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49ers: 5 players to watch in Week 10 game against the Jaguars.

After winning five straight games to start the season, the 49ers appeared to be the best team in the NFL after that, the 49ers lost three straight.

The 49ers are scheduled to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars on a cross-country road trip after the draw week, but there are plenty of question marks outside the building.

The Jaguars are 6-2 and have won five straight.

So it won’t be an easy game for the 49ers to get back on track.

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“I think it’s important every week, but especially when you lose three in a row,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said.

“The season is always one week and it’s not about running or anything like that.
“It’s important to beat a really strong soccer team this week.”

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The 49ers have issues on both sides of the ball. The defense did not meet expectations.

And the 49ers, who scored 30 points or more in their first five games, scored 17 points, 17 points and 17 points in their three-game losing streak.

Here are five 49ers to watch for the team’s Week 10 game in Jacksonville.

1. Talanoa Fufanga

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A year ago, Talanoa Hufanga was everywhere.

Perhaps more specifically, he was close to the offensive line and always had the ball. Now, the 49ers need more players from Hufanga.

Forget about defensive coordinator Steve Wilkes being moved from the locker room to the sideline.

The most important thing for him is to find ways to make Hufanga more active and allow him to make breakthrough plays.

This is a good opportunity for Hufanga to play.

The Jaguars will certainly pass the ball to versatile running back Travis Etienne, and Hufanga could help set the tone for this game with some big hits early in the game.

2. RB Christian McCaffrey

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Christian McCaffrey was the centerpiece of the 49ers’ offense. He leads all running backs in the NFL in yards from scrimmage (944) and yards rushing (652).

But McCaffrey has struggled in recent weeks to find space to run. In the last four games, McCaffrey gained 51, 43, 45 and 54 yards on the ground.

McCaffrey appears to have benefited from this week off, as he looks refreshed from his bye week and has a little more spring in his step.

With Deebo Samuel back from a shoulder injury for the first time in 2 1/2 games, things may open up a bit for McCaffrey as a runner and receiver.

3. NB Isaiah Oliver

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Each team has targeted the 49ers’ nickelback, and this game should be similar.

Christian Kirk of the Jaguars is one of the top three slot receivers in the NFL. Of the 42 passes Trevor Lawrence targeted, he had 33 receptions.

Kirk gained 393 yards and three touchdowns from the slot.
Meanwhile, Oliver was having trouble reporting.

Over the past four games, Oliver has completed 20 times on 20 targets for 179 yards and three touchdowns.

Oliver is good in run support, but needs to be able to provide more resistance in pass coverage.

Otherwise, the Jags will be looking for third downs.

4.QB Brock Purdy

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Brock Purdy was sidelined during the bye week and it was a good opportunity for him to clear his head after giving up six points in the final 10 quarters and losing three straight.

“It was really nice to be able to take a breather, collect my thoughts and ideas, and get ready for the second half of the season,” Purdy said.

“So, that was good for me.” In fact, Purdy is having a Pro Bowl season in his first full year as the 49ers’ starter.

Purdy averages 9.1 yards per pass attempt, which is No. 1 in the league.

His passer rating of 105.4 ranks second behind Miami Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.

Now, Purdy will have to put together a complete game, as he has done most of the time since taking over the 49ers’ starting role last December.

5 DE Chase Young

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It didn’t take long for the 49ers to sign newly acquired Chase Young as a starter.

He is currently at the top of the team’s list of defensive ends.

“I think he’ll step in right away,” Shanahan said this week. Young appears to have almost fully recovered from a serious knee injury that has plagued him for about two years.

Young averaged 58 snaps per game with the Washington Commanders, including 75 snaps on October 15 against the Atlanta Falcons.

Young had five sacks in seven games with Washington before being traded to the 49ers for a special compensatory pick at the end of the third round of the 2024 NFL Draft.

The 49ers have struggled defensively, especially in their last two games against Minnesota and Cincinnati.

General manager John Lynch has cautioned that Young is not a magic pill, but his presence is expected to have a noticeable impact on the 49ers at every level of the defense.

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