San Francisco 49ers (2-4) vs. New York Giants (4-1)
10:00 AM (PST)
The fourth and final game of what I have been calling Schedule Hell has reached its end. The 49ers are 0-3 during their S.H. stretch and they face perhaps the toughest team of the four they have played. The G-Men are coming off of their first lost of the season against the lowly Browns snapping an eight game winning streak dating back to the playoffs and last season. J.T. O’ Sullivan, who looked like he might be the 49ers future QB under center, played well in the first three games of the season. During the last three games in which the 49ers have lost allowing opponents to score 30 or more points O’ Sullivan has thrown seven interceptions. He is only part of the reason for the 49ers descent back to obscurity. Mike Nolan, Greg Manusky, Mike Martz and the 49ers defense are also guilty for the 49ers poor play. The only player on the team who is doing his job each week and for some reason seems to be forgotten by Martz when it matters most in a game is Frank Gore. He has to be asking himself ‘what if I was on a good team?’ Gores numbers are already impressive rushing for 524 yards, 4 touchdowns along with 22 receptions for 196 yards. Could you imagine Gore on a playoff caliber team? His numbers would be astonishing. But thankfully he is on the 49ers roster, at least until 2011 or before he seeks a trade. If the 49ers even want to entertain the idea of beating the Giants on Sunday Gore needs to be heavily involved regardless of what the score is and who has the lead. The control of this offense needs to be taken away from the hands of O’ Sullivan who has shown his inexperience as a starter.
On the other side of the football the 49ers have flabbergasted me as they have regressed from any progress they have made as a defensive unit. The D was suppose to be even better this year with the addition of Justin Smith, Manny Lawson coming back from injury that kept him out most of last season, the big play ability of shut down corner back Nate Clements and the continued progression of LB stud Patrick Willis. The 49ers have instead given up too many big passing plays the last three games while giving up too much yardage and points. So what happens when no one on your team produces? You lose games you are fully capable of winning. Eli Manning suffered a bruised chest so look for Brandon Jacobs and Derrick Ward to have plenty of carries and yardage. Given the deep passes against the 49ers the last three weeks, Plaxico Burress and the other wide outs should put up big numbers too.
49ers 24 Giants 38
The 49ers should have beaten the Eagles last week but forgot to make plays in the fourth quarter. This week the 49ers will show up for the coin toss and than Nolan will take the team off the field ceding the imminent loss. Ha. As much as the 49ers need to win to avoid a humiliating stretch of four straight losses to teams that have been in the playoffs the last two years, they are not going to beat the defending Super Bowl champions. The 49ers will stay in the game through the first half but the constant barrage of bowling ball runners Jacobs and Ward will wear down the 49ers D allowing for the deep passing scores. The dormant Browns offense was awaken last week, but the 49ers offense does not have the same talent in their passing game. Another loss, another 30 points scored, another season seemly over before the half way point. I hope I am wrong.
Fantasy Studs of the Game:
Vernon Davis (5 receptions, 75 yards, one touchdown)
Won’t put up these numbers, but hell, why not say he might.
Brandon Jacobs (105 rushing yards, two touchdowns)
With porcelain Eli Manning hurting and the 49ers unable to stop anything on defense, Jacobs strikes it big.