Chris Gallagher | May 28th, 2020
After a season that saw them advance to the Super Bowl, the expectations for the San Francisco 49ers are sky-high heading into 2020. Leading for most of the game in that Super Bowl, the 49ers were unable to make the key plays down the stretch, allowing the opposing Kansas City Chiefs to come roaring back and ultimately win the game.
The Niners said goodbye to Pro Bowl defensive lineman DeForest Buckner in the offseason, trading him to Indianapolis in a salary cap dump. However, the organization was able to add defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw in the draft along with other additions such as left tackle Trent Williams and wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Marquise Goodwin, making them very formidable heading into next season.
Make sure to check out all of our other team bold predictions here.
Nick Bosa wins Defensive Player of the Year
After one of the most dominant rookie seasons by a defensive player in NFL history, Nick Bosa is prime and ready to stake his claim for the league-wide title next season. Bosa finished the 2019 season with nine sacks, 47 tackles, and an interception. He established himself as one of the best edge rushers in football. Bosa captured defensive rookie of the year honors for his stellar campaign, earning 43 of a possible 50 first-place votes. Playing on one of the best defensive lines in football featuring Arik Armstead and Dee Ford, he will continue his strong play in year two and capture defensive player of the year honors.
Raheem Mostert leads the NFL in rushing yards
Many NFL fans did not know the name Raheem Mostert at the start of last season. Featured in a three-headed rushing attack, Mostert was forced to fight for carries in a crowded backfield featuring Matt Breida and Tevin Coleman. Mostert had a strong regular season as he ran for over 700 yards and eight touchdowns. The playoffs are where he had a coming-out party and gained national attention. In the NFC Championship game, Mostert torched the Green Bay Packers. He rushed for 220 yards and four touchdowns in one of the most dominating playoff performances in NFL history. Building off a strong playoff campaign and a performance for the ages, his strong play will carry into next season. Mostert will win the NFL rushing title in a dominant 49er running attack.
Jimmy Garoppolo finishes top five in passing yards and touchdowns
There may not be a player in the entire NFL with a larger spotlight on them than Jimmy Garoppolo heading into next season. With a strong rushing attack and defense, Garoppolo led the Niners to a berth in Super Bowl 54. However, many questions remain unanswered as he was unable to make key throws in crunch time in the Super Bowl, causing the Chiefs to come roaring back and ultimately win the game. Following this, reports surfaced in the offseason that the team was involved in the Tom Brady sweepstakes. The rumors added even more questions to their own belief in their quarterback. Next season will see Garoppolo silence the critics as he records his best season to date finishing top five in both passing yards and touchdowns.
George Kittle breaks the tight end single-season reception record
Heading into only his fourth year in the league, George Kittle has already established himself as one of the premier tight ends in football. Having already recorded two seasons with over 1,000 receiving yards and 80 receptions, Kittle has already broken hall of fame tight end Mike Ditka’s record for most receiving yards by a tight end over his first three years in the league. He excels in the ability to run after the catch and not drop passes. These skills will lead Kittle to break the record for receptions by a tight end in a single season.
The 49ers capture the one seed in the NFC again
Coming off a 13-win season that saw them finish top five in both offense and defense, next season will pose a much tougher task for the 49ers. Following the departure of Emmanuel Sanders in free agency, the offense will rely heavily on young receivers Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk to step up and make plays in Sander’s absence. A much tougher schedule also looms as the Niners will make a return visit to New Orleans. They also travel across the country to battle the Giants and Jets. Although next season poses a much more formidable task to gain home-field advantage in the playoffs, led by head coach Kyle Shanahan, the team will once again capture the one seed in the NFC.
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