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How the 49ers can get to 10 wins in 2018

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The team’s win total over/under is set at 8.5. Which are you taking?

The San Francisco 49ers win total over/under is currently sitting at 8.5, with the under installed as a sizable favorite. The under total is set at -170, while the over total is set at +140. The -170 means you have to bet $170 to win $100, while +140 means if you bet $100 you win $140.

The win total odds have changed considerably this offseason. The number has remained at 8.5 wins, but the total opened with over as the favorite. Money has been coming in on the under, and so sportsbooks have worked to disincentivize the under.

I bring all this up because ESPN’s Mike Clay recently put together an interesting feature in which he assessed how all 32 teams can get to 10 wins. It should not surprise anybody that breakout seasons from Jimmy Garoppolo and the defense are the keys for the 49ers.

The 49ers haven’t won more than eight games in a season since 2013, but expectations are the highest they’ve been since the Jim Harbaugh era after Jimmy Garoppolo won all five of his starts down the stretch last season. The 49ers can compete with the Rams for the NFC West crown if Garoppolo proves to be the real deal and their young, talented defense enjoys a breakout campaign.

It really is that simple. There are other things that will impact the performance, but if Garoppolo and the defense take steps forward, this team could be in really good shape. For the defense, that would mean a better than expected pass rush, and a young secondary coming together quickly (with either Richard Sherman returning to form or Tarvarius Moore or another cornerback emerging as a presence opposite Ahkello Witherspoon).

But how will it actually work out? Clay projects the team at 7.8 wins, and pointed to the high risk that offsets the high potential of this roster.

The sky is the limit for this team. The combination of DeForest Buckner, Solomon Thomas, Arik Armstead, Reuben Foster, Richard Sherman, Ahkello Witherspoon and Jaquiski Tartt has massive upside on defense, and Garoppolo has looked good enough that the offense shouldn’t struggle to find the end zone. There is a lot of talent here, but also a lot of risk. The 49ers are probably a year away from a playoff spot in a loaded NFC.

Considering where the roster stands and what the coming season could bring, are you taking the over or under on 8.5 wins?

Poll

How many games will the 49ers win in 2018?

This poll is closed

  • 83%
    More than 8.5
    (3338 votes)
  • 16%
    Less than 8.5
    (637 votes)
3975 votes total Vote Now