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In-Depth Prediction, Preview, and Odds

Packers vs. 49ers Prediction

Sunday, January 19, 2020 at 7:40pm EST
Levi's Stadium, Santa Clara

In-depth Coverage

This is an in-depth analysis of this game, covering every possible detail and angle. Use the table of contents to navigate between each section, or just jump on in!

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Table of Contents

Last Updated: Wednesday, January 15, 2020 at 1:05pm EST

Introduction

It's on to the NFC Championship game and we will see the NFC North grapple with the NFC West as the Green Bay Packers take on the San Francisco 49ers. This contest has a start time 6:40 pm ET and will take place at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California. The teams met back on November 24th and the Niners won that game at home by a score of 37-8. Both teams enter this game at 14-3 on the year.

Green Bay Packers Review

The Green Bay Packers are back. They had an amazing season that saw them go 13-3 through the regular season.  They grabbed the number to seed in the NFC and after beating Seattle, the Packers are now in the NFC title game for the first time since 2016. Green bay will now be looking for their first appearance in the Super Bowl since 2010. They will also be looking for revenge for a 37-8 loss right here at Levi's stadium back in November. In the NFC Divisional Round, the Packers won by a score of 28-23 and it was their 6th win in a row. The offense has been solid all year but it has been their defense that has fueled them of late. Since allowing 37 points in the loss to the Niners, the Packers have allowed just 15.7 ppg in their last six games The defense will be tested in this one as the Niners have one of the best offenses in the league. The offense has been rather average of late as the Packers have averaged just 24.3 ppg over their last six games. The last two times that these teams have met in the postseason, the Niners won. Can the Packers keep their strong run going and punch their ticket to the Super Bowl? We shall see.

San Francisco 49ers Review

The San Francisco 49ers are back in the postseason for the first time since 2013 when they lost to Seattle in the NFC title game by a score of 23-17. The 49ers had been a bit mediocre down the stretch of the regular season as they went 3-2 in their final five games and all five games were decided by five points or less. The defense was their main struggle as the Niners allowed 31.8 ppg over their final four regular-season games but the defense bounce back strong last week against the Vikings as they held them to 10 points in the 17-point win. San Fran is now 14-3 on the year and they have gone 7-2 here at home for the year. The Niners have been strong on both sides of the ball as they are 4th in total offense and 2nd in scoring, putting up 29.9 ppg while on defense they are 2nd in yards allowed and 8th in points allowed, giving up 19.4 ppg. San Fran has allowed 31.8 ppg and has allowed 18.6 ppg at home for the year and they could have a psychological edge after beating the Packers 37-8 here at home back in November. Can the Niners continue to play well at home and move on to the Super Bowl for the first time since the 2012 season? You'll have to check back to find out.

The Running Game

Green Bay Packers Running Offense
vs. 49ers Running Defense

Green Bay Packers Running Offense

The Green Bay run game has been near the bottom of the league for most of the year but right now it is slightly above average. That is due to the fact that the Packers have found their ground game as they have rushed for 137.4 ypg over the last five games. Last week against the Seahawks, the Packers ran for 109 yards and leading the team was Aaron Jones, who had 62 yards and two TDs. He has nor rushed for 316 yards and four TDs in his last three games. During the regular season, he rushed for 1084 yards and 16 TDs but he had just 38 yards and no TDs in the loss to the Niners earlier in the year. 

The Packers ran for 117 yards in that game and they will look for a bit more than that in this one. Getting their ground game is key as it will allow Rodgers to take some shots against the number one pass defenses in the league. Jamaal Williams was 2nd on the team with 460 yards and a TD while Rodgers was 3rd with 183 yards and a TD. The Packers have run for 103.8 ypg on the road and at 4.1 yards per pop.  

