Kensat30 wrote:Nolan is going to focus on the strength of the team, the defense and the LBs in particular.
He switched the Niner's to a new scheme this year (3-4) and traded some people that just didn't fit (Engelberger). Julian Peterson in particular looks like the prototypical WLB in the 3-4 scheme. Other underappreciated players such as Jamie Winborn and Andre Carter should make an impact in their new positions as well. I think this is the right move to start from scratch and redefine a defense that was very poor last season. No one expects anything in 2005 for SF, so now is good time to test players and see what works and what doesn't.
On the offensive side of the ball, the main difference lies in the philosophy as well. Nolan appears to have chosen to strength the core of the offense (o-line) in both the draft and FA so that young and maturing QBs/WRs have time to gain experience and develop. The RBs may actually gain more than 2 yards on any given play when there is blocking. The most positive aspect of the offseason, is that the Niner's were willing to go out and spend some coin on an LT, and prove that it maybe it was the Niner's front office (Donahue) that was botching things, and it wasn't coming from the owner's box (holding out hope).
Spot on, although I'm still not as positive as you are about the front office having completely turned around. Time will tell with that if/when the team shows signs of life and need that extra guy.
I actually think Nolan and Singletary will provide the spark and hard nosed attitude that has been lacking in that defense for a few years now. From a fantasy perspective, the defense may return to 2003 form where they could make a respectable spot or matchup start because of the turnovers and sacks that they can produce.
Their hiring of the former Saints O coordinator McCarthy signals the return to the WCO for sure rather than the "I can't make up my mind what I want to do" offense under Erickson last season. It does worry me a bit though that McCarthy had such a talent in Deuce and underutilized him in goalline situations, but we'll see.
This team actually played their hearts out last year for Erickson, they were just hammered by injury and left devoid of talent because of that and bad personel decisions. Hopefully that is all changing.