How watchable are the San Francisco 49ers for the 2022 season?
And how many 49er games are being projected to have a million or more watchful eyes when NFL fans turn on their televisions or watch via their handheld devices this fall?
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It’s a pivotal 2022 season for the NFC runner-ups — especially as they are projected to transition to a new quarterback in Trey Lance, added some new weapons on offense via the 2022 NFL Draft, signed Super Bowl winning cornerback Charvarius Ward and finally, were given five primetime games on NBC, ESPN and Amazon.
And the 49ers landed inside a major top 25 list not once, but three times.
According to the website bookies.com, the 49ers have three games that fell into the “Top 25 Most Watchable Games” for 2022, as compiled by writer Bill Speros. As mentioned by Speros, the Bookies criteria involved which games were scheduled for primetime, the geographical aspect especially if it pertained to a rivalry game and finally, if there’s a major storyline attached to that contest.
Here are those games.
Chiefs at 49ers, Week 7
At No. 17 is the rematch of Super Bowl 54 by Bookies.
It’s the first time both teams will meet since that Miami encounter, which saw the Chiefs rally back from 10-down and end their Super Bowl winning drought.
The Chiefs’ roster changed drastically since then. Tyreek Hill, who delivered 105 yards on 9 catches at Hard Rock Stadium on that February 2 night, was traded away to the Miami Dolphins. Tyrann Mathieu is another key member of that Chiefs team who moved on this offseason, signing with the New Orleans Saints. Meanwhile, Ward snatched four tackles and three solo stops that evening…but will now take on his former team for the first time in his career when Kansas City comes to Levi’s Stadium.
Early line via Draft Kings: Kansas City -1
49ers at Rams, Week 8
The following week is this next major rematch — this time the NFC title game. That contest tied with the Week 16 Christmas showdown between the Denver Broncos and Los Angeles Rams at No. 18 by Bookies.
Some of the lasting memories of that game include the Jaquiski Tartt dropped interception, then the Jimmy Garoppolo pick that eventually sealed the win for the Rams. But now, Tartt remains a free agent and was mentioned as a possibility for the New York Jets on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Garoppolo has still remained on the 49ers’ roster after hearing constant trade chatter. Even if Garoppolo stays on with S.F., Lance is being labeled the opening season starter…and for this game at SoFi Stadium. But along with many expected to tune in for this Sunday afternoon regional showdown, hordes of 49er fans are likely to try to outnumber the “Rams House” inside the crystallized Inglewood venue.
Early line via Draft Kings: Los Angeles -3.5
49ers at Broncos, Week 3
The first primetime game on the 49ers’ 2022 schedule earned the label of the 25th most watchable game by Bookies.
And this one has a reunion type feel to it in the Rocky Mountains.
For one, the Broncos will have longtime NFC West adversary of the 49ers Russell Wilson now leading the Denver offense. Also, former 49ers interior defender D.J. Jones gets to line up against the offensive trenches he once crossed paths with during practices at Santa Clara.
Lastly, new Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett was on the Green Bay Packers staff that saw Aaron Rodgers lead his team down the field for the winning field goal with 37 seconds left — which was also a Week 3 contest aired on NBC. The 49ers will look to redeem themselves here in front of the NBC cameras.
Early line via Draft Kings: Denver -2.5