Atlanta Falcons (6-7) at San Francisco 49ers (7-6)
Sunday, December 19, 4:05PM ET
Surprisingly, the Atlanta Falcons have shown some life in recent weeks. Their offense is doing its best to get going, although the defense is still struggling to slow opponents down. That’s why the Falcons will get grounded against a hungry San Francisco 49ers squad.
Although they’ve been a bit inconsistent this season while battling through injuries, the 49ers are finally beginning to hit their stride. The return of George Kittle has worked wonders for this team, which has allowed Jimmy Garoppolo to play with more confidence. Especially if Elijah Moore returns to the lineup in Week 15, the 49ers should have little trouble moving the ball.
Speaking of offense, it’s the only way the Falcons keep themselves alive in this battle. Their defense has been awful all year long, which means they’ll need to score early and often to keep pace. Assuming Cordarrelle Patterson can go, they’ll need their do-it-all playmaker to find the end zone at least twice.
Regardless of Patterson’s effectiveness, I don’t see the Falcons winning this one. Their defense is too porous, and the 49ers offense is too efficient. Barring a career game from Matt Ryan, you’ll see San Francisco stay comfortably in the NFC playoff picture.
Prediction: 49ers win | Spread: 49ers (-8.5)