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49ers vs. Rams how to watch: TV, live stream, odds, prediction, keys for ‘Monday Night Football’ showdown

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The final game of Week 10 of the 2021 NFL season pits NFC West rivals against each other. The Los Angeles Rams, coming off a disappointing home loss to the Tennessee Titans last week, travel to Northern California to take on the San Francisco 49ers, who have lost five of their last six games after starting the season 2-0. 

This game should mark the Rams debuts for Von Miller and Odell Beckham, while it will also be their first game since losing Robert Woods for the season. L.A. has an opportunity to gain some ground on the division-leading Cardinals after Arizona lost to the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The 49ers are pretty far back in the playoff race at the moment, but they do at least have an opportunity to play spoiler here. 

So, can the Rams get back to their winning ways, or will the Niners send them into the loss column once again? We’ll find out Monday evening. But first, let’s break down the matchup. 

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How to watch

Date: Monday, Nov. 15 | Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
Location: Levi’s Stadium (Santa Clara, California)
TV:
 ESPN | Stream: fuboTV (click here)
Follow: CBS Sports App
Odds: Rams -3.5, O/U 50

When the Rams have the ball

The Rams suffered a tremendous loss in Friday’s practice, when Woods went down for the year with a torn ACL. The Beckham signing softens the blow a bit as it prevents the Rams from having to dig even deeper into their wide receiver depth chart, but Woods and Beckham are much different players. The Rams are almost surely not going to use Odell the same way they did Woods in the run game, for instance, and Woods’ facility and willingness to do the dirty work as a blocker is part of what made him such a valuable player for this offense. 

In Woods’ absence, it seems more likely that Van Jefferson will play more of Woods’ role, while Beckham slides into Jefferson’s role as a field-stretcher and back side threat. It’s a role that Beckham is well-suited for, but also one he didn’t particularly like playing in Cleveland. The Rams pass the ball far more often than do the Browns, so perhaps he’ll be more willing to accept that role because he’ll actually see more targets deep down the field. Matthew Stafford can certainly get the ball there on those plays, as well as those where Beckham is running the back-side dig that Woods or Jefferson would often run prior to Woods’ injury. 

No matter Beckham’s role in the offense, it seems highly likely that Cooper Kupp will maintain his place atop the team’s pecking order. He has shown immense chemistry with Stafford this season, he has the deepest wealth of knowledge of the offense, he’s the team’s best route-runner, and he’s now also easily the biggest and most physical of the team’s starting wideouts. 

Kupp lines up on the perimeter more often these days than he did earlier in his career, but is still most often aligned in the slot. The 49ers have allowed 46 catches on 55 targets to slot receivers this season, per Pro Football Focus, allowing 361 yards and two touchdowns on those passes. That is, uh, not very good. K’Waun Williams is the team’s top option in the slot and he’s been better than other defensive backs the Niners have tried in the role, but the 5-9, 185-pound Williams is at a distinct size disadvantage against Kupp, who is quite big for a slot receiver (6-2, 208 pounds). 

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The 49ers’ perimeter defensive backs have left a lot to be desired in coverage this season, leaving them potentially vulnerable to Jefferson and Beckham doing some damage as well. Josh Norman is listed as questionable for this game, but he’s been ineffective for most of the year anyway. Emmanuel Moseley has been… fine, but it’s easy enough to attack the 49ers’ other starters that you don’t even need to worry about throwing at him. 

The Niners are usually quite good at taking away the middle of the field due to the coverage abilities of their linebackers and safeties, but Dre Greenlaw has been out since Week 1, Fred Warner is having a down season, and Jaquiski Tartt has largely not played up to his usual standards, either. It seemed likely earlier this week that tight end Tyler Higbee was headed for a decrease in role after the Beckham acquisition; but the Rams now don’t have the receiver depth to dramatically ramp up their usage of 10 personnel, so Higbee will likely retain a near-every-down role in the offense. He could be set up fairly well in this matchup, too. 

The 49ers have been far more effective stopping the run (sixth in Football Outsiders’ rush defense DVOA) than the pass (25th), thanks in large part to the ability of their defensive line to make plays in the backfield. San Francisco ranks fifth in Adjusted Line Yards allowed per carry, and ninth in the share of opponent rushing attempts stopped at or behind the line of scrimmage. The Rams have done a good job of running the ball throughout the season so far, but the advantages they have in the pass game makes it seem like they should tip the balance more in that direction in this matchup. 

When the 49ers have the ball

This is not necessarily a strength-on-strength matchup, but it’s definitely a preference-on-preference matchup. The Rams’ defense is designed to encourage opponents to run the ball, and the 49ers largely want to base their offense around the zone running game. Few teams in the NFL use fewer defenders in the box than the Rams, who have aligned with six or fewer defenders near the line of scrimmage on 23 more defensive snaps than the next-closest team despite not yet having played their Week 10 game. 

