No. 33: San Francisco 49ers

2013 Ultimate Standings

Updated: September 23, 2013, 12:31 PM ET
By Jeff Gold | ESPN The Magazine

Last year's rank: 36
Title track: 28
Ownership: 45
Coaching: 3
Players: 18
Fan relations: 43
Affordability: 75
Stadium experience: 102
Bang for the buck: 13

The 49ers went to the NFC championship game two years ago, the Super Bowl last season, they are the preseason favorites to win the NFC again and yet somehow they were ranked only 28th in title track. Jeez, Bay Area fans are tough. Guess that happens when you've won five Super Bowls and once had a stretch of 16 straight double-digit-win seasons (an NFL record). Not much impresses them.

Clearly, the fans love Jim Harbaugh (third in coaching), who took over from Mike Singletary (18-22). Harbaugh has gone 24-7-1 over his first two seasons and came within one play of taking the lead in the final minutes of the Super Bowl last season. The Niners' one low ranking came in stadium experience (102), but this season will be the last at tarnished Candlestick Park -- the third-oldest stadium in the NFL, behind only Lambeau Field and Soldier Field, both of which recently underwent major renovations. In 2014 the 49ers move to Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif., the site of Super Bowl L. Clearly, the only acceptable final game at the Stick would be a win in the NFC title game.

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