Every season, every new coach, every glimmer of hope at the beginning of the regular season have all been shot down for the last almost-decade, so I wasn't exactly putting any eggs in any basket called "Jim Harbaugh" when he was hired during the off-season. With the lock-out, I felt for sure we'd be right in the gutter again, our hopes of even making it to the playoffs still years away. I read up a little on this "Jim" guy, and what he had accomplished at Stanford, but I wasn't going to start getting my hopes up. High expectations are breeding grounds for big disappointments, after all.
If you had told me in our measly 2-2 preseason that we'd have a winning season by week 11, about to clinch our division, and would have the second best standings in the NFC, I would have told you to shut your mouth and quit lying. There was no way this Jim guy was that good. I mean, sure, we have some of the best players in the NFL, but no coach so far had been able to bring that talent together to win games. As everyone is likely finding out now, those doubts have been shot to pieces. I believe in Jim Harbaugh and I believe in this team. I even believe that Alex Smith has a future as a starting quarterback.
I know, I know, they still have things to work on. But their passion is so strong. They have worked so hard for every win. They have learned hard lessons and have been able to adjust on the fly to whatever the opposing team throws at them. We could be in the Super Bowl within a couple of years. Hell, we could even win it by then. It's too soon this season to hope that we'd even take conference championship...but damn, they are determined to make all the doubters eat their words. Our defense is amazing. Our running game is strong and even Smith's passing game improves with each week.
I wasn't even going to watch the Eagles game. I didn't want to watch us get beat by stupid Michael Vick. The first hint of the game that I got was when the Niners were down 20-3. Then Chris got a push notification on his iPad that we had won. I thought he was joking. Then we played the Lions, who were then undefeated. We won. It was an amazing game. The next big game we had where people were saying we'd probably finally lose was the Giants. Everyone thought we were a fluke. Then, we beat the Giants. Shit just got real.
Tomorrow is HarBowl, or Harbaugh v. Harbaugh. Jim and John, brothers and coaches of the Niners and the Ravens respectively, will have their teams face each other tomorrow in Baltimore. Both teams are trying to clinch their Division with these games. It's going to be a helluva match. It's so important to me that I planned where I'd be on Thanksgiving based on where I could watch the game. So, even if the Niners don't go all the way this season and walk away with the greatest turn around season of all time (in my mind, at least) and the Division, I'll be satisfied if we win Harbowl. I've got a new Niners wallpaper on my phone and I'm more excited about it than I am about cranberry sauce-and I love me some cranberry sauce. So, happy Thanksgiving everyone, hope you all enjoy your holiday. Go Niners!