The San Francisco 49ers are back in action for Week 2. The team has traveled east to face the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field. The game kicks off at 10:00 a.m. PT, and will air on FOX. It marks the first early game on the schedule, with four more still to go on the schedule. The 49ers were 11-1 ATS in 10 a.m. games under Jim Harbaugh, so make of that what you will.
Jim Tomsula has his first win under his belt (interim appearance aside), but this second game is kind of a big deal. Tomsula grew up just outside of Pittsburgh, less than ten miles from the Steelers current stadium. He went to games as a kid, whether it be with tickets or sneaking in. He'll have plenty of family on hand, and while I think he'll be plenty focused on football, it is still a cool story for the Pennsylvania native.
The 49ers will look to build on a very solid win in their season opener. They effectively ran over the Minnesota Vikings, as Carlos Hyde put up 168 yards and two touchdowns in his debut as the starting running back. The 49ers will look for another big game from Hyde, but the Steelers seem like a strong bet to try and stack the box against this. The question then is if Colin Kaepernick can beat the Steelers with his arm and/or legs.
On the other side of the ball, the 49ers will look to bring pressure against the statuesque Ben Roethlisberger. He had some mobility early in his career, but it is severely lacking as he gets older. Roethlisberger knows a thing or two about picking up blitzes, so the 49ers will likely need to be ready for screen passes and other quick hitting counters to the blitzes. The 49ers mixed and matched their blitzes and more vanilla looks up front, so I am sure Eric Mangini will have an eye out for that.
Nuts and bolts
Location: Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, PA
Game time: Sunday, September 20, 10:00 a.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: Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Laura Okmin
Spanish Radio: KTRB 860-AM (Jesus Zarate, Luis Landero)
Odds: 49ers +5.5
Matchup history: 11-9
Enemy blog: Behind The Steel Curtain
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Week 1: vs. Minnesota Vikings - 49ers 20, Vikings 3
Week 2: @ Pittsburgh Steelers - Sunday, September 20, 10:00 a.m. FOX
Week 3: @ Arizona Cardinals - Sunday, September 27, 1:05 p.m. FOX
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