draft has become an annual excuse for many to call in sick to their jobs, being second to only the Super Bowl as a national holiday of sorts for those whose lives are dictated by the NFL's calendar year. In the days leading up to April 26th, it is easy to predict many sleepless nights for both the players involved, the scouts and General Managers of each respective NFL franchise, and of course, all the crazy fans. But for those that do manage to obtain some slumber, their dreams may very well become a reality on Saturday. But then again, maybe not. With each passing day, more drama seems to be unfolding with nearly every NFL team. Whether it is Ocho Cinco...
  • By James Darnell
    August 7, 2007 at 1:22 AM
    Every team has at least one. The spirited, fearless leader that ignites and intensifies team morale whether it be in practice, during games, or just in the weight room. Taking a quick glance around the league, Baltimore Ravens' All-Pro linebacker Ray Lewis comes to mind without a second thought. From his trademark stadium entrance to his passionate displays on the field, Lewis is the ultimate team player, constantly trying to elevate his teams' level of intensity to the highest degree. Lewis can do and say nearly anything he wants, and no one within the organization will question it. Why? Because he produces on the field, with no arguments to be had. Since the start of the 49ers' training camp on July 29, second-year tight end Vernon Davis has not been shy in regards...
  • By James Darnell
    July 26, 2007 at 2:28 AM
    Thursday July 26 2007 12:44 AM The year is 1977. That year marked the beginning of a rather historic time for the San Francisco 49ers. No, it wasn't a Super Bowl championship. No, it wasn't even a winning season. 1977 set the tone for the next four years, as the 49ers failed to produce a winning record from 1977-1980. Of course, in 1979 the team drafted that one guy from Norte Dame, who won three Super Bowl MVP trophies and set countless records, but that isn't important. Neither is the 16-year span from 1983-1998 in which the team never won less than ten games. The GOAT streaking down the sidelines for 16 seasons in red and gold is meaningless, just as the five total Super Bowl rings are rendered. Only 1977. 30 years later, the team is in...
Share 49erswebzone