Schedule sets up well for banged-up 49ers
The Super Bowl loser’s curse comes and goes.
From 2000 to ’07, seven consecutive Super Bowl losers did not make the playoffs the next season. From 2008 to ’14, seven straight Super Bowl losers made the playoffs the next season.
In the last four seasons, the 2018 Rams and 2015 Panthers have flopped after playing in the Big Game.
Will the 49ers be the next? They fit the profile as a nouveau riche contender — they were 25-55 from 2014 to ’17 and went from 4-12 to 13-3 and Super Bowl LIV. And they’re in a competitive division. The Seahawks and Rams have Super Bowl quarterbacks.
But the 49ers also had some factors in their favor. Their defense is their strength — solid at all three levels with a superior pass rush led by Joey Bosa. And while quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo is an X-factor, the 49ers’ offense is rushing-based and diversified — No. 2 in the NFL last year with three rushers with 500 or more yards.
But after a 24-20 loss at home to the Cardinals last week, you have to wonder. With Deebo Samuel out (broken foot), 49ers wide receivers had just two catches for 20 yards. Now tight end George Kittle has a sprained knee that limited him to four catches for 44 yards — none in the second half.
Just a bump in the road or a sign of things to come? Too early to tell. Right now, the schedule is their best friend — the Jets this week and the Giants next.
Pick: 49ers 26, Jets 10.