Heading into Week 10, the 49ers are off to a 5-3 start, but the team limped into the bye week following three consecutive losses. The bye week allowed the team to gain some reinforcements, rest up, and for the coaching staff to make some adjustments.
Currently, the Philadelphia Eagles are in the driver’s seat for the number one seed in the NFC. The 49ers got some help from the Baltimore Ravens this weekend after they defeated the Seahawks, pushing the 49ers back into first place in the NFC West.
Coming off the bye week, the 49ers face a stiff test with the Jacksonville Jaguars on the road. 49ers fans are anxious to see the team back on the field and hope they resemble the team that steamrolled opponents for five weeks to begin the season.
Here are three reasons why 49ers fans can be optimistic for the rest of the season:
There’s no doubt that the team was missing Trent Williams and Deebo Samuel. While their absences weren’t the main culprit for the team’s losing streak, it certainly didn’t help. Samuel’s play-making ability was missed at crucial times for the offense, and the 49ers struggled to run the football without Williams on the field.
The hope is that these two studs fall right back into place to push the offense back to where it was early in the season. Samuel declared he’s “good to go.” Williams’s return isn’t as certain, but there’s a very good chance he returns Sunday.
Oh right, the 49ers also traded for Chase Young. That should help.
The 49ers peak down the stretch
Historically, under Kyle Shanahan, the 49ers hit their stride heading into the playoffs. Routinely known as the “team nobody wants to play” in the postseason, the 49ers have a chance to duplicate that with their new addition and returning stars.
The 49ers have won ten-plus games three times under Kyle Shanahan and made the NFC Championship game all three years. Sure, in 2019 the 49ers raced out to a 7-0 record, but the offense hit its stride down the stretch.
The 49ers won seven of their last nine, including their Week 18 comeback in LA to secure a playoff berth in 2021. Following a Week 7 loss to the Chiefs, the 49ers didn’t lose again until the NFC title game last season.
Steve Wilks and Kyle Shanahan likely spent all week looking at the changes needed to the defensive scheme and integrating Chase Young into the fold. As the head coach, Shanahan has to be involved with these changes since his understanding of offense can be a huge asset to Wilks.
The 49ers had some rough patches with Robert Saleh and DeMeco Ryans calling defensive plays, but they were able to figure it out. The frustration comes from Wilks being experienced while Saleh and Ryans were new to the job. Still, there’s hope that Young and some tweaks can get the 49ers defense back to their expectation.