The San Francisco 49ers head to Washington this weekend to wrap up a season-long three-game road trip. They lost the first two games by a combined six points, covering the spread against the Arizona Cardinals, and then coming up just shy of the cover against the Indianapolis Colts.
The 49ers have now lost four straight games, each by a field goal or less. They are the second team in the Super Bowl era to do that, losing their last four games by a combined 11 points. They continue their search for a win, and it does not get any easier facing off against Kirk Cousins and company.
The 49ers are a sizable underdog this weekend against Washington. The line opened at ten points, and while it is at 11 points at most sports books, our friends at Odds Shark have found some lines as high as 12.5 points.
The three-game road trip is a bit of a rarity in the NFL, and so I thought I would chat with our friends at Odds Shark about the tail end of this trip. Odds Shark has a huge database of gambling information, which can give us an idea of trends. I asked them about team performance in this kind of scenario, and they got back to me with straight up and against the spread numbers for the third game of a three-game road trip.
Over the last three years, the team in the third consecutive road game is 13-23 straight up and 11-23-2 against the spread. Over the last five years, they are 20-33 straight up, and 22-29-2 against the spread. Finally, over the last ten years, they are 35-69 straight up, and 46-55-3 against the spread. It’s also interesting to note that the over hit half the time over the last ten years, while the UNDER had the edge the past three and five years.
So what does all this mean?
OK, maybe not absolutely nothing, but I’m not exactly racing to the cage with my money on either of these teams. But, the 49ers are coming off two straight overtime losses, which would wear down even the best of teams. Of course, if the defense gets Eric Reid and Reuben Foster back, while they might be a it rusty, it also gives the defense considerably more depth.
I’m inclined to stay away from this game, but if I had to pick, I’d lean towards Washington to cover. I think the third game of this road trip coming off four straight tough losses might just be a little too much for the 49ers. Kirk Cousins likely wants to put on a show against his old coach, and the Washington defense is playing well enough to create even more problems for the 49ers offense. I just don’t know if the 49ers will get on the board for more than field goals in this one.