The San Francisco 49ers are the hottest team in the NFL right now and it is not even close. The Niners haven’t missed a beat fighting with a third-string quarterback, Brock Purdy. Their defense has played phenomenally and their offense is somehow finding a way to play at a high level despite injuries. With the NFC looking weaker than ever, the Niners have a legit shot at a Super Bowl. I would have thought it would have been the Cowboys or Eagles 2 weeks ago, but currently, the Niners are the best team in the NFC. The real question is can they finish off a championship?
Let’s talk about the path to the Super Bowl first, the Niners are going to try everything they can to get the two seed. The second seed lets them avoid Philly until the conference championship, and get the easiest Wild Card matchup. They also avoid the Cowboys, who are probably the third-best team in the conference. Even though Dallas has been very hit or miss these last two weeks, they still are extremely dangerous. The 49ers will see a team of the Giant’s capacity in the first round and likely the Vikings in the second round. I don’t see either of these teams being an issue for them. The NFC Championship will be the toughest test they will face in the playoffs. If they get a win there, I do believe their momentum should lead them to a Super Bowl win.
Brock Purdy. He is the man of the hour, coming in as a third-string, and playing lights out. He plays smarter than both Jimmy G and Trey Lance, and that is what is winning them games. In an important divisional matchup against the Seahawks, Purdy didn’t seemed to be phased. He didn’t play at an MVP level but played well enough to beat a playoff contender. While the Seahawks are an impressive win, dominating another potential playoff team (Bucs) the week before makes the feat even more incredible. Overall, Purdy has been a spark that the Niners desperately needed after losing player after player on their offense. Although injuries have plagued this team, this could very well be a blessing in disguise. Purdy could be the future of this team if he is able to continue playing at this level and if he can lead the Niners deep into the playoffs.
The defense for this team is the underlying reason why San Fran is the best team in the NFC. They have dominated every team they come across in the win streak and get none of the headlines. Shutting down offenses like the Dolphins, Chargers, and Bucs is not an easy task. The Niners allowed under 18 points in all three games which is not a task that can get replicated by many other teams. I do have concerns for when they play Dallas or Philly who have both played at high levels on both sides of the ball. Once again, that is why I think that the NFC Championship game will be their toughest task. Although when they played Dallas last year, they were able to do enough to steal a win against the Cowboys. As long as this defense continues to play at a high level the Niners are a tough out.
What would really be interesting is if the Vikings win out and the 49ers are forced into a tougher Wild Card game. That would make their path just a little bit harder, but nothing that they shouldn’t be able to handle. The real question is, how fatigued will the Niners be against the NFC East team in the Conference Championship? That might be a little bold, but if Dallas nor Philly are in the NFC Championship game I would be extremely surprised. One last factor to think about is how healthy is Jalen Hurts and whether can Dallas get their act together. The bottom line for San Francisco is the offense and defense are playing well enough to win the Super Bowl, so why not them.
Top Picture by Getty Images