San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch insists his 3-0 team isn’t looking past this Sunday’s game against the 1-2 Arizona Cardinals regardless of what sportsbooks think about the contest.
“I think you just turn on the tape, and Arizona, forget about what everyone thought coming into this year, all the narratives,” Lynch said during a Friday appearance on San Francisco sports radio station KNBR, per David Bonilla of 49ers WebZone. “We just turn on the tape of the first three games, and you make a strong case this is a team who very likely could be 3-0. They’ve played very solid football in doing such. They’re more talented than people give them credit for.”
Arizona failed to hold onto a 16-10 fourth-quarter lead in what became a Week 1 20-16 loss to the Washington Commanders and squandered a 21-point advantage against the New York Giants the following weekend. Quarterback Joshua Dobbs, who only joined the Cardinals on Aug. 24, helped rally the troops for an upset 28-16 victory over the Dallas Cowboys last Sunday and grabbed Lynch’s attention in the process.
“And I think the biggest thing, they traded for a guy four days before the season, but yet he’s playing like a guy who’s been there for some time, and not just executing and dinking and dunking, but making plays, too,” Lynch said. “[I’m] talking about Josh Dobbs. So, he’s functioning at a high level.”
According to ESPN stats, Dobbs began Friday ranked 10th in the NFL among qualified players with a 61.1 adjusted QBR on the season. Despite his solid play and the fact that the Cardinals don’t appear to be tanking without the injured Kyler Murray in the lineup, OddsChecker nevertheless listed Arizona as a massive underdog (+625, +14) for Sunday’s encounter at Levi’s Stadium as of Friday afternoon.
“They’re going to respect whoever we play,” Lynch added about his players. “But Arizona made it easy to do such, and we’re expecting a good football team and having to earn a victory.”
The 49ers host a “Sunday Night Football” matchup versus the Cowboys on Oct. 8, and some will feel that evening could offer a preview of this season’s NFC Championship Game. San Francisco must first be ready for a fight this Sunday because Dobbs is playing like a man with nothing to lose as long as he’s atop Arizona’s depth chart.