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49ers should have lowered expectations this year, especially in Vegas

If you think the 49ers are likely to bounce back in a big way, betting the "over" on their 2015-16 win total could be a good idea.

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

It's probably safe the say the San Francisco 49ers fell well short of expectations last season. Jim Harbaugh had led the team to the NFC Championship in each of his first three seasons with the team, and most were expecting more of the same in 2014. That's not to say that the 49ers' shortcomings were altogether unexpected -- many of the issues they had last season were actually the same issues they'd had the past three years, just exacerbated.

That is to say, the 49ers tripped over themselves on offense, had some issues with either injuries or off-the-field problems on defense and ultimately were among the worst teams in the league when it came to clock management. But the 49ers overcame those issues before, and they were expected to again. Many thought they would reach 10 wins and make it into the postseason, at which point all bets would be off.

And despite how much of a disaster the season wound up being (and the chaos of the ensuing offseason), the 49ers still went 8-8. I feel like that point is kind of overlooked, given the schedule the 49ers had and the division they play in, 8-8 isn't bad. Given some of the bad 49ers teams we had just before Harbaugh, I can't imagine why people were so angry.

Either way, the coaching shakeup, the lack of faith in the ownership and last season's struggles have altered the perception of the 49ers around the league. Whereas they were expected to win around 10 games, with a betting over/under around 10.5 games last season (I saw the figure in multiple places), we can expect that number to decrease this year, yeah?

Over at SportsBookReview.com, they took a look at both the NFC and the AFC, breaking down the over/under for wins for teams last season, where they wound up and what the over/under is expected to be this season. Now, I'm not deep into betting like Mr. Fooch or anything, but I did find the numbers interesting.

They state the 49ers were at 10.5 for the over/under last season, and that due to the head coaching changes and Colin Kaepernick's struggles, the number should go down. Nine to 9.5 points for an over/under "seems about right," by their reckoning.

For the record, the Seahawks went over their total (11) by going 12-4 last season, the Cardinals went way over their total (7.5) by going 11-5 and the Rams went just under their total (7) at 6-10. Seattle's over/under is likely to go down slightly, the Cardinals' should increase significantly and St. Louis' should remain the same.

The rationalization for Seattle's number going down slightly is the tough schedule, with tougher than usual home games (Pittsburgh, Detroit, Carolina) and rough road games in Green Bay, Baltimore, Cincinnati and Dallas. Arizona's will jump due to their success, but not too high given the tough schedule and the rest of the NFC West. St. Louis is well ... St. Louis.