The San Francisco 49ers visit the 0-1 Bengals in Week 2. And while quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo commands a lot of attention, EDGE Nick Bosa could be the key difference maker. Niner Noise breaks that down and more in our Niners preview for this contest.
This, after Garoppolo tossed just 166 yards, one touchdown and a pick-six interception during the Niners’ 31-17 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week. Sure, San Francisco’s defense one that game. But the 49ers are pinning their hopes on Garoppolo being the difference maker for the team in 2019.
Cincinnati, meanwhile, dominated the Seattle Seahawks on the road in Week 1, enjoying superiority in almost every stat category except the one that mattered most: points. Falling 21-20 to quarterback Russell Wilson and Co., the Bengals still managed to gain 429 all-purpose yards, while allowing only 232 to Seattle.
All at a very difficult venue for visiting teams, CenturyLink Field.
This paints a picture of what the 49ers will need to do in Week 2: figure out a way to take advantage of a Bengals defense, which gave up more yardage than any other team in 2018 (6,618), while keeping Cincinnati’s own offense from replicating the same kind of efforts it enjoyed against the Niners’ NFC West division rivals.
Garoppolo is key here, yes. But so is rookie EDGE Nick Bosa, who tallied his first sack in an impressive pro-level debut last Sunday.
Bosa is still dealing with a nagging ankle injury he suffered before the preseason, which held him out of exhibition contests. If he’s able to play in Week 2, San Francisco’s defense should be able to do much more damage over the course of this contest.
Niner Noise previews this contest in Cincinnati, breaking down Garoppolo’s matchup with Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton, X-factors, matchups to watch, injuries and much, much more.