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49ers Try To Hang On As They Host Division-Leading Rams

It looks like Troy Smith is good for at least one more start for the 49ers when they host the division leading Rams on Sunday. Their positions in the NFC West reflect just how unpredictable the NFL can be (you know, on top of the Browns beating the Saints and Patriots in back-to-back weeks). While the 49ers were the favorite to win the division at the beginning of the year, they're now at the bottom of the division, which is right where the Rams were supposed to be when the first cleat-hit-ball and the season got underway.

So when I say that it looks like Troy Smith will be the starter against the Rams, what I really mean is "Please disregard everything I'm saying because I've been wrong at least half as much as everyone else has been this season." That's a rough paraphrase of what I, in actuality, mean - but who's keeping track? It's feasible that Alex Smith can get the start, feasible that the somewhat schizophrenic Mike Singletary is at all times condemning and praising both of these guys because they'll both line up under center. Who knows?

No, no ... I know, and so do you. Troy Smith has earned himself another start for the 49ers this year, and with Smith rehabbing an injury which may or may not be better, that start will come on Sunday. Troy wasn't sensational for the Niners in his first start with the team (and ever) against the Denver Broncos, but he got things done. Mike Singletary has expressed lately that Troy is a good leader, the kind of leader he wants, while simultaneously debunking Alex Smith in that regard. So the Niners had a mostly-mistake-free and semi-lucky Troy Smith come out with the win, and they're hoping for the same thing when the Rams come to town.

He went 12-of-19 for 196 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions. He also rushed for one touchdown, and that's something to look at going forward, as he might use that threat to open up some lanes for Frank Gore, who, if he can get 100+ yards rushing, AccuScore gives the 49ers an 88% chance of winning.

Both teams are relatively healthy what with the bye week. Steven Jackson is a little banged up, but that's something that's come to be a constant for him these days. Danario Alexander is coming off of the fifth surgecial procedure he's had performed on his left knee, and will probably be missed considering his deep-threat ability. He'll begin running some time this week, but the feeling is that he won't be ready for the game.

Check back throughout the week for in depth analysis and commentary regarding the game.