Erickson must make 'Niners look smart

Dennis Erickson is already under enormous pressure, and losing to Steve Mariucci's Lions would be devastating.

Updated: October 3, 2003, 2:33 PM ET
By By Darrell Trimble | NFL Insider
Of all the reunion matchups taking place this weekend, none bears watching more than the one in San Francisco, where Steve Mariucci returns to the Bay Area to square off against the organization that fired him.

However, the real juice has little to do with Mariucci and how he handles the situation. While he will have additional incentive to beat his former employers and show them they made the wrong choice in dismissing him, the meat of the contest will be how Niners coach Dennis Erickson handles the pressure of proving to the Niners brass that it made the right call by hiring him.