Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

49ers always locked in and nothing changes with upcoming three-game stretch, says Deebo Samuel

Nov 22, 2019 at 10:30 AM--

Much has been said about the San Francisco 49ers' upcoming three-game stretch. It's tough. Real tough. In fact, Nick Wagoner of ESPN pointed out this week that, during the Super Bowl era, no team had faced three consecutive opponents this late in the season, with each opponent being .800-or-better.

The 49ers' three upcoming opponents are a combined 24-6 at this point in the season, with each team sitting at 8-2. The series kicks off with a game at Levi's Stadium on Sunday night against the Green Bay Packers. Then the team will travel for matchups against the Baltimore Ravens and New Orleans Saints.

For San Francisco's coaches and players, though, it's business as usual.

One of those players is rookie wide receiver Deebo Samuel, who joined 95.7 The Game on Thursday. He acknowledged that this three-game stretch does indeed feel different from earlier parts of the schedule, and that has become more apparent as the NFL season progressed with these three teams showing no real signs of slowing.

"As we get closer and closer to it, we're kind of getting the feel [that] these are going to be the toughest games, back-to-back, that we're going to have," Samuel told Damon Bruce, Ray Ratto, and Matt Kolsky. "... But we're just going to take it week by week and continue to do the things we've been doing all season."

A lot could be determined on Sunday night. The 49ers currently own the best record in the NFC, and, if the season ended today, would be the No. 1 seed in the playoffs. A lot would change with a loss this weekend. Green Bay would jump ahead of the 49ers by virtue of the head-to-head tiebreaker, and San Francisco would fall to the No. 5 seed thanks to a Week 10 loss to Seattle.

We are entering the guts of the NFL season, and these final weeks will determine a lot for the playoff-hopeful squads. That doesn't necessarily mean the 49ers will change anything going forward.

"I don't think that we're changing," Samuel said. "I think Kyle (Shanahan) believes in what he's been doing. It's been working, and we're just going to continue to do the same thing that we're doing. We're not going to change. I mean, we've been locked in all season, as you can see, and we're going to continue to do that."

Samuel suffered a shoulder injury — more specific, an AC joint injury — this past weekend against the Arizona Cardinals. He exited the game but returned in time for the 49ers' exciting comeback to win. Does he expect to play during Sunday night's pivotal matchup?

"We're going to listen to the doctors and see what the doctors say," Samuel responded.

Samuel did, however, add, "I feel good."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Samuel below.

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