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49ers game plan vs. Houston

Published: Sunday, Oct. 6, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 6C
Last Modified: Monday, Oct. 7, 2013 - 12:39 pm

A look at today's 49ers game vs. Houston; including: broadcast information, matchup to watch, three keys to the game and injury report.


Opponent: vs. Houston

Time: 5:30 p.m.

Line: 49ers by 7

Records: 49ers 2-2, Texans 2-2

TV/Radio: Ch. 3 (Al Michaels play-by-play, Cris Collinsworth color), 680, 1320


Texans defensive end J.J. Watt vs. 49ers guard Alex Boone

Watt is the reigning Defensive Player of the Year after finishing 2012 with a league-high 20.5 sacks, 23 tackles behind the line of scrimmage and an NFL-record 16 batted passes. And he's angry after Houston gave up a lead and lost last week to Seattle. He'll mostly be facing the right side of the 49ers' offensive line, which includes Boone. Boone doesn't receive as much publicity as Mike Iupati, Joe Staley and Anthony Davis, but he quietly has become the team's most consistent offensive lineman.


• The 49ers' inside linebackers – who may or may not include Patrick Willis (groin) – must keep up with tight ends Owen Daniels and Garrett Graham. Houston quarterback Matt Schaub loves to look their way, particularly in the red zone. Each has three touchdown catches this season.

• Discipline is key for every member of the 49ers' defense, especially rookie free safety Eric Reid. The Texans love to get a defense going one way, only to cut a play back in the opposite direction. If a defender overcommits, he will be vulnerable to a big play.

• The 49ers rank second in penalties committed – 39 for 339 yards. It's a big reason the offense still is hiccupping and why Andy Lee is averaging nearly six punts a game. He averaged four a game last season.



• Questionable: CB Nnamdi Asomugha (knee)

• Probable: T Anthony Davis (shoulder), TE Vernon Davis (hamstring), TE Demarcus Dobbs (calf), G Mike Iupati (shoulder), DT Ray McDonald (ankle), RB Bruce Miller (quadriceps),

WR Quinton Patton (foot), CB Carlos Rogers (knee),

DT Justin Smith (shoulder), T Joe Staley (hamstring), WR Kyle Williams (knee),

LB Patrick Willis (groin)


• Out: G Brandon Brooks (toe), LB Tim Dobbins (hamstring)

• Probable: LB Bryan Braman (hamstring), LB Brian Cushing (concussion), TE Owen Daniels, RB Arian Foster (thumb), TE Garrett Graham (hip), CB Johnathan Joseph (not injury-related), RB Greg Jones (foot), CB Brice McCain (knee), C Chris Myers (biceps), T Derek Newton (knee), S Eddie Pleasant (hamstring), WR DeVier Posey (Achilles), S Ed Reed (hip), LB Darryl Sharpton (foot), G Wade Smith (knee), RB Ben Tate (shoulder), DE J.J. Watt (groin)

• Questionable: T Duane Brown (toe), WR Andre Johnson (shin)

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Read more articles by Matthew Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.

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