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Here's How the 49ers Can Upset the Rams in the NFC Championship Game

Larry Rupp
A look at how the San Francisco 49ers can upset the Los Angeles Rams in the Conference Championship Round of the NFL Playoffs.
A look at how the San Francisco 49ers can upset the Los Angeles Rams in the Conference Championship Round of the NFL Playoffs. / Harry How/GettyImages

The San Francisco 49ers pulled off the biggest upset of the NFL Playoffs so far by defeating the Green Bay Packers with a walk-off field goal in the Divisional Round. They will now travel to take on a familiar foe Los Angeles Rams team in what is sure to be an exciting NFC Championship game.

The 49ers head into Sunday as 3.5-point road underdogs against the Rams, according to FanDuel Sportsbook. There is a lot to like about their chances of coming out on top in this one, though.

49ers vs Rams Odds

It's easy to forget that this is a matchup that has already happened twice this season. San Francisco swept Los Angeles across two regular season games by a combined score of 58-34. In fact, Head coach Kyle Shanahan's team has won six straight head-to-head contests against their NFC West rivals.

That makes the game plan here rather simple. The 49ers have thrived against the Rams as of late because they keep winning the turnover battle. LA quarterback Matthew Stafford has thrown 4 interceptions against the 49ers this season and has been sacked a whopping seven times.

On the offensive side of the ball, San Francisco has had no trouble running the ball against this powerful Rams' defensive line. The 49ers racked up at least 135 yards on the ground in both matchups against the Rams in 2021 and only gave up a combined total of 116 rushing yards.

The 49ers are healthy with starting running back Elijah Mitchell and wide receiver Deebo Samuel pairing up to create a dangerous rushing duo. The key to victory for the 49ers is controlling the clock with the ground game, making Stafford uncomfortable in the pocket and forcing a turnover or two.

It'll be interesting to see if quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo has another improbable win up his sleeve when the game kicks off at 6:30 p.m. EST on Sunday.

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Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.