The San Francisco 49ers loss dropped the team to 1-6, and they currently hold the No. 2 pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. The 49ers are tied with the Chicago Bears, and they are a half game ahead of the 1-5 Carolina Panthers. The 49ers currently hold the tiebreaker between all three teams thanks to a .500 strength of schedule record.
All three teams and the winless Cleveland Browns benefited in Week 7 from the New York Jets win over the Baltimore Ravens. It improved New York to 2-5, which has them a game back of the 49ers and Bears, and half a game up on the 2-4 Jacksonville Jaguars and New Orleans Saints.
The 49ers are on a bye this week, which means we can enjoy generally stress free football on Sunday. This weekend will bring a couple fairly big matchups for draft purposes. The 2-5 Jets are traveling to face the winless Cleveland, while the 1-5 Panthers are hosting the Arizona Cardinals. I mention those two over the 1-6 Bears hosting the Minnesota Vikings because the Browns and Panthers likely have the better shot at getting victories this weekend.
The Browns and Jets are both dealing with numerous issues, but it seems hard to see Cleveland getting a win this week. Cody Kessler is in the NFL’s concussion protocol, while Josh McCown is uncertain to be available this weekend as he continues his recovery from a collarbone injury. That could leave Kevin Hogan as the Browns primary option. They would likely mix Terrelle Pryor in a bit as they have done in the past, but they will be in rough shape. Hogan did solid work on the ground last week, but I am not holding out hope much hope for him in Week 8.
My guess is the Browns are going to end up with the top pick, and I really don’t see any reason they win a single game this year. This Jets game is certainly winnable, but after that it gets pretty tough. Here is their remaining schedule:
Week 9: vs. Cowboys
Week 10: @ Ravens
Week 11: vs. Steelers
Week 12: vs. Giants
Week 13: BYE
Week 14: vs. Bengals
Week 15: @ Bills
Week 16: vs. Chargers
Week 17: @ Steelers
They get three straight home games around their Week 12 bye, but can anybody say with any kind of confidence that they’ll win one of those games? Crazy things happen in the NFL, so I would not put it past them. I could very well see potential upsets of the Chargers or Raiders. But anything else would be a real surprise.
The 49ers could still win a couple games here or there. They get the Jets as well, with question marks as to who will be the Jets quarterback at that point (and who will be the 49ers quarterback). The 49ers have a chance at wins over New Orleans, Chicago, Miami, and potentially Los Angeles. They could get an upset somewhere else, but those are the four big games separating the 49ers from 1-15.