After their rally fell short against the Minnesota Vikings in their season opener, the San Francisco 49ers were able to get their first win of the season against the Detroit Lions last week. Now, the team has to hit the road to take on the red-hot Kansas City Chiefs, and as expected, the 49ers’ odds for next game has them as six-point underdogs to the Chiefs.
Kansas City is favored to win this game because of how well they have played offensively in their first two games. During the offseason, the Chiefs traded quarterback Alex Smith to the Washington Redskins because they were impressed with what they saw from Patrick Mahomes. Their decision to hand the reigns of the offense to their 2017 draft pick is already paying off as the team is off to a 2-0 start.
Mahomes hasn’t only played well, he has been great in his first two starts of the year. The second-year signal caller completed 23 of 28 passes for 326 yards and six touchdowns. In his first two games, he has completed 38 of 55 passes for 582 yards, 10 touchdowns and zero interceptions. Mahomes also became the first quarterback to throw 10 touchdown passes in the first three games of a career.
The success Mahomes has had in three games already has people, including 49ers Hall of Famer Steve Young, comparing him to Brett Favre.
The 49ers will have a tough challenge ahead of them when they play the Chiefs. The team already has to deal with the 1 PM. start time, which has historically affected west coast teams because they will be kicking off at 9 AM. PST, which usually results in a slow start in the first half for the visiting team.
Their defense also has to figure out a way to slow down what has been the best offense in the league so far. The 49ers struggled against Kirk Cousins in their first game, and almost allowed the Lions to come back against them in the second half of last week’s game, which means they have to do a better job when they face the Chiefs on Sunday.
The 49ers also have to figure out how to contain Tyreke Hill and Kareem Hunt, who have caused problems for defenses this year with their speed. The good news for the 49ers is Rueben Foster will be eligible to return from his suspension this week and should help improve their pass rush, which hasn’t been very effective this year.
Despite how well the Chiefs have played this season, the 49ers have a legitimate chance to win this game because Kansas City has a pretty bad defense. The Los Angeles Chargers scored 28 points against the Chiefs in their season opener and the Pittsburgh Steelers scored 37 points in their loss to the Chiefs last week.
If San Francisco’s offensive line can give quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo enough time in the pocket, he should be able to put up some big numbers on the Chiefs. If Matt Breida has another big game for the 49ers, their offense could prove to be too much for the Chiefs to handle.