TDT Preseason NFL Power Rankings No. 30: San Francisco 49ers

It's a new era in San Francisco, but will we see the same lackluster results?

The front office of the San Francisco 49ers organization was shaken up after last season. They gave general manager Trent Baalke the boot, and brought in former NFL star John Lynch as his replacement. After putting together a pretty solid draft class, Lynch has the Niners trending in the right direction. Although the team is in a full rebuilding mode, there’s nowhere to go but up, after winning just two games a season ago.

What I Like: I love the hire of John Lynch as the new GM. He’s a brilliant football mind and has already shown that he’s cut out for the position. He brought two outstanding defenders into the fold in defensive lineman Solomon Thomas and linebacker Reuben Foster. The Niners are shaping up to have a formidable front seven this year, led by NaVorro Bowman.

What I Hate: Even though they have made some improvements, there is still a serious lack of talent on both sides of the ball. The quarterback position is a crapshoot at this point and until that gets settled, this team can only go but so far.

Isaiah J. Downing/USA TODAY Sports

Offensive MVP: RB Carlos Hyde Hyde was just 12 yards short of the 1,000 yard mark last season and he reached the end zone six times. With so much youth at the skill positions in San Francisco, Hyde will be relied on heavily to shoulder the bulk of the workload. There aren’t many proven talents on this roster, but if he can remain healthy, he could have a big season.

Defensive MVP: LB NaVorro Bowman The 49ers defense is only as good as their best player, and there’s no debate as to who that player is. He’s had some injury concerns of his own, but when healthy, he is arguably one of the Top 5 defensive players in the NFL. He’s a great player and should be a strong leader for his young teammates.

Season Outlook: As I stated earlier, there is nowhere else to go but up for the 49ers this season. They certainly won’t contend for the NFC West crown this year — or the next two or three for that matter. But, they are making strides in the right direction. A lot of their success this year depends on who’s playing quarterback. Brian Hoyer is the most likely guy, but he hasn’t exactly been the model of consistency. It’s going to be a long season no matter what for the Niners.

4-12, 4th in NFC West

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