Super Bowl 54 Odds: Niners’ Receivers Have Come on Strong
The Kansas City Chiefs’ receiving corps gets most of the attention. But one has to concede that the San Francisco 49ers have some wideouts who have emerged. They are unsung, but they work well with quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.
And the cast has changed since last season. Veteran Emmanuel Sanders has come on board to provide some genuine veteran leadership. And rookie Deebo Samuel has proven to be a nice surprise. Perhaps the question is whether the Niners can flood the Kansas City secondary, which isn’t bad. So taking a glimpse of what these guys are capable of is worthwhile.
Remember that Super Bowl LIV kicks off on Sunday at 6:30 PM ET at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. The Fox network will provide the live telecast. And BetAnySports customers will have the opportunity to place wagers in real-time using Sports Betting Ultra.
Here is their line on Sunday’s game:
Super Bowl LIV: Chiefs vs. 49ers Betting Odds
|49ers||+1 (-110)||54½ (-110)||EV|
|Chiefs||-1 (-110)||54½ (-110)||-120|
Now let’s take a look at those receivers:
Over 41.5 receiving yards -135
Under 41.5 receiving yards +115
He may not be as dangerous as he was a few years ago, when he was completing three straight 1000-yard seasons. But Sanders will have an effect. He was not even acquired by the 49ers until they were already 7-0. But this is a player who has participated in two Super Bowls. And he was a winner in Super Bowl 50 with the Denver Broncos.
Sanders suffered an Achilles injury last December. But he recovered in time for the start of the 2019 regular-season. And he was making an impact with Denver, with close to 400 receiving yards in the first four games. The Niners knew they had to upgrade at the wide receiver position. And Denver, which was about to go through a quarterback transition, was waving a white flag. So Sanders came aboard and helped the young receivers. That’s something we’ll talk about in a moment.
With a group of pass-catchers that has thinned out because of injuries, Sanders was a godsend. Marquise Goodwin and Jalan Hurd had gone on injured reserve. Sanders stepped in and in his limited time with the 49ers, he had 502 receiving yards. And he was in the right place at the right time, with a 67.9% catch rate.
He has also shown some durability, playing 85% or more of the snaps seven different times. But here is something to consider as you look at the props. While he has had a pair of 100-yard games for the Niners, the numbers have dwindled lately. In his last five games, he’s had only ten receptions for 128 yards. And he has scored only one touchdown in his last 10 outings.
Under 56.5 receiving yards -140
Over 56.5 receiving yards +120
There is no question that San Francisco counted on Samuel to play a role. After all, he was a second round draft choice (out of South Carolina). And he’s got speed too (4.48 in the 40). But he’s really emerged as one of the best rookie wide receivers.
This season, he had 802 receiving yards, averaging 14.1 per catch. And Jimmy Garoppolo was able to find him 70.4% of the time. He has three 100-yard games. And undoubtedly one of the key parts of his development was the arrival of Emmanuel Sanders. Because Sanders took some pressure off him, his per-game production more than doubled. Samuel went from averaging just 33 yards per game to 67 after the Sanders trade.
He is also someone who is dangerous when he’s carrying the football. That’s why Kyle Shanahan has used him on designed rushes, where he has 159 yards and three touchdowns. It would seem like Samuel has quite an upside. Sanders calls him “a special player.”
Under 2.5 receptions -135
Over 2.5 receptions +115
Yes, Sanders and Samuel get more attention. But Kendrick Bourne is the guy who led the 49ers in receiving touchdowns, with six. Bourne was undrafted, signing with San Francisco in 2017. He attended Eastern Washington, a pass-happy school that plays in the FCS division. And he stepped right in. Last year he had 42 receptions for 487 yards, which led all San Francisco wide receivers.
So don’t discount his value to this offense, especially as he usually winds up in the slot. Kansas City has had all kinds of difficulties defending slot receivers. In fact, Kendall Fuller has allow the highest quarterback rating slot receivers this season (138.7). Shifting Fuller to the safety position won’t necessarily keep him away from Bourne. It depends on how well San Francisco is able to execute its play action.
It’s hard to determine whether Pettis will make an impact at all; after all, he has not played in offensive snap since Week 12. He’s only caught eleven passes this season. But last year, as a second-round draft pick out of Washington, he connected for some big plays. Pettis averaged 17.5 yards per catch. They (meaning Shanahan and members of his staff) think Pettis has been trying to overcome opponents too much with his athleticism alone. Few people are expecting him to take the field. But maybe Shanahan is playing possum, and we will see Pettis placed into a few situations where he can succeed. Maybe.
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