Week 4 NFL Picks on CBS: San Francisco 49ers at Los Angeles Chargers

Jimmy Garappolo struggled as a Niner, but he is out (knee) and CJ Beathard will take his place for the 49ers this week.

San Francisco at L.A. Chargers
Time: 3:25 PM CT (CBS)
Spread: LAC -11.5
Total: 46

Odds c/o 5dimes

The 1-2 L.A. Chargers lost 23-35 to the L.A. Rams in week 3. Week 4 sees the Chargers host San Francisco as 11.5-point favorites at 3:25 PM (CT) on CBS. The over/under is set at 46 points according to NFL oddsmakers at bookmaker 5dimes.

Los Angeles has had a rough going defensively. The Chargers rank No. 31 in the NFL in surrendering 31.0 points per game, which has resulted in two losses despite possessing a top-10 offense (No. 8 at 27.3 points per game). It ranks in both the top-10 of passing yardage (291.0 per game) and rushing yardage (124.3 per game). The Chargers simply gave up 38 points to the Chiefs and 35 to the Rams while holding Buffalo to just 20 in its week 2 victory. It is hoping for a return to that type of performance, and San Francisco offers a great chance for its “D” to get back on track this week.

The 49ers are 0-2 on the road this season and have a terrible pass offense which ranks No. 24 in the NFL at 207.0 yards per game. However, the Niners make up for it with its rush attack, ranking No. 2 in the league with 152.7 yards per contest. The result is a decent offense that stacks up to be No. 12 overall with 24.3 points per game.

However, much like its opponent, the defense has been the No. 1 issue for San Francisco. It ranks No. 27 in giving up 29.7 points per game, and it allowed the Chiefs to rack up 38 points last week in week 3. Week 2 it surrendered 27, but scored 30, against Detroit, and in Week 1 it gave up 24 points to the Minnesota Vikings.

The aim this week would be to hold the Chargers under 25 points, but can San Francisco make the defensive plays to disrupt L.A. or will the 11.5-point spread hold rather true to oddsmakers projections?

The biggest problem thus far for San Francisco has largely been that Jimmy Garoppolo has been a massive disappointment. The former Patriot has thrown just 53 of 89 for 718 yards (59.6 percent completions) while having launched three interceptions and incurred 13 sacks. His passer rating is just 90.0 due to his 3.4 percent interception ratio, while he also has just five passing TDs (5.6 percent). He was placed not he injured reserve with a knee injury on Wednesday, and San Francisco will turn to CJ Beathard this week.

CJ Beathard of Iowa takes the place of Jimmy Garoppolo this week.

The team has announced it is not interested in Nick Foles or Colin Kaepernick simply because it believes in Beathard. He is in his second NFL season after being drafted in the third-round out of Iowa. He threw 123 of 224 last year (54 percent) with four TDs and six INTs. The Niners are hoping he can mature quickly, from the 69.2 passer rating he posted in his rookie season. At Iowa, he was a strong-armed quarterback and highly coveted in the 2017 draft, but he will have to learn the hard way with Garoppolo hitting the injured list just a few days ago.

His top receiver is George Kittle. Kittle caught 12 of 20 targeted passes for 191 yards and nine first downs this season, but he has not caught a TD reception yet. The Niners have got TD receptions from Kyle Juszcyk and Dante Pettis, but San Francisco has just two receivers with 100-plus yards to their credit. Running back Matt Breida has experienced great success, though, with 274 yards on 32 attempts, including six runs for 20-plus yards and 10 first downs.

He has scored one of the Niners’ two rushing TDs, with Alfred Morris having done most of the rest of the work at a 3.8 yard-per-carry average on his team-leading 40 attempts. Garoppolo rushed eight times for 33 yards, and the Niners are hoping Beathard can continue that success rushing from the pocket. The offensive line had done a superb job, but Garoppolo was mostly to blame for the incompletions and interceptions. The Niners could be in for a major improvement or struggles under a new quarterback, but determining which is still somewhat tricky as untested NFL quarterbacks can tend to either surprise or flop dramatically, with the difference being somewhat impossible to delineate without seeing the results first.

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