(By Daisy Barringer)
First, a PSA:
I'd like to say congratulations to all of the brand new fans who attended their very first NFL game last night when the 49ers defeated the Seahawks 13-6. There seemed to be a lot of you and you seemed to be having an amazing time. I know this because you refused to shut your mouths for the entirety of the game, even when we were on offense. Oh yes, you were enjoying watching the 49ers play so much that you insisted on screaming, "Let's Go Niners!" even as Alex Smith tried to make calls at the line of scrimmage.
This went on for three quarters, despite the requests all around the stadium that said, "Shhhhhh. Offense at Work." But perhaps you can't read. Or were so drunk that everything was a bit blurry. Because regardless of the pleas, thousands of you continued to scream and yell right at the time when our boys needed you to be quiet.
And so I'm sorry that during a timeout, I turned to my section during a timeout and said, "While we have a break, lets go over football etiquette" and proceeded to lecture you about when we get loud (defense) and when we stay silent (offense). And I'm even sorrier that several of you took this as a personal affront and decided to get back at me by screaming with even more vehemence the next time our offense took the field. And I'm sorry that when Alex Smith then threw an incomplete pass, I turned around and said, "That's YOUR fault, not his." Except I'm not. Because it kind of was.
Mostly, I'm sorry that I assumed you were mocking me because of my gender. Because when I turned to the man next to me and said, “If I were a guy, they would listen to me,” and he replied, “No, if you were a guy, they would kick your ass,” I realized he was right. You weren’t going to listen to anyone because, well, you’re you. So do us all a favor: Watch the games at home. You can be as loud as you’d like there and no one will care even a little bit.
And now, onto the game!
You’ve gotta love Niners football. Give Gore the ball, play tough on defense, and let the magic happen. Although it’s less like “magic” and more like “really hard work,” but it’s still super fun to watch.
I admit I was nervous going into last night’s game. I was still tired from Sunday’s game (I’m old) and worried that the 49ers I love so much might not show up. But they did. Maybe not in a highlight reel kind of way, but in a way that wins football games and that’s all that matters.
Thankfully, the 49ers stopped messing around with trick plays and 800 quarterbacks and excessive deep passes and did what they do best: played some smashmouth football and got it done. The result: The 49ers are now 5-0 under Jim Harbaugh following a loss.
Of course, it wasn’t perfect.
Vernon Davis was held without a catch for the first time since 2008. In fact, he was covered so well that he wasn’t even targeted.
Even though our defense played hard, they still allowed Marshawn Lynch to get 103 yards and 5.4 yards a carry. That guy’s a beast though, so the fact that our defense allowed 0 points in the second half considering Lynch was playing so well is huge. Plus, Aldon Smith got a sack and god do I love a sack.
And then there’s my biggest bone to pick In the fourth quarter, I turned to my friend and said, “Thank God they haven’t messed with Alex by bringing in Kaepernick.” Moments later, I ate my words as I saw Kaepernick trotting onto the field. “Oh crikey,” I said, a term I actually use excessively while watching football which makes no sense except that I’m trying to limit my cussing.
Was Smith doing an amazing job? No. But was he doing just fine? Yes. (And while we’re doing PSAs, can you people STOP booing at Alex Smith every time he goes three and out? It’s football. That happens. Booing at our quarterback isn’t going to do a thing except make it worse. So shut it.) Anyway, back to Kaepernick. What on earth are they thinking? I wondered as I watched Kaepernick scramble on 2nd and 6 for a loss of a yard.
And then, just like I predicted, Alex Smith came in. We were in the red zone. It was 3rd and 7. He pulled his arm back and then threw an interception right into the arms of Brandon Browner.
Now would Alex have thrown that interception if he’d been in on the play before? Maybe. We’ll never know. What I do know is that once again he was taken out of his rhythm and then gone back into the game and made a costly mistake. I am all for mixing things up, but only when it’s necessary. I think the better call would have been to give the ball to Gore on 2nd and 6, let him run it, and go from there. After all, that was working all night long.
Anyway, enough whining. Ultimately, the 49ers won. And Frank Gore had an amazing game. I was worried about him going against Seattle’s run defense, but our offensive line stepped up, everyone got his blocks, and the let Gore do his thing. The only bummer? A helmet-in-the-back that left him having trouble bending low and taking deep breaths. He promises it’s nothing serious though.
And, of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the sack-heard-round-the-world, or at least by Vegas. I’m not a betting girl, but I’ll admit that when we got the sack at the end of the fourth, I yelled, “And we even covered!” But you know and I know that it made perfect sense for Harbaugh to decline the chop block penalty on fourth-and-17 that gave us the safety once he realized Seattle didn’t have the first down. It’s the difference between a potential onside kick and Seattle getting the ball back and the Niners kneeling and ending it right then and there. Sure, a lot of people lost a lot of money, but what do I care: WE WON.
So yes. All in all a fun night at Candlestick. For the first time in my life, I didn’t have to bust out the scarf and hat and mittens once the sun went down. It was t-shirt weather the entire time. The crowd was into it. And the Seattle fans were well behaved, as they tend to be.
I did learn one thing though. Right before I left for the game, my therapist told me that he thinks it would be a good idea for me to start dating. I laughed and said, “Right. Anyway, I’ve gotta go. This session is cutting into my tailgating time.”
But as I wandered around the parking lot and plaza of Candlestick by myself (my friend was meeting me at the seats) for an hour or more, I realized that hey! Maybe he was right. And maybe I’d meet a nice 49ers fan who’d want to talk to me. I mean: Relatively attractive girl. All by herself. Clearly into football. Seems like someone would take the bait, right?
Alas, the only guy who spoke to me was one who pointed out the PBR in my hand and told me he liked that I seemed like a cheap date.
Thinking maybe I should add the opera to my repertoire.
Anyway, FUN GAME! FUN NIGHT! Glad to see my boys brush off that savage loss to the Giants and kick some back. High fives for everyone. Except you, loud people on offense. You get nothing but a finger to the lips telling you to “shhhhhhh.”