After a dominant Week 1 in Pittsburgh, the San Francisco 49ers will travel to Los Angeles to take on the Rams in a Week 2 battle between familiar foes. While there are plenty of stars to watch in this one, all eyes will be on 49ers QB Brock Purdy once again as he continues to try and carry his undefeated regular season streak through the 2023 season. Ahead of the Rams-49ers game, we'll be making our 49ers Week 2 predictions.
The Rams are coming off a shocking road victory against the Seattle Seahawks, as Matthew Stafford pioneered multiple touchdown drives without the services of Cooper Kupp. Rookie receiver Puka Nacua had an incredible debut (10 receptions, 119 yards) and Kyren Williams stepped up on the ground to lead the Rams to an upset. A matchup against the 49ers will present new challenges, as San Francisco's defense looked dominant against Pittsburgh throughout the entire the game.
Will Christian McCaffery be able to gash Aaron Donald and the Rams defense up front? Will Brock Purdy and Brandon Aiyuk continue their connection that led to two scores last week? Let's get out the crystal ball and make three bold predictions for the Week 49ers-Rams matchup.
*Watch NFL games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
3. Deebo Samuel totals over 150 yards
Sean McVay's Rams have never had a good answer for Deebo Samuel, and that continues in Week 2. Samuel has averaged 130 total yards in his last four games against the Rams, and he bests that mark with a few big plays in this matchup. Samuel was a big part of the early gameplan against the Steelers, as head coach Kyle Shanahan manufactured looks early to get Samuel the ball in space.
Samuel received seven touches against the Steelers, but the game got out of hand quickly. Matthew Stafford hasn't had any big games against the 49ers yet, but he helps the Rams keep pace in the first half which helps Samuel get more touches in the long run and break off some huge chunk plays. After Brandon Aiyuk ate last week, it's Samuel's turn against the NFC West rival Rams.
2. Christian McCaffery scores twice
While Samuel should be targeted early and often, it's McCaffery who will finish off the drives for the 49ers in the red zone, punching in two touchdowns on the day. McCaffery scored twice last year against the Rams on October 30th, catching a touchdown pass and rushing one in as well.
McCaffery was utilized more often than expected in Week 1 against Pittsburgh, notching 25 touches on the game while Elijah Mitchell only received five carries. Expect a little more balance between the two backs in this one, but McCaffery will get the high-value touches around the endzone and make good use of them.
1. Brock Purdy misses only five passes, stays undefeated
Purdy has never played against the Rams, but that doesn't stop him from being on target throughout this matchup. With the 49ers leaning on the ground game and the Rams doing everything they can on their end to establish the run, Purdy goes 21-for-26 on a highly efficient day to help lead the 49ers to a 2-0 record to start the 2023 season.
Purdy accomplished the feat of only missing five passes in two games last year against the Arizona Cardinals and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and he does it again in a convincing victory over the Rams.