King of Props Keeps the Gravy Train Rolling
We enjoyed a 2-0 Saturday and made it look exceedingly easy.
Seattle’s Golden Tate had just one reception, staying well under his total of 4½, while Indy’s Griff Whalen got the three catches he needed before halftime and finished with five.
Now 48-25-1 (.658) on the season, we look for a weekend sweep with these two plays:
Over 67½ receiving yards for 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree
After missing the first three months of the season while rehabbing a surgically repaired Achilles tendon, Crabtree has resumed a primary role in the passing offense.
In last week’s win over the Packers, he had eight catches for 125 yards, marking the second time he has exceeded the century mark in the last three games. Crabtree has also been targeted 28 times over that stretch.
During the regular season, the Panthers allowed the second-fewest rushing yards per game. They figure to keep Frank Gore in check and force the 49ers to throw.
Colin Kaepernick will be looking for Crabtree often, and the now-healthy wideout should deliver some big plays.
Over 4½ receptions for Chargers wide receiver Keenan Allen
Regular readers of this space know that we are fans of Allen, who was a reception machine at Cal and has continued to impress in his rookie season.
In four different games, he put up either eight or nine catches. He also rarely leaves the field when San Diego is on offense, missing only two snaps over the last four games.
During the two regular-season meetings between these teams, the Chargers emphasized the run in an effort to keep the high-powered Broncos offense off the field.
With lead back Ryan Mathews hobbled by an ankle injury, San Diego will likely need Philip Rivers to throw more. In a game that could be a shootout, Allen should be heavily involved.
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