Mike Singletary, Alex Smith take turns calling each other out

The 49ers’ Week One meltdown was the most complete of any team.

Michael Crabtree’s lazy preseason led to a sloppier opening performance.  The team couldn’t run the ball.  The team’s red zone defense provided little resistance. Oh, and the team’s starting quarterback and head coach took turns calling each other out after the game. 

Wait, what?

Mike Singletary publicly backed Alex Smith after the game as his starter, but Matt Maiocco of Comcast Bay Area reports that the coach “called out” Smith, Crabtree, and the offensive line to the team. 

“I think as time went on [Smith] began to press a little bit more,” Singletary told the media.

Meanwhile, Smith called out the coaching staff, intentionally or not.  Trying to explain a series of penalties, wasted timeouts, and other offensive confusion, Smith not-so-subtly blamed the coaches for getting plays in slowly.

“For whatever reason most of [the timeouts] occurred on third-and one, fourth-and-one, so yeah, whatever it is, deciding on what personnel would go in, deciding on if we would go for it, that decision has to be
made,” Smith said.  “The refs aren’t waiting around to spot the ball based on what
we’re going to decide to do. That clock’s rolling.

“You’ve got to make that decision if you’re going to go for it, then the play’s got to get called. You’ve got to have a call ready. That happens fast. It was all in key situations like that today when we had most of the problems. It’s frustrating, absolutely.”

Holy crap. If you think we are overreacting, check out the venerable Lowell Cohn’s excellent column for the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat.

Smith not only made his coaching staff look incompetent (correctly), but made them sound like liars.  Singletary blamed all the confusion on headset problems, but Smith indicated the headset was fine for the most part.

Singletary has a reputation as a disciplinarian, but his team doesn’t reflect it.  From Crabtree’s elephant in the locker room to the team’s play to the differing media stories on Sunday, this looks like the same old disorganized, dysfunctional franchise we’ve grown used to.

65 responses to “Mike Singletary, Alex Smith take turns calling each other out

  1. Alex Smith and Crabtree both looked bad yesterday, but losing so ugly like that is an entire team effort and that falls on the coaching staff.
    So Smith is right in putting the blame on the coaches.
    Crabtree getting away with being a diva is the coaches’ fault, too.

  2. And down go the Niners! There is a joke there somewhere. Almost as funny as hearing Joe Buck exclaim, “And the Packers pound it in!”, after GB’s last TD.
    So much for them winning the division. They were awful.

  3. Good on Smith for not letting the coach throw him under the bus. I’m not sure why everyone thinks Singletary is a great head coach. What has he done? Yelled at guys? That doesn’t work for long with kids that are actually afraid of you. How well do you think its gonna work with millionaire adults? What does Alex Smith have to lose? No one thinks he’s a good QB anyways.

  4. I had heard the OC takes too long making his decision, then he relays it to the QB coach, who then gives the call to Smith.

  5. Whatever the drama is it’s been 6 LONG years and Alex IS NOT “the guy”. I dont care how you dress him up or present him, he’s a career back up. And to think, the Niners had Aaron Rodgers in their backyard at Cal and decided to go Alex. Smart. I will give them credit for starting to turn things around but they’ll only go as far as the QB can take them.

  6. Crabtree’s preseason diva act? NO! But I thought he was the greatest receiver to come out of the draft in awhile, wow was I mis informed…LOSERRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

  7. Honestly, what did the Niners expect. Singletary is more of a novelty than a real head coach. He was fun for a while, brought some attention to an otherwise boring team, but seriously, it’s time to move on and hire a real coach.
    The guy is just one repetitive sound bite, providing plenty of media fodder and memorable moments, but you can’t expect a guy that inexplicably drops trow in front of a group of grown men to game plan and lead your team.

  8. Singletary is a high school football coach. He thinks that motivating players during the week will win on Sundays. The nuances of the game, like game planning, and game and clock management, escape him.
    This takes me back to a PFT post from last week about how Pete Carroll named the different days of the week as a motivational tool. You all laughed and laughed at what a nincompoop Carroll was and how that stuff doesn’t work on the “grown men” (lol) in the NFL.
    Well, it turns out that mid-week motivation only works when mixed with a little game-day intelligence.
    Who outcoached who on Sunday?

