When you're used to sipping champagne, Boone's Farm seems a bit lacking. But when you are already used to binge-drinking -- sparkling wine or apple wine -- you still look forward to the next swig. That is the reality that a co-dependent 49er fan has to swallow.
With our halcyon days behind us it seems that the John York regime is willing to suck dick with as much aplomb as former owner Eddie Debartolo, Jr. was willing to get his own dick sucked by most of the NFL (and Chris Berman).
This year it's do-or-die for Mike Nolan. A normal ultimatum for previous Niner coaches in the post-Bill Walsh era:
-George Seifert, one year after losing the NFC Championship game (aka the "Who Gets the Chance to Beat the Bills Bowl") , was targeted for a firing after a 3-2 start the next year. His job was saved by winning the Super Bowl.
- Steve Mariucci, one week after completing the second-greatest comeback in NFL playoff history, was canned for losing to eventual Super Bowl champions Tampa Bay. In defense of that decision, the 49ers downed the ball with 50 seconds left in the first half, practically throwing in the towel. After firing Mariucci, they should've implemented a plan as to what type of coach they were going to hire. Instead they played Circle Jerk Roulette and took...
-Dennis Erickson. Well, I'm sure there's some fanfic of Jeff Garcia, Terrell Owens and Tim Rattay in some sordid love triangle that would better describe those two years.
Mike Nolan, we're not expecting you to win us a ring. Your standards have been lowered. Your current owner and boss is a schmuck, and not even a twat with potential like Arthur Blank or a comedically-inept maroon like the Fords in Detroit. Our owner is a poor man's Bill Bidwill.
Free agents do not clamor for a chance to play in the red and gold. Our mascot, Sourdough Sam has decided to shave. That was a terrible idea.
We just ask you to be competent.
Some of the free agency acquisitions have not been the most inspiring. Picking up Isaac Bruce as your #1 wideout and Takeo Spikes at LB makes it seem like Scot McCloughan just plays Madden 2004 and makes his decisions from there.
Alex Smith has had the problem of having a different offensive coordinator and #1 WR every year he's been in the league. He's had a lack of consistency. He has another glaring problem in that he kind of sucks. Former NFL Europe MVP (like Jon Kitna!) JT O'Sullivan is a gamer and he knows Martz's system but if the O-line doesn't hold up and our receivers don't play like NFL receivers (which they are prone to do) well then fuckity fuck fuck we will know what it sounds like when doves cry.
The future holds promise. Frank Gore still managed to average 4.2 ypc despite NFL defenses absolutely treating our passing game with the respect Charlie Sheen usually reserves for Denise Richards. Vernon Davis... um .... is physically gifted? Zak Keasey and Josh Morgan seem to be the talk of the preseason. Last year's Rookie of the Year Patrick Willis is a beast and they finally have a DT that fit's the 3-4 system. Justin Smith actually knows how to rush the passer and can play OLB when needed. Our secondary has always been solid and maybe this year the opposing team's quarterbacks won't have enough time to scratch their asses before making their first read this year.
Every year's preseason has this sort of optimism, though. Hell, last year we started 2-0 and it felt like we were headed in the right direction. Then injuries mounted and it was back to Mad Dog 20/20 in our collective plastic cups.
So Nolan, the greek chorus of spoiled Niners fans understand but we don't really care. O'Sullivan -to-Bruce doesn't bring back memories of Montana-to-Rice or Garcia-to-Owens (although TO probably envisions himself as the pitcher and Garcia the catcher). But we play the Rams and Cardinals twice a year. That's already at least one win in the column.
Wear as many suits as you want, but remember your old man never won us a ring either. Good luck, homey. We'll be right behind you drinking the shit out of whatever is available.