49ers Run Defense

The 49ers have been above average against the run this year as they have allowed 107.2 ypg on the ground which is 12th in the league but they are 21st in yards per attempt and that could be an issue against a rejuvenated Green Bay ground attack. Still, the Niners held a very good Minnesota ground game to just 21 yards last week and they have now allowed just 99.1 ypg on the ground at home but they have allowed 4.5 yards per attempt in their home games. The San Fran run defense has been very solid of late as they have allowed just 77.2 ypg on 3.4 yards per attempt over their last three games. If they play that well in this one, then the Packers will not have a tone of success running the ball.      

Stats

Green Bay’s Rushing Stats

  • 13th in rushing attempts per game (25.9)
  • 15th in rushing yards per game (112.0)
  • 18th in yards per attempt (4.3)
  • 17th in rushing first downs per game (5.7)

San Francisco’s Run Defense Stats

  • 7th in run plays per game against (24.2)
  • 12th in rushing yards allowed per game (107.2)
  • 21st in opposing yards per attempt (4.4)
  • 17th in rushing first downs per game against (6.2)

Who has the Edge?

The Niners have been very stout against the run of late and they have allowed just 99.1 ypg on the ground at home for the year. The Packers have been very good at running the ball of late as they have piled up 137.4 ypg on the ground over their last five games. Aaron Jones has played very well in his last three games but he did have just 38 yards on the ground in the loss to the Niners earlier in the year. To me, it looks like this category will be a push as I just don’t see either team gaining the edge in this one. 

Advantage: Push

49ers Running Offense
vs. Green Bay Packers Running Defense

49ers Running Offense

The Niners have one of the best ground attacks in the league as they rank 3rd in rushing at 146.5 ypg and 9th in yards per attempt at 4.6. San Fran could have a solid game here against a Green Bay defense that has struggled against the run this year. The Niners have been slightly better at home as they have averaged 148.1 ypg here at Levi’s Stadium and on 4.7 yards per attempt. During the regular season, the Niners had three players that ran for at least 544 yards and leading the way was Raheem Mostert, who had 772 yards and eight TDs on the year. 

2nd on the team was Matt Brieda, who had 623 yards and one TD while Tevin Coleman had 544 yards and six TDs. Coleman had a big game last week against the Vikings, rushing for 105 yards and two TDs. He had 39 yards and a TD in the first meeting with the Packers. Mostert led the team on that day with 45 yards and a TD. This is a deep and talented running back corps and it will look for a big game against a suspect Green Bay run defense. 

Green Bay Packers Run Defense

The Green Bay run defense has been nothing special this year but they did hold the Niners to just 112 yards rushing in the first meeting. They will need for their run defense to step up or it could be a long day for them. Green Bay allowed the Seahawks 110 yards rushing last week and they have now allowed just 108 ypg over their last three games while on the road, the Packers have allowed just 106.3 ypg on the ground. Green Bay is 24th in the league in yards per attempt at 4.7 and they have allowed 4.6 yards per attempt on the road. Can the Green Bay defense slow down a very strong San Francisco ground game? We shall see.  

  

Stats

San Francisco’s Rushing Stats

  • 2nd in rushing attempts per game (32.1)
  • 3rd in rushing yards per game (146.5)
  • 9th in yards per attempt (4.6)
  • 6th in rushing first downs per game (7.2)

Green Bay’s Run Defense Stats

  • 13th in run plays per game against (25.6)
  • 23rd in rushing yards allowed per game (119.5)
  • 24th in opposing yards per attempt (4.7)
  • 20th in rushing first downs per game against (6.3)

Who has the Edge?

The Niners have one of the best ground attacks in the league and I see them racking up some rushing yards in this one. The Packers have been better against the run of late and they did hold the San Fran ground attack to just 112 yards in the first meeting but the Packers are still 23rd against the run for the year and 14th in yards per attempt allowed. The Niners have averaged 144.3 yards per game over their last three games and 148.1 ypg at home. We also note that the Niners piled up 186 yards rushing last week against a very good Minnesota defense. Give the Niners a clear edge here.

