49ers Free Agency Goal: Destroy Rivalry With Seahawks


This is the 40-Something Files!

A weekly take on the state of Seattle Sports through the lens of a guy whose four decades of fandom has earned too many scars, and seen too few celebrations.

Suddenly, everyone and their grandma has taken to the airwaves announcing free agent signings from all over the NFL. Here we stand, the 12’s of Seattle and NFL fans in general, hanging on every leaked word as we finally reach the “official” free agency signing period.

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Each declaration, including, sadly, word that Byron Maxwell has gone to “the (other) birds” is coyly accompanied by some form of this qualifier: “teams can’t officially sign free agents until March 10th, the actual start of the free agent signing period for 2015, so believe what you read at your own peril! Ah, Ah, Ahhhhhhhh”

But hey, who’s got time for formalities in today’s sports news cycle, right?

The trashiness of these premature free agent signings (and related reporting) aside, there’s been quite a few interesting rumors floated that, on the surface, are some serious “red meat” for the 12’s.  Red and Gold meat, that is…

Forget about the twisted fashion in which Jim Harbaugh‘s tenure came to an end in San Francisco. That’s ancient history.  This week, the very foundation upon which brand new Levi’s Stadium was built has begun to crumble in a way that no measure of earthquake rated reinforcement could withstand, nor was it ever meant to.

Taking stock of the last 48 hours or so worth of rumored activity coming out of San Francisco (aka Santa Clara):

1) Frank Gore to Philly (Again, 12’s are sad to see Maxwell go, but this is a way more hurtful flee to Philly for Niners fans – as long as we’re keeping score)

2,3,4) Other offensive staples also appear on the move, such as Michael Crabtree of “mediocre” fame and Guard Mike Iupati, who has been a solid contributor.  There’s even a hard-to-justify rumor that a certain bicep-slurpin’ QB is being shopped around.

5,6) On the defensive side of the ball, Patrick Willis and Justin Smith appear headed to retirement.

12’s can’t help but revel in the extensive amount of earth-shattering news.  All the while, our red and gold-wearing counterparts have turned on their team’s ownership and management, in a 180 reminiscent of the students of Adams College turning on the Alpha Betas as Gilbert made his climactic speech in the formulaic finale of Revenge of the Nerds!

But wait just a second… what are the 49’ers and their fans getting out of this, exactly?  The Seahawk’s rivalry with San Francisco is going down in flames, at the precise time that Seattle is enjoying it’s greatest success in franchise history!  Right when the Seahawks vs. Niners battles, tabbed as epic games between NFC West behemoths, staked claim of the NFL’s most cherished and hyped two or three time per year showcase, leave it to the hated 49ers to ruin it for the Seahawks and the 12’s – and every other NFL fan, for that matter.

We paid our dues as the underdog, rising to the challenge of taking on the powerhouse San Franciscan stalwart, offering competitive – if not quite successful – resistance.  The Seahawks took defeat (and fans took smack talk) on the chin time and again, but inched closer and closer to taking out the beast.

For two years running now, The ‘Hawks have begun to rewrite this rivalry’s rules.  The “Beastly” shoe is now planted firmly on the Seattle team’s foot, and the underdog baton has been passed San Fran’s way.

Tweets and facebook posts about “5 rings” have given way to Vines featuring the LOB ferociously punishing Vernon Davis, and mercilessly picking off Kaepernick as he stares down his intended targets.

Oh, how the NFL rivalry of the century was just getting started, when the inept powers that be in San Francisco separated from the one person in their leadership, Jim Harbaugh, who had any football where-with-all, and so adeptly (insanely) stoked this NFC West rivalry’s fires.

And now this… The 2015 NFL Free Agency dismemberment of the Niner team as we’ve come to know it. Kiss the national spotlight on games between our Hawks and their Niners goodbye.  Nobody wants to see a franchise spinning out of control face off against a franchise that is squarely in its prime.

I hate to admit it, but those damn Niners and their insufferable fans (some of whom, shamefully, I also call friends outside of football fandom) just might have gotten the last laugh in the annual series that had become the lifeblood of The 12’s passion.

Right when we hit our stride (with our smack-talk fearless, our team unstoppable, and the national build up to the games between the 49ers and the Hawks lasting for weeks on end) leave it to the San Francisco Forty Whiner fans to turn on their team and fold up their trash-talk-tents.

Just like in Revenge of the Nerds, the cool kids are taking their ball and going home. It should surprise no one that the 49ers and their fans have taken this once heated, but respectable rivalry…


(Special thanks to D-man, Jimmy, and Tracy (Queen of Bellingham) for the inspiration… Hashtag GoHawks!)