Last Sunday, we went a perfect two-for-two on our 5/5 confidence picks. It was the rest of the picks that let us down, and we ended up going 2-4. That brings our season total to 78-74-2. I found three plays with varying levels of confidence for this week’s Thursday night battle between the 49ers and the Seahawks. As always, I have included confidence ratings with all my picks at the end of their write-ups.
Christian McCaffrey HIGHER than 80.5 Rushing Yards
Running backs playing Seattle is an elite matchup. Seattle is giving up 160.5 rushing yards per game, which is the second most in the NFL. They also give up the fifth most yards per rush. During the last four weeks, they have been especially bad. They’ve given up 171.5 rush yards per game to running backs, including 229 rushing yards to Josh Jacobs in Week 12
McCaffrey has a firm grip on the touches in this backfield even if it looks like he split carries with Jordan Mason last week. Mason had 11 rush attempts, but all of them were after halftime when the 49ers were up 28–0. Even if Mason starts to get a few more carries, McCaffrey should go higher than this line. I originally wrote this lineup when it was posted at 68.5 rush yards and had it as a 5/5 for confidence pick.
Unfortunately, it has already moved significantly, and I had 79.5 rush yards as my number to stop playing it at originally. However, I am willing to go to 80.5, but not any higher, and give it a 3/5 confidence rating since it is so high
Tyler Lockett +3.5 Receiving Yards HIGHER than DK Metcalf
The 49ers have one of the most dominant defensive units in the NFL, and they’ve found success running zone coverage on 77.8% of plays, which is the fifth most in the league. Lockett has led the Seahawks in target percentage against zone coverage this season with a 24.5% target share. That is slightly higher than Metcalf, who has a 22.4% target share against zone coverage. That slight target share difference should be enough for Lockett to have 3.5 more receiving yards than Metcalf.
In their first game this season, the 49ers ran zone coverage above their season average. San Francisco ran zone coverage on 87.2% of plays in that game and Lockett went off for nine receptions and 107 yards receiving. I expect another zone-heavy defensive approach from the 49ers, and for Geno Smith to look to Lockett’s way often. I rate this play as 4/5 for confidence and would play it even if it went up to a 6.5 receiving yards difference.
Marquise Goodwin HIGHER than 24.5 Receiving Yards
Here’s a list of the slot receiver with the most routes run per team, and their stat lines only from the slot against the 49ers the last five weeks:
Week 10: DeAndre Carter: four targets, three receptions, 61 receiving yards
Week 11: Greg Dortch: eight targets, eight receptions, 56 receiving yards
Week 12: Chris Olave: five targets, three receptions, 51 receiving yards
Week 13: Tyreek Hill: seven targets, five receptions, 56 receiving yards
Week 14: Chris Godwin: seven targets, four receptions, 51 receiving yards
Goodwin is Seattle’s predominant slot receiver this season even though he has split slot snaps with Lockett. Since Week 10, Goodwin has the slight edge and has run 70 snaps from the slot compared to Lockett’s 65 routes run from the slot. Considering slot receivers’ success against the 49ers recently, I am confident Goodwin will can go higher than this line. I rate it 5/5 for confidence, which makes it my highest confidence play of the night. I would play this up to 29.5 receiving yards.
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