Advantage: San Francisco 49ers

The Passing Game

Green Bay Packers Passing Offense
vs. 49ers Passing Defense

Green Bay Packers Passing Offense

The Green Bay passing game is used to being ranked in the top 10 but that has not been the case this year as they enter this game ranked 16th in passing yards per game.  Rodgers had a solid game with 243 yards and two TDs while throwing no picks. The Pack has now thrown for 547 yards in their last two games after throwing for just 558 yards in their previous three games. Part of the reason is that they have been looking to run the ball a bit more of late. During the regular season, Rodgers threw for 4002 yards with 26 TDs and just four INTs. He will be tested against the league’s top-ranked pass defense in this one.  

Rodgers threw for just 104 yards with a TD and no INTs in the 37-8 loss to the Niners earlier in the year. Devante Adams led the team with 997 yards and five TDs during the regular season while Allen Lazard was 2nd with 477 yards and Adam Jones was 3rd with 447. Overall, the Packers had five players with at least 447 yards receiving. Adams is Rodgers’ favorite target but he will spread the wealth. The Packers have averaged just 201.4 ypg through the air on the road this year.          

49ers Passing Defense

The San Francisco pass defense has been the best in the league this year as they have allowed just 166.7 ypg through the air and at just 5.2 yards per attempt. They have also allowed just 8.4 yards per completion and are 3rd in the league in sacks. This is a tough pass defense and they will be facing a Green Bay offense that has struggled to throw the ball on the road. The Niners held Cousins and company to just 126 yards passing last week while picking off a pass and sacking his six times. They also shut down Rodgers in the first meeting this year and will be looking to do so again.

As I stated above, the Niners have gotten good pressure on the quarterback this year and leading them in sacks during the regular season was Arik Armstead, who had 10 while Nick Bosa was 2nd with 9. Bosa had two sacks in last week’s win over the Vikings. Richard Sherman led the team in INTs with three while also leading the team in passes defended with 11. Can the Niners keep Rodgers Under wraps again?        

Stats

Green Bay’s Passing Stats

  • 17th in pass attempts per game (35.3)
  • 16th in passing yards per game (233.4)
  • 18th in completion percentage (62.00)
  • 16th in yards per pass attempt (6.6)
  • 16th in yards per pass completion (10.7)
  • 11th in passer rating (96.1)

San Francisco’s Pass Defense Stats

  • 5th in pass attempts against per game (32.2)
  • 1st in passing yards per game allowed (166.7)
  • 10th in completion percentage allowed (61.86)
  • 1st in yards per pass attempt (5.2)
  • 1st in yards per pass completion (8.4)
  • 3rd in sacks per game (3.2)
  • 7th in passer rating allowed (83.0)

Who has the Edge?

I have to give the Niners the edge in this category. They have been the best team in the league against the pass all year and the Packers have averaged just 201.4 ypg through the air on the road. Their passing game has been very average overall and the Niners allowed just 126 yards passing last week against the Vikings. San Fran has allowed just 166.7 ypg passing this year, including just 154..3 ypg passing at home. The Niners can also get pressure on the QB and they are 1st in yards per attempt and yards per completion allowed this year while the Packers are 16th in both categories on offense. This is an easy call who gets the edge in this one. 

Advantage: San Francisco 49ers

49ers Passing Offense
vs. Green Bay Packers Passing Defense

49ers Passing Offense

The San Francisco passing game has been below average in terms of yards this year but when they pass the ball, they have been effective. The Niners are 18th in passing but 3rd in completion percentage, 3rd in yards per attempt and 6th in yards per completion. The running game sets yo the passing game very nicely but it will not be easy for them in this one as the Packers have allowed just 178 yards per game through the ait in their last three games. During the regular season, Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 3978 yards with 27 TDs but he did have 13 INTs and that is too many. He threw for just 131 yards with a TD and an INT last week against the Vikings.  

The Niners have been led by George Kittle, who many feel is the best TE in the league right now. He had 1053 yards receiving with five TDs during the regular season this year. Emmanuel Sanders was 2nd with 869 yards and six TDs while Deebo Samuel was 3rd with 802 yards and six TDs. That is a hell of a trio of receivers that Garoppolo has at his disposal. The Niners have thrown for 219.4 ypg at home and just 202.3 ypg in their last three games.  

