Tuesday, September 18, 2007

24-Hour Rule -- Movin' On

I don't think there's any reason to rehash Sunday's beatdown of the Bills -- it's just another preseason game, as far as I'm concerned -- but I've gotten through the first half of the 49ers-Rams game, and couple of things worth noting:

* Adam Carricker hasn't done jack. He's having trouble getting off the guard, and has been virtually invisible for 30 minutes.

* Alex Smith is the anti-J.P. Losman. Just about everything he throws is short. Former Notre Dame quarterback Arnaz Battle is probably San Francisco's best receiver, which means that Jerry Rice ain't walkin' through that door. There's also former Seahawk Darrell Jackson, last year's top-10 pick, Vernon Davis and Frank Gore. Like I said, not exactly Hall of Famers.

Still, the Steelers have given up some Canton-worthy performances to lesser talents, so that doesn't mean Ike Taylor will get his Tim-required eight picks Sunday. (By the way, I think Ike's season total should be reduced to seven because, frankly, Losman was so bad last week he couldn't even throw interceptions. Just a thought.)

* Frank Gore looked sharp -- big surprise, I know -- but so did Marshawn Lynch. The Steelers aren't going to get beat by one player.

* Defensively, the 49ers run a 3-4, and they blitzed Marc Bulger silly in the first half. I wonder if that was the game plan -- the best way to stop Bulger is to not give him time -- or if that's their M.O. I don't remember them sending guys after Matt Leinart, but then again, Matt Leinart looked like crap in Week 1.

* Bulger does hold onto the ball -- something Mr. Roethlisberger has been known to do (though he's gotten a lot better, it seems) -- and that could be part of the blitz-happy rationale.

Whatever, if Pittsburgh plays like it did in Weeks 6 and 7 of the preseason and San Francisco plays like it did in Weeks 1 and 2 of the regular season ... well, we'll be talking about Week 8 of the preseason on Sunday evening. Of course, anything can happen -- Texans '02, for example -- but just like Jerry, T-Max ain't walkin' through that door either.