NFL 2019 (Week 6): San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams

Russell S. Baxter

NFL 2019 (Week 6): San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Rams

By Pete Fasulo

Special to Pro Football Guru

It’s an NFC West battle in Week 6. The Rams are coming off back-to-back losses that have many wondering if their success the past two years is coming to an end. The Niners are coming off an impressive win on Monday night over the Browns that vaulted them to 4-0. This game will be a chance for San Fran to separate itself from Los Angeles or a chance for the Rams to get back in the hunt for the divisional crown.

49ers: While the Niners have gotten out to a 4-0 start, they have done it facing teams with a 6-14 record thus far. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has been impressive, completing 69% of his passes for 920 yards in the 49ers’ first four games. Tight end George Kittle has hauled in 23 passes for 235 yards and a touchdown, while wide receivers Marquise Goodwin and Deebo Samuel have combined for 21 receptions and 316 yards. In addition, Kyle Shanahan’s offense has utilized the run game to precision. Running back Matt Breida has 340 yards rushing and Raheem Mostert has 236. Their offensive line, dealing with its share of injuries, has still excelled. Defensively, the Niners lead the league in forced fumbles with seven. Fred Warner, Kwon Alexander, and Jaquiski Tarrt all have 18 or more tackles thus far this season. DeForest Buckner leads the team with three sacks and two forced fumbles.

Rams: The Rams started off the season 3-0, yet have looked completely lost the last two weeks in terms of a balanced offensive attack. Quarterback Jared Goff has thrown 117 passes in the past two games. Head ccoach Sean McVay will need to find a better balance of run and pass in order to get back on the winning track. Goff has completed only 63.1 percent of his passes and has thrown seven touchdowns to seven interceptions. Todd Gurley has only carried the ball 64 times during the first five games of the season. The offensive standout for Los Angeles has been Cooper Kupp. After missing the bulk of last season with knee surgery, he has returned and recorded 41 receptions for over 500 yards and four touchdowns. Defensively, the Rams have given up 26.8 points per game. They have had trouble getting off the field as their third down conversion rate is a poor 41.3 percent. While Aaron Donald has been double-teamed repeatedly, Clay Matthews had looked good. Yet, a broken jaw suffered in last Thursday’s game will sideline him for four to six weeks

Prediction: The big question in this game is whether the Rams can find some semblance of balance on offense. If they insist on living and dying with the passing game being the bulk of their offense, expect them to struggle. San Francisco will blitz Goff and under pressure he will not be as strong as he is as a pocket passer with time. The Niners’ offense will use a balanced attack of run and pass to keep the Rams’ defense guessing. Expect the 49ers to prove to the rest of the league that their 4-0 start is no fluke.

San Francisco 49ers 30, Los Angeles Rams 21

Pete Fasulo (@LISportsFans) is a freelance writer covering business, music, and sports. He has written for music publications such as Revolver and Aural Fix. His sports writing career has been resurrected here after numerous years at The Torch and The Long Island Tribune (many moons ago).

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