The 2014 NFL season is officially under way since the Seattle Seahawks overcame the Green Bay Packers on Thursday night.
All the fans have been waiting months for this and the players are almost as excited as the fans.
But it could be argued that the season may have come too soon for the San Francisco 49ers and their head coach Jim Harbaugh.
Ahead of them beginning their season on Sunday, the 49ers coach has several head aches surrounding his team leaving the team who have played for the last three consecutive NFC Championships looking very vulnerable.
There are many players and one team owner on the suspension list heading into the new season and there is one big name on the list from San Francisco.
Linebacker Aldon Smith will serve out a nine game suspension before he can even be considered by Harbaugh for the niners.
That personal conduct and substance abuse violation from Smith is possibly the biggest hit that the 49ers are having to deal with right now.
That being said, Ray McDonald is currently in the midst of a storm surrounding his arrest for domestic violence.
Harbaugh has reacted well since McDonald's arrest coming out and condemning his actions and affirming a zero tolerance policy on domestic violence.
That was received by the 49ers fans better than when his brother, John Harbaugh came out to defend Baltimore Ravens Runningback Ray Rice.
As if the suspensions weren't enough, there are some big names out injured for San Francisco including NaVarro Bowman, Glenn Dorsey, Kendall Hunter and Antoine Bethea.
So their team is missing key faces as they approach the new season but who isn't?
Perhaps more concerning for the 49ers will be their performance in pre-season where they went 2-2 and only managed to score three points in their first two games.
Dominant victories over the Houston Texans and San Diego Chargers gave them a bright sparks but losses to the Denver Broncos and Baltimore Ravens got them off to a bad start.
But arguably the most concerning thing for the 49ers, comes in the form of the other NFC teams.
The quest to reach the Super Bowl will be tough enough for the 49ers given that they're in the same conference as the Seattle Seahawks who were impressive on Thursday and all of last season when they actually won the Super Bowl.
But when you're in the same division as the Seahawks, it gets more difficult and if you look at the wider picture in the NFC, they have more teams to be afraid of.
The Washington Redskins, New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles and Carolina Panthers will all surely be challenging the niners come the post-season.
I certainly wouldn't back the 49ers to make it to the Super Bowl this year and unless they hit the ground running they may even struggle to make it to the NFC Championship game.
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