What do the writers of Niners Empire at Stadium Rant predict will happen in this Week Three matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and the Denver Broncos?
After losing Week One to the Bears, the 49ers were in a must-win game against a division rival. The 49ers took care of business and come into week three after an impressive 27-7 victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the home opener.
However, the game saw the 49ers lose starting quarterback Trey Lance to a season-ending ankle injury. Jimmy Garoppolo is the starter once again in a move that seemed impossible to start the offseason.
The Broncos opened the season against Seattle and were defeated in an upset loss. The Broncos entered Week Two in a must-win game as well and defeated the Texans 16-9 in a game they could have easily lost. The Russell Wilson and Nathaniel Hackett era has gotten off to a rocky start in the Rocky Mountains.
On Sunday Night Football, the 49ers are looking to win their second straight game and build momentum into the long season ahead.
Niners Empire Staff Predictions and Analysis
Score Prediction: 49ers defeat Broncos 24-10
Holding opponents to 210 yards per game, the 49ers come into the contest with the first-ranked defense in the league. Although the sack numbers aren’t indicative yet, the pass rush has been as good as advertised. Nick Bosa has three sacks on the season as he looks to reach the 20-sack mark this year.
The pass defense has been great to start the year with the inclusion of second-year safety Talanoa Hufanaga taking over for Jaquiski Tartt and the addition of Charvarius Ward. The rush defense has been great as well only allowing 2.6 yards per carry through two games.
For the 49ers to win, they need to limit the number of penalties like they did in Week Two (only called for one penalty), control the turnover battle, have a 60% to 40% run-to-pass ratio and control field position. The 49ers also must run the ball effectively and look to continue their run game dominance.
George Kittle is making his season debut and Jimmy Garoppolo has to play fundamental football and complete passes to wide-open targets.
Bold Prediction: Jimmy Garoppolo throws for two touchdowns. The defense gets four sacks from their defense and Deebo Samuel rushes for over 75 yards.
Score Prediction: 49ers defeat Broncos 27-21
The 49ers need to stop the running game and execute their rushing attack in Denver this Sunday. They have to keep Russell Wilson off the field and control the pace of the game.
Jordan Mason should see his first action this week unless Jeff Wilson and Marlon Mack are outplaying him dramatically in practice. Expect the Niners to try and run the ball at least 30 times. The front seven should be the most crucial for the Niners because the Broncos ideally want to win with a similar formula. Especially with Jerry Jeudy likely not playing this weekend.
If the Niners can force Wilson into a game where he has to air it out, the defense should feast.
Bold prediction: San Francisco will force two or more turnovers and win the rushing yard battle.
Score Prediction: 49ers defeat Broncos 27-24
The 49ers lost their starting quarterback for the year with an ankle injury. Jimmy Garoppolo, the backup quarterback, takes his place as the team travels to Denver to face the Broncos.
In Week Two, the 49ers’ defense did not allow any points to Geno Smith and the Seahawks on offense. Riding high, they will try to stop Russell Wilson, Javonte Williams, and Melvin Gordon.
Jimmy Garoppolo will have to out-duel Russell Wilson, something he hasn’t done of late
Score Prediction: 49ers defeat Broncos 23-17
With Quarterback Trey Lance being injured for the rest of the season, the game plan will be far different with Jimmy Garoppolo under center. The passing game should become more efficient this week, as it seems Shanahan has more faith in Garoppolo to throw the ball.
The 49ers face off against former Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who historically has been the bane of existence for the 49ers. With the 49ers facing Wilson for the first time on a new team, the 49ers plan to turn the script over against their former rival.
The 49ers running back room has continued to get depleted with both Elijah Mitchell and now Tyrion Davis-Price being injured. Rookie Jordan Mason will now be the backup running back and will be expected to have an important role in the offense. Marlon Mack was recently called up from the practice squad and will look to revive his career by carving out a role in the offense.
The Denver Broncos offense has been very lackluster so far in the 2022 campaign. Matching up against the 49ers’ defense, it would be no surprise to see the same in Week Three. This could be one of the toughest 49ers’ defenses that Wilson will have ever faced and it will show. The emergence of safety Talanoa Hufanga will certainly be a threat against the former rival.
Bold Prediction: Jordan Mason has a 100 yard game and gets his first career touchdown