Here is a link to my column previewing the 49ers-Packers game. The full column appears below:
The 49ers will murder the Packers on Sunday. I’m using “murder” in the metaphorical sense.
The 49ers own the Packers — also in a metaphorical sense.
The 49ers have defeated the Packers three times in a row.
In those three games, the 49ers have defeated the Packers in Green Bay and in San Francisco.
The 49ers could defeat the Packers on a neutral site. The 49ers could defeat the Packers on the moon.
I could go all Dr. Seuss on you. The 49ers could beat the Packers at home or in a dome. The 49ers could beat the Packers in bed or on a sled or in a shed, etc.
Do the Packers stand a chance?
Well, yeah sure. Every team stands a chance. A football has funny bounces in it.
What are the Packers’ chances based on?
Could you, at least, make a case for them, smart guy?
OK, the Packers’ case:
It is very cold in Green Bay and the 49ers are a warm-weather team and, by the time kickoff rolls around, Vernon Davis and Justin Smith will be crying from the mere thought of frostbite and Colin Kaepernick will refuse to leave the locker room.
Weather is a bad argument. Face it. When Packers’ supporters reach to the weather as their first line of defense, they no longer are talking football — because they can’t talk football with a straight face.
During a football game, players on the field do not feel the cold — although they do feel it on the sideline. Even though the 49ers are a California team, they are made for cold weather. They are a run-first team. The weather — cold and wind — affects running much less than passing. The Packers, by contrast, are a passing team. The weather could affect them more.
Are there any other factors which could help the Packers, and please try to be open-minded?
Aaron Rodgers. He’s a factor. He missed games this season and now he’s back and he’s a great quarterback. Never underestimate a great quarterback.
Just one thing, he was the Packers’ quarterback the past three games and he lost all three. He lost to Alex Smith and he lost to Kaepernick. He just plain lost. He’s still rusty from not playing and he certainly isn’t better than he was in the three losses when he wasn’t rusty. He may even be worse.
You’re being so negative. Please make a case for the Packers.
Try this. Niners’ cornerback Carlos Rogers is out with a pulled hammy (Don’t you love the word “hammy?”). His replacement, Eric Wright, pulled his own hammy. A pulled-hammy epidemic has invaded the Niners. They may be reduced to using Perrish Cox against the slot receiver, the same Cox the 49ers waived and the Seahawks picked up and waived. A castoff. Aaron Rodgers will exploit Cox.
Maybe he will. But the Packers’ best defender, linebacker Clay Matthews, won’t play. He’s a bigger loss than Rogers or Wright. We can see we’re getting nowhere with you, hardhead. Try again.
Hey, I’m doing my best. And please don’t call me hardhead.
How about this argument? The Packers will win a tight, tense game against the 49ers on Sunday because the Packers are due.
Due. They’re due. They lost three in a row and they are due for a win.
Now, you’re talking, hardhead.
Hey, I want to please you — whoever you are — but I can’t go on with this. I just can’t. The “due” argument is a fraud. Which team would you rather coach, the team that won three in a row or the team that lost three in a row? Me, I’d rather coach the three-time winner. There’s a reason the three-time winner is a three-time winner. Conversely, there’s a reason the three-time loser is a three-time loser. So, sure, the Packers are due — for a loss.
We cry uncle. Give your reasons for a Niners’ fourth straight win and be done with it.
I thought you’d never ask.
The Packers cannot stop the run. They are horrendous against the run. This means trouble for them. The 49ers will run Frank Gore and then they will run him again.
And after they establish the run, they will fake the run and then they will use the play-action pass. That’s how they work. The Packers will not stop this simple combination.
Because the Packers don’t have the personnel to do it. And get this, their defensive coordinator, Dom Capers, has a great reputation but he’s overrated.
Or maybe modern football has passed him by. He’s always one game behind when it comes to the 49ers. In last season’s playoffs, Colin Kaepernick ran for 181 yards against the Packers’ defense, such as it is. It was all that pistol, read-option jazz.
So Capers had a brainstorm. He prepared for the pistol, read-option jazz when the Packers and Niners met in Candlestick to open this season. Surprise. Kaepernick laid off the pistol, read-option jazz for the most part and passed 39 times, completing 13 passes for 208 yards to old man Anquan Boldin (Anquan Oldin?).
And the Packers lost again. Capers must have been smacking himself in the head.
Whatever the 49ers are planning for Sunday, Capers does not have a clue, although you can bet he’s arrowed in on Boldin.
Do you have any final thoughts?
The 49ers can beat the Packers in the snow if it’s apropos. The 49ers can beat the Packers in the sun or on the run. The 49ers can beat the Packers just for fun. The 49ers already beat the Packers by the S.F. Bay. And they will beat the Packers on Sunday in Green Bay. That’s what I have to say.
For more on the world of sports in general and the Bay Area in particular, go to the Cohn Zohn at cohn.blogs.pressdemocrat.com. You can reach Staff Columnist Lowell Cohn at firstname.lastname@example.org.