- The San Francisco 49ers clash with the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday Night Football (8:20pm ET, Dec. 29)
- San Fran is a 3-point road favorite, and is drawing 66% of the betting handle
- Seattle is receiving 67% of the sharp action – read below for our betting prediction
It’s fitting that the biggest game of the 2019 season will also be the final game of the calendar year. The 12-3 San Francisco 49ers square off against the 11-4 Seattle Seahawks with the NFC West title at stake.
A win for the 49ers would not only only clinch the division but also the conference’s top seed. If the Seahawks prevail, they’ll likely finish as the NFC’s third seed and will host a Wild Card playoff game next week.
49ers vs Seahawks Odds & Betting Handle
|San Francisco 49ers||-3.0 (-119)||66.0%|
|Seattle Seahawks||+3.0 (-101)||34.0%|
All odds taken Dec. 29
The line for this game opened 49ers -2.5 and quickly climbed to -3. It’s stayed put since the early move despite the majority of the action being on San Francisco. Sportsbooks are reporting that 66% of the money is on the Niners, as is 65% of the betting tickets. The pros are on the opposite side as 67% of the sharp action is backing Seattle.
San Francisco will be looking win outright away from home for seventh time this season. They’re 5-2 ATS on the road, but 0-2 as an away favorite. Seattle meanwhile, has failed to cover in three straight, and lost outright to Arizona last week as an 8-point home favorite. The Seahawks have been hit hard by injuries this month, but are expecting Jadeveon Clowney and Shaquill Griffin to return, and will trot out a familiar face in their backfield.
Marshawn Lynch was serving tequila shots at a parking lot tailgate in Oakland eight days ago for the Raiders' last game there. Now he's gonna start for the Seahawks in the playoffs.
— Matt Schneidman (@mattschneidman) December 23, 2019
So We Meet Again
These two teams played a thrilling overtime game in Week 10 that Seattle won by a field goal. The Seahawks rushed for 147 yards in that outing and Russell Wilson completed 70.6% of his passes. Seattle’s defence, led by Clowney, sacked Jimmy Garoppolo five times and held him to his second-worst passer rating of the season.
🚨 JADEVEON CLOWNEY SCOOP N' SCORE 🚨
Seattle defense comes up big.
— ESPN (@espn) November 12, 2019
The Niners were without their top-two pass catching options for the majority of the game, as George Kittle sat out with a knee injury and Emmanuel Sanders left early. Now, all of San Fran’s skill position players appear healthy, and should feast on a deteriorating Seahawks defense. Seattle has give up 27.2 points per game over the last month and will be hard pressed to slow down Kittle. The Niners star has 24 catches over the last three weeks, and only two teams allow more tight end production than the Seahawks.
A closer look at Seattle’s victories this season suggest negative regression is inevitable. Ten of their wins have been by eight points or less, which ties the NFL record for most one score wins in the Super Bowl era. Eleven of their 15 games have been decided by one score, including six of their past eight.
Game #256. The very last game of the regular season.
— #FootballWeekNBCSN (@SNFonNBC) December 22, 2019
Despite their 11-4 record, the Seahawks +12 point differential ranks 15th in the NFL. That’s worse than non-playoff teams like the Rams and Buccaneers, and is 152 points less than the 49ers. The lowest point differential ever for a 12-win team is +31, which suggests unless Seattle is a true outlier, their fortune in close games is about to change.
How Valuable is Seattle’s Home Field?
So much is made about how tough it is to play in Seattle, but so far this season that hasn’t been the case. The Seahawks are 4-3 at Century Link Field and just 2-5 ATS. Yes, they’ve covered in three straight home outings as an underdog, but none of those games were this season.
San Francisco is the healthier team and has the pieces on defense to neutralize the Seahawks attack. Seattle’s ground game will likely struggle, which means all the pressure will be on Wilson’s shoulders. He is certainly capable of having a strong game, but against the 49ers’ fierce pass rush and elite coverage unit, the advantage belongs to San Fran.
Pick: 49ers -3 (-119)
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