Power Rankings: No. 16 San Francisco 49ers

A weekly examination of the 49ers’ ESPN.com Power Rankings:

Rank: 16| Last Week: 12

Comment: Beleaguered coach Jim Harbaugh went into his bag o’ quotes this week for motivation and inspiration. Equal parts Winston Churchill and someone closer to him, Harbaugh dropped these pearls of wisdom with the Niners riding their third two-game losing streak of the season and their playoff hopes flagging. “As my father-in law Merle Feuerbom says, ‘It’s always darkest before the dawn,’” Harbaugh said. “So, this could be the first minutes of our finest hour. That’s the way we approach it.” The 49ers have no choice, what with discouraging losses to Seattle and Oakland in their wake -- as such, the Niners dropped four spots in our Power Rankings to equal a season low of No. 16 in Week 10; their best ranking was No. 3 in Week 2 -- and a trip to Seattle on tap. “I get this from the Marines,” he said, “‘Leaders eat last.’” Then find some symbolism in this: Harbaugh chipped one of his top front teeth Saturday night, mostly bonding, he said, because it was cracked in a 1996 playoff game for the Indianapolis Colts against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The culprit this time? “A $2 steak,” he said. The Niners’ remaining schedule is even tougher.