Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kurt Warner believes the 49ers are the best team in the NFC

Dec 4, 2019 at 3:43 PM--

The San Francisco 49ers fell out of first place in the NFC and don't even lead their division anymore. Still, at least one NFL Network analyst, Kurt Warner, believes the Niners are still the best team in the conference.

Three 10-2 teams are vying for the top seed in the NFC and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs. They are the 49ers, their opponent this weekend, the New Orleans Saints, and the NFC West-leading Seattle Seahawks.

San Francisco lost a nail-biter to the Seahawks during Week 10 but will get another shot at them in Seattle on December 29.

Until then, the 49ers remain focused on coming away from New Orleans with a win.

Warner was asked on Wednesday which of the two teams possesses the most dangerous offense. He isn't convinced the Saints are "hitting on all cylinders" just yet. That could change, though. Hopefully, for the 49ers' sake, that won't be this weekend.

"They're good," Warner said of the Saints offense. "They're just not as good as I thought they would be."

The NFL Network analyst does, however, like what the 49ers offense is doing right now.

"They're multifaceted," Warner continued. "They've got different guys stepping up. George Kittle can be a difference-maker. They can run the football. The play-action is really good. I'm going to give a slight edge here to San Francisco, even though I still think Jimmy Garoppolo has a ways to go in getting into Drew Brees' category. I just like the way they're playing right now, and I believe they're the best team in the NFC."

Warner mentioned the 49ers' running game, and that's one aspect of the team's offense that Steve Wyche believes could be the difference in Sunday's matchup. The Saints own the No. 3 ranked run defense in the NFL, but that doesn't necessarily mean they will be able to stop San Francisco's No. 2 ranked rushing attack.

"Now, the Saints have not allowed an individual running back to rush for more than 100 yards since 2017," Wyche notes, "but they have allowed teams to rush for more than 100 yards five times this season. That's still among the best in the NFL, but we do know that San Francisco comes to you with a potential three-headed monster in that (Matt) Breida could be back, and you've got (Raheem) Mostert and (Tevin) Coleman, who could be in there for the Niners.

"This is a huge, huge challenge, but it all starts up front for the Saints, again, where Cam Jordan and Marcus Davenport lead a very solid front against a San Francisco offensive line that knows how to create holes for those home-run hitters at running back."

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