Sunday afternoon in San Francisco the 8-3-1 San Francisco 49ers will be taking on the 5-7 Miami Dolphins.
Though the records do not reflect it, this is really a pretty even match-up.
Both of these teams boast stout rush defenses with the Niners ranking 3rd allowing 90.6 YPG, and the Dolphins ranking a respectable 8th allowing 97.7 YPG.
This should make it hard for both teams to run on each other. Frank Gore, leading rusher for the Niners, comes into the game averaging 4.9 YPC, while Reggie Bush of the Dolphins comes into this matchup averaging 4.4 YPC.
Both of these teams depend on their running games offensively. However, with both defenses being solid against the ground attack, I would expect both quarterbacks, Ryan Tannehill of Miami and Colin Kaepernick of San Francisco, to be well over 30 passing attempts.
In the air, the edge should go to the Niners. The mobility of Kaepernick will be a major factor in this game also.
Expect Kaepernick to have a solid game both passing the ball, as well as rushing the ball. When coverage dictates, he will leave the pocket. Kaepernick should be able to get somewhere in the ballpark of 225-260 yards passing and also account for 40-50 yards on the ground.
If the Niners are going to come out with a win in this game, Kaerpernick needs to be a threat in both areas.
Miami should be able to exert pressure on Colin Kaepernick in passing situations. Miami defensive end, Cameron Wake, has had a solid season rushing the passer. He is coming to San Francisco with a total 11 sacks on the year.
I am expecting him to be able to collect a couple more sacks Sunday. Miami should be able to get some coverage sacks on Kaepernick, by getting the young quarterback to hold on to the ball too long.
This is going to be a low scoring, hard fought game. If you are expecting the Niners to blow out the Dolphins, think again. The Dolphins are going to be in this game.
Kaepernick is going to make enough mistakes to have this game decided within a field goal. I think that the Dolphins can come into this game and play loose enough to pull off an upset at Candlestick over the San Francisco 49ers with a Dan Carpenter field goal.
This will be the game that will have people wanting to switch back to Alex Smith.