Saturday, October 6, 2012

Week 5 AFC East game picks: Bills at 49ers

Lead writer Nick St. Denis and AFC East Daily contributors Dan Begnoche, Sean Donovan and Sam Hollingsworth pick the Buffalo Bills' bout with the NFC's San Francisco 49ers.

Nick's take:
The Bills are trying to re-establish their C.J. Spiller/Fred Jackson-led rushing attack, and just in time to face the 49ers' stingy run defense. San Francisco will take advantage of a injury-riddled Bills offensive line and force Buffalo to be one-dimensional, making Ryan Fitzpatrick try to win it through the air. He'll struggle, and San Fran will win easily.
Prediction: 49ers 28, Bills 10

Dan's take:
Buffalo had little time to recover from its second-half meltdown against New England last week as it head into San Francisco, where the 49ers have won their last seven regular season games. San Fran has been a force on defense, the topper coming last week in their shutout victory against the Jets. An ailing backfield and a turnover-crazed Fitzpatrick will have a hard time against the league's third-ranked defense, and it will be a statement game for the Buffalo defense against a stout rushing tandem.
Prediction: 49ers 21, Bills 10

Sean's take:
In its previous six home games, the 49ers' defense has allowed just 66.5 rushing yards per game and forced 17 turnovers. They welcome a Bills team to town that relies on its running game to drive the offense and has a gunslinger quarterback. It's a terrible matchup for Buffalo's feast-or-famine style of play and results in a big loss.
Prediction: 49ers 27, Bills 3

Sam's take:
The Buffalo offense has had no problem scoring, but when it comes to stopping other teams from doing so, they've been virtually non-existent. Expect Alex Smith to outshine a gunslinging Ryan Fitzpatrick here.
Prediction: 49ers 31, Bills 21