General manager Trent Baalke, your Mayflower van has arrived.
It’s may be only eight games into this nightmare of a 49ers season, but it’s time to stop the charade and blow this thing up. We’ve see enough to know who they are this season. Which is to say, a woefully overmatched team that has no chance to get better in the foreseeable future.
We saw more of the same old in a pathetic 27-6 loss against an ordinary Rams team in St. Louis on Sunday. The offense totaled 189 yards in 65 plays. That’s less than three yards a pop, for goshsakes. It converted three times on 17 tries on third down. The defense was somewhat competitive, but the group failed to contain Todd Gurley, the one player who could beat them.
The trade deadline is Tuesday, and rumor has it that the 49ers are open for business. They darn well should be. Anyone and everyone who’s on the back nine of their careers should be available. That means Anquan Boldin, Ahmad Brooks, Vernon Davis and yes, hard as it is to say this, even Joe Staley, who has more value than any veteran on the roster.
Heck, if someone offers a seventh-round pick for Sourdough Sam the mascot, then Baalke should be all ears. That’s the way it’s done in the NFL these days. For a bad team to get good again, it has to bottom out, stockpile draft picks and hope like heck that it can evaluate talent better than the next team.
Then coach Jim Tomsula can announce that Blaine Gabbert will replace Colin Kaepernick at quarterback. Because Kaepernick is owed $32 million if he suffers a career-ending injury, there’s no good reason to play him even one more down. Plus, Gabbert gives the team an even better chance to fail, which is important here.
At 2-6, the 49ers have only three winnable games left on their schedule — against the Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions and Rams. Two are on the road. Finish with a 4-12 or 5-11 record, secure a pick among the top half-dozen or so in the next draft, and the organization could be in position to select a potential franchise quarterback for the future.
Balls has serious doubts that Baalke can execute the rebuild to completion, but he can at least begin the process. And he can do it now.
DUMB-DE-DUMB-DUMB: Once again, the football brains were absolutely clueless when it came to personnel decisions.
The release of Jarryd Hayne left fragile Reggie Bush as the only experienced running back on the active roster, and it was only a matter of time before he went down again. Sure enough, Bush lasted only a few minutes before he slipped on a patch of concrete in front of the stands and was carted off the field. If reports of a right ACL tear are accurate, the 30-year-old may have played his final game.
Bush’s absence left Mike Davis and undrafted rookie Kendall Gaskins as the only options in the run game. Davis entered the game with 15 carries this season. After Davis departed with a hand injury, only Gaskins was available, and he had never carried the ball in an NFL game. He finished with six yards in five tries.
If there was no other experienced back available, then Hayne would have been as good an option as any. At least he knows the system, whatever that is.
DAILY HAYNE: Hayne could land a spot on the 49ers practice squad or 53-man roster today if unclaimed by another team, but since Tomsula and his staff have no idea what to do with him, he’d be better off somewhere else.
The Dallas Cowboys, Detroit Lions and Seattle Seahawks are said to be interested in Hayne, who carried the ball only eight times from scrimmage in six games.
“Blessed for another test,” Hayne said via Twitter shortly after his release.
For now, a return to the National Rugby League didn’t appear to be an option.
“There’s no chance of him coming back, none at all,” his agent Wayne Beavis told the Australian Associated Press. “He is 100 percent committed to what he is doing over there.”
BOY NAMED SUE: Only one week earlier, the Cleveland Browns’ Josh McCown was injured on a play similar to the one that took Bush out of the game. The quarterback slammed into a wall at the Edward Jones Dome after he was shoved out of bounds but was able to play on Sunday.
According to one unconfirmed report, 12 attorneys handed Bush their business cards while he laid prone for several minutes.
STUPID VET TRICKS: Boldin was inactive for the game, but that didn’t stop him from making a bone-headed move that cost his team 15 yards in the first period.
Boldin was whistled for a personal foul penalty after he took a swipe at the Rams’ Chase Reynolds, who wasn’t even the player who had pushed Bush out of bounds. Yep, just the kind of discipline and leadership one would expect of a 14-year veteran.
If a player isn’t healthy enough to play, then he shouldn’t be close to the sidelines. Then again, if veteran NaVorro Bowman refuses to come off the field, why would Boldin listen to the coaches, either?
HORROR SHOW: If the first quarter wasn’t the worst in modern NFL history, then it was on the short list.
The two lowest-scoring teams in the league combined for six penalties, five points, two video reviews, and worse yet, they wasted 48 minutes of our lives while they were at it.
JUST SAYIN’: You had to be at the New York Jets-Raiders at O.co Coliseum to understand it, but there’s nothing quite like a game between two original AFL teams.
Or the old AFL logo painted in each end zone.
WILL POWER: The Raiders got their first close look at stud lineman Leonard Williams, who went to the New York Jets two picks after Cooper was selected fourth overall.
“I wasn’t too surprised,” Williams said earlier in the week. “Everyone watches those predraft analysis and stuff like that, but it’s never completely accurate. I did think I was going to go top three or something like that, but I think it worked out pretty well that I came to the Jets. I’m under a lot of great players to learn from Sheldon Richardson, Muhammad Wilkerson, Damon Harrison, those guys have been able to take me under their wing and show me a lot of stuff.”
The scenario has worked out for all parties involved. While Williams hasn’t put up glitzy numbers yet, he has anchored one of the best defenses in the league, the kind of inside presence that the Raiders could use more of right now.
HE’S (ALMOST) BACK? Barring a setback, Warriors coach Steve Kerr appears ready for a return to the sidelines this week, as reported here the other day.
Tonight the Warriors will open what amounts to a five-game homestand, counting a game this Saturday night in nearby Sacramento. That would give Kerr some time to get his feet under him before the team heads to Memphis and Minnesota on back-to-back nights next week.
The way the unbeaten Warriors have started the season under interim boss Luke Walton, Kerr may want to return soon lest he become Steve Pipp, so named after the injured New York Yankees first baseman who saw Lou Gehrig claim the job for two decades.
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