Predicting the final 4 games of the 49ers' 2023 season

With a month to go in the season and the 49ers on a win streak, Niner Noise takes a look at how the season will end for the surging Niners.

Seattle Seahawks v San Francisco 49ers
Seattle Seahawks v San Francisco 49ers / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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Brandon Aiyuk
Washington Commanders v San Francisco 49ers / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

Week 17: Sunday, Dec. 31 at Washington Commanders, 1:00 PM ET/10:00 AM PT

There is probably a version of this game that you could consider a trap.

The 49ers are flying out to the East coast on a short week after a heartbreaking loss to one of the NFL's best and most physical teams to play against a Commanders team that is not very good and could be in the midst of a six game losing streak, depending on how their trips to Los Angeles to play the Rams in Week 15 and New York to play the Jets in Week 16 turn out.

But given the need for the 49ers to win their final two games to keep hold of the NFC's top seed and just how awful the Commanders have been at times this season (their four wins are against the Cardinals and Broncos to open the season, followed by the Falcons in Week 6 and the Patriots in Week 9), I think the 49ers will avoid the trap altogether.

Washington's defense wasn't very good before trading away EDGE rushers Montez Sweat (to the Bears) and Chase Young prior to the trade deadline (they allowed 28.5 ppg before the trades), but it's gotten worse since (33.4 ppg in Weeks 9-13).

The offense isn't much better, although the run the ball fairly efficiently when they actually get the chance to, but they lead the league passing attempts but not yards, which tells you everything you need to know.

The early body clock time on a short week may impact the 49ers a bit and so, like they did in Philadelphia, there's a chance they get off to a slow start, but look for the Niners to eventually blow the doors off the Commanders on the road.

Outcome: A big win for the 49ers

Record: 12-4