Bay Area Oil Spill

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard

(Full disclosure, I was born & raised in Northern California and raised a 49ers fan.)

The San Francisco 49ers could be one of the worst teams in the NFL in 2015. They have pretty much blown up a team that was in the Super Bowl three seasons ago and replaced just about everything but the janitorial staff (they even traded the All Pro punter). It could be worse but not by much.

49ER DEPARTURES

Jim Tomsula is the new 49ers Head Coach. While he is a well respected defensive line coach, he has never been a coordinator or a head coach at the NFL level. He replaces Jim Harbaugh who while successful (44-19-1 with three NFC Championship appearances and one Super Bowl appearance) was also abrasive. So he is out and the player friendly Tomsula is in.

Somewhere after Harbaugh’s departure over 16 players from the 2014 team moved on. This included the retirement of three main pieces to the defense, chief among them was future Hall of Fame linebacker Patrick Willis. His replacement Chris Borland retired shortly there after and then All Pro defensive lineman Justin Smith. This preseason rising star defensive end Aldon Smith was released after yet another DUI arrest, All Pro punter Andy Lee was traded and the teams all time leading rusher Frank Gore was allowed to sign with the Indianapolis Colts.

The most notable addition is someone who has never played a down of collegiate or professional football. Jarryd Hayne was NRL Superstar in Australia (that’s rugby for those of you keeping track at home) who played his first pro football game in the 49ers preseason loss to the Houston Texans. Hayne impressed but it’s still one game and we didn’t even see if he could pick up a blitzing linebacker.

Then there is the quarterback position. If 49ers have pinned there hopes on Colin Kapernick. If he doesn’t turn the corner and become a top line NFL signal caller than it could be a long couple of years for the 49er Faithful.

All these questions can be traced back to GM Trent Baalke. We criticized his strategy during the draft and firmly believe that if the 49ers finish in the NFL West basement then blame falls squarely on his shoulders.

And let’s not even talk about the field they play on. It’s possible the worst in all of sports.

Time will tell if the moves the 49ers made will pan out. Consensus is that they will not and the 49ers will be worse than the Oakland Raiders. If that happens you can probably expect a long road to recovery with a new GM at the helm.

 

 

 

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The Unique Job Of Coaching

By Brad Hubbard | @bradhubbard 

Being a head coach in any professional sport (or major collegiate one) is a tough task. Well paying but still tough task. It’s tough for a laundry list of reasons but one that people do not give a lot of thought to is the speculation that you will lose your tough job sooner rather than later.

Coaches

In the NFL, Jim Harbaugh and Rex Ryan seem to be the odds on favorite to lose their jobs at the end of the year. Fair or unfair the media, fans and general discourse have already made the decision for their employer.

Is this right? No. Is it unfair? Yes. Would you want your employer to do the same thing to you? Probably not.

However coaching is not like your job. It is not (or at least probably not) like your current position where every decision you make is scrutinized in real time. Where hundreds of millions of dollars rest on your decision, broadcast in HD and meticulously reviewed by pundits the morning after.

Can you imagine your job and your families future being influenced by pundits, 24 news, social media and the Internet? No wonder these folks are being paid so much.

It’s not an easy job but one that is coveted across the board for whatever reason.