Jump to content
Washington Football Team Logo
Extremeskins

Facts on rebuilding; the Myth of the "One Year Turn Around"


KCClybun

Recommended Posts

I've seen people say this lately; that Mike's had enough time. Sure, Mike's only had two seasons. Sure he didn't have a lot to work with. So what? Just look at the 49ers and the Lions are doing!

Hmm...indeed. Let's look at what the 49ers and Lions are doing. Because comments like this, in general, show in the ignorance of football fans who only root for their team and don't pay attention to any others or the situation they're in. This leads to silly comments like "EVERYONE IN THE NFL IS GOING TO TAKE A QUARTERBACK BEFORE US, WE HAVE TO LOSE!" or, in this case, the fact that you can turn around a team that sucks and has a bad roster in two years.

This is painfully untrue in the case of the 49ers; the problem with the 49ers has never been talent, or player acquisition. Usually, when people say "this team is more talented than their record shows", it's an excuse. In this case? Not so much.

Since 2005, 49ers have drafted 21 players who are still in the league. 17 of those players are still on their football team. The 49ers have a first round quarterback (Alex Smith, 11,964 yards, 66 touchdowns, 58 interceptions), three first round offensive linemen (Mike Iupati, Anthony Davis and Joe Staley), a first round tight end (Vernon Davis, 3,559 yards and 34 touchdowns), a first round wide receiver (Michael Crabtree, 2,034 yards, 10 touchdowns), and a first round middle linebacker (Patrick Willis, 530 solo tackles, 5 ints and 17 sacks). They've did well with their picks after the first round too; Frank Gore (3rd round, 7,468 yards rushing, 41 touchdowns rushing), NaVarro Bowman, Dashon Goldston (213 solo tackles, 21 passes defensed, 10 interceptions), Josh Morgan, Delaney Walker, Parys Harrelson (5th round, 140 solo tackles, 21.5 sacks, 4 interceptions).

And that doesn't take into account guys like Manny Lawson, Taylor Mays, Bear Pascoe, and David Baas who have done relatively well elsewhere.

Want to know the key thing about all those players I just listed? Every single one of them was drafted BEFORE Jim Harbaugh was even dreaming about coaching in San Francisco.

The 49ers were never lacking in terms of talent. Where they were lacking was offensive consistency. KDawg posted a thread about how not having any sort of carry over offensively has doomed us; how we went from playing Marty Ball (run the ball, play good defense) to the Fun and Gun (big play offense) to Gibbs 2.0 (more balanced but still run base, with the head coach and offensive coordinator occasionally clashing over what the offense needed to be) to Jim Zorn's more classic West Coast Offense, to Kyle's Vertical West Coast Offense.

We talked about Campbell having a different coordinator every year, but Alex Smith LEGITIMATELY had a new offensive coordinator every year, because Mike Nolan was apparently insane and the 49ers kept trying to throw crap at the wall trying to see what stuck.

They went from Mike McCarthy's West Coast Offense (McCarthy, who wanted Rodgers in the first place), to Norv Turner Air Coryell, to Jim Hostler (who tried to mix McCarthy's offense and Turner's offense), to Mike Martz' "send everyone out and hope the QB doesn't die" Air Coryell, to Jimmy Raye's extremely conservative, Marty Ball style offense, to Mike Johnson's slightly more opened up version of the offense, before FINALLY coming back to the West Coast Offense of Jim Harbaugh.

Jim Harbaugh has finally settled down and built an offensive philosophy that the 49ers can grow from. But the 49ers drafted EXTREMELY well. Harbaugh has managed to cultivate and elevate a level of talent that most new head coaches could only DREAM of walking into. He's embraced Alex Smith instead of shunned him like Mike Nolan did (and you got the feeling Singletary only mildly tolerated him.)

The Lions have a less stellar draft history, worse than even ours is. They went 0-16, 2-14, then 6-10 before they got to this season. That's three seasons. The greatest thing that team ever did was getting rid of Matt Millen and hiring Martin Mayhew. How Millen lucked into Calvin Johnson, I'll never know, but I guess if you draft enough wide receivers in the first round, you're bound to hit on one of them. (Law of averages, I guess.)

From 2008 (when I get the sense someone finally screamed "WHY THE HELL ARE WE LETTING MATT MILLEN DRAFT ANYMORE!" and Martin Mayhew assumed more direct control of things), these have been the Lions draft picks who are still on their roster.

2008

Gosder Cherilus

Kevin Smith (just got resigned after getting cut)

Andre Fluellen

Cliff Avril

(Jerome Felton and Caleb Campbell are depth with the Colts and the Chiefs, respectfully)

2009

Matt Stafford (1st round)

Brandon Pettigrew (1st round)

Louis Delmas (2nd Round)

DeAndre Levy (3rd Round)

Sammie Hill (4th Round)

Aaron Brown (6th Round)

(Lyndon Murtha is depth for the Miami Dolphins.)

