I am in the press box at AT&T three hours before Game 2 of the NLCS. This is a nice place to be. And I’m thinking about the 49ers game I did not see on Sunday.

I wonder about Kaepernick getting 16 snaps and I’m thinking, in my ignorance, it confuses matters for the team to have two such different QBs sharing duty. I know they represent a change of pace from each other. It’s just that against the Giants neither seemed to be effective and I wonder if the Niners offense is losing its identity as a balanced and smash mouth offense.

I wonder how Alex Smith feels about all this in and out. This doesn’t feel like Joe Montana subbing for Steve DeBerg. This feels muddled.

I could be wrong.

I notice — in the sense of not having noticed anything — Alex Smith was not effective when he had to come back and do the quarterback rescue thing against an elite team. That is troubling.

I notice some Niners fans say the Niners didn’t really mind losing this game because they play the Seahawks on a short turnaround and that is a division game and division games matter more than out of division games.

I say that line of reasoning is completely wrong. I know how football coaches think, I really do, and they want to win EVERY game in the 16 game season. They don’t take off games. The Giants didn’t take off the game and it was an out of division game for them. The Giants are Super Bowl champs and they wanted to show their quality to the world. They did. The Niners also wanted to show their quality. They have quality but not the same as the Giants.

Greg Roman, I assume, wants to be a head coach in college or the NFL. His game plans, depending so much on tricks, will not help him make the leap. He needs to control himself. And Jim Harbaugh, who got taken to school by Tom Coughlin, needs to control Roman.

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  1. Mitchell Chang

    I definitely did not like to see Kaepaernick come in. It ruined the flow of the offense and I also think the play-calling was not setup to mount a come back. Smith is not gunslinger but I’ve seen him come back in games to within a chance of winning but the coaches don’t see to feel that way. Again I’m not seeing he’s terrific but he has gotten us this far in certain games. I think consistency is the key. If you’re going to bench Smith for Kaepaernick (not saying I agree with it) then do it and stick with it the whole game. If you want to win the ball game with Smith then win the ball game with Smith and accept the consequences. Harbaugh and Roman betrayed their usual sound football formula and got to cute. Those were my feelings.

    October 15th, 2012 2:19 pm

  2. HueJastle

    I was expecting a bash fest but this was fair and honest and I totally agree… losing to the Giants isn’t a surprise… the way they went about losing was… the entire team was out of character… and even though we all know the team has it’s flaw we all know that they are capable of more than what we saw on the field that is for certain

    October 15th, 2012 2:37 pm

  3. lameduck

    I’m really glad it’s a short week.

    October 15th, 2012 2:56 pm

  4. htwaits

    It’s clear they succeeded in getting the Giants to prepare for Kaepaernick. Then they screwed it up by actually using him.

    It would be interesting to know how many times they have put themselves in third and long after one of their trick plays over the past 24 games.

    October 15th, 2012 4:01 pm

  5. Dennis

    This team may play with a lot more emotion than I thought. What I mean by that is they have not been able to come from behind in any of their games this year. They were never behind in all 4 of their wins. And in their two losses, once they got down they stayed down. It wasn’t even close – no fight. It isn’t just Alex, it is the whole team. The only thing I can think is that they play with too much emotion. Too high when things are good and too low when things are bad.

    October 15th, 2012 4:06 pm

  6. Bob In Portland

    A lot of the Kaepernick stuff seemed ill-conceived, and I agree that too much of Kaepernick seemed to kill the flow of the offense. When Kaepernick is ready to QB full-time it will be great to see those laser-like long throws, but I don’t think it’s this year.

    I think I was more concerned with the Niners getting away from their running game (much like they did last year against the Giants during the season).

    It’s trending that having Aldon Smith play all downs makes him less effective on passing downs. Granted, the team’s a little thin on outside LBs, but they need to figure out something.

    And Eli Manning may be the best QB in football.

    Let’s see how they do against the Seahawks’ defense.

    October 15th, 2012 4:27 pm

  7. Tiburon Dave

    They don’t appear to have any faith in alex to bring them back from adversity.

    Colin Kaepernik didn’t come in to run the read option…he came in to throw the ball down field…and he threw two beautiful balls that travelled about forty yards 10 feet off the ground…

    As a coaching staff and a team…they’ve come to the conclusion that alex doesn’t have the right stuff to get them to a championship…

    October 15th, 2012 5:53 pm

  8. russell

    I think the Broncos showed tonight why you don’t panic and you play your game. All the gimmicky Kapernick stuff just bucked the flow. With a lead, ala the Jets game, it is a nice addition to the gameplan. The way they used him Sunday was disruptive and foolish. Oh, and I loved it!

    October 15th, 2012 9:12 pm

  9. Mark M

    Exactly. And doubt is not a good thing to have going into a short week. This next game worries me.

    I have no interest in seeing Kaep start, as much as I dislike Smith’s game. We need to stick to our identity as you correctly point out to have any shot at the Super Bowl, and hope our defense can win it for us. That, along with a ball control offense, is whom we are. Can’t play the Bills every week.

    October 15th, 2012 10:54 pm

  10. Scott

    People should remember that when Harbaugh had Andrew Luck, the best quarterback in college football, Harbaugh and Roman would still use the Wildcat formation. Which pretty much indicates they would use it no matter who the quarterback is.

    They probably should have given it a rest for a week after making the Giants prepare for it, but these games happen in the NFL.

    October 16th, 2012 6:57 am

  11. Tommy CostaRica

    The loss of special teams coach Brad Seely and Blake Costanzo has been evident all season as the defense is letting everyone’s return guys run loose. And our guys have not played up to last years Ted Ginn show.

    October 16th, 2012 10:21 am

  12. B-Rad

    At the end of the first quarter the Niners had a 3-0 lead and a yardage
    advantage of 120-25 and then everything went to hell in a handbasket.

    October 16th, 2012 11:33 am

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