Green Bay Packers @ San Francisco Giants Divisional Round Preview and Prediction
The Green Bay Packers are in familiar territory as they hit the highway after a Wild Card victory in hopes of continuing another run to the Super Bowl. They will first have to get past the San Francisco 49ers that enjoy their second straight year with a week of rest before hosting the divisional playoff game at Candlestick Park. The 49ers were ultimately victorious in an epic battle against the New Orleans Saints in this spot last year. Thanks to some costly special team gaffs by Kyle Williams they missed out on a Super Bowl berth losing by a field goal in overtime to the eventual champions, the New York Giants.
Alex Smith will be looking on from the sideline in this year’s postseason as coach Jim Harbaugh has handed the reigns over to sophomore Colin Kaepernick. Following Kaepernick’s emergence, San Francisco beat the spread four of seven times, with one of those spread losses coming as a 16-point favorite in a Week 17 win over the hapless Arizona Cardinals.
The Packers are looking for vengeance after losing the season opener to the 49ers, 30-22 at Lambeau Field. San Francisco catapulted out to a 23-7 pad making Green Bay’s offense one-dimensional as they had to play catch-up from the starting gun. The Pack woke up with a 75-yard punt return for a touchdown from Randall Cobb to cut the deficit to 23-15 in the fourth quarter, but the Niners put the game away with a Frank Gore touchdown run eventually winning by 8.
The reigning league MVP, Aaron Rodgers, is under center for his eighth playoff game for the Packers (5-2 SU/ATS), as the Pack has won four of his first five contests on the road. Since 2006, the Packers boast a remarkable 19-9 ATS record in the role of road underdog, while splitting a pair of games in this situation against the Giants and Texans this season.
Green Bay Packers +3 @ San Francisco 49ers (betting prediction)
For some strange reason Aaron Rodgers still has a chip on his shoulder. He’s achieved the highest of peaks in the NFL, but he still finds motivation from the snubbing he received on draft day in 2005. The San Francisco 49ers were one of those teams that passed on the eventual All-Pro. Add in the fact that Rodgers is from the Bay area (Chico, CA) and you have the recipe for a clinical performance from #12.
Rodgers was sacked a league-high 51 times this year and there have been clear issues with the offensive line. The Niner’s defense is getting healthy at the right time and they should harass Rodgers all day, but the Packers offense is also healthy and boasting an improved running game with DuJuan Harris.
Here are some numbers for you to chew:
Teams that won 11 or more games last year are 29-6 SU and 21-13-1-1 ATS at home with a week to get ready for Division Round contests.
New England and San Francisco fall into this situation, but be careful because teams in this role are just 5-4 SU and 2-7 ATS in the last six post-seasons.
In what projects to be a tightly contested match I have to go with the experienced pivot. Give me the points with the Pack.
Side Play: Green Bay +3 (5dimes.eu)
Read our full 5Dimes review to learn more about our recommended bookie.
NFL Record: 11-7-1