The 49ers have tended to run into heavier boxes than most teams in the league, so this game should be a change of pace for them. Elijah Mitchell has run into an eight-plus man box on 39.3% of his carries, per TruMedia, the league’s highest rate among 49 qualified running backs. He’s averaged 5.0 yards per carry into those eight-man boxes, tied for the ninth-best figure among that same group of players. Mitchell has just 15 carries into light boxes this season, but he’s averaged 5.53 yards per tote on those plays. That’s a good sign for his potential to get going against the Rams, which would in turn set the 49ers offense up for success. 

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San Francisco’s pass game is predicated on a lot of play-action and bootleg concepts, which give Jimmy Garoppolo easier reads and wider throwing lanes. Garoppolo’s 108.7 passer rating on play-action throws dwarfs his 88.1 mark on straight dropback plays. The leveled crossing routes that are the 49ers’ staples on those plays, though, don’t work quite as well or as often against the types of two-high safety looks that form the basis of the Rams’ defensive coverages. It will be up to the likes of Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk, and George Kittle to adjust to the zones and find open space for Garoppolo to deliver them the ball. 

It’s also worth watching what the Rams decide to do, coverage-wise, in this matchup. They have used Jalen Ramsey in the slot on about 40% of his defensive snaps this season, per Pro Football Focus. Using him there allows him to contribute to the run fits along with the defensive front, but might not allow him to contribute as much as a coverage player in what should be the team’s preferred matchups. It seems somewhat unlikely that he shadows either Samuel or Kittle wherever they go, but we can’t rule out the possibility. 

The Niners typically block things up very well up front, but the loss of right tackle Mike McGlinchey could prove damaging here as Von Miller might make his Rams debut on Monday night. Miller has tended to rush from the left side of the defense during his career, putting him right where McGlinchey would usually be. Couple him with Aaron Donald up the middle and Leonard Floyd on the opposite edge, and the Rams have the ability to make things very uncomfortable for San Francisco’s offensive line.

Latest Odds:

San Francisco 49ers
+3.5

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Prediction: Rams 33, 49ers 23

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North Carolina vs. Notre Dame live stream info, TV channel: How to watch NCAA Football on TV, stream online

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Who’s Playing

Notre Dame @ North Carolina

Current Records: Notre Dame 1-2; North Carolina 3-0

What to Know

The North Carolina Tar Heels will be returning home after a two-game road trip. They will take on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday at Kenan Memorial Stadium after a week off. UNC is expected to win — but not by much — so they will need to come into the game prepared for a fight.

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The Tar Heels beat the Georgia State Panthers 35-28 two weeks ago. Among those leading the charge for UNC was RB Omarion Hampton, who rushed for two TDs and 110 yards on 16 carries. Hampton put himself on the highlight reel with a 58-yard TD scramble in the third quarter.

Meanwhile, Notre Dame netted a 24-17 victory over the California Golden Bears last week. RB Audric Estime and RB Chris Tyree were among the main playmakers for Notre Dame as the former punched in one rushing touchdown and the latter snatched one receiving TD.

Notre Dame’s defense was a presence as well, as it embarrassed California’s offensive line to sack QB Jack Plummer six times for a total loss of 47 yards. It was a group effort with four guys contributing.

The wins brought the Tar Heels up to 3-0 and the Fighting Irish to 1-2. A pair of stats to keep an eye on: UNC enters the matchup with 310 passing yards per game on average, good for 21st best in the nation. But Notre Dame comes into the contest boasting the 34th fewest passing yards allowed per game in the nation at 184. These opposing strengths should make for an exciting matchup.

How To Watch

  • When: Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET
  • Where: Kenan Memorial Stadium — Chapel Hill, North Carolina
  • TV: ABC
  • Online streaming: fuboTV (Try for free. Regional restrictions may apply.)
  • Follow: CBS Sports App
  • Ticket Cost: $110.00

Odds

The Tar Heels are a slight 2.5-point favorite against the Fighting Irish, according to the latest college football odds.

The line on this game has moved quite a bit since it opened, as it started out with the Fighting Irish as a 1.5-point favorite.

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Over/Under: -110

See college football picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine’s advanced computer model. Get picks now.

Series History

Notre Dame have won all of the games they’ve played against North Carolina in the last eight years.

