This weekend’s spotlight Sunday-afternoon game is a matchup between the surprisingly unbeaten 49ers and the 3-2 Rams, who come in on 10 days’ rest after a Thursday-night loss to the Seahawks. This is a game that could go a long way in deciding who wins the NFC West. Elsewhere in the late-afternoon window, Atlanta visits Arizona, the Cowboys head to New York to face the Jets and Tennessee will travel to the Mile High City to face the Broncos.
|San Francisco 49ers||+3.5 (-115)||+145||Over 50.5|
|Los Angeles Rams||-3.5 (-105)||-180||Under 50.5|
This will be one of the more entertaining games of the weekend, as up-and-down Rams host the red-hot 49ers. Fresh off their 31-3 dismantling of the Browns last weekend, San Francisco is unbeaten behind a stingy defense and powerful rushing attack. The 49ers have already recorded 11 takeaways this season, including seven interceptions, and they took the ball away from the Browns four times last week.
— Kevin Modesti (@KevinModesti) October 9, 2019
Once they get the ball, Matt Breida and Tevin Coleman keep it away from the opposition. The 49ers have run the ball at least 40 times in each of their last three games, and have topped 259 yards in two of those three. That will exacerbate the Rams’ pass defense woes. The Rams defense has been horrible against the pass the last two weeks, and the 49ers ability to run the ball sets them up to see quite a bit of play action downfield.
The Rams have all but given up on the run game, and with Todd Gurley questionable, that will likely continue. They have thrown the ball 117 times in their last two games, and Jared Goff threw for more than 500 yards against the Buccaneers, although plenty of that came during garbage time. Last week against the Seahawks, Goff threw for 395 yards in a close loss to the Seahawks and spread the ball around to his numerous weapons.
The problem this weekend is that the 49ers will likely take advantage of the inevitable turnovers from Goff, who has thrown seven interceptions this year. San Francisco should be able to use its run game to control the clock, the game and the score for a big win on the road.
Pick: 49ers +3.5
Someone has to win this game, and it looks more likely to be the Cardinals.
The Falcons defense is atrocious, and got carved up by Houston last week. Arizona’s offense gained more than 500 yards on the road last week and looks like it is finally getting into a rhythm. While the Cardinals may be without David Johnson, the porous Falcons pass defense will have its hands full with quarterback Kyler Murray. The home squad has covered the spread in the last four matchups between these two teams.
Pick: Cardinals +2.5
The return of quarterback Sam Darnold has Jets fans hoping their offensive woes can turn around this weekend. Unfortunately the Jets didn’t add any new wide receivers this week, so he doesn’t have much to throw to. That isn’t an issue for the visiting Cowboys, as Dak Prescott connected with Amari Cooper 11 times last weekend for 226 yards.
God, Amari Cooper is good at football. pic.twitter.com/XYwbUGl9pb
— Austin Gayle (@PFF_AustinGayle) October 6, 2019
All anybody is talking about is the one throw Cooper dropped, which turned into a turnover for the Packers in a Dallas defeat. Cooper has talked all week about how that was his fault, and he has the look of someone ready to redeem himself. That’s not good news for a Jets defense that has shown little pass rush, with only six sacks on the year. Prescott should have plenty of time to find his targets, and the Cowboys should bounce back with an easy win.
Pick: Cowboys -7
This is a matchup between two teams that seem to be clones. Both like to run the ball, although they aren’t the best at it, and both have a quarterback who hasn’t been performing well this season.
Tennessee has topped 20 points on offense just once since its season-opening win over the Browns. The Broncos have also topped 20 points on offense just once this season, and that was in a loss. Both offensive lines are having issues with protecting their quarterback, as well. This will be an ugly game, and I doubt there will be much scoring. The Under has hit in four of the Titans’ five games this season and in eight of Denver’s last nine home games. The trends will continue.