Here’s how quickly things change in the NFL.
The Rams are good enough that they’re parking starters this week in anticipation of the playoffs. And the 49ers are disappointed to hear that because they suddenly feel like they have a chance.
With the Rams locked into a home game as NFC West division champs but unable to reach the No. 2 seed, they’ve announced their intention to rest players including quarterback Jared Goff, running back Todd Gurley, defensive lineman Aaron Donald, and left tackle Andrew Whitworth.
That’s a bummer for 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan, whose team has won four straight with quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo at the helm.
“It is a little bit,” Shanahan said, via Matt Maiocco of NBC Sports Bay Area. “I’d like them to have everyone out there. I think our guys would, too. But it is what it is. We have to make sure that doesn’t affect us. You got to line up and play whoever you play. If you lose your edge at all in this league, you’ll get humbled very fast.”
The 49ers have played with plenty of edge lately, and just gave the playoff-bound Jaguars a punch in the mouth last week, scoring 44 on the league’s best defense.
So while they might be playing the Rams JVs Sunday, it sets the stage for next year, and could represent a significant torch-passing in the NFC West, where the Cardinals might end up with a new coach (despite Bruce Arians’ non-denial denial) and the Seahawks are on the verge of a significant personnel makeover.