Harbaugh breathes life into Tebow talk


Harbaugh breathes life into Tebow talk

Programming note: Watch 49ers Press Conference Live -- Monday at 12 p.m. on CSN Bay Area and CSNBayArea.com.

With the gentle and melodic warble of Release The Kraken, Jim Harbaugh has inflicted a new level of torture upon us all.Yes, the Return Of Tebow.But not Tim Tebow per se, but the endless, tortuous yowling about Tebow, both for and against. The entire magnetic field of sports talk is about to be distorted again, only worse than ever because it emanates like gamma ray bursts from the blowhard capital of the universe, New York City.We are so very doomed.And yes, it is Jim Harbaughs fault. Absolutely its his fault, and he must pay the ultimate crime. Whatever that is.I mean, we get why he needed the 49ers to put up a strong performance against the New York Jets on Sunday. The boys had coughed up a hairball in Minneapolis, they were starting to buy what the outside world was selling, and they might have been losing a bit of their edge.But 34-0 isnt the excess we complain about here. Its the way the 49er defense squeezed New York quarterback Mark Sanchez head, and the result of that compression.Tebow.But not so much Tebow himself, but his hideous hellbat army of shrieking acolytes the Big Bang Theory of gasbaggery.And Harbaugh, knowing what the world has already endured by the neutron star of TebowTalk, could have called off a dog or two for the good of the culture. He could have ordered Vic Fangio to allow Sanchez a touchdown, or even two, for the game was done and over fairly early:Yeah, Vic, I know its a bad message to send, but something you have to do something for the greater good of the society. At least thats what Jed just told me. Me, I could give a damn about society, and Id be good with you pulling his sternum out of his chest, metaphorically speaking, but Jed is pretty spooked about the damage to our culture, or some such crap.Instead, the 49ers went pedal to metal, they disenfranchised Sanchez from his future, and left us all with . . . well, you know.TebowTalk.Now you can justify and rationalize all you want about how TebowTalk cant be Harbaughs problem, but it is everyones problem. Its why we recycle, its why we fight bullying, its why we march for justice and equality. Its why we try to do good and fight evil.Put another way, the 49ers could have won the game and covered the spread by winning, 4-0. The extra 30 points, the four turnovers, the 145 yards of total offense for the Jets that was just excess.The collateral damage of that excess has already begun. TebowTalk 6060247 the hell of an argument weve already had 1,200 times with neither resolution nor new information. Yelling for the sake of screaming, caterwauling to just to make the other guy beg for the sweet release of temporary deafness.And yes, it was preventable. Not by Sanchez or even Rex Ryan, who are merely players in an insane tableau foisted upon them by Jets owner Woody Johnson, but by the catalyst who made this all inevitable. Jimmy Joe Harbaugh, the man who could have spared us all but chose not to.Thats quite a legacy to explain to the grandkids Yeah, Little Tad and Kimberly, I unleashed Tebow. I didnt want to at first, but then I just said, Oh, the hell with it, I live across the country. Itll never hit my loved ones.But of course hes wrong, because TebowTalk is the unchallenged zenith of pigheaded squawling on both sides. You have to be careful around such forces, but Harbaugh needed his boys to get their mad back more than he cared about the rest of us. We will never forget, and we will not easily forgive.Well, you may forgive him because you think of him the way Tebows people think of him. But you can never say you werent warned about the result of such recklessness.And when that vein behind your left eye starts to throb uncontrollably because you cant escape TebowTalk, you will remember this day. And you will weep.

Roger Craig, Terrell Owens, John Lynch among Hall of Fame semifinalists


Roger Craig, Terrell Owens, John Lynch among Hall of Fame semifinalists

Former 49ers running back Roger Craig, in his final year on the modern-era ballot, is a semifinalist for the Pro Football Hall of Fame for the 10th consecutive year.

Craig is among 27 semifinalists announced for the Class of 2018. The list includes six first-year eligible candidates and four other players who have been eligible previously but are semifinalists for the first time.

Wide receiver Terrell Owens and safety John Lynch, currently 49ers general manager, are among the return semifinalists. Lynch was among the final 10 players last year, while Owens made it to the top 15.

The list of first-year eligible semifinalists includes wide receiver Randy Moss, defensive back Ronde Barber, guard Steve Hutchinson, linebackers Ray Lewis and Brian Urlacher, and defensive lineman Richard Seymour.

The four previously-eligible players who are semifinalists for the first time are safety LeRoy Butler, defensive ends Leslie O’Neal and Simeon Rice, and cornerback Everson Walls.

In January, the list of modern-era candidates will be trimmed to 15 individuals. There will be a total of 18 finalists, including contributor finalist Bobby Beathard and seniors finalists Robert Brazile and Jerry Kramer. Hall of Fame rules stipulate from four to eight new members will be selected every year.

Beathard, Brazile and Kramer will be voted on separately and, like all other finalists, must receive 80-percent approval from the full selection committee at the annual selection meeting on Feb. 3, 2018 in Minneapolis, the day before Super Bowl LII.

Craig's teams made it to the playoffs in each of his 11 NFL seasons, including his first eight years with the 49ers. In 1985, he became the first player in NFL history with 1,000 yards rushing and 1,000 yards receiving in the same season.

Owens, who played his first eight seasons with the 49ers, was a first-team All-Pro performer six times. He ranks second all-time in receiving yards (15,934) and third with 153 receiving touchdowns.