  • Oct 30, 2021 – Notre Dame 44 vs. North Carolina 34
  • Nov 27, 2020 – Notre Dame 31 vs. North Carolina 17
  • Oct 07, 2017 – Notre Dame 33 vs. North Carolina 10



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San Diego State vs. Toledo: How to watch, schedule, live stream info, game time, TV channel

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Who’s Playing

Toledo @ San Diego State

Current Records: Toledo 2-1; San Diego State 1-2

What to Know

The San Diego State Aztecs may be playing at home Saturday, but the experts are forecasting a three-point defeat. They will take on the Toledo Rockets at 3:30 p.m. ET at Snapdragon Stadium. Both of these teams will be looking for a pick-me-up after considerable defeats in their previous games.

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The Aztecs were expected to have a tough go of it last week, and, well, they did. They found themselves the reluctant recipients of an unfortunate 35-7 punch to the gut against the Utah Utes. San Diego State was in a tough position by the half, with the score already sitting at 21 to nothing. One thing holding San Diego State back was the mediocre play of QB Kyle Crum, who did not have his best game: despite one touchdown, he threw one interception with a passing completion percentage of only 31.25%.

Meanwhile, it’s never fun to lose, and it’s even less fun to lose 77-21, which was the final score in Toledo’s tilt against the Ohio State Buckeyes last week. The Rockets were down 56-21 at the end of the third quarter, which was just too much to recover from. Toledo’s loss came about despite a quality game from QB Dequan Finn, who passed for two TDs and 153 yards on 19 attempts in addition to rushing for one TD and 70 yards. Near the top of the highlight reel was Finn’s 50-yard TD bomb to WR Thomas Zsiros in the first quarter.

The losses put San Diego State at 1-2 and Toledo at a reciprocal 2-1. A couple offensive numbers to keep in mind before kickoff: San Diego State enters the game with 221 rushing yards per game on average, good for 22nd best in the nation. The Rockets have displayed some offensive firepower of their own as they rank 17th in the nation when it comes to rushing touchdowns, with nine on the season.

How To Watch

  • When: Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET
  • Where: Snapdragon Stadium — San Diego, California
  • TV: Fox Sports 1
  • Online streaming: fuboTV (Try for free. Regional restrictions may apply.)
  • Follow: CBS Sports App
  • Ticket Cost: $14.85

Odds

The Rockets are a 3-point favorite against the Aztecs, according to the latest college football odds.

The line has drifted a bit towards the Rockets, as the game opened with the Rockets as a 1-point favorite.

Over/Under: -111

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See college football picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine’s advanced computer model. Get picks now.

Series History

This is the first time these teams have played each other within the last seven years.



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Miami (FL) vs. Middle Tenn.: How to watch online, live stream info, game time, TV channel

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Who’s Playing

Middle Tenn. @ No. 25 Miami (FL)

Current Records: Middle Tenn. 2-1; Miami (FL) 2-1

What to Know

The Middle Tenn. Blue Raiders are staring down a pretty large 25.5-point disadvantage in the spread for Saturday’s game. They will take on the Miami (FL) Hurricanes at 3:30 p.m. ET Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium. The Blue Raiders should still be riding high after a win, while Miami (FL) will be looking to regain their footing.

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Middle Tenn. simply couldn’t be stopped last week, as they easily beat the Tennessee State Tigers at home 49-6. The team ran away with 42 points in the first half and mostly just sat on those in the second to pick up the victory.

Meanwhile, Miami (FL) came up short against the Texas A&M Aggies last week, falling 17-9. Miami (FL) couldn’t find the end zone and got their points from three field goals.

Special teams was responsible for all of the team’s points. K Andres Borregales delivered a perfect 3-for-3 game.

Middle Tenn.’s win brought them up to 2-1 while the Hurricanes’ loss pulled them down to an identical 2-1. Two defensive numbers to keep in mind before kickoff: The Blue Raiders haven’t allowed a rushing touchdown yet this season. Miami (FL) is not quite as good, but they are no chumps, either: they enter the contest with only one rushing touchdown allowed, good for 11th best in the nation. Looks like the running backs might have a tough go of it.

How To Watch

  • When: Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET
  • Where: Hard Rock Stadium — Miami Gardens, Florida
  • TV: ACC Network
  • Online streaming: fuboTV (Try for free. Regional restrictions may apply.)
  • Follow: CBS Sports App
  • Ticket Cost: $4.00

Odds

The Hurricanes are a big 25.5-point favorite against the Blue Raiders, according to the latest college football odds.

The oddsmakers had a good feel for the line for this one, as the game opened with the Hurricanes as a 26.5-point favorite.

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Over/Under: -111

See college football picks for every single game, including this one, from SportsLine’s advanced computer model. Get picks now.

Series History

This is the first time these teams have played each other within the last seven years.

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