We’ve been saying weekly that each game could get really ugly, really quickly. Well unfortunately, last week it finally did. The game got really ugly, really quickly. The Cowboys ran up the score to a final of 10-40. The 49ers suffered their worst loss of the season, and they have to turn around and fly across the the country to the City of Brotherly Love to take on the Eagles on Sunday. Philadelphia has been red-hot to start the season, flying high to a 6-1 start. Whereas, we all know the 49ers remain one of two winless teams in the NFL (alongside Cleveland).
Let’s check out the 49ers offensive match-ups when they take the field Sunday against the Eagles.
*All grades are courtesy of Pro Football Focus and will be next to the opposing players in parenthesis*
Rookie QB CJ Beathard (46.7) looks to improve on his first career start when he leads the 49ers against the Eagles on Sunday. However, it might not be much of an improvement. The Eagles are currently one of the best teams in the entire NFL, and definitely sit at the top of the NFC halfway through the season. Beathard and the 49ers wide receiving corps will line up opposite of DBs: CB Patrick Robinson (89.7), CB Jalen Mills (47.7), CB (R) Rasul Douglas (68.8), S Malcolm Jenkins (74.3), & S Rodney McLeod (69.5).
The Eagles will most likely use their best corner, Patrick Robinson, on Pierre Garçon, as he is by far the 49ers top receiving threat. Marquise Goodwin averaged roughly 20 yards a catch last Sunday against the Cowboys, but I’m not sure how many deep passes will be completed, or even attempted, as the 49ers rookie QB looks to be under pressure all day against the Eagles. I’d imagine their best bet would be short, quick passes to get Beathard’s confidence up early. Then, later on in the game they can take some deep shots if they’d like.
Look for TE George Kittle to become Beathard’s security blanket as the second half of the season goes by. The two are definitely already on the same page, as their time at Iowa together will prove so. Beathard looks somewhat comfortable and trusting when throwing the ball to his old college teammate. It is definitely a rapport all of us 49ers fans would love to see continue to develop in the NFL.
Running & Offensive-Line
San Francisco running back Carlos Hyde was clearly out-shined by Dallas back Ezekiel Elliot Sunday. Hyde finished the game with 68 yards on 14 carries, far from superstar numbers. The offensive-line did not help him much, as he was getting hit behind the line of scrimmage more often than not. On occasion, it appeared Hyde was about to take one to the house, but the bruising back was then taken down by a shoe-string tackle. Hyde looks to be in for another long day this Sunday, as the Eagles front-seven consists of: DT Flether Cox (85.3), DT Timmy Jernigan (86.7), DE Vinny Cury (82.4), DE Brandon Graham (90.2), DE Derek Barnett (73.7), DE Chris Long (73.3), OLB Mychal Kendricks (77.6), MLB Joe Walker (46.3), & OLB Nigel Bradham (78.6).
The 49ers offensive-line will definitely have their hands full come Sunday, as the Eagles have an insanely talented defensive-front. Beathard will likely be under pressure for most of the game, unfortunately. Look for the 49ers to use the Eagles speed against them with draws and screen passes. If the 49ers somehow make this a close game, it will definitely be because they won the battle in the trenches.