What SF 49ers win vs. Patriots says about Niners playoff hopes
The SF 49ers dominated the New England Patriots Sunday afternoon by a score of 33-6. The win kept the Niners in the playoff hunt.
If there was ever a time for the SF 49ers to get hot it’s right now. After dismantling the LA Rams last Sunday, they made easy work of the New England Patriots, thus keeping their playoff hopes alive.
With a new playoff structure in place for 2020, the SF 49ers and their fans need to keep an eye on the NFC as a whole. Seven teams are eligible to make the postseason with the top team in the conference given a much-needed bye.
As it stands, the 49ers are sitting on the bubble behind the New Orleans Saints and LA Rams. Two teams the 49ers will play within the next five weeks.
If the standings among the four NFC divisions don’t move around a lot, it looks like the NFC North, South and West will have two representatives. The NFC East will most likely just have the division winner limp into the postseason.
Before the game, the SF 49ers were sitting at a 43 percent chance of making the playoffs. According to ESPN Data (h/t KNBR), their win against the Patriots upped their chances by 18 percent.
But here’s where things get tricky.
The SF 49ers obviously need to win out or pretty close to it to be in consideration for a Wild Card spot. They’ll have their work cut out for them with contests against the Rams, Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills and Seattle Seahawks to finish out the season.
A loss to the Rams hurts but isn’t major due to the Niners already beating them once this season. They cannot afford to lose to the Cardinals again. Otherwise, their chances of making the playoffs through the division will most likely be squandered. Stealing a win against the Seahawks would not only be a huge morale boost, but it keeps all the teams within striking distance of each other.
The question is: How many games will the SF 49ers need to win to make the postseason? Based on this new format, winning 10-11 games should give them a chance. However, it may take 12-13 wins to make it.
The SF 49ers have a chance. They’ve shown over the past two weeks, they’re a team who’s looking to reclaim “Revenge Tour.”
Head coach Kyle Shanahan is going back to what works with his offense, despite the injuries including losing running back Jeff Wilson and wide receiver Deebo Samuel on Sunday. He’s getting the ball out of quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo’s hands quickly and effectively.
Which is what led the SF 49ers to the Super Bowl.
With nine games to go, the SF 49ers will need to win at least seven of them. It’ll be a daunting task, but with how well they’re playing amid all the injuries and call-ups, they can easily surprise the NFL and clinch a playoff berth in December.