  9. Can everyone outside of San Fran now jump off the bandwagon finally? Singletary should be a defensive coordinator, not a head coach. Alex Smith in my eyes is a very below average QB. hes on the same tier as Matt Moore, Kyle Orton, David Garrard and guys like that. they can look good on certain days, when everything is going right. Guys like him dont lead you very far.
    Carbtree needs to get his act together. This is the guy who thought he was worth so much money that he held out half a season. the least he can do is run hard on every play. He’s got that Randy Moss attitude of “ill play hard when i wanna play hard”. the problem is he isnt half as talented as Moss.
    This team should go 9-7 just by playing in that awful division. But they will be blown out of the water as soon as the playoffs start.

  10. Everything going on with the 49ers involves decisions being made by the coaching staff and/or the coach who apparently has no one in the front office to question them and probably no power or desire to outright veto them. The FO is like, spend the money, hire them, and pray they work out while we spend our energy on the new stadium. That’s it. As far as I know, there are no savvy, experienced football minds questioning or advising the coach in house in the FO.
    If there were, they would be calling Singletary in and asking him to do things differently. Even Steve Young has seen and said Alex Smith does not have it. Yet no one listens. They let Singletary continue on with his philosophy that the QB is NOT the most important player on the team, when evidence in this day and age says otherwise. They let him put all his ‘faith’ in a QB with a lifetime passer rating of 68.8. They let him hire someone like Jimmy Raye who has been a failure everywhere. They let him cut Nate Davis, the most promising raw skilled QB on the team instead of insisting he be developed at any cost – or at least find out he can’t be developed, instead of simply calling him out and cutting him. They pass on getting a proven veteran QB in the event Smith failed yet again. So I blame everyone. I’m sorry but ownership does not get a pass for just throwing money at something, hiring someone and then just sitting back and hoping it all works out. They have to be proactive on something besides the stadium.

  11. Are people starting to realize they were giving Iron Mike wayyyyyy too much credit while he has yet to accomplish anything as a coach?
    Sure, everyone likes him, sure everyone respects him, and he’s really not a BAD coach… but it’s nice to see people starting to realize they were nuthugging him for no reason.

  12. Bad communication didn’t make Smith throw balls at people’s feet or over their head.
    This team is going nowhere with Alex Smith at the helm. They wanted one last year to know for sure, and they got it:
    As for Singletary, I think he is a good HC but he will be fired if changes don’t occur with Jimmy Raye and Alex Smith.

  13. Now i’m justified in the belief Raiders shouldn’t have taken Crabtree. But the other guy we took isn’t much better…but at least he isn’t a diva

  14. After the Seahags scored their second or third touchdown, they showed a cutaway shot of Singletary on the sideline. He was laughing. That says it all right there. Seriously, do you think Belichick, Parcells, Payton, Reid, or any of those guys would be laughing/smiling on the sidelines when they’re getting their ass handed to them on the field? Singletary was a great linebacker, but sucks as a head coach.

  15. Rosenthal: “The 49ers’ Week One meltdown was the most complete of any team.”
    Whereas every other franchise played magnificently in Week One – without any communications problems, problematic relationships, or general sloppiness whatsoever –
    Talk about jumping from A to Z, Gregg – when you get a splinter do you call 911? Slick, efficient, clicking-on-all-cylinders performances takes time. Think what might happen if Florio reacted to sloppy written presentations by firing people?
    (From a Packers fan, temporarily supporting – to a degree – the Vikes as well in Favre’s last year, with affection for Seahawks, Niners, resurgent Lions, and respect for a host of other teams.)

