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Pre Season Game 3 Preview - San Francisco

Fooch from Niner's Nation was gracious enough to drop by and give us a run down on the state of the 49ers currently.  There a lot of names that will look familiar to you.  A number of us wildly endorsed the Bears going after Bryant Johnson.  He signed with San Fran and is currently injured.  Our name was once linked to Ashley Lelie, he also now plays for the 49ers and is also injured.  There current starting QB and the one we will see is J. T O'Sullivan.  Yes....that O'Sullivan.  The same one that was on the Bears NFL Europe squad and the one QB the Bears didn't start at some point over the last 3 years.  If he toasts us I don't know what I would do.  Here is what Fooch had to say:

The main story of 49ers camp as far as the rest of the world is concerned has been the 3-headed QB competition between J.T. O'Sullivan, Alex Smith and Shaun Hill.  Over the past few weeks it has quickly turned into the J.T. O'Sullivan show as JTO has started the first two preseason games and will start Thursday against the Bears.  That doesn't necessarily mean he's the best guy for the job, but it's somehow become his job almost by default (some of us think Mike Nolan just has a personal problem with Alex Smith).

The biggest non-QB story has been the emergence of rookie WR Josh Morgan, a 6th round pick out of Virginia Tech.  The former Hokie dropped in the draft due to character concerns, but he has been a revelation in camp.  Injuries to Bryant Johnson, Arnaz Battle and Ashley Lelie have changed Morgan's situation from competing for a roster spot to actually competing for a starting job.  He struggled a bit last week when covered by Charles Woodson and Al Harris (shocking, I know) so 49ers fans are curious to see what he does against the Bears #1s.

The 49ers will be putting together a bit of a patchwork offensive line due to injuries to their starting right tackle and left guard.  Barry Sims was signed to compete with and also be insurance for Jonas Jennings, who broke one of his knuckles last weekend.  Undrafted rookie free agent Brian De La Puente, a local boy who went to Cal will be filling in for injured left guard Adam Snyder.  De La Puente is a long shot to make the roster because of the numbers game but has had a very solid camp and could end up on the practice squad.

On defense, the 49ers had a vastly improved pass rush last weekend against the Packers, although they had some injury issues of their own on the offensive line.  If the 49ers could develop a consistent pass rush, it's reasonable to believe they could have a top 10 defense.  The secondary and linebacking corp is a strength (the addition of Takeo Spikes helps there), but will break down without a pass rush.

The Bears could expect some fireworks on special teams.  The 49ers punt and kickoff coverage has been spotty due to some short-term injuries to key special teamers.  I wouldn't be shocked to see one or two long returns from the Bears as both the Packers and Raiders have had long run backs on punts and kickoffs.  For their own returns, Allen Rossum apparently decided fair catches are for whimps and wants to run just about everything back.  He had a return for a touchdown last week, although it was late in the 4th quarter.

The 49ers are planning on sending their starters out into the third quarter although is for sure yet.  In spite of this, Frank Gore and Isaac Bruce are two guys who will probably not play beyond the first quarter, if history is any indicator.
Based on this report their weak points are something we can take advantage of, we know we can make plays on special teams.  We also have been getting very good pressure on the QB with our front four, they should have a good game.