The 49ers constantly stress improvement no matter how good or poorly they're playing, and these three second-half adjustments play right into that strategy.
Prior to three consecutive wins in Weeks 10 through 12, the San Francisco 49ers were coming off a horrific three-game losing streak.
During the initial five-game win streak to begin the season, the Niners looked unstoppable on both sides of the ball. The offense had been a pleasant surprise, and in six of their seven wins this year, they put up 30-plus points per game, while the defense held opponents to an average of 15.5 points per game.
In spite of those impressive numbers, however, San Francisco began showing chinks in its armor, which would eventually lead to total damage and a subsequent three-game losing streak. Suddenly, what seemed like a once-dominant group that played with such speed and ferocity found itself looking lethargic and lost.
Missed tackles started piling up, penalties were becoming even more of an issue than they already were, and quite frankly, the situation was looking dire in Santa Clara.
Nevertheless, winning is the cure for all negative noise, and while San Francisco has managed to string together three quality wins since the bye in Week 9, it could still afford to make three necessary adjustments for the second half of the season.
49ers must keep Steve Wilks on the sideline
The first order of business San Francisco needed to address has thankfully been rectified: a better line of communication throughout the entire defense.
Defensive coordinator Steve Wilks began the year by coaching his unit from the cozy confines of the press box. However, after the team found itself sputtering during Weeks 6 through 8, changes were imminent, and bringing Wilks down from the box to the sideline was certainly one of them.
Judging by their most recent success, the 49ers appear to have taken a step in the right direction by making that adjustment.
In the last three games since making the move, San Francisco held its opponent to 14 points or less, fewer than 90 yards rushing per game, and forced eight turnovers within that stretch.
The booth switch for Wilks should be a permanent one. The defense has been fun to watch, and it'll only get better from here on. If the Niners continue riding this momentum for the next several weeks, folks will have forgotten all about this momentary lapse in defense.