When Bill Walsh was the 49ers head coach and it was Thanksgiving week, he would go into the locker room and every player had to say something he was thankful for.
This showed Walsh's humanity and wisdom.
So in honor of Walsh, let's do the same thing today. Let's share what the 49ers should be thankful for.
And there's a special reason to do this, because 2020 has been the worst year of our lifetimes.
So let's start in a generic way. The 49ers can give thanks that they're still the 49ers. The San Francisco 49ers really are an important sports franchise in America. God love the Tennessee Titans, Jacksonville Jaguars and Carolina Panthers, but they're not the 49ers. Even when the 49ers aren't good, they're the San Francisco 49ers. It's like being the New York Yankees.
And that implies tradition -- what a tradition. And it also implies a standard. A standard of how they comport themselves on and off the field, and a standard of play that they may not always reach but they understand.
The 49ers can be thankful even though they're not that good this season. And there are reasons. They've had an unbelievable run of bad luck with injuries and illness. They're going to be much better next season.
They're the San Francisco 49ers and they're going to come back. They can look each other in the eye and say they're thankful for that.
And even though they've had so many injuries, it doesn't seem like any are career-enders. And even though lots of guys have gone on the Reserve/COVID-19 List, no one has had strange complications from the virus. That's all good.
It has been an incredibly grim year. At least the 49ers are getting through it with hope for next year. No matter what happens the final six games of this season, they have tremendous hope. They can come back next season the way the Rams came back this season.
The 49ers can be thankful for hope.