San Francisco 49ers vs. Seattle Seahawks, 9-17-2017 - Expert Prediction

Game Snapshot

#285 San Francisco 49ers
#286 Seattle Seahawks

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San Francisco 49ers (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS, 0-1 O/U) vs. Seattle Seahawks (0-1 SU, 0-1 ATS, 0-1 O/U)

NFL: Sunday, September 17, 2017 at 4:25 p.m. EST

The Line: Seattle Seahawks -12.5. Total: 43

It will be an early-season NFC West showdown when the Seattle Seahawks host the San Francisco 49ers at CenturyLink Field on Sunday afternoon. Both teams are 0-1, as Seattle fell at Green Bay and San Francisco got blown out by Carolina.

Rebuilding mode

The 49ers, of course, are in all-out rebuilding mode after the Chip Kelly experiment at head coach produced nothing more than a dreadful 2-14 record in his only season. They now have a very different offensive scheme under new head coach and former Falcons’ offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan and the defense appears to be at least somewhat improved. In San Francisco’s 23-3 loss to the Panthers, the defense gave up just 287 yards–including only 171 through the air.

Shanahan’s offense, however, struggled to the tune of a mere 217 yards and 13 first downs. Nine-year veteran Brian Hoyer has replaced Colin Kaepernick at quarterback, in part because he is familiar with his head coach’s system (Hoyer and Shanahan were together with the Browns in 2014). The former Michigan State standout had a streak of 224 passes without an interception end this past Sunday, when he finished 24-of-35 for 193 yards.

Rawls ready to go

Seahawks’ running back Thomas Rawls is expected to play in Week 2 after missing last weekend’s 17-9 loss to Green Bay with a high ankle sprain. Rawls has not taken the field since the exhibition opener on Aug. 13, when he rushed twice for five yards against San Diego. In 2016, the Central Michigan product had 109 carries for 349 yards (3.2 average) and three touchdowns in nine games. It was a step back from his 2015 rookie campaign, during which he amassed 830 yards and four scores on 147 attempts (5.6 average).

“We do expect Thomas back,” head coach Pete Carroll said on Monday. “He should be raring to go.”

With Rawls sidelined, rookie Chris Carson led Seattle running backs with 39 yards on six carries. Former Packer Eddie Lacy got the call just five times and turned those chances into a grand total of three yards. Quarterback Russell Wilson kept it twice for 40 yards.

NFL Trends:

The San Francisco 49ers are:

  • 4-12 ATS in their last 16 overall
  • 5-12-1 ATS in their last 18 road games
  • 3-9 ATS in their last 12 games against the NFC

The Seattle Seahawks are:

  • 5-1 ATS in their last six home games
  • 6-2 ATS in their last eight games on grass
  • 20-8 ATS in its last 28 following a loss

Seattle’s defense did a fine job in Week 1, limiting Aaron Rodgers and the high-powered Packers to just 17 points. With Rawls back, the offense should improve and the defense should be even better given that it will get some rest in between series. And the opponent (San Francisco), of course, is nothing like Green Bay. The 49ers are 4-12 ATS in their last 16 overall, 5-12-1 ATS in their last 18 on the road, 3-9 ATS in their last 12 against the NFC, 2-6 ATS in their last eight against losing opponents, 3-10 ATS in their last 13 following a loss, 1-9-1 ATS in the last 11 meetings between the two teams, and 0-5-1 ATS in their last six on the road against the Seahawks. Seattle is 5-1 ATS in its last six at home, 6-2 ATS in its last eight on fieldturf, and 20-8 ATS in its last 28 following a loss. Expect those trends to continue.

Pick: Seattle Seahawks -12.5

San Francisco will likely be without linebacker Reuben Foster on Sunday. The rookie started at weakside linebacker against Carolina and suffered a high ankle sprain in the first quarter. Trainers feared a broken leg, but x-rays proved otherwise. Shanahan said that Foster could be sideline for a month. The over is 7-2 in the 49ers’ last nine on the road, 4-1 in their last five against the NFC West, and 5-0 in their last five on fieldturf. It is also 4-1 in the Seahawks’ last five following a loss and 7-3 in their last 10 after allowing more than 350 yards of total offense in their previous outing. Look for this one to go over the total.

Pick: Over 43


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Ricky Dimon

A 2006 graduate of Davidson College, Ricky is a freelance sports writer based in Atlanta, Georgia. He has previously worked with various websites in the sports handicapping industry and is generally a fan of going with the hot hand while in most cases showing a willingness to take favorites and give the points. Beyond the four major sports, Ricky is an avid tennis fan—and writer—and covers the ATP Tour on a daily basis.