The San Francisco 49ers will host a game against the Washington Redskins on Nov. 23 at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. Fans can watch online the 49ers vs. Redskins via live stream - free for subscribers - below, and on CBS Television Network.
The 49ers currently have a 6-4 record, while Washington has 3-7 so far this season. For the Redskins, this matchup couldn't have come at a worse time; the 49ers have a chance to enter the playoffs, but Washington only has the chance to play the spoiler. James Dudko of Bleacher Report thinks they have two vital options to create a staggering upset that could affect playoff rankings.
"The power sweep is the signature play of the San Francisco offense," Dudko wrote. "When it works, the vaunted Frank Gore-led ground game is clicking and San Fran just looks like a better team."
Dudko adds that the Redskins should not allow the 49ers to run those power sweep plays. He calls on defensive coordinator Jim Haslett to adopt an "aggressive, attack-first approach" in countering those plays.
"This kind of attacking mentality is crucial against the power sweep," Dudko wrote. "It helps a defense gain quick penetration and pressure the gaps behind the pulling blockers."
The other Redskins tactic that Dudko suggests is to target San Francisco inside linebackers in coverage. He notes that while the 49ers have a solid defense, there is one obvious weakness the Redskins could use to their advantage.
"Losing All-Pro pair NaVorro Bowman and Patrick Willis to injury was always going to stunt this defense," Dudko wrote. "They are central to what coordinator Vic Fangio loves to do."
According to Dudko, this is good news for the Redskins. That's because the 49ers will have to rely on rookie Chris Borland and Michael Wilhoite for their defense, making them quite vulnerable.
San Francisco may be the favorite to win in Sunday's game, but even they have their own challenges as well. An article in the Associated Press reports that coach Jim Harbaugh's future with the 49ers is up in the air, despite the fact that he has taken his team to three straight NFC championship games and a Super Bowl appearance.
Peter Panacy of Bleacher Report mentions that the 49ers have problems with their offense, which had been revealed during their performance on Week 11. During that time, although they ended up winning the game 16-10 over the Eli Manning and the New York Giants, their offense was inconsistent at best.
"What should have been a blowout turned into a close, nail-biting contest in which the 49ers needed their stalwart defense to bail out their inept offense," Panacy wrote.
Despite that lackluster offense, the 49ers still receive recognition for their success. The Associated Press reports that emerging rookie Borland was named the NFC's defensive player of the week; he is just the second 49ers linebacker in 40 years with two interceptions.
"There's no give-up in our guys," Borland said. "We have guys, veterans, who have been there a lot. When it was going tough, we just pressed on and kept looking forward. Back-to-back wins on the road, we're all excited."
Panacy thinks that the 49ers need to find their balance between offense and defense when they play the Redskins. However, reinforcing their defense could be the "linchpin" that carries them into the postseason.
"This isn't exactly a bad situation for the 49ers," Panacy wrote. "Prominent defenses remain a vital part of being a Super Bowl contender, and San Francisco is no stranger to utilizing its defense to the best of its abilities."
Sunday's game between the Redskins and 49ers will air at 4:25 p.m. ET/1:25 p.m. PT on CBS. Fans can stream the game on demand (but not live as it happens) through NFL Game Rewind.