- The San Francisco 49ers are 9.5-point favorites against the Green Bay Packers.
- San Francisco hasn’t lost at home to NFC opposition in two years with key players.
- Green Bay earned a dominant road win in Dallas on Sunday, but is their time up?
Ahead of Saturday’s NFC divisional round matchup in San Francisco, I’m here to offer a 49ers vs. Packers prediction.
Green Bay impressed on Sunday in Dallas, dominating the Cowboys 48-32, including leading 27-7 at the half.
Their reward for winning? A date with the San Francisco 49ers, who received a bye week in the wild-card round as the NFC’s top seed.
Here’s a look at NFL betting lines for Saturday’s game, along with my bets for the contest.
49ers vs. Packers Betting Odds
- San Francisco 49ers Moneyline: -500
- Green Bay Packers Moneyline: +375
- Game Spread: San Francisco 49ers -9.5
- Game Total: 50.5 Points
49ers vs. Packers Betting Predictions
San Francisco 49ers Spread (-9.5) vs. Green Bay Packers
The schedule makers did the Packers no favors for this game.
Following their massive win in Dallas, Green Bay travels to play their second straight road game with only five days of preparation for the NFC’s top team.
Even more concerning is that San Francisco’s top personnel hasn’t played in two weeks, so they’ll be well-rested to (hopefully) cover a big number.
Historically, the 49ers fit two profitable betting systems. Double-digit underdogs in the wild-card and divisional rounds are only 6-12 ATS.
Additionally, divisional round underdogs who won as underdogs in the wild-card round are 14-16 ATS since 2004-05, including 4-7 since 2017-18.
From a matchup point of view, the unknown here is what the Packers offense can accomplish against San Francisco’s defense.
Since Week 10, San Francisco is 16th in EPA per play but seventh in dropback EPA per play.
Over that same span, Green Bay is third in EPA per play and dropback EPA per play.
However, the competition level leaves something to be desired. Over that span, they played zero outdoor games against sides fifth or better in defensive DVOA (San Francisco ranks fourth).
Plus, what really worries me about Green Bay is their defense.
This season, Green Bay ranked 23rd in defensive EPA per play, while San Francisco led the league in the corresponding offensive category.
Green Bay also played only two outdoor games this season against NFC playoff sides.
In those games – Week 4 vs. Detroit, Week 15 vs. Tampa Bay – they went 0-2 with a -28 point differential.
Additionally, the 49ers have shown they can dominate teams outdoors, beating all of the Cowboys, Eagles and Bucs by at least 13 points.
Accordingly, I’ll take the 49ers at -10 or better.
George Kittle Over 52.5 Receiving Yards (-115)
Kittle is a bad matchup for the Packers, who tend to struggle against tight ends.
This season, Green Bay ranked 26th in DVOA against the position and extended that poor record into the playoffs.
Against Cowboys tight end Jake Ferguson, they allowed 10 receptions for 93 yards.
Now they face Kittle, who excels against teams that love to deploy zone coverage.
In five games this season against teams 10th or higher in zone coverage rate, he’s cleared this number four times.
In the process, he averaged 69.2 yards, which is even more impressive considering his lone failure saw him produce only nine receiving yards.
Plus, in 10 games against teams who rank 17th or worse in DVOA against tight ends, Kittle cleared this number six times.
Add in 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy completes north of 70% of his passes against zone coverage and I’ll trust Kittle to clear what feels like a low number.
Jayden Reed Anytime Touchdown (+200, 0.5 unit) | Romeo Doubs Anytime Touchdown (+250, 0.5 unit)
A sizable majority of Green Bay’s touchdowns come via the pass, but there’s little separating these two players.
As a result, I’ll split a unit rather than forcing a singular pick.
This season, Green Bay ranks second in passing touchdowns per game (1.9) and fifth in passing touchdown percentage.
Conversely, San Francisco surrenders 1.2 passing touchdowns per game – including 1.6 at home – along with 24th in opponent passing touchdown percentage.
Just at home, the 49ers rank 31st in opponent passing touchdown percentage, likely because they’re constantly playing with the lead.
Reed leads the Packers in targets inside the 20- and 10-yard line, one ahead of Doubs in each. From inside the five-yard line, the players are tied with four targets apiece.
Additionally, both have proved very efficient when targeted in goal-to-go situations. Of their 10 combined receptions from inside the 10-yard line, all have gone for touchdowns.
With Green Bay likely playing from behind along with a high game total, back these players so long as both remain available at +200 or better.
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