The 49ers are now 0-3 straight up and 1-2 against the spread after a 31-10-debacle at Kansas City in which they were the incorrect 2.5 point favorite. With an offense that ranks 31st in the NFL for scoring the first place to look beyond head coach Mike Singletary was offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye. And that is exactly where Singletary looked after pulling an all-nighter of tape study after the loss at KC in which he came to the conclusion that Raye had to go. Raye’s firing was likely long overdue as he and Singletary often clashed about the direction of the offense and the 30-year NFL veteran assistant coach was consistently getting schooled by his counterparts on other teams. Quarterbacks coach Mike Johnson will assume offensive coordinator duties starting with this week’s game at Atlanta.
Raye is far from the only problem with the 49ers however, as San Francisco has gone from the favorite to win the NFC West at SBG to a team that is fighting to merely survive. Singletary is a fiery motivator and can be an inspirational leader but the time has come for deeper tactical strategic moves and handicappers are not convinced that Singletary can deliver on that aspect of the job.
Alarming Lack of Production
The 49ers improved to 8-8 last year based on a strong defense and power running game that covered for the up and down quarterbacking of the team. This year the running game is struggling as feature back Frank Gore is averaging just 3.7 yards per carry, which is 1.2 yards BENEATH his average last season and the worst of his 6 year NFL career.
Another big problem for the 49ers with the NFL odds is a defense that ranks dead last in the NFL for points permitted, which is a stinging indictment of Singletary as his expertise is on that side of the line.
Smith Steps Back?
Alex Smith was proclaimed fixed last year as his QB rating jumped to a career best 81.5 but so far in 2010 he is back in the tank with the NFL betting odds at a 66.2 QB rating and a 2/5 touchdown to interception ratio.