2010

Ndamakung Suh (1st round)

Jahvid Best (1st round)

Amari Spievey (3rd round)

Jason Fox (4th round)

Willie Young (7th round)

("Mr. Irrelevant 2010" Tim Toone is depth for the Bills)

2011

Nick Fairley (1st round)

Titus Young (2nd round)

Mikel Leshoure (2nd round)

Doug Hogue (5th round)

Johnny Culbreath (7th round)

So that's four years with the same regime in the front office (ish, depending on when you think Mayhew took over), and three years with the same coaching staff. Those four drafts have produced 20 players who are currently on their team 9 starters (factoring in injuries and what not, and I still think my count is off. Feel like I'm missing someone.)

In the 49ers case, it took YEARS of consistent drafting and finally landing the perfect head coach. The turnaround is impressive, but it's ignorant to suggest that Jim Harbaugh snapped his fingers and all the sudden the 49ers were good again; they had the talent for years. They just didn't seem to have a head coach that was capable of bringing that talent out and maximizing it.

In the Lions case, canning Matt Millen helped tremendously. But they've also had three years in the same defense, and three years in the same offense.

Both teams maximized their drafts picks, made smart, cost effective free agent signings (like signing two first round picks in Carlos Rogers and Braylon Edwards for the 49ers and signing veteran leadership like Kyle Van Der Bosch and Stephen Tulloch for the Lions), and are now seeing returns on those investments.

The Niners always teetered on the brink of being good, but bad head coaching and bad offenses screwed them. The Lions are now seeing a return, in their third year, on an investment they made three years ago.

I know someone is going to say Mike should've started the process in 2010. Well, he didn't. Others are banging their head on the wall because now, with nothing to play for, Mike's starting to see some return on those investments he made.

But let's stop this madness about how some of these teams "turned it around so fast" and how Mike's behind the 8-ball. The rebuild is on schedule. We're still missing a rather large, rather obvious piece, and I understand that makes people anxious because they think Danny's coming down the hall with an axe trying to kill it all and bring back Vinny and hire a new coach and ruing everything.

But if your beef is that Mike didn't take a 4-12 team that had an absolutely bare bones structure to it and turn them into playoff contenders in their second season, and you're going to use the Niners and the Lions to back up your argument, you're wrong.

Those teams are where they are now because they were patient, diligent, smart in free agency and they drafted their top end players AND their depth very well.

If you build it, rings will come.

Enough of the "things should be better already if they don't get better soon he might be/will be/should be fired" crap.

You wanted things done the right way? Well, welcome to doing things the right way.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We do have some people we need to get rid of, but overall, we have a front 7 on defense to build around (once we get more inside linebacker depth), our skill players are not that bad, and our rookie no-name o-line is actually playing decent somehow.

If you do want to talk turnarounds, look at the turnaround on defense by just replacing a few people and drafting Kerrigan. That only took one year and I believe they were saying that statistically it is the 10th ranked defense. Our secondary needs serious help, sure, but at times they are also playing very impressive.

I'm just tired of all the change. I get annoyed every time I hear someone say fire Shanahan or that he'll be gone. He may not win us a super bowl, but I feel he's put us in the right direction in a way Gibbs was not doing (heresy, I know).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yup, i couldn't agree more. I love the way things are going right now. We have a lot of upside at just about every position IMO except for QB. We will take care of that this year. But we are winning and playing very good football against very good teams with rookies. Whens the last time you could say that about this team. I for one am willing to give Mike as much time as he needs to turn this around 3 years, 4 years, 7 years. IDC. I just want a team that had a chance to win and make it to the playoffs every year. I dont want to start the season expecting to win 3-4 games. And by week 10 be paying attention to where we are in the draft. Im sick of doing that!!!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good stuff NC.

I would add the garbage FA market in Mike's first year, incomplete host of draft picks (thanks Vinny) and first year evals to get rid of "dead weight" as a delay in rebuilding. This is the year we began to see the fruits of a functional organization. Solid picks, solid FA's - I'm pumped about the direction and competitiveness of this team.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well done NLC. Some of these guys don't understand football. The best way to say it is "it would be easier if we could just simulate the franchise a year or two, but this isn't Madden."

This is a "Now" society these days, and patience is truly a virtue. I think Mike will do what he needs to do. He has shown that he can clearly have these men on the team motivated and the players that have had time to develop have done well.

HAIL!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another thing that kind of folds into this conversation (and isn't worthy of its own thread) is the end-of-the-season trend. I agree that a random win in December is often relatively meaningless. Last year's win over a similarly flawed Jacksonville team was pretty insignificant. However, I think there is something to be said about a team that surges and peaks in latter part of a season.

