The San Francisco 49ers and the rest of the West Coast based teams in the NFL have had to play early games on the road when visiting East Coast teams, which has affected their ability to win games because a 1 PM. ET. kickoff means they play games at 10 AM. PST, which is something their bodies aren’t used to.
This season, the teams are trying to change the current scheduling format so they don’t have to play too many early games when they play East Coast based teams. While the proposed changes won’t affect San Francisco 49ers season odds, it will put them in a better position to win those early kickoff games on the East Coast.
According to Monday Morning Quarterback’s Peter King, the 49ers, Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Chargers have submitted a proposal that will prevent West Coast teams from playing more than three early games each season.
Last year, the 49ers had five early kickoff games against East Coast opponents. The year before that, they had four early kickoff games. San Francisco’s record in those games is 2-7. Most people will point to the fact that the 49ers weren’t a very good team during those years, but if you go back to when they were a perennial playoff team, they still lost a lot of those early start games.
The Cardinals had six early games last season, one of which was in London, and the team went 1-5 in those games. The Chargers had four early start games and went 2-2 in them.
According to King, the proposal by the West Coast based teams is one of four that the league will consider next week, as well as the catch rule, which is expected to be changed next season.
If the proposal passes, it will make a big difference for the West Coast teams because they won’t have to worry about playing many games at 10 AM. PST, which will level the playing field for the teams. It will also mean that coaches who keep their team in the East Coast for an extra week when they have consecutive games against East Coast teams, which is also an inconvenience a lot of West Coast teams deal with every season.
After three consecutive losing seasons, the 49ers have a chance to make the playoffs this year thanks to the play of Jimmy Garoppolo, who they acquired in a trade with the New England Patriots and signed to a big contract this offseason after going 5-0 as the team’s starter last year.
If the 49ers don’t get to play as many early start games this season, they will improve their chances of getting road wins against East Coast based teams, which should help them get back into the playoffs.
However, before they can start looking ahead to the playoffs, the 49ers still have some holes to fill, so expect them to be active during the NFL Draft.
With the quarterback situation taken care of, the 49ers can use the ninth pick in the draft to address other needs like the running back position and their linebacking corps situation. If they do well in the draft, there is no reason to believe they won’t make the playoffs this year.
My team..the 49ers. Not afraid to go for it....it's going to be an exciting 2018 season #hopeatlast— Tracey Gwynne (@acegirl22) March 23, 2018