Lynch, a hard-hitting safety with Tampa Bay and Denver, was selected to nine Pro Bowls in his 15-year career. He recorded 26 interceptions, forced 16 fumbles and recovered nine in his career.

Steve Atwater, S – 1989-1998 Denver Broncos, 1999 New York Jets | (Times as a Semifinalist: 7 – 2012-18)
Ronde Barber, CB/S – 1997-2012 Tampa Bay Buccaneers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Tony Boselli, T – 1995-2001 Jacksonville Jaguars, 2002 Houston Texans (injured reserve) | (Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
Isaac Bruce, WR – 1994-2007 Los Angeles/St. Louis Rams, 2008-09 San Francisco 49ers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
LeRoy Butler, S – 1990-2001 Green Bay Packers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Don Coryell, Coach – 1973-77 St. Louis Cardinals, 1978-1986 San Diego Chargers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 10 – 2005, 2010-18)
Roger Craig, RB – 1983-1990 San Francisco 49ers, 1991 Los Angeles Raiders, 1992-93 Minnesota Vikings | (Times as a Semifinalist: 10 – 2009-18)
Brian Dawkins, S – 1996-2008 Philadelphia Eagles, 2009-2011 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 2 – 2017-18)
Alan Faneca, G – 1998-2007 Pittsburgh Steelers, 2008-09 New York Jets, 2010 Arizona Cardinals | (Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
Torry Holt, WR – 1999-2008 St. Louis Rams, 2009 Jacksonville Jaguars | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
Steve Hutchinson, G – 2001-05 Seattle Seahawks, 2006-2011 Minnesota Vikings, 2012 Tennessee Titans | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Joe Jacoby, T – 1981-1993 Washington Redskins | (Times as a Semifinalist: 8 – 2005, 2008, 2013-18)
Edgerrin James, RB – 1999-2005 Indianapolis Colts, 2006-08 Arizona Cardinals, 2009 Seattle Seahawks | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
Jimmy Johnson, Coach – 1989-1993 Dallas Cowboys, 1996-99 Miami Dolphins | (Times as a Semifinalist: 5 – 2014-18)
Ty Law, CB – 1995-2004 New England Patriots, 2005, 2008 New York Jets, 2006-07 Kansas City Chiefs, 2009 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
Ray Lewis, LB – 1996-2012 Baltimore Ravens | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
John Lynch, FS – 1993-2003 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-07 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 6 – 2013-18)
Kevin Mawae, C/G – 1994-97 Seattle Seahawks, 1998-2005 New York Jets, 2006-09 Tennessee Titans | (Times as a Semifinalist: 4 – 2015-18)
Karl Mecklenburg, LB – 1983-1994 Denver Broncos | (Times as a Semifinalist: 7 – 2012-18)
Randy Moss, WR – 1998-2004, 2010 Minnesota Vikings, 2005-06 Oakland Raiders, 2007-2010 New England Patriots, 2010 Tennessee Titans, 2012 San Francisco 49ers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Leslie O'Neal, DE – 1986, 1988-1995 San Diego Chargers, 1996-1997 St. Louis Rams, 1998-1999 Kansas City Chiefs | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Terrell Owens, WR – 1996-2003 San Francisco 49ers, 2004-05 Philadelphia Eagles, 2006-08 Dallas Cowboys, 2009 Buffalo Bills, 2010 Cincinnati Bengals | (Times as a Semifinalist: 3 – 2016-18)
Simeon Rice, DE – 1996-2000 Arizona Cardinals, 2001-06 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2007 Denver Broncos, 2007 Indianapolis Colts | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Richard Seymour, DE/DT – 2001-08 New England Patriots, 2009-2012 Oakland Raiders | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Brian Urlacher, LB – 2000-2012 Chicago Bears | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Everson Walls, CB – 1981-89 Dallas Cowboys, 1990-92 New York Giants, 1992-93 Cleveland Browns | (Times as a Semifinalist: 1 – 2018)
Hines Ward, WR – 1998-2011 Pittsburgh Steelers | (Times as a Semifinalist: 2 – 2017-18)

EDITOR'S NOTE: Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area is one of 48 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee.

John Lynch: Eventually, Garoppolo 'is going to be our guy'


John Lynch: Eventually, Garoppolo 'is going to be our guy'

SANTA CLARA – General manager John Lynch came close Tuesday to announcing which quarterback will start for the 49ers this week.

But the official announcement that rookie C.J. Beathard will start Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks will have to come from coach Kyle Shanahan, he said.

“C.J. (Beathard) played extremely well against the Giants, and that’s likely,” Lynch told reporters at Levi’s Stadium. “But I’ll let Kyle speak to that.”

Lynch reiterated that they want to give newly acquired Jimmy Garoppolo the best chance to succeed. Garoppolo spent part of the 49ers' bye week learning the basics of the offensive system in meetings with quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello. Garoppolo also met one-on-one with Shanahan.

Beathard had his best game as a pro on Nov. 12, before the bye week, as he threw for 288 yards and two touchdowns in a 31-21 victory over the New York Giants. Garoppolo arrived in Santa Clara on Oct. 31 in a trade with the New England Patriots.

Lynch said he feels Garoppolo “is going to be our guy,” so the organization does not feel any urgency to rush him onto the field. In fact, Lynch sounded as if the 49ers are not placing a high priority on spending big on the quarterback position with Garoppolo and Beathard on the team.

"You still study every position, but we feel pretty good about where our quarterback room is,” Lynch said.