Heller’s Three Burning Questions 3.0: San Francisco 49ersby Joe Heller July 1, 2021 1 comment
With the 2021 NFL Draft over and the schedule officially being released, it’s time for my third annual 32 part series where the top three questions will be posed for each NFL team. Here are those three questions for the San Francisco 49ers.
Be sure to check out all of Heller’s Three Burning Questions.
Is it Still Jimmy Garoppolo‘s Team?
Garoppolo is penciled in for now, in the No. 1 quarterback slot. Jimmy G. started just six games in 2020. He suffered a high ankle sprain in Week 2 and the second one in Week 7 that ultimately ended his season. Many around the league including those in the Bay area believed it may be the end of Garoppolo’s time as the 49ers starting quarterback. Then, the 49ers selected Trey Lance with the No. 3 overall pick. The pick they traded up for, giving up three future first-round picks to the Miami Dolphins. At that price, Lance is their obvious quarterback of the future, but that future may begin in early September.
Will Their Top-Notch Defense be Back?
The elite defense that got this team to the Super Bowl yeti short seasons ago, was decimated by injuries. Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas each tore an ACL in Week 2 and missed the rest of the season. While Thomas is no longer in San Fran, Bosa is expected to be ready and back to the finding force he was in his rookie season. This team’s defensive effectiveness starts with Bosa.
Could They Make a Postseason Run?
Injuries derailed their chances of winning back-to-back NFC Championships before their season even got started. In addition to Jimmy G. and Bosa, tight end George Kittle and cornerback Richard Sherman missed multiple games. Their receivers all battled through injuries. Their running game was by committee, which was effective. It seemed whichever back was leading the way each week, missed the third and or fourth quarter with a minor injury.
With most of those players and others, who missed games last season, returning and healthy it’s easy to think this defense can be what it once was, even without their former defensive coordinator, Robert Saleh who is now the head coach of the New York Jets. If they can overcome any potential quarterback controversy, this team will contend in one of the tightest divisions, top to bottom in the NFL. The 49ers could return to playoff football.
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