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Sunday Night Football Open Thread: Bears v. 49ers

Earthquakes, 49ers and Bears...oh my! Let's keep the NFL action going, as we travel a short distance south across San Francisco Bay from Oakland to this NFC tilt in the high-tech cradle of California. Talk Sunday Night Football on Battle Red Blog.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Your Houston Texans are 2-0 to start the season!  Coach Bill O'Brien is the first head coach in franchise history to start out 2-0 in the first year with the team.  Dom Capers won the Texans' inaugural game against the Cowboys, and then went on a five-game losing streak to finish the season 4-12 in last place in the AFC South.  Gary Kubiak started out 0-3 before defeating the Dolphins at Relaint Stadium; ending the year with a 6-10 record at the bottom of the AFC South.  O'Brien is off to a great start!  Let's keep it rolling...

Welcome to Levi's Stadium!  The NFL's newest stadium cost a whopping $1.3 billion and will be the site of Super Bowl 50 on February 7, 2016.

Al Michaels and Chris Collinsworth visit the 49ers' new home in Santa Clara, CA for Sunday Night Football tonight.  It's the first time for Sunday Night Football in this venue, and the NBC production crew shared the following comments in an article from the San Jose Mercury News:

"First, I love the match-up,'' Collinsworth wrote in an e-mail. "But, I have to admit that I am anxious to see what the technology capital of the world can do with an NFL stadium."

Fred Gaudelli, the Emmy Award-winning producer, has seen it already, and he's optimistic about Sunday's show. "I think it might be the most technologically advanced stadium I've been in, with everything they have going on interactively,'' he said. "I thought it would be beautiful on television. I like everything I saw. It's a true work of art."

"One thing that this stadium has that most news stadiums don't have is room on the sideline,'' Gaudelli said. "When you have a cart on each sideline like we do, and handhelds on each side like we do, it tends to get really tight down there. Here, they actually gave you room on the sideline. I thought that was a nostalgic but nice touch."

Michele Tafoya, the two-time Emmy winner who has sideline duties for the game, comes with a bit of nostalgia herself. Because her father grew up in San Francisco, she spent her weekends going to 49ers games at The Stick.

"I have a million memories from those days,'' Tafoya said via email. "But I am excited to see the new stadium with all of its innovations.  "And as a sideline reporter, I will be grateful to walk on a less boggy field -- presumably with less wind."

And from a broadcast standpoint, it looks as if it will be a big upgrade from Candlestick.

"There is no comparison, nor should there be,'' Gaudelli said. "The thing that Candlestick has is that it's a treasure chest of tremendous 49ers memories and 49ers games. But that's what today's players will have to do, create their own memories."

Tonight we have Harbaugh v. Trestman.  They once coached together for the Oakland Radiers when Jim Harbaugh accepted his first coaching job as a quality control coach on offense and reported directly to then Offensive Coordinator Marc Trestman.

Which QB will have the bigger night?  Can Jay Cutler help the 0-1 Bears get their first win of the season?  Will Colin Kaepernick guide the 49ers to a 2-0 start?  Pull up a chair and see.  The usual rules apply, and the floor is yours for commenting.

Alright, Carrie Underwood, the audience is warmed up and ready.  Grab your mic and hit it!