  16. More than anything, SF needs a competent OC. The talent is there to at least COMPETE offensively. You have a fantastic RB, a fantastic TE, and everyone on the OL was either a 1st or 2nd round pick. To not only be pushed around on the OL, but out-coached as well?
    The playcalling has not been up to par. Like it or not, this team is only going to go as far as Alex Smith takes them. The running game is not there. It won’t be, until Rachal, Iupati, and Anthony Davis grow up. Until then, SF should be passing from the spread offense to set up the run. Alex is more comfortable in the spread, and they have some pretty good weapons in Vernon Davis, Crabtree, Josh Morgan, and Delanie Walker. Not to mention two excellent receiving RBs in Gore and Westbrook. This could be a dangerous team, if they’d learn to throw early and often, and put defenses on their heels!

  17. I can’t figure out if Singletary is a caricature of a head coach, or a caricature of a sleestak.
    Nevertheless, he is a caricature. The novelty should wear off quickly, and the coaching carousel will resume it’s usual course in the Bay area.

  18. alex smith has had way too many chances to prove himself… i can’t stand watching him throw it 5-10 yards on every throw anymore
    time to give troy smith his shot

  19. How many coaches will Alex Smith get fired before ownership realizes that he is a bust? Mike Dinglebary should be a motivational speaker and not a head coach. Pete Carroll showed how to make adjustments and how a REAL head coach manages a game. Also, Alex Smith better watch his mouth. One day he might walk into a dark locker room and see Dinglebary standing there with his pants around his ankles.

  20. “Almost as funny as hearing Joe Buck exclaim, “And the Packers pound it in!”, after GB’s last TD.”

  21. Good luck with the Champs on Monday night next week…Brees is going to torch the niners. I think its safe to say you’ll need far more than 6 points to even stay in the game next week…gonna be ugly. TWO DAT!

  22. Wow the Seahawks look good!? Who is going to win that division? At this point I am not so sure that the Rams couldn’t win it.

  23. Yeah, the 9er’s melted down plenty on their own but lets give the Hawks some credit for contributing heavily to the meltdown with the right adjustments, completely stuffing the run (Gore 37 yrds) and flat out outplaying them in all phases. It takes some quality coaching to blow out any nfl team first week with a roster that barley knows each others names. Granted its one week of a long season and things can turn quick but gotta like the direction and college like enthusiasm the Hawks are bringing.

  24. At least Vernon Davis showed up (8 catches for 73 yards)
    I guess Mike Singletary was right – “Cannot win with ’em!… Can’t do it!”

  25. As i posted the other day, the 49ers were way over-rated during the offseason, and Singletary is a goofball. I picked this team to finish worst in the worst division in football, even worse than the dreadful Rams. Now pay attention to what happens next: Singletary’s response in the next couple weeks to Smith’s comments will be destructive, rather than constructive. Just watch. Meltdown has started. (as Florio would advise, buy popcorn.)

  26. Alex Smith is a complete and total bust and Mike Singletary is insane to keep him as his starter. A drowned squirrel would have done a better job. Michael Crabtree appears to be a bust as well. Pity, because the 49ers are loaded with talent.

  27. Say what you will about DHB (Bey), at least he’s not a cancer/diva like Crabtree. Yes Raiders could have gotten him at 20 and should have traded down but I’m glad we didn’t take him.
    Of DHB has his usual 1 catch per game. And again we have another strong armed, terrible leader QB to moan about until it’s too late and then we’ll put in the strong-enough armed Gradkowski who’ll do great but still won’t get his deserved due.

  28. Im sure Alex Smith will catch on and get to be the QB we all thought he would be next year in year 7. He was well worth picking #1 overall and letting Aaron Rodgers fall to Green Bay at #24. Everything will be fine whiner Fans! I think Singletary needs to pull down his pants in the locker room again. That worked, right?

  29. @Boudin:
    I don’t know what you just said little kid, but your special!
    (quote from Jay & Silent Bob Strikes Back)
    That has to be the most ignorant rant I have heard. A) Who are you with & who are you “coming for” B) What exactly does it mean to “get crunk”? Sounds like your planning to take a tennis ball in your keister…. Is that getting crunk? C) It is currently Monday day, not Monday Night. Moday night will occur at kickoff.
    I don’t know, but I am very confused. Thanks for getting moron of the day honors, & the day isn’t even over!!