Green Bay Packers Passing Defense

The Green Bay pass defense has been near the middle of the Pack this year but they have been very strong of late, allowing just 178 ypg through the air over their last three games. The Packers could have their pass defense under fire if the Niners get their ground game going. The Packers do give up some big plays as they are 27th in the league in yards per completion at 11.5. We also note that they have allowed 233 yards per game passing on the road this year and that could be a problem. We shall see.

The Packers have been average at getting pressure on the quarterback but they did have five sacks last week against the Seahawks. Za'Darius Smith and Preston Smith each had two sacks in that game. Leading the Packers during the regular season was Za'Darius Smith with 13.5 while Preston Smith had 12. Kevin King led the team in INTs with five while Jaire Alexander led them in passed defended with 17.   

Stats

San Francisco’s Passing Stats

  • 30th in pass attempts per game (29.2)
  • 18th in passing yards per game (230.2)
  • 3rd in completion percentage (68.81)
  • 3rd in yards per pass attempt (7.9)
  • 6th in yards per pass completion (11.4)
  • 7th in passer rating (102.0)

Green Bay’s Pass Defense Stats

  • 13th in pass attempts against (33.9)
  • 15th in passing yards per game allowed (234.5)
  • 3rd in completion percentage allowed (60.14)
  • 19th in yards per pass attempt (6.9)
  • 27th in yards per pass completion (11.5)
  • 13th in sacks per game (2.7)
  • 6th in passer rating allowed (82.5)

Who has the Edge?

I will give the Packers a slight edge in this category. Their defense has been pretty good against the pass all year but very solid against the pass of late as they have allowed 178 yards per game over their last three games. The Niners have averaged just 202.3 ypg over their last three games and just 219.4 ypg at home. They are not a great passing team and the Green Bay defense will step up here as they have in their last three games. Green Bay has some good pass rushers and they had five sacks last week against the very elusive Russell Wilson last week. Look for the packers to get pressure on Garoppolo in this one as well.    

Advantage: Green Bay Packers

Intangibles

Green Bay Packers

The Packers enter this game at 6-2 on the road for the year and they have averaged 21.4 ppg and have allowed 19.6 ppg in those games. Green Bay is 18th in total offense at 345.5 ypg and 15th in scoring at 23.5 ppg. They are 10th in offensive yards per point 14.5 and 17th in yards per play at 5.4, plus 19th in third-down conversion percentage at 37.79%. Let’s look at the kicking. The Packers are 25th in kick return average at 20.8 and 31st in punt return average at 4.9, plus they are 24th in net punting at 39.9 and 5th in FG% at 92%.

On defense, the Packers are 18th in total yards allowed at 352.6 ypg and 9th in scoring defense at 19.6 ppg. Green Bay has a defensive yards per point average of 17.9, which is 4th in the league and 19th in yards per play at 5.5, plus 12th in 3rd down conversion percentage against at 37.86%. Lastly, the Packers are 9th in penalties per game at 6.1 and 3rd in turnover margin per game at +0.7.

49ers

The Niners enter this game at 7-2 here at home for the year and they have averaged 31.8 ppg and have allowed 16.6 ppg in those games. San Francisco is 4th in total offense at 381.1 ypg and 2nd in scoring at 29.9 ppg. They are 1st in offensive yards per point at 12.7 and 5th in yards per play at 5.9, plus 4th in third-down conversion percentage at 44.81%. Let’s look at the kicking. The Niners are 27th in kick return average at 20.5 and 9th in punt return average at 8.0, plus they are 21st in net punting at 44.9 and 23rd in FG% at 77%.

On defense, they come in ranked 2nd in total yards allowed at 281.8 ypg and 8th in scoring defense at 19.4 ppg. San Francisco has a defensive yards per point average of 14.6, which is 23rd in the league and 1st in yards per play at 4.6, plus 2nd in 3rd down defense at 32.35%. Lastly, the Niners are 13th in penalties per game at 6.5 and 10th in turnover margin per game at +0.2.  

