Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers Matchup Preview (10/24/21): Betting Odds, Depth Charts, Live Stream (Watch Online)

Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers Matchup Preview (10/24/21)

The Colts may be 2-4, but they are on the rise with improved play over the past few weeks. Carson Wentz is getting healthier by the week, and Michael Pittman Jr. is emerging as a go-to receiving threat for Indianapolis. The 49ers should benefit from an early bye week, but both quarterbacks are injured, and it’s unclear who will start for them this week. Can they overcome that roadblock and bring their record to .500? Or will the Colts parlay their recent momentum into a road win over a tough NFC West team?

Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers Betting Odds

The Trends

  • Colts are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games
  • 49ers are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games
  • The over is 5-1 in the Colts’ last 6 road games
  • The over is 4-2 in the 49ers’ last 6 home games

The Pick

The 49ers are currently 4.5-point home favorites, and while I think the 49ers are the better and healthier team, that may be too large a spread. The Colts deserve some credit for pushing the Rams and Ravens to the brink, and their 28-point win over the Texans may not seem like much, but that type of decisive victory should give them some momentum going into this game. Carson Wentz has been playing better recently, and if his offensive line can buy him some time, he should be able to move the ball against the weak 49ers secondary. With quarterback questions on the horizon for San Francisco, I’m taking the Colts to cover the spread, and I’d even contemplate betting on them to win outright in an upset as the 49ers are 0-2 at home this season and were favored in both games. I’d also take the over as both defenses have exploitable secondaries, and both teams are trending towards the over this season.

My predictions: 49ers win 27-24, Colts cover, over 44 points

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TV Schedule

Date: Sunday, October 24
Time: 5:20 PM ET
Location: Levi’s Stadium – Santa Clara, CA (Initials)
TV Coverage: NBC

Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers Live Stream

Where can you watch Colts vs. 49ers online? You can stream this game, and many other NFL games live online with Hulu. Hulu has a 7 Day free trial and is cheaper than cable options at $5.99/month. Watch Colts vs. 49ers Free Online Now.

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Injuries

Indianapolis Colts: WR T.Y. Hilton (quadriceps) Q, DE Kemeko Turay (groin) Q, S Andrew Sendejo (concussion) Q, FS Julian Blackmon (Achilles) O, OT Braden Smith (foot) O, CB Rock Ya-Sin (ankle) O, WR Parris Campbell (foot) IR, K Rodrigo Blankenship (hip) IR
San Francisco 49ers: OT Trent Williams (ankle) D, QB Trey Lance (knee) O, DT Maurice Hurst (calf) O, DT Javon Kinlaw (knee) O, TE George Kittle (calf) IR, K Robbie Gould (groin) IR, RB JaMychal Hasty (ankle) IR, RB Jeff Wilson (knee – meniscus) PUP

Indianapolis Colts Analysis

Carson Wentz has plenty of critics, but the big-play ability and downfield passing touch have returned in recent weeks. He’s further removed from his ankle injuries every week, and his comfort level is rising in his new offense. It also helps that the offensive line is getting healthier around him. Wentz threw for over 20 yards per completion against the Texans, and yes, it was the Texans, but it was good to see him aggressively throwing downfield and looking good doing it. Wentz’s raw numbers from this season don’t jump off the page, but it’s worth noting that he has only thrown one interception through six games after 15 interceptions in just 12 games last year. A fresh start under a familiar coach in Frank Reich is working wonders for Wentz’s career.

Wentz is also playing behind an infinitely better offensive line than what he had to deal with in 2020, and it’s paying dividends for his efficiency. The Colts rank just 22nd in the NFL with an adjusted sack rate of 7.5% per Football Outsiders, but the Eagles allowed a 9.4% adjusted sack rate last year, so this year has been a significant improvement in terms of protection. Indy has been excellent in run blocking as the offensive line ranks sixth in the NFL in 2nd level yards created per carry per Football Outsiders. That’s without Quenton Nelson, arguably the best offensive lineman in the NFL. While Nelson isn’t expected to play this week, his return will be huge for the team when it does happen. In the meantime, Eric Fisher and Braden Smith will be relied upon to hold down the fort against a formidable defensive line.

This year, Jonathan Taylor has been excellent in his sophomore professional season, and he has run for 472 yards, the fifth-most in the NFL, and four touchdowns. Taylor had somewhat of a slow start to the year but is coming off his best game against Houston with 15 touches for 158 yards and two touchdowns. Michael Pittman Jr. has emerged as a reliable receiving threat for Wentz and is on a solid pace with 31 catches for 403 yards already. Parris Campbell hit Injured Reserve, but T.Y. Hilton is back just in time to make an impact while Mo Alie-Cox and Zach Pascal remain reliable receivers for this team. Indianapolis may not have eye-popping offensive talent, but their stable skill position players are deep and consistent.

The Colts have struggled defensively this season as they rank just 17th in defensive DVOA. However, it’s been a mixed bag as the run defense ranks first in DVOA and the pass defense ranks 29th. Those rankings play out in the traditional stats as the Colts have allowed the third-highest passing completion rate and 15 touchdowns, the second-most in the NFL, and have allowed just one rushing touchdown all year. The 49ers are better-suited to attack a weak run defense than a weak secondary, particularly with the quarterbacks banged up and George Kittle on IR, so this is not an ideal matchup for San Francisco.

