Trivia: The 2014 49ers And Their Star Receivers

June 8, 2014 Statistics

Colin Kaepernick won’t be hurting for weapons this year, which may be why San Francisco decided to give him a massive contract extension prior to the season. So will this be a career year for the young quarterback? Even if he plays well, he may not throw for 4,000 yards due to game script; after […]

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Youngest and Oldest Receiving Groups in 2013

April 17, 2014 Receiving

In January, I calculated the AV-adjusted age of every team in 2013. In February, I looked at the production-adjusted height for each team’s receivers. Today, we combine those two ideas, and see which teams had the youngest and oldest set of targets. To calculate the average receiving age of each team, I calculated a weighted […]

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Predictions in Review: NFC West

February 19, 2014 Stat Recap

During the 2013 offseason, I wrote 32 articles under the RPO 2013 tag. In my Predictions in Review series, I review those preview articles with the benefit of hindsight. Last week was the AFC West; this week, the NFC West. Let’s begin in Arizona, where I actually got one right. Questioning the Narrative on Larry […]

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Championship Game Preview: San Francisco at Seattle

January 17, 2014 Current Events

It’s Carroll-Harbaugh X! Okay, the Whats Your Deal Bowl may not have quite the hype of Brady/Manning XV, but don’t tell that to folks on the West Coast. Pete Carroll and Jim Harbaugh are longtime rivals who have managed to alienate 31 other fanbases in the NFL. For the record, Harbaugh holds a 6-3 record […]

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Cap Space Versus Production For DEN/NE/SF/SEA

January 16, 2014 Strategy

It’s not much of a stretch to say that the Patriots, Broncos, 49ers, and Seahawks, and are four of the best organizations in the NFL. Over the last two years, these four teams are the only to win 23 games in the regular season or 26 games if you include the playoffs. In the salary […]

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The Division Round Gives Us The Championship Round We Want

January 13, 2014 Current Events

By all accounts, this was an underwhelming quartet of games played on The Best Weekend in Football. Last year, the division round gave us an incredible Russell Wilson comeback where the Seahawks scored three fourth quarter touchdowns before falling short against the Falcons and the Peyton Manning-Joe Flacco-Rahim Moore classic. Seattle won this year but […]

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Division Preview: San Francisco at Carolina

January 11, 2014 Current Events

At least 400 total yards were gained in every game this season. When Nick Foles threw 7 touchdowns against the Raiders, Oakland actually out-gained Philadelphia, and the two teams combined for a season-high 1,102 yards that day. On the other end of the spectrum was San Francisco/Carolina I, when the two teams combined for just […]

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Wildcard Preview: San Francisco at Green Bay

January 5, 2014 Current Events

After the projections for most of the week was below-zero weather, the latest reports indicates that by kickoff, the temperature in Green Bay should be in the single digits. The temperature of a game is more open to interpretation than you think: in a lot of the games below, there are different reports depending on […]

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New York Times: Post-Week 3, 2013

September 25, 2013 Current Events

This week at the New York Times, I examine the disappointing San Francisco 49ers. From the moment Coach Jim Harbaugh arrived in San Francisco in 2011, the 49ers have been one of the N.F.L.’s best teams. In Harbaugh’s first two seasons, the 49ers ranked third in combined wins (24) and points differential (275), trailing only […]

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Inside Linebacker Moldbreakers: London Fletcher and Patrick Willis

July 24, 2013 Defensive Players

Last year, I wrote about how rare and impressive it was to see Ray Lewis and London Fletcher still playing at high levels. Lewis did not have a great 2012 season, but managed to walk away from the game as a defending Super Bowl champ. Fletcher was even better, and was named a second-team All-Pro […]

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Vernon Davis as Art Monk

June 26, 2013 Random Perspective On

After the voters did not select Shannon Sharpe as part of the 2009 Hall of Fame Class, I wrote this post comparing Sharpe to Art Monk. While many viewed Sharpe as a receiver playing tight end, I noted that the Redskins used Monk not just as a wide receiver, but as an H-Back and as […]

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Were The 49ers Using West Coast Offense Principles in the 1950s?

June 11, 2013 Coaches

Entire books have been written about the West Coast Offense. Friend of the program Chris Brown has an excellent primer on some of the principles of the system. Due to time constraints, this post is not going to dissect a voluminous playbook, translate Spider 3 Y Banana into English, or discuss the role of motions […]

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More division wins than non-division wins

April 5, 2013 Checkdowns

The Rams finished with the best division record in the NFC West last year at 4-1-1, but St. Louis went only 3-7 in games against non-NFC West opponents. The Jaguars were 0-10 in non-division games last season, but beat both the Colts and Titans to finish 2-4 against the AFC South. Since the merger, three […]

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Losing in the title game: the Harbaugh 49ers and the Lombardi Packers

February 4, 2013 Coaches

Congratulations to Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Joe Flacco, and the Baltimore Ravens on winning Super Bowl XLVII. The Ravens and 49ers treated us to an exciting Super Bowl, and the Hall of Fame chances of Terrell Suggs, Haloti Ngata, Matt Birk, Anquan Boldin, and yes, Joe Flacco, are a lot better today than they were […]

