The San Francisco 49ers are winless for the year and find themselves facing an upstart Los Angeles Rams offense. This is San Francisco’s second divisional game in two weeks and injuries are starting to mount on the defensive side of the ball. I'm watching these Niners on Thursday Night.
DB Jimmie Ward
S Eric Reid has been ruled out and S Jaquiski Tartt is questionable with a neck injury. Ward has been battling hamstring issues himself but is line for an increased work load this week. The former 1st round pick has obvious talent but has yet to really put it all together on a consistent basis. Until we know more about Tartt’s availability, its tough to say where he will line up on Thursday Night.
RB Carlos Hyde
If you saw what I wrote about Alec Ogletree in the 5 Rams to watch, you already know that Hyde’s 7.0 ypc average is 2nd in the NFL. And that he’s not getting first contact until 3.90 yards down the field on average. And this has been against two elite level front seven’s in Carolina and Seattle. A super talented back, Hyde and his OL have the ability to absolutely ruin the Rams defense based off of what we saw last week against Washington.
WR Pierre Garcon
San Francisco’s prized free agent addition has a line of 9/107/0 so far in 2017 on 15 targets. The Rams are banged up at the CB position and would seem unlikely to have CB Trumaine Johnson shadow Garcon throughout the game. If QB Brian Hoyer is able to settle in, Garcon is going to be his number one go to. He’s unlikely to beat you with speed but the Rams need to limit his production on 3rd downs.
DE DeForest Buckner
A very large human being. Buckner stands 6’7 and nearly 300 lbs. Coming off a rookie campaign in which he recorded 6 sacks, Buckner is one of many highly drafted 1st round defensive lineman for the 49ers. According to PFF, Buckner has been the 5th best interior defender so far this season and is coming off a game vs Seattle where he was in Russell Wilson’s face often. John Sullivan and friends, please be safe.
LB NaVorro Bowman
From 2011 to 2015, Bowman was voted a First Team All-Pro. In 2016 he tore his Achilles tendon and is looking to regain his All-Pro form this season. He could make it tough for Todd Gurley and the running game. Bowman played all but one snap last week in Seattle and was a primary reason in why the Seahawks offense struggled for the majority of the game.