Who has the Edge?

I will give the Niners the edge here. The Packers have an edge in the field goal game, but they have few edges in the resat of the categories. The Niners have a better return game, offensive yards per points number, punting and they have been a solid home team. The coaching is rather even but the mental edge will go for the Niners after they crushed the Packers in the regular season. That will be in the head of the Packers plus the fact that the last two times these teams have met in the postseason, the Niners have won. The Niners have a lot of intangibles that favor them and that gives them the edge here.

Advantage: San Francisco 49ers

Final Outlook

Now you know that if the Packers win this game and the Chiefs win their game that we will hear how State Farm was instrumental in making this Super Bowl as both Mahomes and Rogers are in the same commercial. As fun as that would be, I don’t think the Packers will win the game but that doesn’t mean they can’t cover the spread. The Packers have one of the best records in the league and they have still been flying under the radar a bit. Their offense hasn’t been as explosive as the last few years but they have found a solid running game and their defense is very underrated. The Niners have the edge on offense but the Packers have allowed just 19.6 ppg on the road while the Niners have allowed just 16.6 ppg at home. I feel that the Packers can stand toe-to-toe with the Niners on the defensive side of the ball. The Niners have averaged 31.8 ppg at home while the Packers have averaged just 21.4 ppg on the road so San Fran has a decided edge there. The Niners pounded the Packers in the regular season but I see Green bay making the right adjustments to keep this one within the spread of 7.5.  

Trends Are Courtesy Of Covers.com

  • Green Bay is 7-1 ATS vs. a team with a winning record
  • Green Bay is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 playoff games as an underdog
  • Green Bay is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games in January

  • San Francisco is 5-12 ATS in their last 17 games after accumulating more than 150 yards rushing in their previous game
  • San Francisco is 7-19-1 ATS in their last 27 games as a home favorite
  • San Francisco is 3-12 ATS in their last 15 games after accumulating less than 150 yards passing in their previous game

Prediction: Green bay +7.5

Second Opinion on this pick from StatSalt.com

All predictions are made well in advance of game time. Don't bet this pick before calling the free Winners And Whiners update line to make sure the pick is still good (recorded message): 1-213-205-3114

Additional Insiders' Best Bets

Full-game Total Bet

Insiders Status:

Rating:

I will be taking the Under in this one. The Niners shutdown a very solid Minnesota offense last week and the Packers are not a high scoring team. They did score 28 points last week against Seattle but the Packers have averaged just 21.4 ppg on the road for the year. That number isn’t likely to get better against a San Francisco team that has allowed just 16.6 ppg at home for the year. The Packers have been solid on defense this year and they have allowed just 19.6 ppg on the road for the year. The Niners have been a scoring machine at home this year but they are also a running team and that will eat up plenty of the clock. Green Bay will also look to establish their ground game which has been rather solid of late. We have two good defenses against offenses that will run the ball allot in a game that should be played conservatively with a date to the Super Bowl on the line. It all adds up to a low scoring game between these NFC powerhouses.      

Trends Are Courtesy Of Covers.com

  • The Under is 5-0 in Green Bay’s last 5 games on grass
  • The Under is 6-1 in Green Bay’s last 7 road games vs. a team with a winning home record
  • The Under is 5-1 in Green Bay’s last 6 games as a road underdog

  • The Under is 5-1 in San Fran’s last 6 games in January
  • The Under is 3-1-1 in San Fran’s last 5 games after allowing less than 90 yards rushing in their previous game
  • The Under is 14-6 in San Fran’s last 20 home games vs. a team with a winning road record

Prediction: Under 45
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Written By David Hess

David has always had a fascination with numbers and sports, so he combined the two to become a handicapper and a writer for us here at Winners & Whiners, along with StatSalt. All the information that David puts in his articles are well-researched and his predictions are well-thought out. He is a big fan of all the major pro sports and the colleges making David a very versatile and a constantly winning handicapper. David has been writing for the past 10 years and has been handicapping for over 20 years. He will help you beat the Man, so be sure and follow along.