Back in our lives. Bless their hearts.
Yes, yes, while Kyle Shanahan himself will tell you he has no use for preseason games, there will be something profoundly soothing about seeing the red and gold on our TV sets Friday night from Levi’s Stadium.
Especially soothing because, at various points during the off-season, the 49ers were skidding all over the road.
Now? Maybe we’re all affected by the sugar rush that is the return of the NFL, but . . . things in 49erLand seem . . . OK? Maybe even . . . really good?
To think: just 4 months ago, the Jock Blog was heavily questioning the direction of the franchise. That’s what an agonizing NFC Championship loss to the rival Rams will do.
First, there was the Jimmy Garoppolo situation. They had one job: trade Jimmy G. They failed.
BREAKING: He’s still on the roster, but the relentless reps and bright future of Trey Lance have served as balm, as is the belief that somehow, some way, the 49ers will find a way to move Jimmy G by September 1.
Next, was the exodus. Gone — valuable defensive lineman DJ Jones, offensive lineman Laken Tomlinson, running back Raheem Mostert, defensive lineman Kentavius Street and offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel. It seemed like the 49ers were hemorrhaging talent.
BREAKING: The defense has been so remarkable in camp, bolstered by CB Charvarius Ward and the return of Javon Kinlaw, some are saying it may be the best in the NFL. And while the status of the interior offensive line remains a large question mark, the drafting of LSU’s Ty Davis-Price to add to a running back stable with Elijah Mitchell and Jeff Wilson, Jr has calmed nerves.
And, of course, the grandaddy of all our offseason heartburn: the Deebo Samuel situation. That was legit panic, on the outside. We saw the Instagram scrub. We heard the trade demands. We listened to Ian Rapaport and Adam Schefter lay out the Deebo strife. We wondered what we had done wrong. How could Deebo forsake us?
BREAKING: Kyle and GM John Lynch just sat back and waited. They played the long game. They knew things on the inside that we did not on the outside. And now . . . Deebo is a 49er.
Are things perfect? Hardly. Surely in coming Jock Blogs, we will tackle the arc of Trey Lance, with enough skeptics out there to cause ripples of ambiguous feelings. There’s the unproven interior offensive line. Kinlaw has yet to perform for a full season. Corners are always a thing, no matter how good they look in the summer.
And Kyle has his doubters, until he wins a Super Bowl.
But all things considered?
The 49ers barrel into Levi’s tomorrow night with the Bay Area believing that things are looking up. Considering the off-season, it’s almost remarkable.
The 49ers are a powerful brand. And they’re back.