As I sat here watching the 49ers blow another contest which was very much within their reach, I recalled something I read not more then a month ago. Some might remember this piece of work which was in fact given a great deal of publicity on this fine site. It was written by a man who we have not heard anything from since and was titled “Five Reasons the San Francisco 49ers Should Keep Their Head Coach.” After viewing today’s debacle by the bay I can safely give at least 500 reasons for why this team in fact does need to fire their head effective at 5:10pm PST.
I won’t do this however, as I actually take some pride in not inducing comas in my readers, but I digress. This team needs something serious to take place in order to at least attempt to salvage the season. The 49er faithful need to awake one morning this week and see that the people who are in charge of this franchise have found the wherewithal to finally do right by the fans. Of course this was believed to have happened after the 2004 season when owner John York summarily jettisoned Dennis Erickson and Terry Donahue. A move that was not only much needed but was so well received by the masses that there was dancing in the streets of San Francisco. Alright, that was perhaps an exaggeration of sorts but I can almost guarantee that if the same scenario unfolds in the following 24 hours a dance club atmosphere will envelop this city.
Mike Nolan came to the bay area with so much promise and gave the team reason to believe that he could turn their losing ways around. He presented a vision and focus that consequently pulled the wool over just about everyone’s eyes. His vision has done little for this his players or those who lovingly follow them on a weekly basis. The time has come to relieve a man who has been in far to over his head for the last year and a half at least. This city and the team it adores have suffered for too long and the time has come to extricate the main reason for it.
I witnessed something else yesterday aside from the 49ers losing a game they should have won, it was Nolan displaying more intensity and fire throughout the contest then has ever been seen in any full season in the last three years. Only one thought crossed my mind as Nolan berated his players on the sideline, (something I believe needs to happen from time to time) it was that this man knows his time as head coach of the 49ers is coming to an end. After having a chance to reflect on this I then thought more about where this behavior was for the last few seasons and why Nolan failed to display it before today. Too little to late was the comment that continued to find its way into my mind when seeing him vehemently scream at linebacker Tully Banta-Cain after an offside penalty was called on the player in the second half.
Banta-Cain has not even been active for games much of this season so I can see how he might have been a bit amped to even be in uniform, besides let’s be honest here, it’s not as if that one play lost the game. Once again not getting pressure on the quarterback and allowing far too much pressure to be applied to their own quarterback along with miscommunication and gaffes on offense led to the 49ers demise in this game. This team is quite simply, poorly coached. The talent that does exist is either not being utilized at the appropriate time or not at all, which leads one to ask how Nolan even has a job at this moment.
The JT O’Sullivan experiment has run its course and should be canned as of today as well. How many times can a quarterback be allowed to throw costly interceptions, ending games in which his team still has a chance to win? O’Sullivan has done it three weeks running now and if the past is any indication of the future this trend will persist as long as he is allowed to be the starter. I say give Shaun Hill a chance starting next week in New York, sure it’s a hostile environment with a raucous crowd but I see it as a perfect time to see if Hill can fare any better with this offense then the current man at the helm.
The point is that change needs to take place on this team and it needs to happen soon, whether that means a new head coach entering next weekend, a new starting quarterback or both.