September 25 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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In case you have been sleeping for the 49ers season, Iíll let you in on a little secret. The 49ers wonít play this week. They are off on their bye week, and it couldnít have come at a better time. Before the season started, a look at the 49ers scheduled showed that the bye week would give the team two weeks to prepare to beat the Rams. But now that the Rams are 0-3, and the 49ers are 2-1 that amount of preparation time seems less important. Taking center stage is the 49ers paramount need to get healthy.
The 49ers were a sick team this past week, with as many as twenty players in the organization having flu like symptoms this past Sunday. The team however is showing no ill effects of the bug - which is a good sign. As players try and get their strength and their stomachs back, the two weeks will prove imperative in this task.
A great need for the team is time to heal. Plagued by a series of injuries at safety, offensive line and linebacker the 49ers find themselves extremely weakened at three key positions. There depth along the roster is wearing thin, and the 49ers will need this week to help get some players healthy, or at least back on track towards health.
So while beating the Rams remains a priority, it no longer is the solitary focus of the team. They want to be healthy and ready to play first and foremost. They want to get the best talent back on the field as quickly as possible. Those things have taken the focus away from what could be the 49ers biggest game of the season.