San Francisco 49ers

49ers can expect a tough afternoon against Atlanta Falcons

49ers vs Falcons: Matt Barrows' 5 players to watch

The Sacramento Bee's 49ers insider Matt Barrows gets you ready for the San Francisco 49ers vs. Atlanta Falcons game at the Georgia Dome on Sunday.
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The Sacramento Bee's 49ers insider Matt Barrows gets you ready for the San Francisco 49ers vs. Atlanta Falcons game at the Georgia Dome on Sunday.

The particulars

  • Opponent: at Atlanta Falcons
  • Time: 1:05 p.m.
  • Line: Falcons by 13 1/2
  • Records: 49ers 1-12, Falcons 8-5
  • TV/radio: Ch. 40 (Thom Brennaman, Charles Davis, Chris Spielman), 680, 1320

Three things to watch

KNOCKING MATT RYAN OUT OF RHYTHM

First-round draft pick DeForest Buckner has been getting deserved attention lately, but fellow defensive end Ronald Blair, a fifth-round pick, also has been playing better and seeing his snap count increase. Blair, who enters the game on passing downs, will be instrumental if the 49ers are going to be able to knock Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan out of rhythm.

HOW WILL O-LINE HANDLE NOISY GEORGIA DOME?

For the second consecutive season the 49ers have been forced to use a free agent they signed to play guard as an offensive tackle. Zane Beadles fared much better at left tackle last Sunday against the Jets than Erik Pears did at right tackle last year. Still, he’ll have a tougher test in Atlanta in a loud, domed stadium against a Falcons pass rush built for speed.

WILL GROUND GAME OVERCOME KILGORE’S ABSENCE?

Marcus Martin was consistently a soft spot on the 49ers offensive line a year ago. With center Daniel Kilgore out for the remainder of the season, Martin is back in a starting role. That’s bad news for the 49ers’ running game, especially for the inside draw that coach Chip Kelly says is one of the team’s “bread and butter” plays, but which was inconsistent at best even before Martin re-entered the lineup.

MATT BARROWS

Injury report

49ERS

  • Out: WR Torrey Smith (concussion)
  • Doubtful: T Joe Staley (hamstring)

FALCONS

  • Out: DE Adrian Clayborn (knee), CB Jalen Collins (knee), WR Julio Jones (toe), S Robenson Therezie (ankle), WR Nick Williams (concussion)

Schedule

DATE

OPPONENT

OUTCOME

RECORD

Sept. 12

vs. Los Angeles

W, 28-0

1-0

Sept. 18

at Carolina

L, 46-27

1-1

Sept. 25

at Seattle

L, 37-18

1-2

Oct. 2

vs. Dallas

L, 24-17

1-3

Oct. 6

vs. Arizona

L, 33-21

1-4

Oct. 16

at Buffalo

L, 45-16

1-5

Oct. 23

vs. Tampa Bay

L, 34-17

1-6

Oct. 30

BYE

Nov. 6

vs. New Orleans

L, 41-23

1-7

Nov. 13

at Arizona

L, 23-20

1-8

Nov. 20

vs. New England

L, 30-17

1-9

Nov. 27

at Miami

L, 31-24

1-10

Dec. 4

at Chicago

L, 26-6

1-11

Dec. 11

vs. N.Y. Jets

L, 23-17

1-12

DATE

OPPONENT

TIME

TV

Sunday

at Atlanta

1:05 p.m.

Ch. 40

Dec. 24

at Los Angeles

1:25 p.m.

Ch. 40

Jan. 1

vs. Seattle

1:25 p.m.

Ch. 40

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