The Bills head west to play in a venue in which they played three weeks ago — State Farm Stadium. The first trip to Glendale, Ariz., did not go so well as that was the site of the “Hail Murray” where Kyler Murray found DeAndre Hopkins in the middle of three defenders to hand the Bills a 32-30 loss at the hands of the Cardinals.
Buffalo (8-3 SU, 6-5 ATS) needed the bye week after that loss and rebounded with a 27-17 win and cover (-4.5) against the Chargers last Sunday. Nevertheless, the Bills were sloppy in the victory as they committed three turnovers, including two from QB Josh Allen (interception, fumble) and were outgained by the Chargers. Now the Bills return west to face a potentially resurgent 49ers club that may be starting to get over the Super Bowl loss hangover and seems to be getting as healthy as it has been all season.
The 49ers (5-6 SU, 5-6 ATS) broke a three-game losing streak last weekend with a 23-20 win in Los Angeles over the Rams as five-point underdogs. San Francisco held the Rams to just 308 yards and forced four turnovers. Many key contributors returned for last week’s game including CB Richard Sherman, who had an interception, and rookie DL Javon Kinlaw, who had a pick-six.
Offensively, RB Raheem Mostert, who had missed four games with a sprained ankle, scored the Niners’ opening touchdown and WR Deebo Samuel, who missed three games with a hamstring injury, had 11 catches for 134 yards. Running back Tevin Coleman is also scheduled to return for this game after being sidelined for the last three games with a knee injury.
San Francisco has been forced to move operations to Glendale due to enhanced COVID-19 guidelines from Santa Clara County. The 49ers are 1-4 SU and ATS at home this season, but are 4-2 SU and ATS outside of Santa Clara County.
The Bills opened as 2.5-point road favorites on the look-ahead line 10 days ago and were re-opened last Sunday night at around the same price. The professional bettors have gravitated toward the 49ers as they are now 1-point favorites for Monday night’s game. Now as the small underdogs, the Bills are in a positive recent trend having gone 6-1-2 ATS in their last nine games as a road ’dog.
The total opened at 48 but has declined slightly to 47. The Bills had a three-game Over streak snapped last week but are one of the NFL’s top Over teams (8-3 to the Over) this season. The 49ers have gone Under in two straight games and are 5-6 to the Under on the season. With both Mostert and Coleman back relatively healthy, San Francisco may look to establish the run against the Bills rush defense that ranks 22nd in Defense-adjusted Value Over Average (DVOA) per Football Outsiders. Buffalo also seemed to recommit to the running game last weekend with 172 yards on 30 carries.
The Bills are looking to win their first AFC East title since 1995, but they are faced with two tough prime-time games, this one and next Sunday night vs. the Steelers.
Perhaps no team in the NFL has faced more adversity this season than the 49ers, but a win here could set up a run into the playoffs with all winnable games ahead (Washington, at Dallas, at Arizona, vs. Seattle). San Francisco is about as healthy as it has been all season and looks to be peaking at the right time.