At this point, it is a well-known fact that I find watching the 2016 49ers to be a special form of torture. I guess in my old age, my tolerance for bad football has gone down because bad football doesn’t just mean loss after loss after loss (after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss after loss), it’s also just really boring. Still, the fact that I don’t even enjoy watching the Niners anymore didn’t stop me yesterday from rudely throwing cash on the brunch table at 12:58pm before the food had been removed or the check deposited, lamely apologizing, and booking it to the bar, Monkey, the Saint Bernard in tow. Because as much as I’d rather spend an afternoon covering my body in paper cuts before swimming in a salt water pool than watch this disaster of a team, I am somehow still unable to even contemplate missing kickoff.
In this instance, my “loyalty” paid off, as despite the fact that every single person at the Blackthorn Tavern wanted to ask 45 questions about my dog (he is pretty adorable), I was able to see Jimmie Ward intercept Jets QB Bryce Petty’s first pass to set up a 49ers’ touchdown. During the next series, thanks to a couple of good passes and a 47-yard Carlos Hyde run, Shaun Draughn was able to run it in for another touchdown and just like that, less than five minutes into the game, the 49ers were up 14-0.
I’m not going to lie. The Jets looked so awful at this point in the game that I started to worry the 49ers might actually win. And even though I know there are 49ers’ fans out there who wanted that to happen, my old age has also turned me into a (slightly) less emotional fan who understands that the best thing that can happen to this 49ers team at this point is for the complete and total meltdown to continue in the most humiliating way possible.
Because not only do we absolutely need the best draft pick possible to start rebuilding this team that lacks any real marquee players, we also need for the every single coach and person in the front office to understand that this situation is truly even more terrible than they’ll admit. That there are almost no redeeming qualities about this team. That the fans are fed up. That we don’t want to go to the stadium to watch them in person anymore. That we don’t want to buy branded jerseys or t-shirts or hats. That we don’t want to renew our season tickets. That something has to change because we’re fed up.
The good news is that even when were up 14-0, I still knew in my heart that we’d manage to blow it. I mean, it IS the 49ers after all. In this instance, we have Phil Dawson to thank. He’s usually the only dependable guy on the team, but his two missed field goals meant the Jets were eventually able to tie things up and send the game into overtime, where of course, our exhausted and lackluster defense wasn’t able to keep the Jets from scoring a touchdown, getting the 23-17 win, and handing the 49ers their 12th straight loss.
But losing 12 games in a row has its perks. It means that the 49ers are the second worst team in the NFL. It means they’re a complete joke. A laughingstock. A farce. And for owners like John and Denise York, who (unlike their willfully ignorant son) care what people think, that is the one thing they can’t handle.
Which is why finally we’re hearing that John and Denise are ready to make some “big” moves. Jason La Canfora wrote Sunday morning that sources said that Trent Baalke, Chip Kelly, AND Jed York may all be in danger of losing their jobs. (Okay, so he didn’t say Jed was out, but “Denise and John York taking a more hands-on approach” hints strongly at some sort of reassignment for Jed at the very least, right?) This is good news for anyone who loves this team—it means that maybe, for the first time in years, we’ll have a GM who doesn’t try to draft every single available player with a torn ACL. Who is able to assess whether it’s a good idea to give Chip Kelly another chance and make coaching decisions accordingly. It means maybe there’s a chance the Niners will be able to start successfully rebuilding. That maybe, in two or three years, we’ll have a shot at the playoffs again. That covering myself in papercuts won’t seem like just as fun of an option as spending three hours every week watching this football team that I love so much.
Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. John and Denise are not exactly beloved figures in the 49ers organization. Even if they do make the right decision and fire Trent Baalke and their son, they’ll do other things that will irritate the fan base. Like, as reports are also saying, bringing in Mike Shanahan as GM (or head coach), a move that won’t be applauded by the throngs of people who worry Shanahan is a has-been who might allow John York to interject his opinions and authority too much. At this point though, let’s just see what happens. Shanahan is a smart dude. Assuming he is able to keep the Yorks from interfering too much, I think I’d be okay with him coming aboard. I mean, how much worse can it get?
Of course, this is the Yorks. So nothing is going to happen until January. Which means the only silver lining for the final three games will be if the 49ers lose them all. Yup, that’s right: At this point I will be pissed if the 49ers actually win another game. I am fully rooting for them to end the season 1-15 with 15 straight losses. Because this ownership and front office deserves to know what that kind of defeat feels like. They deserve to be humiliated. And they deserve to have every single fan calling for their heads. Um, I mean: jobs. They deserve to suffer. Just like we’ve been doing ever since they fired Harbaugh.
Next Week: The 49ers travel to Atlanta to play the (8-5) Falcons. They’re going to lose. You know it. I know it. And John and Denise York definitely know it. For once, however, that’s a good thing.
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