The San Francisco 49ers have a real chance of starting their 2019 campaign 3-0, as the winless Pittsburgh Steelers come to Levi’s Stadium for the Niners’ home opener. Niner Noise previews the contest.
The last time the San Francisco 49ers started a season 3-0 was back in 1998, when the team eventually finished 12-4 and made it all the way to divisional round, eventually losing to the Atlanta Falcons.
Yet that’s on the table for head coach Kyle Shanahan and Co. this Sunday, when the 0-2 Pittsburgh Steelers come to town.
Pittsburgh, of course, will be without veteran quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for the rest of the season, losing him to an elbow injury, which has forced backup QB Mason Rudolph into his first career NFL start.
Rudolph isn’t the only big piece of news for the Steelers. They did, after all, send off a lucrative package to the Miami Dolphins in exchange for up-and-coming defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick, who is slated to play his first game with Pittsburgh on Sunday.
This move suggests the Steelers are “all in” on Rudolph being an integral part of their future, as the first-round NFL Draft pick used to grab Fitzpatrick can no longer be used to acquire a quarterback early next year.
Yet the 49ers have no concerns about Pittsburgh’s 2020 plans. No, Shanahan is wondering how his team can start off the year undefeated before heading into its early Week 4 bye.
And a period of the schedule, which gets much more difficult.
Currently, the Niners are listed as seven-point favorites, according to Bovada. But there’s so much more behind this bout, and Niner Noise breaks down what fans can look forward to in our Week 3 preview.