Wednesday Breakfast with Tim and Mike: Excitement to see Leshoure Week 3

Posted Sep 18, 2012

Tim and Mike break down the San Francisco game and Mikel Leshoure's return.

What is the biggest concern about the loss at San Francisco?

Mike: For me, it's two things. One is how the defense couldn't make a drive-stopping stop on the 49ers' last possession to what became a clinching touchdown. And the other was that the offense couldn't carry the day.

The offense is the strength, but it didn't play that way.

Your thoughts?

Tim: I agree with you about the defense in the fourth quarter. The 49ers converted third-down plays of 7, 14, and 9 yards in that final touchdown drive. That’s just not good enough. The defense has to find a way to get off the field there.

I was disappointed in the way the Lions ran the ball, too. I know the 49ers have a great run defense but after watching the game again Monday there were some cuts Lions running backs missed and some opportunities they didn’t take advantage of.

I, for one, am excited to have Mikel Leshoure back this week.

What about you, Mike?

Mike: I want to see Leshoure, too, but that isn't the most important addition. The secondary needs fresh bodies -- or reconditioned ones at least.

Injuries have been a killer there, and the latest one (Drayton Florence) further depletes the depth.

I think we've seen what Louis Delmas means to the defense. He makes plays.

Back to Leshoure.  What do you expect from him?

Tim: If I were to venture a guess I’d say Houston is back this week, which is good. Concussions are a tricky thing, so you never know with Bentley, but I don’t think he’s far off, either. Getting those guys back will help.

I expect Leshoure to play well Sunday. Remember what Kevin Smith was able to do last year against the Panthers with fresh legs. Leshoure gives a new meaning to the term fresh legs. This kid hasn’t played a four-quarter game since 2010.

Not to mention the Titans defense has given up an average of 155 yards on the ground over their first two games.

Leshoure will be ready to roll and I think he plays well.

So, I think the running game will be better with Leshoure, what about the passing game, Mike? Stafford has looked a little off these first two weeks.

Mike:  You're right about Stafford. He hasn't been as sharp, but he isn't the only one. Nate Burleson has been mostly silent, and Titus Young has had a strangely ineffective first two games.

All of a sudden the great receiving depth has been pretty shallow.

Where do they go to fix things in Week 3?

Tim: I’m not too concerned about Burleson or Titus. Titus got off to a slow start last year, too, after dealing with a hamstring injury and he was slowed some in training camp by a sore knee. Maybe he’s still feeling those effects?

They need to keep going to that well, but I don’t think they’ve utilized the matchup advantage tight end Tony Scheffler possesses enough. After catching five passes against the Rams Week 1, Scheffler had one catch for 13 yards Sunday night with just three targets. He needs to be more of a weapon.

What do you see them doing Sunday in Nashville, Mike?

Mike:  They certainly know the plan. Let Stafford throw the ball. If they get open, he'll find them and deliver the ball.

The big issue could be the hangover effect -- coming down from playing on Sunday night against a top team to playing an ordinary Titans team.

However they do it -- run, pass, defend -- they need to come back from Nashville with a 2-1 record. It's all about building the won-lost record, not winning in the polls. In the NFL, there aren't any polls that matter.