The San Francisco 49ers return to action in Week 4, facing yet another tough matchup. The team is hosting the Green Bay Packers. The game kicks off at 1:25 p.m. PT, and will air on FOX, with a decent coverage map. The 49ers are 1-2, coming off a second straight ugly loss, this time to the Arizona Cardinals. The Packers are 3-0, coming off a big Monday Night Football home victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.
How can Kap & Co. keep pace with Packers?
The San Francisco 49ers are struggling, but there are specific ways they can potentially hang with the Green Bay Packers. It will require a pretty significant effort, but there are weaknesses on this Packers team.
It is not an understatement to say this is one heck of a tough matchup for the 49ers. They are reeling after back-to-back losses by a combined score of 90-25. The right side of the offensive line has been awful. Colin Kaepernick had his worst game as a pro last week. On the defensive side of the ball, the pass rush has been inconsistent as best. NaVorro Bowman is still working back to 100 percent in terms of what we used to see. The secondary is struggling for reasons that seem as much scheme-related as anything else. The defense as a whole is getting torched.
Can the 49ers spring an upset, or at least cover the 8.5-point spread? I think the latter is not entirely out of the realm of the possible. The Packers are coming in off a short week. Historically, home underdogs of a touchdown or more have done pretty well. The Packers run defense struggles when teams spread things out a bit. There are ways to beat this team. I am not optimistic about Sunday, but we can always ride with the "Any Given Sunday" mantra.
Honestly, it's hard for me to know how to feel about this game. I've pondered the idea that this season should just come to an end as quickly as possible. Have the Packers stomp the 49ers and further stick a fork in their season. That comes with the frustration of back-to-back blowout losses. On the other hand, embarrassing the Packers with an upset would be more than fine by me. I'll always prefer the 49ers not embarrass themselves in front of a partial national audience. But I suppose there is a certain entertainment value to rubber-necking at this early season dumpster fire.
Nuts and bolts
Location: Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara, CA
Game time: Sunday, October 4, 1:25 p.m. PT
TV channel: FOX
Online streaming: NFL Game Pass on replay
49ers Radio: 680-AM, 107.7 (Ted Robinson, Tim Ryan) | Full listings
Announcers: Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews
Spanish Radio: KTRB 860-AM (Jesus Zarate, Luis Landero)
Odds: 49ers +8.5
Matchup history: 30-34-1
Enemy blog: Acme Packing Company
Facebook: Go ahead and give us a like!
Week 1: vs. Minnesota Vikings - 49ers 20, Vikings 3
Week 2: @ Pittsburgh Steelers - Steelers 43, 49ers 18
Week 3: @ Arizona Cardinals - Cardinals 47, 49ers 7
Week 4: vs. Green Bay Packers - Sunday, October 4, 1:25 p.m. FOX
Week 5: @ New York Giants - Sunday, October 11, 5:30 p.m. NBC (SNF)
Week 6: vs. Baltimore Ravens - Sunday, October 18, 1:25 p.m. CBS
Week 7: vs. Seattle Seahawks - Thursday, October 22, 5:25 p.m. NFLN (TNF)
Week 8: @ St. Louis Rams - Sunday, November 1, 10:00 a.m. FOX
Week 9: vs. Atlanta Falcons - Sunday, November 8, 1:05 p.m. FOX
Week 10: BYE
Week 11: @ Seattle Seahawks - Sunday, November 22, 1:25 p.m. FOX
Week 12: vs. Arizona Cardinals - Sunday, November 29, 1:05 p.m. FOX
Week 13: @ Chicago Bears - Sunday, December December 6, 10:00 a.m. FOX
Week 14: @ Cleveland Browns - Sunday, December 13, 10:00 a.m. FOX
Week 15: vs. Cincinnati Bengals - Sunday, December 20, 5:30 p.m. NBC (SNF)
Week 16: @ Detroit Lions - Sunday, December 27, 10:00 a.m. FOX
Week 17: vs. St. Louis Rams - Sunday, January 3, 1:25 p.m. FOX