[Sunday Night Football]
LA Chargers at San Francisco
Line: 49ers -7.5
Moneylines: Chargers +250 / 49ers -300
This number, higher than a touchdown, seems ridiculous.
The Chargers are 5-3 and would be a playoff team if the season ended today. Niners are 4-4, and have clearly underachieved. Even though San Francisco is the host team, it makes no sense to be laying such a high number.
We kept on looking for breaking news that QB Justin Herbert is out, or injured, but he seems to be fine. LA Chargers will be without some talented receivers (Keenan Allen and Mike Williams). Yeah, that hurts the offense. The Bolts' offensive line is also banged up.
However, San Francisco's defense is hobbled, as well. Four starters -- CB Jason Verrett, DT Arik Armstead, LB Azeez Al-Shaair, and DE Samson Ebukam – are listed as doubtful, leaving a defense that is already without Javon Kinlaw undermanned.
Some Charger critics may point to this team struggling in Atlanta last week. The Falcons have one of the league's worst defenses, and all the Chargers could muster was 20 points. But hey, they won. Atlanta beat San Francisco, and that's when the team was healthier.
The line seems to be overreacting to newly acquired RB Christian McCaffrey, who will only get more comfortable in Kyle Shanahan’s offense as the season progresses. He's coming off some impressive debuts, so the optimism is justified.
Still, we're having trouble figuring out why the 49ers are laying this many points to a winning opponent with a bona fide superstar QB (anyone care to argue that Garappolo is better than Herbert?).
Let's also look at a few powerful data points: Dogs of 3.5+ went 51-29 (64 percent) ATS over the first nine weeks. Dogs of 7.5+ have a 14-7 ATS, so far.
We don't know how anyone can lay points. It's either the Chargers or a pass.
The Pick: Los Angeles Chargers +7.5