What a stand up guy. Two days after Kyle, filling in for Ted Gin who happens to be one of the best in the business, had the ball supposedly brush against his leg, then had the ball stripped out of his arm while trying desperately to get his team to the super bowl. Two days after his father met him outside the locker room and asked his son “are you man enough, are you tough enough to get through this?” Two days after a nation (Niner nation) cried itself to sleep, amid death threats, Kyle was indeed man enough to sit through a very tastefully performed interview on the Dan Patrick show. The man has huge balls, and class.
That said more to me about the character of our team than 13 and 3 ever could have. Asked what he took away from the loss, Kyle only said that it was the way his team and coach never even thought of throwing him under the bus for the loss. I love and respect many former coaches, but there is no way they would ever have gotten that kind of integrity out of a team. It certainly was not on Kyle that we lost that game. We can think of 30 other plays where we just didn’t get it done.
We did far more than was ever expected. In a way it is great that we didn’t make it all the way to the big dance the first year. There is so much we can do to improve our team.
Give us a world class wide receiver or two, keep the team healthy, and we will have another shot next year. It would not really have been reasonable or accurate for us to have gone to the super bowl this year. Not that the way we lost was how anyone had it pictured, but it seemed to me that the Saints game would have been the tougher of the two.
I can’t stress the words “team” and “character” enough. This comes down from the top. Jed has done lots of growing up, and we have a coach that (hopefully) won’t be going anywhere for a really long time. The way these men conduct themselves on and now off the field is an inspiration. In every way, I feel that we had a “perfect” season. Something left to shoot for, but all in all an inspiring performance. Thanks Jed, Jim, Alex, Frank, Alton…. I’m a relative rookie; I only had season tickets for 23 years. It makes me proud to be a “Niner” again.