The 6-2 Atlanta Falcons will seek to improve to 4-1 on the road as it travels to San Francisco to face the 49ers in a game NFL oddsmakers are listing 7.5 points in favor of Atlanta. The over/under is set at 44 for the game which will air at 3:05 CST on FOX.
Atlanta began the season 5-0 but has lost two of its past three, falling to the New Orleans Saints 31-21 and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 23-20.The win sandwiched in-between was a 10-7 victory over the struggling Tennessee Titans.Last week against Tampa Bay the game went into OT, but the Falcons blew a 17-point lead to allow the Bucs to take it.
Falcons QB Matt Ryan threw 37 of 45 for 397 yards with two TDs but one costly INT. RB Devonta Freeman rushed for 88 yards on 21 carries but the Falcons had no rushing TDs.
WR Julio Jones caught 12 passes for 162 yards and a TD and Jacob Tamme had 103 yards on 10 receptions with a TD.Atlanta had four fumbles and lost three of them, with Ryan, Jones and Mike Person (ankle injury but probable to play) all coughing it up.
Ryan has thrown for 2,399 yards on the year at a 67 percent completion ratio, and he has 11 TDs with seven INTs for a 2.2 INT percentage.He has been sacked 15 times and has a passer rating of 92.3.Freeman now has 709 yards on the year and averages 4.7 yards per attempt.
Only Tevin Coleman has more than 40 attempts after him with a 4.4 yards per carry average and one rushing TD.Ryan has scrambled for 51 yards on 21 attempts, but he has fumbled twice and once for loss.
Jones is the star of the Falcons with 70 receptions for 892 yards this season and six receiving TDs.He has fumbled twice and once for loss, but his usage rate is high enough to excuse it.Tamme is the No. 2 receiver with 32 catches in 44 targeted passes for 369 yards and a TD on the year.
The 49ers are riding a two game losing streak which was the response after having snapped a four game loss-streak prior to the win against Baltimore.Colin Kaepernick has struggled, throwing 144 of 243 for 1,1615 yards with five interceptions and 28 sacks.His passer rating is just 78.8.He has had some success running the ball with 256 yards on 45 attempts (5.7 yards per carry), but he has been a pick machine and the 49ers are struggling.
He will be benched with some injuries, in this affair in favor of Blaine Gabbert.
RB Carlos Hyde has rushed for 470 yards on 115 attempts with three TDs on the year and just one fumble (recovered).He is not expected to play due to a foot injury.
WR Anquan Boldin has caught 31 passes in 53 targets for 372 yards and two TDs.Torrey Smith has caught for 342 yards on 16 catches for a team-high 21.4 yards per catch, with four catches longer than 20-yards (including a 76 yard catch).Smith and Boldin have combined to reach 30 first downs.Boldin is unlikely to play due to a hamstring injury, and that is a huge loss for the Niners.
With both Hyde and Boldin on the shelf it might be tough for the Niners to even cover the spread in this one.
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