It’s six days until 49ers training camp-week begins! We want to look at each opponent and provide a reason for and against the San Francisco 49ers beating them. We’ve included a poll for the community to vote on whether they expect a win or a loss. We’ll see what kind of prediction this provides at the end.
Week 1 @ Minnesota Vikings
Week 2 vs. Detroit Lions
Week 3 @ Kansas City Chiefs
Week 4 @ Los Angeles Chargers
Week 5 vs. Arizona Cardinals
Week 6 @ Green Bay Packers
Week 7 vs. Los Angeles Rams
Week 8 @ Arizona Cardinals
Week 9 vs. Oakland Raiders
Week 10 vs. New York Giants
The 49ers travel to Tampa Bay in Week 11 to face the Buccaneers. It’s an away game and the 49ers are favored by a point right now. That should indicate the Bucs are not a good team, most teams are given a couple points for simply being the home crowd. Not this one. And most of this is due to the paltry defensive performance in 2017. Which brings us to:
Reason For: The Tampa Bay defense, most of it
The Buccaneers defense is bad. We’re talking bottom of the league bad. We’re talking some last place rankings bad. We’re talking 2016 49ers defense bad. Yes, that bad. The Buccaneers ranked last in yards allowed with 6,048 yards in 2017. The New York Giants, which we talked about yesterday are second worse and it’s by a difference of about 60 yards. Oh, we’re not done. The Bucs also came in last place in sack totals with a paltry 22. Even the 49ers, with their pass-rush issues, could hit 30 sacks. The run defense is equally mediocre coming in third for touchdowns allowed.
The drafting of Vita Vea may help the sack totals or at the very least the run defense as putting him and Gerald McCoy on the same line together almost seems unfair. The Bucs also drafted several secondary contributors, so they are trying to turn things around. However, when a defense is ranked like this last year, you can’t just turn it all around the year after, especially with the same coaching staff.
But about that Vita Vea drafting...
Reason Against: The Buccaneers interior defensive line
The Buccaneers have little going for them, but that pass rush was once solid, and taking Vita Vea in the 2018 NFL Draft may get them the help they need.
What are the 49ers trying to figure out with the offensive line? The interior. Center Weston Richburg can’t hold down that fort all by himself, especially when the Bucs have Gerald McCoy coming for Garoppolo’s head. McCoy alone is going to need double teams and even then, those don’t work against him. If the 49ers do set more men on him, that opens things up for Vea, provided he’s not a bust and the Bucs line is solid.
Given that the 49ers do like throwing the ball, that could make for a long day with Garoppolo, and the 49ers may have trouble running the ball through the tackles if they try. The 49ers have beefed up their offensive line, but we still need to see things in execution before we call it a finished product—obviously the same can be said for the Buccaneers. If the 49ers fall behind early, and the Buccaneer defense is improved, it could be difficult to play catch-up.
If you can’t see the poll, click here.
What will happen in Week 11 at the Buccaneers?
This poll is closed