This iteration of the San Francisco 49ers, with head coach Kyle Shanahan at the helm, is accustomed to postseason heartbreak. Over the past five seasons, the 49ers have been one of the final four teams standing four times. Twice their season has ended with heartbreak in the NFC Championship Game, and another two times, the 49ers have let 4th quarter leads slip away in the Super Bowl, each time to Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.

Now, as San Francisco prepares to enter their eighth season under Kyle Shanahan, there is an even greater sense of urgency to get over the hump. Soon, this loaded roster will become even more expensive than they already are. The 49ers championship window may slowly be closing, but All-Pro linebacker Fred Warner believes wholeheartedly that San Francisco will capture the Lombardi Trophy for the sixth time in franchise history very soon.

“It’s not a matter of ‘if' in my mind, it’s a matter of ‘when' when we do go win one,” Fred Warner said during an appearance on NFL Network (h/t Angelina Martin of NBC Sports Bay Area). “I think the key is to continue to find guys who are finishers. You want to bring in cats who can finish. The guys who are here, you want to have an internal look at yourself and be like, ‘how can I be better for this team?’ I’ve looked at myself, even when I had a good year last year, how can I be better for that moment to where I punch a ball out? Force an interception. I don’t know, just help finish the game for my team.”

49ers running back Christian McCaffrey against the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl 58

Christian McCaffrey's Super Bowl demons

Fred Warner isn't the only 49ers star who is still thinking about how he can be better on the biggest stage. Christian McCaffrey, arguably the best skill position player on the planet and the NFL's reigning Offensive Player of the Year, enters the offseason NOT thinking about his 160 total yards or the touchdown he scored in Super Bowl 58. He's still thinking about the fumble he had on the first drive of the game. But the 49ers coaching staff, particularly running backs coach Bobby Turner, is trying to remind CMC that he needs to have a short memory while also acknowledging the mental toll it can take on a player of McCaffrey's caliber.

“You’re carrying ‘The Duke' around. He [McCaffrey] takes a lot of pride in that. Every time he touches the ball, he is trying to protect it, and unfortunately, that happened,” Turner said, per Jennifer Lee Chan of NBC Sports Bay Area. “You have to be able to let it go, but it’s one of those things you take personally because it’s very important to him. The ball is everything. He is carrying this whole organization — his family, my family. He is carrying that football. It’s heavy.”

The burden the 49ers carry as a team is heavy. Throughout the 80s, no franchise won more than San Francisco. That winning tradition carried into the 90s. Now, it's been three decades since San Francisco brought the Lombardi Trophy back to the Bay Area, and the clock is ticking.