- WHERE: Levi’s Stadium (Santa Clara, Calif.)
- WHEN: 8:15 p.m. ET | ESPN, ESPN 2, ESPN Deportes, NFL+
The ultimate recreation on the docket for Week 4 pits the Los Angeles Rams towards the San Francisco 49ers. It’s a pairing that has supplanted the Niners-Seahawks lately because the NFC West’s foremost rivalry.
A part of that’s as a result of success of each groups — Los Angeles and San Francisco have mixed to signify the convention in three of the final 4 Tremendous Bowls — nevertheless it additionally stems from the 2 males calling the photographs.
The Kyle Shanahan-Sean McVay connection is properly established by now. They labored collectively on Kyle’s father Mike Shanahan’s workers in Washington from 2010-2013. Each later obtained their first head-coaching jobs in the identical division out west in 2017.
Shanahan has a 7-4 head-to-head report towards McVay thanks largely to a six-game regular-season profitable streak over the Rams, however L.A. is the one which got here via within the groups’ NFC Championship Sport showdown final season and went on to seize what had been an elusive ring for each squads.
That’s the kind of watershed second that would believe and momentum flowing McVay’s manner on Monday evening, though Shanahan will definitely have some methods up his sleeve because the 49ers have a look at keep away from a 1-3 begin.
Listed below are 4 issues to look at for when the 49ers host the Rams on Monday Night time Soccer:
- Can Matthew Stafford put collectively a clear recreation? The Rams’ street to first place within the division has not been a reasonably one. A lot of that is because of Stafford’s turnover-happy begin to the season. He’s presently tied with Mac Jones and Jameis Winston for many interceptions within the league with 5. Whereas his struggles have opened up questions concerning the elbow downside that reportedly plagued him through the offseason, Stafford has additionally merely pressured his share of ill-advised prayers. His miscues and the Rams’ Thirtieth-ranked working recreation is a chicken-and-egg state of affairs to this point, however the finish result’s 20.3 factors per recreation and 306.3 whole yards per recreation, each franchise lows within the first three weeks of any season below McVay. A giveaway-free recreation might be a tall process. San Francisco’s protection has been swarming all 12 months. The unit ranks third in factors allowed and second in yards allowed. It has familiarity towards Stafford, and it has the observe report — he threw two interceptions in each of final 12 months’s regular-season matchups. If he retains that sample up in prime time, it may very well be curtains.
- Jimmy G! Half Deux should enhance. The Jimmy Garoppolo sequel nobody anticipated in San Francisco a number of months in the past has not been well-reviewed. In his protection, he was not set as much as succeed out of the gate. Garoppolo underwent offseason shoulder surgical procedure on his throwing arm and barely participated in coaching camp as a result of 49ers holding him out in expectation of a commerce, so he’s enjoying catchup in each the well being and chemistry departments. That doesn’t excuse his bungling, two-turnover efficiency Sunday evening towards Denver that included a head-scratching security, nevertheless it does assist clarify it. There are additionally a number of good nuggets of stories for Niners followers. Garoppolo usually reveals up towards the Rams. He’s by no means dropped a regular-season recreation to them in six tries, and he’s accomplished 70.1 % of his passes with seven TDs and a 98.6 passer score versus Los Angeles outdoors the playoffs since 2019. His big-bodied goal, George Kittle, ought to be more healthy in his second outing again from a groin harm. Plus, Deebo Samuel had his greatest receiving efficiency of the season (5 catches for 73 yards) final week in Garoppolo’s first full recreation. This offense will proceed to jell, and Garoppolo ought to begin to enhance due to it.
- A large receiver grasp class. The 2 most prolific huge receivers within the NFL because the begin of 2021 might be duking it out on this one. Since Week 1 of final season, Cooper Kupp ranks first amongst huge receivers in touches (213), scrimmage yards (2,748), scrimmage touchdowns (26) and large performs (43), that are outlined as rushes of 10-plus yards or receptions of 20-plus yards, per NFL Analysis. Samuel ranks proper behind him with 202 touches, 2,303 scrimmage yards, 17 scrimmage TDs and 42 large performs. The 2 mixed for 64 touches and 7 touchdowns within the groups’ three matchups final 12 months, and each have been the first contributors of game-changing performs on their in any other case scuffling offenses up to now in 2022. Put briefly, sit again and get your popcorn prepared.
- The Trent Williams issue. The nine-time Professional Bowler is out for the foreseeable future with an ankle harm. Third-year professional Colton McKivitz will now be answerable for defending Garoppolo’s blindside. The important thing to victory for each groups may very properly be how McKivitz holds up in his fifth-career begin. San Francisco quarterbacks have been pressured 2.1% extra typically when the offensive line has been absent Williams since 2020, per Subsequent Gen Stats. When Williams departed final week’s recreation within the third quarter, Denver’s cross rush jumped from pressuring Garoppolo on 12.2% of dropbacks to 21.4%. Count on to see Terrell Lewis, Leonard Floyd and Justin Hollins testing the sting early and infrequently. And there’ll nonetheless be Aaron Donald wreaking havoc in the midst of the road to take care of. Whether or not the 49ers alter to Williams’ absence by asking Kittle and the tight ends to chip extra off the road of scrimmage, or by holding Jeff Wilson again extra regularly in cross safety — he’s presently fourth on the crew in routes run — San Francisco’s very best offensive recreation plan is bound to be affected.