The San Francisco 49ers are the biggest disappointment of the 2021 NFL season. Fresh off of a blowout loss to Colt McCoy and the Arizona Cardinals B-Team, the 49ers now sit at 3-5 with no answers to a plethora of problems.
To mention the playoffs for the 49ers would be foolish. The 49ers have 3 wins against some of the worst teams in football: the Detroit Lions, Philadelphia Eagles, and the Chicago Bears. Those 3 teams have a combined record of 6-16. At their very best, the 49ers are squeaking by the very worst the NFL has to offer.
Despite the depressing and dire state of the franchise, the 49ers have one final chance to save their season, it begins this week, and this is how they do it:
Fixing the 49ers in 5 Simple Steps
A Big Upset on MNF
It all starts with the 49er’s week 10 matchup vs. the LA Rams. Entering the contest a 4.5 point home underdog, the 49ers must accomplish something that has alluded them since October 18th, 2020, winning a game at home.
As sad as that statistic may be, the 49ers may find some solace within it. The team that they beat in Santa Clara, California on October 18th, 2020, you guessed it, these Rams. The 49ers actually swept the Rams in 2020, a season where they finished 6-10 and the Rams made it to the divisional round of the playoffs.
If there is one team the 49ers can sneak one over on, it may just be their long-time divisional rival. A big upset on Monday Night Football would bring the 49ers record to 4-5 with the Jacksonville Jaguars next up on the schedule. If they could pull this upset off, the momentum could start to build for this defeated franchise.
Bench the Vets
The future must become the present. After 8 games of football, the 49ers have trotted out savvy, no, sloppy veterans to fill critical roles on the field.
As young talent atrophies on the sidelines, has-been’s like Josh Norman, Tom Compton, and Dre Kirkpatrick have embarrassed themselves to the dismay of the 49er faithful.
This team needs a spark, by inserting Deommodore Lenoir, Aaron Banks, and Jaylon Moore into the lineup the 49ers may be able to ignite a fire that is so desperately needed from this locker room.
Sprinkle in Trey Sermon and Ambry Thomas, and a youth movement may turn out to be the shot in the arm that this team needs.
Run the Ball
When rookie running back Elijah Mitchell touches the ball good things happen (469 yards rushing, 5.2 yards per carry, and 3 touchdowns). Cut the nonsense and emphasize this talented back to re-establish a long-forgotten run-game.
Killing Cowardly Kyle
Struggling to stay afloat at 3-5, it has come time for the 49ers to try something different. Ask a 49ers fan about the last time they saw their team run a trick play on special teams, I hope you have a lot of free time. I, for one, cannot recall a time this millennium when the 49ers ran a trick play on special teams.
There is no creativity or risk-taking coming from the coaching staff and it’s resulting in bland, boring, and predictable football.
Do something, Kyle Shanahan.
Shanahan Out, McDaniels In
The 49ers need to fire Shanahan at the season’s end, but for now, he should fire himself from play-calling duties. It has become painfully obvious that Shanahan cannot manage the game and call the offense effectively at the same time. Many great coaches have relinquished their play-calling duties for the improvement of the team. Will Shanahan’s ego allow how to step away from the offense to focus on becoming a better head coach?
If so, the 49ers could turn play-calling over to offensive coordinator Mike McDaniels. Previously the run game coordinator, McDaniels could give his undivided attention to calling plays and Shanahan could use that extra time to fix what he has broken.
Main Image Credit:
Embed from Getty Images