This is the third consecutive year under head coach Jim Harbaugh that the 49ers have suffered another tough postseason loss so close to their goal of a Super Bowl victory.
The good news is that he and the 49ers are so close and well-positioned to make another run at it next year.
Unfortunately, the bad news is that several of the top stars are a lot closer to the end of their careers than the beginning.
With the salary cap and free agency, it's virtually impossible to keep a team together from year-to-year, and the 49ers are no exception.
Starters Jonathan Goodwin and Carlos Rogers are most likely gone. The 49ers also must make some key decisions on several players, including Tarell Brown, Donte Whitner, Anquan Boldin and Phil Dawson.
The future is now for the team, and it will be up to general manager Trent Baalke to construct a roster that can win it all next season. 2014 will most likely be the final chance for this core group to win it together.
The sands of time are slipping away, and a sense of urgency must become foremost in the minds of Baalke and Harbaugh.
Let's take a closer look at five mistakes the 49ers cannot afford to make this offseason as they reshape their roster for another chance to win it all next season.