Week 1 preparations for the San Francisco 49ers have finally begun, but it was a long road to get there. Seeing as how Super Bowl losers ritualistically fall below .500 the following season, coach Jim Harbaugh and Co. had their work cut out for them if they were looking to shatter the mold.
Of course, there are exceptions to the rule—but the odds are bleak. Out of 46 teams that lost the big game, only two in the history of the league returned to take home the Lombardi Trophy the next year. The last team to do so? The undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, which extends this renowned NFL drought to 41 years.
According to Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Niners have a 4.34 percent chance of winning it all in 2013.
Against those kinds of odds, there is no leeway for complacency. This led to an aggressive offseason by the ballclub, as it restocked the roster, added to the staff and further developed the offensive and defensive schemes.
And even though the 49ers lost Dashon Goldson and Delanie Walker to free agency, traded away Parys Haralson and revealed their secret weapon in quarterback Colin Kaepernick—giving teams around the league an entire offseason to prepare—there is the notion that this could very well be the best team in the Jim Harbaugh era.
In the following list of articles, you will find a full-scale breakdown of the San Francisco 49ers' 2013 offseason as they prepare for what may be a breakthrough year under the new regime.
- San Francisco 49ers 2013 Schedule: Win-Loss Predictions for Every Game
- Predicting Awards Honors for the San Francisco 49ers' 2013-14 Season
- Full Stat Predictions for San Francisco 49ers' Regular Season
- Burning Questions for the San Francisco 49ers' 2013-14 Season
- What's New for the San Francisco 49ers in 2013-14?
- San Francisco 49ers 2013 Team Roster: Report Card Grades for Every Position