Everyone loves to use the Lions as an example since they spent a decade drafting some of the best players available in the draft. Well, weren't most people correct about them finally taking the next step this year? And wasn't a lot of that tied to the way they finished 2010 (winning their last 4 games)? Assuming we beat Minnesota and play a competitive game vs. the Eagles, we will have ended the season on a sustained streak of playing very good football:

Week 11: Redskins 24 Cowboys 27 (OT)

Week 12: Redskins 23 Seahawks 17

Week 13: Redskins 19 Jets 34 (this might be the outlier, but we were winning this game half way through the 4th quarter)

Week 14: Redskins 27 Patriots 34

Week 15: Redskins 23 Giants 10

That's 5 straight weeks of playing very good football against 5 straight opponents who were playing for their post-season lives. Assuming we end with 7 straight weeks of that type of play, why should we believe that we can't play like that for a lot of 2012? It happened for the Lions and we're relying on just as many young players as they were (albeit at other positions).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The hard thing about being a fan is we want it all. We're irrational. We want to win the Superbowl and have the number 1 pick. We want to blow up the team, get rid of every vet, and be immediately competitive. We don't know the definitions of simple words like "mediocre"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Another thing that kind of folds into this conversation (and isn't worthy of its own thread) is the end-of-the-season trend. I agree that a random win in December is often relatively meaningless. Last year's win over a similarly flawed Jacksonville team was pretty insignificant. However, I think there is something to be said about a team that surges and peaks in latter part of a season.

Everyone loves to use the Lions as an example since they spent a decade drafting some of the best players available in the draft. Well, weren't most people correct about them finally taking the next step this year? And wasn't a lot of that tied to the way they finished 2010 (winning their last 4 games)? Assuming we beat Minnesota and play a competitive game vs. the Eagles, we will have ended the season on a sustained streak of playing very good football:

Week 11: Redskins 24 Cowboys 27 (OT)

Week 12: Redskins 23 Seahawks 17

Week 13: Redskins 19 Jets 34 (this might be the outlier, but we were winning this game half way through the 4th quarter)

Week 14: Redskins 27 Patriots 34

Week 15: Redskins 23 Giants 10

That's 5 straight weeks of playing very good football against 5 straight opponents who were playing for their post-season lives. Assuming we end with 7 straight weeks of that type of play, why should we believe that we can't play like that for a lot of 2012? It happened for the Lions and we're relying on just as many young players as they were (albeit at other positions).

You got it TD!

Even Aikman was talking about how bright our future was on Sunday against the Giants.

The players will come or we will go get them, this front office knows what they are doing. The fanbase must continue to support this team. Frankly I am embarrassed by how some of the fans on here are acting and I wouldn't hire them to work for me with the attitudes that they have.

You always leave it on the field.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

NLC1054 ~ I know someone is going to say Mike should've started the process in 2010. Well, he didn't.

...The rebuild is on schedule...

How can both of these statements be true? If Mike had begun the rebuilding process in 2010, wouldn't the team be further along now?

Do we have to gild the lily? Can't we just be fair to Shanny when we assess his rebuild performance? From me, he got low marks in 2010 and high marks this season.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I blame the dumb-as-rocks sports media in this town for the fact that this stuff even needs to be written.

Nice job, NLC, but it pains me that so many of our fans are so dumb as to need to be told all of this.

Patience shall be rewarded, and we're seeing the starts of it.

This season is lost, gone. But no one has quit. The team is buying in, and results are showing.

Our young players have stepped up and shown they can play rather than step up and prove how idiotic it was to draft them.

Our defense has gone from a confused mismatched unit to one of the better defenses in the league.

It can't all be done as quickly as people would like, and then factoring in the overall pathetic nature of the inherited roster, plus this truncated offseason... I can't ever say I'm pleased with a record like this, but I can see definite reasons for optimism.

I am not worried about comparing him to Zorn's numbers like some in our media want to do... I am not throwing up roadblock questions regarding the QB.. (McNabb = mistake. We get it. It's not something you recover from immediately. Going into 2011 with him as their QB was certainly the plan, and when it fell apart there were decisions to be made. I like the decisions made so far, and those who scream about Rex and Beck must have been undcer the delusion that we actually could have or should have been a playoff competitor this year.

~Bang

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think we are building just fine. I have loved 90 percent of the roster moves the last 2 offseasons, both of which were strange due to the CBA issues.

My worry is of course ending up like the pre-Favre Vikings, a pretty good team with all the pieces except a quality QB.

I think we are looking like the current Browns. Good lines. Decent defense. Not one skill player who scares anyone.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I blame the dumb-as-rocks sports media in this town for the fact that this stuff even needs to be written.

Nice job, NLC, but it pains me that so many of our fans are so dumb as to need to be told all of this.

Patience shall be rewarded, and we're seeing the starts of it.

