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Week One is upon us, and the 49ers are possibly bracing for Nick Bosa’s absence in Pittsburgh. Initially, the offseason was filled with thoughts of Bosa’s deal being a done deal while the team possibly could be without their starting quarterback Brock Purdy for the season opener. Now, Purdy is a full-go, and it appears Bosa has a high chance of missing Week One.
To put it simply, when Bosa is on the field, the 49ers win. There is no such thing as “DE Winz,” but the 49ers are 37-14 when Bosa plays. On the other hand, any game Purdy has started and finished has led to a 49ers victory. Albeit, a small sample size, it remains true.
Per NFL communications, Purdy finished his last six regular season games with two touchdown passes and led the NFL in passer rating with 112.
The question is, can the 49ers win without Bosa or lose if Purdy plays well?
I think there is a better chance of the 49ers losing if Purdy plays well.
Let me explain.
The EDGE depth behind Bosa was always a concern, even if he was active in Pittsburgh. Sure, Drake Jackson is expected to take a leap this season. After that, it’s not pretty. The Steelers have weapons and a quarterback who improved down the stretch. If the 49ers can’t generate pressure, it will be a long day in Pittsburgh.
Conversely, Purdy can play well, but the Steelers are returning TJ Watt, who will primarily be matched up with Colton McKivitz. The fans in Pittsburgh will be another dynamic to consider since it is their home opener.
Ultimately, it will depend on the 49ers defense to keep the crowd out of the game and to correct the issues with their run defense from the preseason.
Purdy will likely play well, but the defense needs to generate pressure and make Kenny Pickett uncomfortable.
Can they do that without Bosa?
What’s more likely?
This poll is closed
49ers win without Bosa
49ers lose if Purdy plays well