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49ers viewing guide, Week 8: Considering 2017 NFL Draft implications

The 49ers are on a bye, but there is still plenty of football to watch in Week 8. The big matchup for the 49ers is Browns-Jets, but there are plenty more.

We’re back for Week 8 of football! The San Francisco 49ers are on a bye, but there are plenty of reasons to watch Sunday’s action. The 49ers are 1-6, and currently hold the second pick in the 2017 NFL Draft. There are some intriguing matchups this weekend that could help the 49ers chances at securing the top pick, or at least a top five pick.

We’re back to take a look at draft implications in Week 8. I think it’s safe to say we’re past the point of thinking the 49ers are going to make a playoff run. So here is who to root for this weekend to help the 49ers improve their draft positioning odds.

New York Jets (2-5) at Cleveland Browns (0-7)

Rooting interest: This is the huge game of the week for the top of the draft. The Browns have few chances to win games this season, and this qualifies as probably their best opportunity. Meanwhile, the Jets are coming off a win over Baltimore, and the return of Ryan Fitzpatrick to starting QB after a quarter-plus benching. Cleveland is sending Josh McCown back onto the field following injury. The Browns are a home dog, but they could surprise this week. Go Browns!

Arizona Cardinals (3-3-1) at Carolina Panthers (1-5)

Rooting interest: The Panthers have struggled in a big way, but they come off their bye week looking to turn things around. This is a very winnable game against a Cardinals team that is really not showing a whole lot of much. Carson Palmer is struggling and I think we see the Panthers get the W.

Seattle Seahawks (4-1-1) at New Orleans Saints (2-4)

Rooting interest: The Saints are better at home than on the road, and with Seattle a little all over the place this season, a Saints win is a distinct possibility. And with the Saints coming to San Francisco next week, I’d like to see the Saints come in with a win.

Minnesota Vikings (5-1) at Chicago Bears (1-6)

Rooting interest: The Bears have the strong SOS, which gives the 49ers the tiebreaker edge. The 49ers face the Bears in Week 13, in what could be a huge matchup for draft implications. The Bears have moved back to Jay Cutler with Brian Hoyer out due to an injury that put him on IR. The Viking defense is pretty ridiculous this season. I’d love to see a Bears upset, but I’m not sure Cutler and company can do enough against that defense.