Chargers vs. 49ers Week 10 matchup preview and current betting lines
The Los Angeles Chargers (5-3) have a better record than the San Francisco 49ers (4-4), but the oddsmakers love the 49ers at home off a bye in this game, and the season-long prospects for these teams are significantly different as well.
Here is a fascinating fact for this game: Neither Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert nor 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan have ever had a winning record at any point in their NFL careers (including playoff games).
- Herbert is 20-20 as a starting quarterback and would have a winning record for the first time with a win in San Francisco.
- Herbert is 0-3 in games where he was .500 with a shot at a winning record for the first time.
- Shanahan is 47-48 as a head coach and would get back to .500 with a win in this game.
- Shanahan is 0-5 in games where he was .500 with a shot at a winning record for the first time.
Most people would take Herbert over Jimmy Garoppolo to be their franchise quarterback, but Garoppolo in Shanahan’s system with the talent around him is in a better position to do greater things this season.
Herbert has been down his top wide receivers, but he still led a fourth-quarter comeback and game-winning drive in Atlanta last week to get to 5-3. A weird stat is that the Chargers became the third team in NFL history to trail by double digits after the first quarter of four straight games. However, they still went 3-1 in those games, so they are able to figure things out and come back to win games this year.
This game features two of the best dual threat running backs in the league in Austin Ekeler (Chargers) and Christian McCaffrey (49ers). Both will be among the favorites to score a touchdown here. Hopefully the game will have multiple touchdowns, because with the way prime-time football has gone in 2022, this one could be a dud.
The NFL Week 10 odds have the Chargers as a 7-point road underdog with a total of 45.5 points. Can the Chargers pull off the upset?
Players to watch in the Chargers vs. 49ers game
Los Angeles Chargers
Josh Palmer: The second-year wideout becomes the de facto No. 1 receiver with Keenan Allen (hamstring) and Mike Williams (ankle) out. Palmer had eight catches on 10 targets for 106 yards in Atlanta, his first 100-yard game in the NFL. In six games where Palmer has played more than 75% of the snaps in his career, he’s either had a touchdown or at least 57 receiving yards. He should be very busy in this one.
San Francisco 49ers
George Kittle: After catching touchdowns in back-to-back games, here is hoping the 49ers get back to making Kittle a featured part of this passing game. One of his earliest breakout games was in 2018 against the Chargers when he had 125 yards and a touchdown. The Chargers have allowed some big pass plays to tight ends this year, which Kittle is more than capable of doing.
Our Best NFL Bets for the Chargers vs. 49ers game
We have two NFL Week 10 predictions for this Sunday night matchup between California teams from different conferences.
Chargers vs. 49ers Point Spread Pick: Chargers +7 (-114)
The Chargers vs. 49ers spread opened with the 49ers as a 3.5-point home favorite before ballooning to 7-point favorites.
The 49ers have played in a league-low one game decided by fewer than nine points this season. It was the embarrassing 11-10 loss in Denver on Sunday Night Football. Just something about prime time and low-scoring games this year.
Meanwhile, the Chargers are 5-1 in close gams this year, only blowing the Kansas City game where they still got the cover on a late touchdown pass from Herbert despite suffering a rib injury. Herbert is a gamer, and despite his career-low stats across the board this year, he has this team in contention going into the second half of the season.
The 49ers are coming off their bye, but Deebo Samuel may still not be 100%, and the 49ers lost to Carson Wentz and the Colts by a 30-18 margin at home on Sunday Night Football last season after coming off a bye. It’s not a guarantee of anything for a Shanahan-coached team.
The 49ers are also 1-2 in close games this year with two blown leads in the fourth quarter. The Chargers are not likely going to win, but some of that shine of the San Francisco defense has gone away with the performances against the Falcons and Chiefs. Even Justin Fields beat this team in Week 1 in Chicago before he was playing well.
Herbert has only lost one road game to a playoff team by more than seven points in his career, and even that game, a 27-17 loss to the 2020 Bills, saw him at the 1-yard line in the final seconds after completing a Hail Mary. The guy is a gamer. We have seen Shanahan-coached teams disappoint many times in games like this, so this would not be a surprise. I would take the Chargers with the points.
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First Quarter Total: Over 9.5 Points (+100)
The cat is out of the bag now that we know the 2022 Chargers join the 1962 Broncos and 1988 Buccaneers as the only teams to trail by double digits after the first quarter of four straight games. Those are not teams you want to be compared to for any historical purposes.
Maybe the 49ers come out a little flat and rusty after the bye week and the Chargers have a good script to get on the board early. Slow starts have been a problem for this team with only 16 first quarter points this year. Only four teams have scored fewer points in the first quarter than the Chargers.
But even if the Chargers fail to score a touchdown or field goal in the first quarter, maybe the 49ers can continue the trend of handing them a double-digit deficit after 15 minutes. The Chargers have allowed 54 points in the first quarter. Only Arizona (58) has allowed more and the Cardinals have played one extra game than the Chargers.
Fast start by the Chargers, another poor start by the Chargers, it doesn’t really matter how it happens. Either way, we like at least a touchdown and a field goal to be scored in the first quarter of this one to hit that over for your NFL bet of the week.
Frequently asked questions about the Chargers vs. 49ers game in Week 10
The game is being played at Levi’s Stadium in San Francisco, California.
Since 2020, the Chargers with Justin Herbert are 7-3 ATS as a road underdog, one of the best records in the league in that time.