Monday Night Football Predictions: San Francisco 49ers at Green Bay Packers
Last Monday's game between the Redskins and Saints from New Orleans was a blowout - we recommended backing the Who Dats - but it was at least interesting because of the whole Drew Brees passing Peyton Manning as the NFL's career yardage leader thing.
Alas, I think we are looking at another semi-blowout this Monday when the San Francisco 49ers, who got a lot less interesting a few weeks ago, visit the Green Bay Packers.
Speaking of the Packers, head coach Mike McCarthy might want to put his house on the market just in case. It sure seems like things have gone sour between him and superstar quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
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Rodgers has made some not-so-subtle comments about the offensive system this year and clearly wasn't happy this past offseason when McCarthy made a bunch of staff changes, including dumping quarterbacks coach Alex Van Pelt, who had a great relationship with Rodgers.
If Rodgers doesn't want McCarthy around any longer, well, Rodgers is the highest-paid player in the history of the NFL so he's going to get what he wants. He's also tight with team president Mark Murphy. Sometimes relationships just run their course. Shoot, you hear whispers that Tom Brady and Bill Belichick aren't exactly chummy these days.
If Green Bay loses this game as a huge favorite, McCarthy might not be the coach by Tuesday.
49ers at Packers Betting Story Lines
San Francisco was a very popular prime-time pick this season because the team was considered a rising power in the NFC with a new franchise quarterback in Jimmy Garoppolo. Good-looking guy, future superstar just like the guy he used to back up, Tom Brady.
However, Jimmy G's season ended in Week 3 in Kansas City, and for all intents and purposes so did San Francisco's. Perhaps not the worst thing to happen to the franchise as it still has a lot of skill position holes that can be addressed with a very high pick in next year's draft. Already, though, the networks are bailing on the Niners. The Monday night games can't be changed nor can the Thursdays, but San Francisco was bumped from Sunday night Week 7 vs. the Rams. I have a feeling the Week 13 Sunday night game in Seattle also will be flexed out.
The Niners bring a three-game skid into this one. Last week's 28-18 home loss to Arizona was peculiar because the 49ers outgained the Cardinals 447-220 and had 23 more first downs and almost 50 more plays run. San Francisco also turned it over five times - four by Jimmy G's backup, C.J. Beathard. This team is now so banged up on offense that its best skill player might be second-year tight end George Kittle. Leading rusher Matt Breida left that game with an ankle injury and isn't likely Monday. Receivers Marquise Goodwin and Dante Pettis both missed Week 5 and probably sit here too.
Green Bay had a similarly weird loss last week in Detroit, 31-23. The Packers outgained the Lions 521-264 and had 12 more first downs, but they had three turnovers, 12 penalties for 112 yards and a whopping five missed kicks (four field goals, one PAT) from usually one of the best in the NFL in Mason Crosby. He was the first kicker since 1997 to miss four field goals and a PAT. If this was most other kickers, he would have been cut on Monday, but the Packers are sticking with Crosby, the franchise's all-time scoring leader. He holds the NFL postseason record for most consecutive field goals made with 23.
Rodgers threw for 442 yards and three scores despite missing two of his top three receivers but lost two fumbles for the first time in three years. He already has lost three fumbles in five games this season. Remember, he's not very mobile with that knee injury & brace.
49ers at Packers Betting Odds and Trends
At 5Dimes , Green Bay is a 10.5-point favorite (+110) with a total of 46.5. On the moneyline, the Packers are -400 and 49ers +325. On the alternate lines, the Pack are -10 (+100), -9.5 (-110) and -9 (-115). San Francisco is 1-4 against the spread (1-2 on road) and 4-1 "over/under' (2-1 on road). Green Bay is 2-3 ATS (2-1 at home) and 4-1 O/U (2-1 at home).
The Niners are 3-7 ATS in their past 10 vs. the NFC. They are 2-9 ATS in their previous 11 in October. The Packers are 5-1 ATS in their past six at home vs. teams with a losing road record. They are 1-6 ATS in their past seven vs. the NFC. The over is 4-1 in the Niners' past five in October. It's 10-2 in Green Bay's previous 12 vs. a losing record. The 49ers have covered one of their past six at Lambeau.
49ers at Packers Betting Prediction
First meeting between the teams since 2015.
I'm somewhat on the fence here just like the Week 4 Thursday game with the Vikings at Rams. I know which team will win, but at which number am I comfortable giving points? At 10.5, I'm not because I can see this being a 10-point game with a late San Francisco TD. So, do I go Niners at 10.5 or Packers at 9.5? We'll go with the best price, and that's Green Bay at that 9.5 number. Take it and go over the total.
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Read more articles by Alan Matthews
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