  30. BC says:
    September 13, 2010 11:21 AM
    The 49ers’ Week One meltdown was the most complete of any team.
    It was more complete than the Raiders?
    Let’s see…..one team was picked by most to possibly have a decent season and maybe squeak out a 9-7 record.
    The other was the concensus pick of just about every football “expert” to be the runaway winner of the NFC West.
    So, yeah, it probably was bigger.

  31. BC says:
    September 13, 2010 11:21 AM
    The 49ers’ Week One meltdown was the most complete of any team.
    It was more complete than the Raiders?
    The 49ers and Raiders may have lost by the same point margin, but this time the dysfunctional organization in the Bay Area isn’t in Oakland.
    You can stop looking down your noses now. How does it feel when you have nothing left to hang your hat on?

  32. This coming from a life long 49er fan. this team is bad. A Smith isn’t the answer, Singltary isn’t the right coach, and Crabtree is a bust.
    Everyone overhyped this team, just like a few years ago. Getting blown out by the seahawks shows that this team has a long way to go.
    I hope they turn it around and maybe have a respectable season like last year, but we’re not even close to a superbowl or being a good playoff team

  33. Great job by the Seahawks yesterday. They dominated on all sides of the ball.
    Before we anoint Pete Carroll, lets remember some of the circumstances for yesterday:
    Scot McCloughan – 2009 49ers GM,
    Current Seahawks front office member
    Jeff Ulbrich – 2009 49ers Linebacker,
    Current Seahawks coach
    Kentwan Balmer – 2009 49ers D-Lineman, Current Seahawks DL
    Michael Robinson – 2009 Special Teams & RB, Current same position with Seahawks
    Brandon Jones – 2009 49ers WR,
    Was signed by the Seahawks in the training camp and then cut
    I’m sure knowing what the 49ers do in all three phases had to help a little.
    Despite how awful they looked, losing was good for this team. Hopefully this loss will sharpen the focus of this team that seemed to come into the season cocky.
    Go Niners!

  34. Wins on the road are tough in this league…… Young team that will get better, but Seattle will be better than many think.

  35. Final comment — Singletary keeping Smith was as much an ownership decision as anything. The guy worked his ass off all offseason and is on the lkast year of his contract.
    Team needs to know if he’s the guy and THIS YEAR is the year where the following is in place:
    A) His continuity of offensive systems and
    B) More talent than he’s ever had.
    But the team must know, behind closed doors, that A & B do not apply if the C option is not true, which is:
    C) He has the talent to be an NFL QB.
    Bottom line, you can have all the work ethic and weapons in the world but it does not automatically translate to eing an NFL-capable QB.
    Smith has all the off-field stuff covered, but no instincts when it comes time to play.
    I pray the Nate Davis era gets a shot in the arm next year. Give me a year of him struggling, even assuming a fraction of the playbook is being used, than watch Smith embarrass this team for another 16 weeks.

  36. They not only looked clueless and bad, but not enthused even to be there — on Opening Day. Singletary is a legend and a likeable enough guy, but looking more and more out of his element. He’s going to have to do more than wear a huge wooden cross acround his neck.

  37. @citynative:
    Shouldn’t that make it hurt worse?
    “Hey- we got our asses kicked by a team some people picked to be one of the worst in the league! But at least they did it with a bunch of our own guys!”
    Do you really think that the Seahawks needed to poach marginal players to figure out the tendencies of a team they play twice a year every year?

  38. Singletary said Smith was his guy. Everyone knows Smith sucks and always will. Singletary is not ready to be a HC in any league, the guy is a joke. That said, i’m glad he’s coaching the 40 whiners.

  39. @City_Native: Spot on post.
    In addition…
    You also forgot the noise and HFA for Seattle. That dug in at some point. The team just folded which is what bothered me the most. Like many, I want to give Alex his shot at a 2nd season with same OC, but I feared last year and am scared again that the OC chosen is not the right one.
    Mike Martz also brought back nice memories yesterday…could have taken the lead but instead had to try and go for it on 4th down. Very lucky to have had another chance later.

  40. niners were the biggest fail yesterday. remember, they were supposed to win.
    no one in their right mind really expected the raiders to go east and win against a healthy titans team.

