Going into last season, the San Francisco 49ers were predicted to win the NFC West by almost every pundit, analyst and blogger in the business.
At the time, we all loved the predictions, and as 49er fans we were happy to agree.
The talent and depth in San Francisco was and still is phenomenal. Players like Vernon Davis, Frank Gore and Patrick Willis can all be argued as the best in the league at their positions.
Last season showed us that there are many other highly talented players on the 49ers roster that have huge potential and solid futures ahead of them. Players like Taylor Mays, Dashon Goldson, Josh Morgan, Delanie Walker, and Anthony Dixon just to name a few.
You also can't forget the great play by veterans like Takeo Spikes and Justin Smith.
And regardless of the chit chat, you can not deny the high ceiling of a player like Michael Crabtree.
The 49ers have talent.
But, long sad story made short, the 49ers didn’t win the NFC West and we can clearly lay out the reasons; bad coaching again, bad quarterbacking again, weak pass coverage and weak pass rush.
Enters Jim Harbaugh.
We have all heard the comparisons between Jim Harbaugh to Bill Walsh. I am for sure not going to do that. In fact, that reminds me of the LeBron James to Michael Jordan comparisons I find so ridiculous.
What I will say is, I haven’t been this excited about a head coach in San Francisco since Bill Walsh.
Jim Harbaugh and the staff that he has brought in will instantly help in all four of the areas mentioned above.
A good coach like Harbaugh will remove the predictability on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball. He will also utilize the great weapons that the 49ers have.
The pass rush will have different looks, which will cause miss-matches and missed blocking assignments. The addition of rookie Aldon Smith, along with new more aggressive play calling will change the 49er pass rush for the better.
As a result of this upgraded pass rush and the new found pressure on the opposing quarterback, the pass coverage will improve.
Look for the 49ers to possibly make some moves in this secondary once free agency and trade opens up. This, plus the addition of rookies Chis Culliver and Colin Jones will create more competition in the secondary and in special teams.
The defensive pass rush and pass coverage is already better.
Jim Harbaugh found his franchise quarterback in Colin Kaepernick.
There is no reason an ex-NFL quarterback and solid head coach like Jim Harbaugh can’t take a guy like Colin Kaepernick (the most experienced and athletic quarterback in the 2011 draft) and turn him into an amazing NFL quarterback.
It may be midseason, it may be next season, but it will happen. Once Harbaugh's prodigy is ready, the 49ers will be feared again.
Jim Harbaugh and Colin Kaepernick—the answer to a 10-year-old question.
Thank you for reading.
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