The San Francisco 49ers’ (7-7) playoff hopes died last week against the Seattle Seahawks. Their odds before the game were not very good, but there was still an outside shot. Now that the 49ers are no longer in playoff contention, they will have to play for pride. Judging by their performances week in and week out, this 49ers team does not have a lot of pride left.
The San Diego Chargers (8-6) have now lost two consecutive games. With the loss to Denver last week, San Diego’s playoff hopes are hanging on by a thread. They would need to win the rest of their remaining games and would need some help from teams like Baltimore. The Chargers have been erratic since starting the season red-hot. San Diego needs a bounce back performance this week and a lot of luck to continue playing into the post-season.
49ers Vs Chargers Week 16 Odds
Chargers +1 (+102)
49ers -1 (-118)
49ers: Jim Harbaugh’s days on the San Francisco sideline are nearly over. Harbaugh’s name has come up in almost every top-tier coaching vacancy. With the NFL season coming to a close, he will surely have his pick of prized destinations: Oakland, anyone? Not only does this seem like an overreaction to a down year, but the lack of support from the front office executives and players have allowed this distraction to overtake their season. Despite losing to the Seahawks last week, the 49ers defense played well and contained Russell Wilson for most of the game. The defensive-line managed five sacks on the elusive quarterback. No easy feat.
Chargers: The schedule really hurt San Diego at a pivotal point in the season .Having to play New England and Denver in back to back weeks is a killer. The Chargers’ offense struggled against two very fast and versatile defenses. On a bright note, the Chargers defense played well against Denver last week. The Chargers held the Broncos offense to five field goals and only one touchdown. Unfortunately, the San Diego offense was unable to put together drives throughout the game. The Chargers need to find a substitute for its abysmal running attack. Last week, the Chargers ran for only 56 yards in the game. There is no true number one running back on the Chargers roster when Ryan Mathews cannot suit up. The Chargers need to run more screen plays or throw early to set up the run later. In the last two weeks, the Chargers have abandoned the run entirely and it has cost them the game.
With Jim Harbaugh already halfway out the door and with any shot at the playoffs out of the picture, the 49ers will have nothing to play for this week. If Harbaugh’s impending departure has not motivated his players to play better already, then it will make no difference this week either. The 49ers offensively need to get Colin Kaepernick more involved. The 49ers passing game has been a disappointment all season. Kaepernick’s numbers are average at best and he does not show the level of improvement that teams look for in a franchise quarterback. He is certainly no Joe Montana, but he is also no Jay Cutler either, so it could be worse for 49ers fans. The Chargers, however miniscule, still have something to play for. With time running out on their season, Phillip Rivers and the Chargers’ offensive coordinators needs to make up for their lack of a run game by passing the ball up the middle of the field. The biggest weapon in this game needs to Antonio Gates. Rivers needs to get Gates the ball down field and if he does, then the Chargers will pull off the upset on the road.
San Diego Chargers 17 San Francisco 49ers 13