Indianapolis Colts Depth Chart

QB: Carson Wentz
RB1: Jonathan Taylor
RB2: Nyheim Hines
WR1: Michael Pittman Jr.
WR2: T.Y. Hilton
WR3: Parris Campbell
TE1: Mo Alie-Cox
TE2: Jack Doyle

San Francisco 49ers Analysis

Jimmy Garoppolo has played with an air of confidence this season and has seen solid production with 925 passing yards and five touchdowns to two interceptions in four games as the starter. None of those volume stats particularly stand out, but I’d say the 49ers have a better chance of winning with him under center than raw rookie Trey Lance at the moment. Garoppolo’s calf injury has held him back somewhat. Still, the bye week came at a good time for him to recover, and Kyle Shanahan is “pretty optimistic” about Jimmy G’s availability for Sunday night. Garoppolo led the 49ers to a 2-1 record that was nearly a perfect 3-0 start. Trey Lance has tremendous upside, and the Niners were justified in trading up to get him in the draft, but for the time being, Garoppolo is the more conducive player to success for the team.

The 49ers’ offensive line is one of the best in the NFL, and the bye week came at a good time for All-Pro left tackle Trent Williams as he continues to work through ankle and shoulder injuries. Williams should be good to go for this week, and he’ll be essential to keeping young pass rushers TyQuan Lewis and Kwity Paye at bay, assuming both will be able to play through their respective injuries. DeForest Buckner will also be fired up to play in this game against his former team, and veteran center Alex Mack will be relied upon to limit the interior pass-rushers impact. San Francisco grades out as middle-of-the-pack in most of the critical metrics for Football Outsiders, and they have to play better to help out a mediocre offense.

San Franciso’s rushing offense has been unpredictable this season since Raheem Mostert suffered a season-ending torn ACL in Week 1. Still, it appears that sixth-round rookie Elijah Mitchell may be breaking out and becoming the full-time starter. After seeing 19 and 17 carries in the first two weeks, Mitchell missed Week 3 and 4 but is now healthy and ready to roll this week. Deebo Samuel has been the best all-around offensive player for San Francisco this season as he ranks second in the NFL in receiving yards per game and has had 31 catches for 548 yards and three touchdowns so far; that’s a 17-game pace of 105 catches for 1,868 yards and ten touchdowns. Second-year pro-Brandon Aiyuk has taken a backseat as Samuel has broken out, but with George Kittle on Injured Reserve, he could take on a more significant role moving forward.

The 49ers’ defense has been solid under first-year defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans, and they rank 12th in the NFL in defensive DVOA. The secondary hasn’t been the same since stud cornerback Jason Verrett was lost for the season in Week 1, but Emmanuel Mosley has stepped up in recent weeks. Nick Bosa and Arik Armstead also represent arguably the best pass-rush duo in the NFL at the moment. San Francisco is allowing the sixth-fewest yards in the NFL this season but don’t stand out in any one particular area outside of that metric.

San Francisco 49ers Depth Chart

QB: Jimmy Garoppolo
RB1: Elijah Mitchell
RB2: Trey Sermon
WR1: Deebo Samuel
WR2: Brandon Aiyuk
WR3: Mohamed Sanu Sr.
TE1: Ross Dwelley
TE2: Charlie Woerner

Indianapolis Colts vs. San Francisco 49ers Daily Fantasy Picks

This game could be sneaky high-scoring as the Colts are not great defensively, and the 49ers are not as good as their perception would suggest. The two leading candidates for your Showdown Captain spot in this game are Indianapolis’s Jonathan Taylor and San Francisco’s Deebo Samuel, both of whom should excel in a solid matchup. If you’re playing Samuel, I have no problem grabbing Jimmy Garoppolo as a high-value, low-priced quarterback who can put up decent numbers in a plus matchup. We have to wait and see if T.Y. Hilton can play this week, but he’s an excellent value play at wide receiver with Parris Campbell out. I also like Brandon Aiyuk’s value with George Kittle out. If you’re looking for very cheap options, tight ends Ross Dwelley, and Mo Alie-Cox stand out to me.

Week 7 Matchup Previews
  • Patriots @ Falcons
  • Colts @ Bills
  • Ravens @ Bears
  • Lions @ Browns
  • Texans @ Titans
  • Vikings @ Packers
  • Dolphins @ Jets
  • Saints @ Eagles
  • Washington @ Panthers
  • 49ers @ Jaguars
  • Bengals @ Raiders
  • Cowboys @ Chiefs
  • Cardinals @ Seahawks
  • Steelers @ Chargers
  • Giants @ Buccaneers
I've been writing about sports for Lineups since the beginning of 2020 and on my own website since 2018. In May 2021, I graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in sport management. With my educational background in the sports business and a strong knowledge of the inner workings of professional and collegiate sports, I hope to tell enthralling stories about the world of sports as it unfolds around me.

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