After clinching the number 1 seed and the conference’s sole bye – the San Francisco 49ers have bragging rights in the National Football Conference. And after dominant displays throughout the season, hindered by only 4 sole wins, few can deny that they are more than deserving of it.
Still favorites to win the Super Bowl, despite a heavy loss to potential SB LVII opponents, the Baltimore Ravens (and former Super Bowl foes exactly a decade ago) – it is not all good news and roses for the back-to-back reigning NFC West Champions.
One of their star offensive weapons has been ruled out for Sunday’s final regular season game against the Los Angeles Rams, per Ian Rapoport.
#49ers coach Kyle Shanahan tells reporters that RB Christian McCaffrey has a mild calf strain that will keep him out Week 18. That gives him nearly 3 weeks to get ready for the playoffs.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 1, 2024
What Does This Mean For The San Francisco 49ers?
Thankfully for San Francisco, not a lot.
As phenomenal as Christian McCaffrey has been, en route to quite possibly winning the NFL Offensive Player Of The Year for the first time in his career, his services would have likely not been in demand anyway, due to the Niners having already wrapped up the 1 seed in the NFC.
And, in some ways, him being out answers the question about rust v.s. rest for San Francisco, and allows McCaffrey to adequately recuperate from what has been a grueling but extraordinary season for him.
The Niners are 3.5 point favorites against division rivals, the Los Angeles Rams, who secured a playoff spot on Sunday after a win against the New York Giants.
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