49ers schedule 2014: Game-by-game predictions that will embarrass me in six months

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

We take a stab at making some early predictions based on the 49ers 2014 NFL schedule.

The NFL released the 2014 regular season schedule, and our San Francisco 49ers have a schedule that features some tough opponents, but actually sets up in a fairly decent manner. A lot will change, so we can all take so much from April assessments. And yet, I like the general layout for now.

Even though we know so much will change for the 49ers and their opponents, it's not going to stop us from making early projections. We've made these predictions every year, and they can be hit or miss. In my 2012 predictions, I predicted 12-4. I was only a half game off because of the tie, but I also incorrectly predicted nine of the games. It's great to figure out the record, but what value is there if you can't actually pick the correct games?

I took a look back at 2013 predictions, and I actually did quite well. I predicted a 13-3 record, and the 49ers finished 12-4. More importantly, I was correct on 13 of the 16 games. My only incorrect predictions were the Colts loss, the Rams win, and the Panthers loss. Here's a table of last year's predictions and results:

2013 schedule 2013 Prediction 2013 Result
vs. Packers WIN WIN
@ Seahawks LOSS LOSS
vs. Colts WIN LOSS
@ Rams LOSS WIN
vs. Texans WIN WIN
vs. Cardinals WIN WIN
@ Titans WIN WIN
@ Jaguars WIN WIN
BYE
vs. Panthers WIN LOSS
@ Saints LOSS LOSS
@ Washington WIN WIN
vs. Rams WIN WIN
vs. Seahawks WIN WIN
@ Buccaneers WIN WIN
vs. Falcons WIN WIN
@ Cardinals WIN WIN

I went through the 2014 schedule last night, and my gut initially said 12-4. I went back again for this post, and I now find myself going with 13-3. Homerism at its finest! The difference was having the 49ers split that Saints-Giants road trip. I honestly could see them winning both games, losing both games or splitting. I think they're sufficient toss-ups. The Saints are always tough at home, and I think we'll see an improved Giants squad this year.

I have the 49ers at 5-1 in the division, with their only loss coming at the Seahawks. The 49ers put together a 5-1 mark last season, but this year I think we see improved play from the Rams and Cardinals. 5-1 in the division is not crazy talk, but it's going to be even more difficult than last year.

The opening seven-game stretch includes some tough games, but the layout of the schedule benefits the 49ers. I have the 49ers on a 6-0 run to start the season, but my gut still tells my I'm missing something with this. The Cowboys are always a tough team to figure out. They beat the 49ers in 2011 behind a big performance from Tony Romo. He's dealing with a back injury this time around, but all indications are that he should be back in time for Week 1.

How do your predictions line up compared to this?

Week 1: @ Dallas Cowboys -WIN 
Week 2: vs. Chicago Bears - WIN
Week 3: @ Arizona Cardinals - WIN
Week 4: vs. Philadelphia Eagles - WIN
Week 5: vs. Kansas City Chiefs - Win
Week 6: @ St. Louis Rams - Win
Week 7: @ Denver Broncos - LOSS
Week 8: BYE
Week 9: vs. St. Louis Rams - WIN
Week 10: @ New Orleans Saints - LOSS
Week 11: @ New York Giants - WIN
Week 12: vs. Washington - WIN
Week 13: vs. Seattle Seahawks - WIN
Week 14: @ Oakland Raiders - WIN
Week 15: @ Seattle Seahawks - LOSS
Week 16: vs. San Diego Chargers - WIN
Week 17: vs. Arizona Cardinals -WIN

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