49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

May 30, 2007
Passing concerns

Question: After the big-time offseason and draft, do you still see some holes in the defense and offense? A lot of the d-linemen don't fit the 3-4 - they're just not big enough to keep the opposing offensive linemen off the linebackers. The right side of the line could turn out to be a big mess. What do you think we still need, Matt?

Matt, Auburn

Answer: I wouldn't call this a hole as much as question mark, but you're right, the defensive line might be an issue. There's only one proven starter, Bryant Young, and he is reaching the end of his career. The 49ers are putting an awful lot of faith in Aubrayo Franklin, who hardly has played at all in four seasons. Another area of concern is the passing game, which wasn't all that spectacular last season. Not only did Alex Smith lose his offensive coordinator, he lost his top receiver, Antonio Bryant, and his best pass-catching tight end, Eric Johnson. They have some good replacements, but passing games don't blossom overnight.

- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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