I am pumped. Take that, Niners haters. All offseason, Niner fans had to endure countless predictions of an abysmal season and a team cobbled together of NFL Europe players and duct tape. Conversely, the Vikings were hyped as the next big thing in the NFC.
Of course, it’s Week 1, which means absolutely nothing most of the time. Last year, the Niners thumped Dallas on the road and Vernon Davis was looking like the team’s offensive MVP. That didn’t turn out so well. The Vikings are undoubtedly still a very good team. And the Niners may finish 6-10, but they probably deserve an apology for being lumped in with Tampa Bay, Jacksonville, and Washington as NFL doormats.
But just awesome stuff all around from Monday. Carlos Hyde looked even better than Frank Gore. He was quick, powerful, and flashy, blending style and substance into a Carlos Hyde performance akin to his days tearing but the Big 10 as a Buckeye.
All of the frustrating delay of game penalties, burned timeouts, and defenses jumping the line of scrimage by timing the play clock-gone. God bless Geep Chryst. It was the most nerve wracking thing in the world to watch the 49ers waltz to the line, call around 40 audibles, and get the play off by the skin of their teeth last year. To top it off, it wasn’t effective last year either. Colin Kaepernick did a nice job of managing the game and using his legs to get first downs when necessary. He wasn’t Aaron Rodgers, but he wasn’t JaMarcus Russel either. They got the win-and that’s really all that matters.
And how about that defense! NaVorro Bowman played great for his first game back. JaQuaski Tartt was an unknown when the 49ers picked him in the second round, but people will be hearing his name soon enough. Defense was studly all around, but this wasn’t the Patriots, Packers, or Seahawks. If they limit Pittsburgh to 14 or less, then the Top 10 D talk can start. Great start though.
And what the heck, the black jerseys are awesome.
Sure. special teams were awful. Straight up bad. But who cares. The 49ers won. It’s been too long.
The Niners won this game because they attacked Minnesota’s biggest weaknesses, the offensive and defensive lines of the Vikings. The Niners won this game in the trenches with a great game plan and scheme. Jimmy T can coach people. Watching Harbaugh lose his head in Michigan while the Niners blow out a quality opponent in prime-time…
Happy Daze, San Francisco edition, starring Carlos Hyde, NaVorro Bowman, and Jim Tomsula.