We’ve all seen this before. The 49ers were too mistake-prone, ineffective and just plain dumb this season when it counted.
They’re on their way to another 7-9 season, and that’s because when it doesn’t really matter anymore, the Niners will start to gel. They’ll beat one or two playoff-bound teams near the end of the season (Arizona and/or Philadelphia) that look past Mike Singletary’s motley crew, and they’ll screw themselves out of what could be two top-10 draft picks.
So, why not tank the season now? If Singletary isn’t into moral victories, why push for a 78th straight 7-9 season when 5-11 or 4-12 could get the 49ers a true impact player? We can’t just depend on Carolina’s ineptitude to land us in the Jake Locker/Taylor Mays/Russell Okung/Carlos Dunlap/Eric Berry zone, we have to get there ourselves with a good old-fashioned tank job.
That’s right, Jimmy Raye! Feel free to keep utilizing Michael Robinson as your primary target in the red zone, both on the ground and in the air!
That’s right, Michael Lewis! Feel free to take the absolute worst angle possible when pursuing running backs!
That’s right, coaching staff! Feel free to keep Brandon Jones as the punt returner!
That’s right, Alex Smith! Feel free to take longer than Aaron Rodgers to get rid of the ball, and make sure every pass is high so it’s more easily tipped to the opposing team!
That’s right, team! Feel free to take your time, too! Delay of game penalties are rad!
Whatever you do, don’t install a quarterback-by-committee where Smith starts on the road and Shaun Hill starts at home, because that would certainly result in more wins. Not that many more, but enough to screw this whole 2010 draft thing up.
Don’t try to throw the ball deep at any time to Michael Crabtree or Josh Morgan, because that could cause a pass interference penalty or (gasp) a long touchdown. Don’t cut Michael Robinson in favor of a returner/RB who can evade anybody faster than an invalid. Don’t blitz on third down.
Just keep doing what you’re doing, Niners. This team isn’t talented enough to compete with the big boys, and seriously, we’re OK with this. In the back of our minds we knew all along. Right now your team’s biggest strength isn’t how much Singletary can glean from looking into his players’ eyes, or the fact that Patrick Willis is so much better than the rest of the league at his position that we might as well call him Tim Lincecum.
This team’s biggest strength is its 2010 draft position, and it’s also the only area where they realistically control their own destiny!
We’ve seen this team get some gutty/gritty/grutty(?), yet meaningless, wins near the end of lost seasons. What have they gotten this team? Absolutely nothing/nada/nathan, except the hollow satisfaction of holding a better record than the team across the Bay.
Forget “learning how to win.” I say let’s beat the Raiders at their own game, Sing. Keep on throwing those interceptions, Alex. Keep on calling those swing passes to the sideline, Jimmy. If this team isn’t looking for moral victories, let’s get some practical losses.