Seahawks (4-2) @ 49ers (4-2)
Pick – Seahawks (+9)
Good Call: Three Stars (Out of Five)
With both teams having short weeks, Seattle coming off a 24-23 win against New England and the 49'ers getting annihilated by the Giants at home, I have to favor the defenses in this game. And when favoring defenses, it's hard to go any other way but Seattle with their stifling defensive play. If you're a reader of my fantasy football "Start 'Em, Sit 'Em!" report, get ready for some redundancy - because it is what it is.
No matter what side is being taken, all bettors must agree that San Francisco relies heavily upon their ground attack, led by RB Frank Gore (87 ATT, 470 YDS, 4 TD's). Truth is, there have only been two times this season that San Francisco has faced good rushing defenses, Vikings (24-13) and Giants (26-3), leading to the team’s only losses of the season. In both games, Gore rushed for a combined 20 ATT, 99 YDS, O TD’s with a turnover. Now add the visiting Seattle Seahawks (4-2) rushing defense that allows only 70 yards-per-game on the ground (2nd) on a short week for Gore and the San Francisco offense that more than struggled last week and it looks like a recipe for disaster.
With Seattle only allowing two touchdowns to opposing running backs in the league, we've got to now take a look at the quarterback situation. Granted, the Seahawks are near last in the league with a mere 169.7 passing yards per-game, but QB Russell Wilson (85.6 QB Rating - 1,108 YDS, 6 INT's, 8 TD's) is looking like he's much more comfortable in the past few weeks. The last thing anyone needs is for Seattle's passing attack to become solid, because then they turn into absolute juggernauts... no matter home, away or on the moon!
Although 49'ers QB Alex Smith (96.6 QB Rating – 1,287 YDS, 4 INT’s, 8 TD’s) gets the job done, there is truly nothing too impressive about his season thus far. Besides the fact that the San Francisco has come out extremely strong on defense, it’s their ground-attack that most teams focus upon. Smith has only surpassed the 300-yard mark in passing once this season, against Buffalo’s sketchy secondary, and barely (303 YDS). When dropping back against decent coverage, Smith records very low numbers and looks to get timid in the pocket. Last week, Smith had dismal numbers against a solid Giants defense (QB Rating - 24.8, 19/30, 200 YDS, 3 INT’s, 0 TD’s), showing just how much the Niners rely on the ground-and-pound game, whether via the I-Formation or Wildcat. I hate to burst your bubble, but that’s precisely the Seahawks' forte - coming hard with the leagues number two rushing defense. Smith is currently ranked 22nd overall amongst quarterbacks… behind Romo… even behind Bradford.
No matter the reasons I hear behind bettors taking San Francisco, I love this match-up and truly cannot believe Vegas is giving up 9-points! If you enjoy money, take Seattle... and then take your deposit to the bank, people!
Just So Ya’ Know:
- Both teams are 4-2 ATS
- Seahawks are 6-0 ATS when underdogs between 3.5 - 10 points
- Home team is 5-1 ATS in last 6 meetings