Hey Los Angeles Rams fans and welcome to this week’s game preview.
This week’s matchup see’s us at home against our old friends the 49ers, who currently sit third in our division with a 4 – 11 record… Injuries! And lots of them this season have decimated this 49ers team. I could be wrong in saying this but I think the 49ers were hit harder than most in this department going right back to the end of the offseason when they lost their starting running back McKinnon, then week four they lose their franchise QB Jimmy G for the season to an ACL. There were quite a few others during the season to the point that they are now on their third string QB Nick Mullens, who got off to a strong start winning his first game against the Raiders in week nine. Still, of what I’ve seen of the 49ers this season it’s a credit to Coach Kyle Shanahan and his team that they have managed to keep this team competitive in every game, and recently winning two of their last three games. Also as most of you know this is a big rivalry match for us going way-way back. Plus Coach Shanahan and our own Coach McVey are very good friends, so just the history involved should make this last regular season game a good one all round…Now on to the match.
Players to watch out for this week
Nick Mullens QB
Has really given this 49ers team a lift since starting in place of the injured C.J. Beathard. Mullens (their third-string QB) has shown his quick release and willingness to get rid of the ball when the opportunity is there, which seems to have their offence clicking. This young guy has been a nice lift for the 49ers and I’m sure he could have a decent future in the NFL.
George Kittle TE
In only his second season Kittle has become a tremendous Tight End for the 49ers. He is the real potent threat in the passing game for the 49ers and is just playing light out at the moment. Also be aware Kittle is closing in on a record set by Rob Gronkowski in 2011 for most receiving yards by a tight end in one season. Will Kittle get enough yards in this one against us to break the record? Time will tell folks but should be fun watching.
Fred Warner MLB
Warner has been the find of the season for the 49ers and has just been a stand out player in the middle of that defence. Since the rookie got his first start in week two he has not looked back, wither it be in coverage of stuffing the run Warner looks to be a real talent for the future.
DeForest Buckner DT
A real up and coming defensive lineman and in only his third season Buckner is again having a great year. Look for this guy to get after Goff relentlessly and expect our own Rodger Saffold to have his work cut out blocking this guy, should be a good matchup this week folk’s as keeping Goff upright will be key.
Richard Sherman CB. A free agent pick-up in the offseason Sherman still has plenty tread left on those tires. He’s another guy who had some injury problems this year but seems to be back on track. Still a top corner in this league and he’ll be looking to keep Woods, Cooks and Reynolds quiet.
My final word on this game
The importance of this game is there for all to see as a loss here could cost us the first round bye in the playoffs and any home field advantage we get. The 49ers are very well coached team and recently dispatched a good Seahawk’s team that is going to the playoffs, so expect this one to be hotly contested, also this is a rivalry game so expect all the drama that goes with that. Coach McVey and Coach Shanahan also know each other very well so there going have to mix it up quite a bit and keep their cards very close to their chest. Also, it’s worth bearing in mind that we will not have Gurley again for this game but don’t think we will run the ball less because of this. Like last week expect C.J. Anderson to see the majority of the handoffs as we look to stay balanced on offence… This will be a close game I feel folks but just having more to play for I think we will pull it out and clinch that second seed.
Score prediction is Rams win 28- 21. And that’s my festive two cents Ramily… All the very best to you all for 2019 folks and a happy new year when it comes