Earlier this season, everything pointed towards another disappointing season for the 49ers. After matchweek 8, San Francisco had a record 3-5 after being humiliated by the Cardinals at home, 31-17. History was looking to repeat itself until eventually, the Niners founds some form.
Fast forward to matchweek 16 and the 49ers are in 6th place with a record of 8-6. In a change of events, Shanahan’s men went from playoff (miracle) hopefuls to playoff contenders. The ‘Bay Bombers’ are in control of their destiny, where winning their remaining three games will secured them at least the 6th seed. Nevertheless, this won’t be an easy task as they’re next game is away against the Tennessee Titans.
Although difficult, it is not impossible to get a result in Tennessee. Both teams come with similar records and similar aspirations. Nevertheless, it everything is painting it to being a close match, where small errors could define the game.
49ers Keys’ To Victory
In contrast to San Francisco, the Tennessee Titans were off to a great start this season. While the Niners were 3-5 after matchweek 8, the Titans had a record of 7-2. But as the season progressed, Tennessee began losing key players due to injury, which now has them with a record of 9-5. Moreover, this has made the Titans unpredictable as they have only won 2 of their last 5 games. Moreover, the Niners can take advantage of Tennessee’s inconsistency to grind a good result in Nashville.
Aside from injuries, one of the reasons for Tennessee’s inconsistency has to do with their pass protection issues. According to ESPN, Ryan Tannehill is the quarterback who’s been sacked the most this season (41 times). Moreover, Tennessee will be without their Offensive-line players, Taylor Lewan and Rodger Saffold. This opens the opportunity for Nick Bosa and company to exploit the Titans’ offense. By taking advantage of these issues, San Francisco’s defense could stop Tennessee from scoring as many points possible.
One last thing the 49ers will need to focus on is their offensive game. The running game has been very effective for San Francisco this season, and with a healthy Deebo Samuel, they will most likely rely on this technique. But if the running game isn’t effective Thursday Night, Garoppolo will need to find an alternative. That alternative could just be the Garoppolo-Kittle connection. Kittle has averaged an REC of 9 and a touchdown in the past three games. If things start to get tough for Samuel and Wilson rushing wise, George Kittle will be there to save the day.
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