The man responsible for putting a competitive product on the field for the San Francisco 49ers, general manager Trent Baalke, isn’t doing a great job these days. He seems to have a firm grasp on the reality of the situation and shockingly told KNBR 680-AM last weekend that he feels bad for fans.
Heck, he’s not even sure if staying positive is the right stance to take right now.
“I don’t know if you do keep yourself up, or positive,” Baalke said (h/t The Mercury News). “I think you are drained. It’s a draining experience.
“I feel bad for the fans, I feel bad for a lot of people, the ownership in particular,” Baalke added. “You know, they give us everything we need and I’ve said that. I’ve gone public with that (Nov. 13 at Arizona). If we don’t get it done, put it on me.”
San Francisco is now in the midst of a 10-game losing streak, the longest such streak in franchise history.
Offensively, the 49ers lack talent at key skill positions, including, some might argue, the most important position of all. However, it’s worth pointing out that Colin Kaepernick has been steadily improving in Chip Kelly’s offense, playing at a high level despite a significant deficit of skill at the receiver position.
That’s small comfort to loyal fans, however, whose standards are among the highest in the NFL after seeing the 49ers feature nothing but the best during the 1980s, 1990s and more recently a small streak of success during the Jim Harbaugh era.
It’s not surprising that fans have even gone so far as to fly a “Fire Baalke” banner over Levi’s Stadium this year.
It seems inevitable that Baalke will be fired at season’s end. The team recently promoted Tom Gamble to assistant general manager, and he’s the perfect man to slide into Baalke’s position should he be axed.
In the meantime, we’re not sure if fans will be happy or mad that Baalke feels bad for them as the team continues to tank.