This season is lost, gone. But no one has quit. The team is buying in, and results are showing.

Our young players have stepped up and shown they can play rather than step up and prove how idiotic it was to draft them.

Our defense has gone from a confused mismatched unit to one of the better defenses in the league.

It can't all be done as quickly as people would like, and then factoring in the overall pathetic nature of the inherited roster, plus this truncated offseason... I can't ever say I'm pleased with a record like this, but I can see definite reasons for optimism.

I am not worried about comparing him to Zorn's numbers like some in our media want to do... I am not throwing up roadblock questions regarding the QB.. (McNabb = mistake. We get it. It's not something you recover from immediately. Going into 2011 with him as their QB was certainly the plan, and when it fell apart there were decisions to be made. I like the decisions made so far, and those who scream about Rex and Beck must have been undcer the delusion that we actually could have or should have been a playoff competitor this year.

~Bang

so much for the "have the players tuned Shanahan out" nonsense from the local media. Any logical fan of the team can see that things are improving and is much better than it used to be.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

good post, I agree completely. People here like to complain that the switch to 3-4 was "throwing away" a top 10 defense.. (that top 10 defense couldnt stop anyone when it mattered but thats beside the point) well guess what? We now again have a top 10 defense after only a year, that is able to make sacks, force turnovers and make stops when it matters

. And while the suck for luck crew likes to whine about how the skins are "ruining" their draft position, I think it bodes well that they're playing some of their best football in nov and dec. Look at the lions who have faded down the stretch.

Good teams are competitive and win in december. The skins aren't quite there yet, but they're finding a way and are slowly building the right foundatiion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

and then factoring in the overall pathetic nature of the inherited roster..

Oh, how quickly we forget.. Here's a look at the 2009 roster:

OFFENSE

POS # PLAYER COLLEGE

QB 17 Jason Campbell Auburn

QB 15 Todd Collins Michigan

RB 26 Clinton Portis Miami

RB 46 Ladell Betts Iowa

RB 31 Rock Cartwright Kansas State

RB 24 Marcus Mason Youngstown State

FB 45 Mike Sellers Wala Wala

WR (Flank) 89 Santana Moss Miami

WR (Split) 82 Antwaan Radle-El Indiana

WR (Flank) 12 Malcolm Kelly Oklahoma

WR (Split) 11 Devin Thomas Michigan State

WR (Flank) 84 Marko Mitchell Nevada

TE 47 Chris Cooley Utah State

TE 87 Todd Yoder Vanderbilt

TE 86 Fred Davis USC

OL (RT) 60 Chris Samuels Alabama

OL (RG) 66 Derrick Dockery Texas

OL © 61 Casey Rabach Wisconsin

OL (LG) 77 Randy Thomas Mississippi State

OL (LT) 74 Stehon Heyer Maryland

OL (RT) 78 D'Anthony Batiste Louisianna-Lafayette

OL (RG) 50 Edwin Williams Maryland

OL © 63 Will Montgomery Virginia Tech

OL (LG) 75 Chad Rinehart Northern Iowa

OL (LT) 71 Mike Williams Texas

DEFENSE

POS # NAME COLLEGE

DL (LDE) 93 Phillip Daniels Georgia

DL (LDT) 96 Cornelius Griffin Alabama

DL (RDT) 92 Albert Haynesworth Tennessee

DL (RDE) 99 Andre Carter California

DL (LDE) 97 Renaldo Wynn Notre Dame

DL (LDT) 64 Kedric Golston Georgia

DL (RDT) 94 Anthony Montgomery Minnesota

DL (RDE) 79 Lorenzo Alexander California

DL (LDE) 76 Jeremy Jarmon Kentucky

LB (SLB) 98 Brian Orakpo Texas

LB (MLB) 59 London Fletcher John Carroll

LB (WLB) 52 Rocky McIntosh Miami (Fla.)

LB (SLB) 95 Chris Wilson Northwood

LB (MLB) 54 H.B. Blades PIttsburgh

LB (WLB) 58 Robert Henson TCU

CB (LCB) 22 Carlos Rogers Auburn

CB (RCB) 23 DeAngelo Hall Virgina Tech

CB (LCB) 27 Fred Smoot Mississippi State

CB (RCB) 20 Justin Tryon Arizona State

CB (LCB) 34 Byron Westbrook Salisbury University

CB (RCB) 25 Kevin Barnes Maryland

S (SS) 48 Chris Horton UCLA

S (FS) 30 LaRon Landry LSU

S (SS) 37 Reed Doughty Northern Colorado

S (FS) 41 Kareem More Nicholls State

Special Teams

POS # NAME COLLEGE

LS 71 Ethan Albright North Carolina

P 3 Hunter Smith Notre Dame

K 6 Shaun Suisham Bowling Green

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...