  41. Realitypolice-Do you really think that the Seahawks needed to poach marginal players to figure out the tendencies of a team they play twice a year every year?
    Yes… This will be proven when they get blown out by teams that have a playbook they haven’t studied.

  42. BenRapistberger says:
    September 13, 2010 11:12 AM
    Are people starting to realize they were giving Iron Mike wayyyyyy too much credit while he has yet to accomplish anything as a coach?
    “Iron Mike” = Mike Ditka (or Mike Tyson)
    “Samurai Mike” = Mike Singletary
    It’s funny to see how FAST everyone jumps OFF a bandwagon.
    Short ride, eh?
    I say not only will the 9ers bounce back by season’s end, I say they’ll do it starting NEXT WEEK against the Saints.
    (and no, I’m not drunk…yet…)

  43. The 49’ers aren’t nearly as bad as they played yesterday . I questioned a couple of the play calls where they went for it on 4th down , and there was one clear TD where I believe it was the fullback was wide open and overthrown .
    Hard to play in our stadium with the noise , and I don’t see Frank Gore being held to those totals every game . They’ll bounce back and play some decent ball later this year I’m pretty sure . It’s only the first game , and what I think we saw yesterday was that the NFC West’s 4 teams are all pretty close . St. Louis played a good game against the Cards . It’s anyone’s division to win this year …

  44. It’s a crap franchise. No GM (York and Marathe somehow think they’re GM’s), constantly hiring coaches with no head coaching experience (Nolan, Singletary), one-trick pony head coach (yell, scream, rant, rave), same bad QB movie six years running (Alex Smith), DB’s suck. Crabtree sucks, is too slow and lacks even a modicum of courage. Haven’t had a winning season in 7 years under this pathetic ownership.
    Easily the most over-hyped team this offseason. Do something first, then tell us how great you are.

  45. we all know singletary wasnt the most experienced coach frisco could have gotten. have read everyone bitch about players.
    lets check out jimmy raye. this is his 14th pro coaching job, after 6 years in the college ranks and 2 years as a player.
    he has been an oc from 1983-86 with the rams and bucs. 1990 in new england. 2001 with the skins. 2004-05 in oakland. senior offensive asst in nyj 2002-03. TE/rb/oc in kc 19892-2000. and mostly wideouts coach, some backs coach the rest of the way.
    team records…
    1977 sf 5-9
    1978-79 detroit 7-9, 2-14
    1980-82 atlanta 12-4 (0-1), 7-9, 5-4 (0-1)
    1983-84 la rams 9-7 (1-1), 10-6 (0-1)
    1985-86 tb 2-14, 2-14
    1987-89 atlanta 3-12, 5-11, 3-13
    1990 NE 1-15
    1991 la rams 3-13
    1992-2000 kc 10-6 (0-1), 11-5 (2-1), 9-7 (0-1), 13-3 (0-1), 9-7, 13-3 (0-1), 7-9, 9-7, 7-9
    2001 wash 8-8
    2002-03 nyj 9-7, 6-10
    2004-05 oakland 5-11, 4-12
    2006-08 nyj 10-6 (0-1), 4-12, 9-7
    2009-now sf 8-8, 0-1 so far
    225-282. excluding kc, 134-221. i dont see what is so special about him.
    he sure didnt get kc over the hump. if memory serves me right, he was run out of LA. based on some of those records, that probly wasnt the only place he was run out of.

  46. LOL, The most complete meltdown of ANY team, LOL. Hey niner fans, Oakland is young at the skill positions, we started a division 2 rookie at center and went into a playoff caliber teams stadium and lost. The seahawks?!?!?! WOW. and now after that disaster and ALL the infighting, you have the Saints to deal with. I LOVE IT!!

  47. I have been telling you Whiner fans about Singletary, the guy can’t coach the NFL level without enough experience as an assistant and coordinator.
    Sorry. His corporate speaker background is starting to show!
    Come on, the arm and arm “we’re united” crap was one of the stupidest things I saw from NFL players. Pathetic. Might as well kick up their legs and do the can can! Pathetic.

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