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SANTA CLARA — The 49ers are one of the most talented teams in the NFL — with eight Pro Bowl players to prove it.

But even the best teams have a weakness, and if you had to pick one for the Niners, what would it be?

It wouldn't be the quarterback — not after Alex Smith's run for a touchdown against New Orleans and then his throw to beat the Saints in Saturday's playoff game.

At this point in the season, the most likely candidate for the 49ers' Achilles heel might be the wide receivers.

That lineup includes Michael Crabtree, Ted Ginn Jr., Kyle Williams, Brett Swain and Joe Hastings. (Joshua Morgan was a key member of this group, but he broke his ankle and he's out until next season).

Here's a glimpse at how the season has gone so far for the WRs:

Braylon Edwards was supposed to be a key member, but he hurt his knee on the first series of the second game, couldn't get healthy and was cut. Hastings, his replacement, has yet to catch a pass in the NFL.

The Niners replaced Morgan with Swain. Swain has caught one pass for the Niners this season, eight total in his three-year career.

Williams is a quick second-year player, but at 5-foot-10 he's on the short side for a WR.

He's caught just 23 passes in his career.

Ted Ginn Jr. is the fastest player on the team, but the coaches haven't developed him into a deep threat. His main function on offense comes on fly sweeps, i.e. on running plays. Plus, he's more of a special-teams player and he's been hurt recently. He missed two games at the end of the regular season with an ankle sprain and he had to leave the Saints game with a kneecap injury.

Then there's Michael Crabtree — the No.1 receiver on the team.

He can be very good — he caught the crucial 41-yard pass in the fourth quarter in Seattle in Week 16. It was a catch that helped the Niners win the game and secure a No. 2 seed in the playoffs. He also caught two TD passes the week after that in St. Louis.

But he also has his down moments - he caught just four passes vs. Saints and had several crucial drops. And the last time the Niners played the Giants (Week 10), Corey Webster shut him down, holding him to one catch for 21 yards.

So, could that receiving corps be a problem on Sunday?

The Press Democrat asked former NFL scout Dave Razzano — son of former 49ers director of pro personnel Tony Razzano, the man who helped put together the 49ers' Super Bowl teams in the 1980s.

Q: What do you think of the matchup between Michael Crabtree and Giants cornerback Corey Webster

RAZZANO: "It's a pretty even matchup. They're both 4.55 (40-yard dash) type guys — neither of them have elite speed for the position. And Webster's big — that's why he matches up well with Crabtree — he's a big guy and he's got good hips. But neither of them have elite speed, so it's kind of a draw."

Q: The Niners drafted Crabtree 10th overall in the 2009 draft and the Giants drafted wide receiver Hakeem Nicks with the 29th pick. They're about the same size (6-foot-1), but Nicks had a much more productive season (1,192 yards and 7 TDs as opposed to 874 yards and 4 TDs for Crabtree). How would you rank them against each other?

RAZZANO: "Hakeem Nicks reminded me of Anquan Boldin coming out of college — he's got that mental toughness and that leadership. Michael Crabtree, everybody has always questioned his toughness. He was over-drafted. He's just not as physically tough, as mentally tough — he's got skill but he doesn't have speed and he doesn't have toughness, and that's why his production is inconsistent. Hakeem Nicks is a much more polished football player in every way."

Q: How would you grade the 49ers wide receiving corps?

RAZZANO: "I think the 49ers receiving corps, counting (tight end) Vernon Davis, is maybe a B. Without him, it's just a C. I think it's very average."

Q: Do you think the Giants' game plan will be as simple as to double-team Davis and make the Niners' wide receivers beat them?

RAZZANO: "I'm shocked that the Saints didn't double Vernon Davis. He's the only one with elite speed who can beat people down the field and over the top. The Niners don't have great separators, and that's why Alex Smith was 31st in the league on third-down conversions. They just don't have a lot of fast, speedy separators. They've got these guys who are more plodders — Crabtree, even (tight end) Delanie Walker.

"Then there's Ginn. Ginn's a terrible route runner. He's never been a good receiver. Williams is OK, but he's small. He's more of a slot guy. But in terms of outside guys, they have nobody like Hakeem Nicks. And again, that's why they're 31st in the league on third-down conversions."

Q: Are the Niners at a disadvantage on Sunday against the Giants because of their wide receivers?

RAZZANO: "I don't think it will be that much of a disadvantage. They still have Vernon Davis. They still have Frank Gore. The Giants' secondary isn't great — the Giants' defensive front is great. The secondary of the Giants is good, not great. It's a pretty even matchup. Their corners are good, not great. They don't have an elite corner or an elite safety — they have an elite front four. That's their bread and butter."

Q: Who do you think is going to win?

RAZZANO: "It's fate. The Niners get turnovers every game, that home-field crowd ... They've come this far — I see the Niners winning this game."