Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs opponent preview: 49ers, Week 7

When they play: Week 7 (Oct. 23) in Santa Clara.

2015 record: 5-11.

Last time vs. Bucs: The 49ers beat the Bucs 33-14 in Tampa in Dec. 2013, leading 20-14 in the fourth before finishing the game on a 13-0 run in the final five minutes.

2016 outlook: It isn't long ago the 49ers were leading in the fourth quarter of the 2013 NFC title game. They'd lose to Seattle, then fade down the stretch in 2014, then struggle under Jim Tomsula, and now they'll likely challenge Cleveland for the worst record in the NFL. How much can Chip Kelly turn things around if he's choosing between Blaine Gabbert and Colin Kaepernick?

Player to watch: LB NaVorro Bowman is a four-time first-team All-Pro -- is this the year he returns to his dominating 2013 form, when he had six (!) forced fumbles, five sacks and returned an interception for a touchdown? After missing 2014 with injury, he showed he can be a prolific tackler again last season.

Rookie to watch: Who knew Kelly would stock up on Oregon ... defensive linemen? First-rounder DeForest Buckner joins another former Duck in Arik Armstead in what could get back to the game-changing front seven that Patrick Willis and others shined with only a few years ago.

Key matchup: RB Carlos Hyde vs. opposing defenses. He had such a promising start to 215 -- 168 yards and two touchdowns in a 20-3 win against the Vikings. He wouldn't top 100 again, and only topped 60 yards once, gone after seven games with a foot injury. He's shown what he can do when healthy.

Familiar face: Does Chip count? Absent that, we'll go with OLB Aaron Lynch, the former USF defensive end who's shown flashes of real promise (12.5 sacks in two seasons) and more trouble, like the four-game suspension he'll serve to open the season.

Cool stat: How bad was the 49ers offense last year? Dead last with 14.9 points per game. They scored seven points or less four times in the first eight games, got to 20 points just three times all season, with a max of 27. Second-worst in total offense, too, at 303.8 yards per game.

Bucs opponent preview: 49ers, Week 7 09/09/16 [Last modified: Thursday, September 8, 2016 10:05pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Thursday's Rays-Yankees game

    The Heater

    The 10 strikeouts look flashy, but RHP Chris Archer was not his sharpest Thursday. He allowed three runs on seven hits, including three straight in the two-run second and a Gary Sanchez homer in the third, and lasted only six innings, throwing 102 pitches.

  2. Rays fall to Yankees in 11 on Brett Gardner homer (w/ video)

    The Heater

    NEW YORK — The front office did its part Thursday, making two trades to bolster the roster in a push for the playoffs. But the Rays didn't follow up in a frustrating 6-5 11-inning loss to the Yankees.

    Rays reliever Andrew Kittredge stands on the mound and can only watch as the Yankees’ Brett Gardner starts to circle the bases after his walkoff home run leading off the 11th inning.
  3. Believe it! Rays are buyers, trade for reliever Dan Jennings and 1B/DH Lucas Duda

    The Heater

    NEW YORK — Dan Jennings' ability to render lefty hitters useless with a sinker that gets beaten into the ground and Lucas Duda's power to blast baseballs off and over outfield walls should make the Rays better.

    Lucas Duda
  4. Bucs' direction is decidedly up for first time in several years

    Bucs

    TAMPA — If you want to see a team give the Heisman Trophy stiff-arm to expectations, check out the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

    Tight end O.J. Howard, left, the Bucs’ first-round draft pick this year, was brought in to give QB Jameis Winston another big-play option.
  5. Rays at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. Friday, New York

    The Heater

    Tonight: at Yankees

    7:05, Yankee Stadium, New York

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Austin Pruitt (50) in the dugout during the ninth inning of the game between the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, April 2, 2017. The Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 7-3.