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Super Bowl XLVII Preview

February 3, 2013 Current Events

Before we get to my preview, I feel the need to point you to some excellent Super Bowl previews I saw this week: Bill Barnwell at Grantland with his excellent Super Bowl preview Chris Brown on the Ravens defense against the 49ers offense and the Ravens offense against the 49ers defense, both also at Grantland […]

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Checkdowns: How the Ravens and 49ers compare to previous Super Bowl teams

January 31, 2013 Checkdowns

Ever wondered which Super Bowl teams were the oldest or youngest? I went and calculated the AV-adjusted age of every team to appear in the Super Bowl. (AV stands for Pro-Football-Reference’s Approximate Value system, which assigns an approximate value to each player in each season; you can read more about it here.) You can probably […]

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Is good luck driving the low interception rates of Joe Flacco and Colin Kaepernick?

January 28, 2013 History

In September, I started a post by asking you to make this assumption: Assume that it is within a quarterback’s control as to whether or not he throws a completed pass on any given pass attempt. However, if he throws an incomplete pass, then he has no control over whether or not that pass is […]

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Super Bowl History

January 21, 2013 History

Now that the Super Bowl matchup is set, I thought I’d start the two-week period with some Super Bow history. The table below lists some information from each of the first 46 Super Bowls. With Joe Flacco and Colin Kaepernick facing off, that ends five-year streak where at least one of the two quarterbacks in […]

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Previewing the NFC Championship Game: San Francisco at Atlanta

January 17, 2013 Current Events

A couple of interesting notes, courtesy of Mike Sando on ESPN.com. The first is a good bit of trivia: Jim Harbaugh joins George Seifert, Barry Switzer and Rex Ryan as the only head coaches to reach the AFC or NFC Championship Game in each of their first two seasons as an NFL head coach. The […]

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Checkdowns: Jerry McDonald’s interview about the Pistol and Kaepernick with Chris Ault

January 15, 2013 Checkdowns

I have not done a good job fulfilling my pledge to point you in the direction of good football articles. But here’s a great interview by Jerry McDonald of the San Jose Mercury News with former Nevada head coach Chris Ault. Ault is the pioneer of the Pistol Offense, and his prized pupil was last […]

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Previewing the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs – Saturday

January 12, 2013 Current Events

I was on vacation last week, so I provided just a bare bones set of NFL playoff predictions. Technically, my picks went 4-0 on Wildcard Weekend, but that doesn’t count for much when you pick the favorite in every game. With a little more time on my hands, here’s an in-depth preview of Saturday’s games. […]

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Season in review: AFC and NFC West

January 9, 2013 Review

AFC East and NFC East Season in review AFC North and NFC North Season in review AFC North and NFC South Season in review In the case of the AFC West, a picture can say a thousand words. Denver Broncos Pre-season Projection: 8.5 wins Maximum wins: 13 (after weeks 10 through 16) Minimum wins: 9 […]

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Checkdowns: Biggest failed comebacks

December 18, 2012 Checkdowns

[UPDATE: There was an error earlier in this post. I believe it is fixed now.] On Sunday Night, the Patriots trailed 31-3 halfway through the third quarter. But that’s when Tom Brady got hot, and New England tied the game with 6:43 left in the 4th quarter. At that moment, many fans probably had visions […]

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Week 13 Power Rankings

December 6, 2012 Power Rankings

We’re 75% of the way through the regular season. We know the Patriots, Broncos, and Texans are elite teams in the AFC, the Ravens and Colts aren’t as good as their gaudy records, and the Bengals and Steelers will consistently be inconsistent. In the NFC, the Giants remain the benchmark for consistent inconsistency. But if […]

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NYT Fifth Down: Post-week 12

November 27, 2012 NYT

My article for the New York Times this week takes a look at one interesting statistic for each of the eight division winners.   Atlanta Falcons – Record in Close Games In 2010, Atlanta raced to a 10-2 record on the strength of an improbable 7-1 record in games decided by 7 or fewer points. […]

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Jim Harbaugh has turned Alex Smith into Jim Harbaugh 2.0

September 21, 2012 Coaches

Alex Smith has had an incredible career revival since Jim Harbaugh came to San Francisco. The first six seasons of his career, Alex Smith won just 38% of his 50 starts, but he has an incredible 15-3 regular season record since 2011 (83%). From 2005 to 2012, Smith had an ugly 72.1 passer rating, the […]

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Reviewing how last year’s breakout teams looked after week 1

September 6, 2012 History

The San Francisco 49ers were the breakout team of the 2011 season, going from 6-10 in 2010 to 13-3 last year. The Cincinnati Bengals were the surprise team of the AFC, jumping from four to nine wins and earning a playoff berth. The Houston Texans, Detroit Lions, and Denver Broncos all made the playoffs after […]

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Random Perspective On: The 2012 San Francisco 49ers

July 9, 2012 Defense

[You can find lots of websites previewing each team as we head towards the 2012 season. You won't find that at FootballPerspective.com, but instead, I'll share some random thoughts on each franchise based on well, whatever springs to mind. We'll kick things off with look at the San Francisco 49ers.] The 49ers are an interesting […]

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