49ers

NFL playoff picture: Where 49ers stand in top-seed chase after first loss

NFL playoff picture: Where 49ers stand in top-seed chase after first loss

The 49ers missed an opportunity Monday night to give themselves wiggle room as the NFC's top playoff seed.

They lost to the NFC West rival Seattle Seahawks 27-24 at Levi's Stadium, falling to 8-1 on the season. They couldn't strengthen their position in the driver's seat for the NFC's No. 1 spot, but they still control their own destiny.

With only one loss, the 49ers have a slight edge over the NFC's second and third seeds -- the Green Bay Packers (8-2) and New Orleans Saints (7-2). San Francisco plays both Green Bay (Week 12) and New Orleans (Week 14) down the stretch, and wins over both teams could be enough for the 49ers to lock up home-field advantage in the NFC bracket, assuming they take care of business against the remainder of their schedule. 

Had the 49ers won Monday, they would've had two fewer losses than the Packers and the Saints. The Week 17 matchup with the Seahawks takes on extra importance now, as Seattle remains within striking distance of the top seed, too.

The 49ers haven't made the playoffs since 2013 and haven't been the NFC's top seed since 1997. But here's how the 2019 NFC playoff picture looks, assuming the season ended today.

  1. San Francisco 49ers (8-1)
  2. Green Bay Packers (8-2)
  3. New Orleans Saints (7-2)
  4. Dallas Cowboys (5-4)
  5. Seattle Seahawks (8-2)
  6. Minnesota Vikings (7-3)


As the top seed, the 49ers would play the lowest remaining team following wild-card weekend. That, assuming the playoff picture doesn't change between now and January, would ensure San Francisco hosts either a division champion (Cowboys), a team boasting NFL leading rusher Dalvin Cook (Vikings) or division rivals with revenge on their minds (Seahawks).

Even with a bye and home-field advantage, the 49ers would have a perilous playoff path to Super Bowl LIV in Miami.

Tom Brady could replace Jimmy G if 49ers lose Super Bowl, Skip Bayless says

Tom Brady could replace Jimmy G if 49ers lose Super Bowl, Skip Bayless says

All season long, 49ers players have been trying to get the media to give Jimmy Garoppolo credit for their success.

Despite Garoppolo's record as a starting quarterback and regular-season stats, most in the national media see him as the 49ers' weak link heading into their Super Bowl LIV matchup against the Chiefs.

Then there's Skip Bayless, who took the Jimmy G bashing five levels too far.

"If Tom Brady were the quarterback of the 49ers going into this Super Bowl, they would be a five-point favorite instead of a one and a half point underdog," Bayless said on FS1's Undisputed on Monday. "You know it and I know it because what is the X-factor we are about to talk about for the next two weeks? What is the potential Achilles heel for the 49ers? Who is the guy that Kyle Shanahan will do his darndest to keep the ball out of his hands? It's Jimmy Garoppolo."

Yes, the 49ers are 1.5-point underdogs. But that's because of the Chiefs' high-powered offense. Garoppolo is 19-5 as a starter with San Francisco. He's thrown 44 touchdown passes in his career and has been intercepted just 21 times.

Garoppolo is not a top-tier quarterback, but he's not the 49ers' Achilles heel.

But wait, there's more.

"If Tom Brady were the quarterback, he would be so much more poised because Jimmy can go deer-in-headlights, he's much more accurate than Jimmy G is," Bayless continued. "He's just more trustworthy under fire especially in Super Bowls, which Tom Brady has mostly owned. He's 6-3 in Super Bowls and to me, he's not getting any older. You think he's done, he's over the hill, he's washed up."

Of course Brady is more trustworthy, Skip. He's in the conversation for best quarterback of all-time. Garoppolo has two career playoff starts.

Bayless saved his best hot take for last. Get ready for this one, 49ers fans.

"Here's my final takeaway," Bayless said. "If by chance, I'll knock on wood for the 49ers, if Jimmy G becomes the reason by far that they lose this Super Bowl, if he throws three picks and completely unravels and just looks awful in the face of Patrick Mahomes, I would not be shocked if John Lynch, the 49ers GM, if he doesn't in the offseason make a play for Tom Brady because it has been written several times that they could get out from under Jimmy G without any huge salary cap hit."

That's right. Skip Bayless just suggested that the 49ers would replace the 28-year-old Garoppolo with the 42-year-old Brady.

Bayless is off his rocker, but we already knew that.

[RELATED: Five 49ers-Chiefs matchups to watch]

There's no way the 49ers are moving on from Garoppolo this offseason, no matter what he does in the Super Bowl on Feb. 2. He is the face of the franchise and under contract for three more seasons.

Garoppolo was supposed to replace Brady in New England. That didn't work out. Now, there's no chance Brady replaces Garoppolo in San Francisco.

Bay Area hoping San Francisco-Kansas City championship ends well again

Bay Area hoping San Francisco-Kansas City championship ends well again

Madison Bumgarner isn't walking through that door, but the San Francisco 49ers hope to replicate the success the Giants had in their championship matchup against a team from Kansas City.

Six years after the Giants outlasted the Royals in an epic seven-game World Series, the 49ers and Chiefs will clash in Super Bowl LIV in Miami on Sunday, Feb. 2.

While 49ers fans are hoping for the same result, we're sure they are hoping the ending isn't as dramatic.

On Oct. 29, 2014, Bumgarner authored one of the most memorable playoff performances when he pitched five innings out of the bullpen in Game 7 just three days after tossing a four-hit shutout in Game 5.

Bumgarner preserved the one-run lead and World Series crown despite allowing the tying run to reach third base on a single and two-base error.

A little less drama would be perfectly fine for 49ers fans. But that outcome will be tough for Jimmy Garoppolo and Co. considering the firepower the Chiefs possess.

Patrick Mahomes won the MVP last season, Travis Kelce is a two-time All-Pro tight end and Tyreek Hill is one of the most dynamic offensive players in the NFL.

But if there is one defense that can slow down Mahomes and the Chiefs, it's the 49ers. Anchored by a tenacious front seven, the 49ers have one of the stingiest defenses in the league.

[RELATED: Montana's two teams facing each other]

Among the playoff teams that have played at least two games, the 49ers have allowed the fewest total yards (505) and points (30).

SF vs. KC: Part 2 is setting up to be a classic, one San Francisco is hoping goes their way again.