A Brand New Team
If you’ve noticed 49ers fans walking into the office on Monday mornings with a pep in their step, it’s not a misplaced sense of optimism or confidence. It’s also not to make up for a decade of agony as the previous slide mentions.
So what is it?
It’s the facts. The fact is general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan have rebuilt this franchise from the ground up over the last three years. The fact is San Francisco has studs-in-the-making at quarterback. The fact is the Niners have depth at skill positions, albeit most are still green. The fact is the 49ers enjoy one of the youngest, most ferocious front seven groups on defense.
The numbers on offense back it up:
- 49ers rank third on third-down conversions with 48.6 percent conversion rate
- Niners rank first on third-down conversions when passing with at 50 percent rate
- To date, the 49ers have only had 11 3-and-outs
- The offense has put up 3,122 yards, while the defense has allowed only 1,928 yards, and the plus-1,194 yard differential is best in the NFL
- Even with two elite tackles missing, the offensive line has allowed only 12 sacks this year, good enough for fourth best
The best part is that it’s complementary on the defensive side of the ball:
- 30 sacks: enough said, and it’s only halfway through the season
- 10 interceptions are good enough for fourth place in the NFL
- 20 times the 49ers have started across enemy lines (beyond midfield), second only to the New England Patriots
- Niners rank third allowing third-down conversions to opponents, only 27.5 percent of the time
- 49ers have only allowed 52 first downs, best in the NFL
- 49ers have allowed an average of 12.8 points per game, first in the NFC and second to the Patriots overall
- Only 10 touchdowns allowed, second place behind the Patriots
- With only 19 punt return yards, the 49ers are first in the league
While these facts are encouraging, let’s pump the breaks for a bit as some critical injuries could easily turn the tides.