Image Credit: Andrew Giesemann
Week 7 is finally here! Last week saw some crazy games happening around the league, and even the 49ers game got pretty crazy! This week the 49ers have a tough challenge With the Arizona Cardinals!! How do we think the game will go? Read on and find out!
This team is flailing at this point. The Cardinals are in a worse long-term spot, but for this season, they will likely come away with more wins. The big turning point of this contest will be new offensive coordinator, Byron Leftwich. If he is able to finally get David Johnson going, I fear the 49ers will be toast. If he isn't, we still lost at home to a team that couldn't move the ball on offense outside of the initial 75-yard touchdown. I still believe David Johnson is one of the best running backs in the league, and think he gets going against our ragged defense.
PREDICTION: Cardinals 28, 49ers 14
What is new Arizona Cardinals offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich going to bring to the table? The easy assumption is large doses of David Johnson, something that doesn’t bode well for the 49ers chances of pulling out a win on the road this Sunday; but would likely benefit their draft position. Defensive coordinator Robert Saleh finally moved Solomon Thomas where he played next to DeForest Buckner for the majority of his snaps, not coincidentally he produced the third highest graded game of his career according to Pro Football Focus. In his four starts this season C.J. Beathard has performed significantly better on the road then at home, if he can limit the turnovers the 49ers may be able to pull off the upset on the road.
PREDICTION: 49ers 24 Cardinals 16
Let me tell you why the 49ers are a questionable football team. Let's say they show up for a game on Sunday, let's say they have a remote chance of winning. Well then I get all excited. I'm like Jojo the idiot circus boy with a pretty new pet.
Now the Cardinals are terrible and this game is a possible victory. "Hello there pretty little win, I love you!" And then I stoke it, and I pet it, and I massage it. Hehe, I love it, I love my little naughty win! You're naughty!
And then the 49ers take my naughty win and...
Uuuuuuh! They killed it! They killed my win! Blown coverages! Absent second-year linebackers! Injuries! Turnovers! 116 games without a special team touchdown!
And that's when I blow it. That's when people like us have gotta forge ahead.
PREDICTION: 49ers: 23 Arizona 20
Round one of the Bosa Bowl Playoffs (named for Nick Bosa the presumptive first pick in the 2019 NFL draft) is this Sunday. The 49ers next three games are all against teams with one win each on the season; the first of those is at Arizona. The Niners are looking to avenge a loss to the Cardinals three weeks ago; a game in which the 49ers dominated but turned the ball over five times. There is a certain subset of 49er fans that would like to see the team lose as many games as possible to secure the highest draft pick possible and there is a certain logic to that, but the team needs to win games against opponents on their level; the Cardinals are one of those teams.
PREDICTION: 49ers 27 Cardinals 14
Definitely not America’s Game of the Week, the 49ers and Cardinals square off for the second time in three weeks. The first meeting was defined by 5 49ers’ turnovers. Likely without WR Pierre Garçon and RB Matt Breida, Kyle Shanahan will have to lean on RB Raheem Mostert and a bevy of young receivers. Robert Saleh finds a way to dial up pressure against Arizona’s rookie QB Josh Rosen and keep the pressure off the secondary. Beathard limits his turnovers to just one while hooking up with his college teammate TE George Kittle for a pair of scores. 49ers win in a game that feels like more of a dominating win than the score indocates.
PREDICTION: 49ers 24, Cardinals 14
49ers vs Cardinals take II
The team quiets critics for at least a week by showing up big against the Arizona Cardinals. CJ Beathard throws two TDs, one to Dante Pettis and one to Matt Breida, in the first quarter before the offense cools for 30 minutes. Finding themselves behind the Cardinals 24-17, Fred ‘Wonderback’ Warner JR gets the team motivated again with a strip sack that Solomon Thomas picks up and rumbles in to the end zone with. Beathard scores the winning TD on an undersigned 8 yard scramble with less than a minute left in the game. Niners win. Niners win. Niners win.
PREDICTION: 49ers win 31-24
Max Carlson (@MrFrizzleFry) (5-1-1)
This is a game the 49ers should absolutely win. If they can bully the Arizona OL and stay in Rosen’s face, they’ll have some good opportunities for turnovers; something that’s been hard to come by for this unit. Unfortunately, I just don’t see the undisciplined defense being able to capitalize on these opportunities.
PREDICTION: Cardinals 25, 49ers 16
49ers finally get a win post Jimmy Garoppolo. The next 3 opponents for the 49ers have 3 total wins, so the schedule is finally lightening up for a team that needs a win in a bad way. The Cardinals fires their offensive coordinator Mike McCoy and promoted QBs coach Byron Leftwich to offensive coordinator. Leftwich has only been coaching in the NFL for a year and a half, though he was a long time quarterback in the league, he has never called plays before. 49ers take advantage of the new coordinator and finally get a few turnovers on defense that lead directly to points.
PREDICTION: 49ers 24 Cardinals 13
Five bloody turnovers against the Cardinals in Week 5. I almost feel like the count from sesame street. Count them one interception ha ha ha, two interceptions ha ha ha. How in the hell do you hold a ball for 40 minutes, double your opponent in yards, triple them in first downs and lose?
I'll be honest, do we really want to the 49ers to win, sure I'll root like hell for them to win, but every loss gets us closer to a better draft pick. I still feel like the 49ers will probably pull this one off though, the Cardinals are changing offensive coordinators to a coordinator that has never called plays before.
PREDICTION: The 49ers will win the revenge game in the desert 24-17.
One of the ways the 49ers can win Sunday’s second matchup with the Cardinals this season, is to do what Denver did last week: Disrupt Rosen. The 21-year old rookie quarterback had looked poised through his prior three starts this season. But, he was downright manhandled by Von Miller and company on Thursday Night Football and the result was three interceptions (two for touchdowns), two more fumbles and a lopsided 10-45 win for Denver. The mile-high defense also sacked Rosen six times which was almost more pressure than he had felt his prior three starts combined. Since the pass rush has been an issue for the 49ers, we can’t expect our guys to be Denver overnight. But, rattling Rosen and shaking his confidence is an area San Francisco can and should exploit. Which is also why it’s key that Richard Sherman be on the field Sunday, if he can manage it. His veteran presence and excellent play aside, this factor could further compound Rosen’s woes and distract him from placing the football in his talented playmakers’ hands. The second component for a San Francisco victory this week is to run, run, run that football efficiently. This is something else the Broncos did well against Arizona which has the worst run defense in the league. As for the 49ers, it’s broken record time: Do NOT turn the football over and the defense needs takeaways. This game presents a good opportunity for Reuben Foster to step up, shake off that rust and be the disrupter we know he can be. If they can do those things, I think the 49ers will win in the desert by a hair. But, this really is a toss-up. It’ll be a battle between a banged up turnover machine vs. a rebuilding organization in chaos. Take your pick. If Richard Sherman plays, I like the 49ers 27, Cardinals 24. If not? Well, I’ll stay with my pick and cross my fingers.
PREDICTION: 49ers 27, Cardinals 24
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