The hate is definitely overrated, but I just mean that because it was such a huge departure from their early sound I think people went back and realized that SFAFC wasn't quite as drastic as they initially thought. Maybe?
It's a possibility. There are definitely a few songs on SFAFC that would fit on Eternal Cowboy pretty well.
Personally, I've never been able to appreciate Axl Rose nearly as much as a lot of AM! fans. There's a lot of reasons for that. To be honest, I just wasn't a huge fan of a lot of Tom's vocal stylings back then (example: I had to get into the live 2006 version of "We Laugh at Danger" before I got into the studio version). And there are a few songs on that album that I just wouldn't consider good. Like The Politics of Starving. I've never considered that song good at all.
Also, Chris-It-X's hilarious comments about wanting to sing early Against Me! songs while smashing the state brought down my enjoyment of that record significantly.