2024 NFL Schedule

49ers' schedule ranks among NFL's worst rest differentials since 2002

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In what is becoming an unceremonious tradition, the 49ers will face the 2024 NFL season at a significant rest disadvantage compared to their opponents.

San Francisco's -22 net rest differential for the 2024 season ranks as the third-worst in the NFL since 2002. (h/t ESPN)

That marks two consecutive seasons where San Francisco got stuck with the worst rest differential in the league, with the 49ers 2023 total also ranking in the top-10 worst differentials over the last two decades.

The most glaring hurdles for San Francisco's scheduling woes will be the four games it plays against opponents who are coming off a bye week, which is a difficult task in itself but magnified even further by the quality of the teams the 49ers will face in those contests.

San Francisco will face the Kansas City Chiefs and Dallas Cowboys in Week's seven and eight, with each coming off a bye week prior to their meeting with the 49ers. Then in Week 11, San Francisco faces its NFC-West rival Seattle Seahawks off a bye week, with a Week 13 showdown against the Buffalo Bills wrapping up the 49ers slate of games against teams who will have multiple weeks of rest before their meeting.

The 49ers are the only team in the league who will play at least four games against opponents who care coming off a bye during the 2024 season, with the Indianapolis Colts being the only other franchise who has at least three such games on their schedule.

San Francisco faced teams coming off a bye week while at a rest disadvantage three times last season, losing in Week 6 to the Cleveland Browns and Week 8 to the Cincinnati Bengals, while beating the Arizona Cardinals in Week 15.

There will also be two instances where San Francisco plays a team who has three additional days of rest due to playing on "Thursday Night Football" the week before -- a Week 4 tilt against the New England Patriots and a Week 13 clash with the Chicago Bears. (h/t Fox Sports)

The 49ers were able to navigate their rest disadvantage in 2023 and still manage to secure the NFC's No. 1 seed. As San Francisco attempts to get back to the Super Bowl, it once again will have to overcome the difficult schedule hurdles it conquered last season.

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