Four months after the 49ers’ Thanksgiving loss in Baltimore in 2011, Jim Harbaugh was still one cranky coach. At the 2012 league meetings in Florida, Harbaugh sought out the man who was responsible for having his team travel three time zones to play the Ravens on three days’ rest: NFL schedule maker Howard Katz. The meeting was arranged by Harbaugh’s older brother, John, “I talked to (Jim Harbaugh), then I talked to him the next day, and then I talked to him the third day,” Katz told the New York Times last year. “He said, ‘Now that I’ve met you, I don’t hate you quite as much.’ His brother said to me, ‘That’s as good as you’re going to do.’” Just over a year after their initial meeting, Jim Harbaugh’s displeasure with the league’s schedule maker has presumably further dissipated. For the second straight year, the 49ers’ schedule provides no reason to relentlessly curse Mr. Katz. Of course, Harbaugh could find ways in which his team is being treated unfairly in 2013 (the 49ers against the world!), but he’d have also to acknowledge the benefits of this season’s schedule. Here’s a look: THE BAD: The 49ers’ five longest road trips – Tennessee, London, New Orleans, Washington, D.C. and Tampa – will come in an eight-week span from Oct. 20 to Dec. 15. The trips to New Orleans and Washington are in back-to-back weeks. THE GOOD: The 49ers won’t face a team coming off a bye week this season. They will have a bye before hosting the Panthers on Nov. 10. Carolina will be coming off a home game against Atlanta the previous week.
49ers’ schedule analysis: The good and the bad
San Francisco Chronicle | Apr 19