Thursday Night Football: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Preview, Predictions and Pick

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Josh Widman
Josh graduated from Syracuse University in May 2020 with a degree in Broadcast and Digital Journalism. He played basketball and baseball in High School. Despite growing up in New Jersey, he roots for the Cleveland Browns, Cavaliers and Indians. He has two favorite sports movies: Dodgeball and Major League. Game 7 of the 2016 NBA Finals is his favorite sporting event of all-time and his favorite sports memory is playing in a white-out basketball game under the lights against a rival summer camp when he was 15 years old.

It’s a rematch of last season’s NFC Championship game at Levi’s Stadium with both teams impacted by injuries.

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Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Betting Lines

  • Green Bay is a 7.5-point favorite on DraftKings
  • Green Bay is -335 on the ML, San Francisco is +280 on FOXBet
  • The O/U is 48.5 on DraftKings

Green Bay vs. San Francisco looks significantly different than it did in January. The 49ers won 37-20 and led 34-7 at one point in the second half. The Packers have lost to the NFC champion in five of their last seven playoff appearances.

The 49ers have a seemingly ever-growing list of injuries to key players. The defending NFC champs will line up on Thursday without much of the defense that stifled Aaron Rodgers and nearly all the offense that ran all over the Green Bay defense. RB Raheem Mostert ran 29 times for 220 yards and 4 TDs. He’s out. QB Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to miss 6-8 weeks and even though he only threw the ball eight times in that game, more often than not, a team loses its starting QB and it’s at a disadvantage. TE George Kittle is also out for a significant period of time. On defense, DE Nick Bosa and DL Solomon Thomas are out until 2021while CB Richard Sherman is still weeks away from a return. San Francisco also traded DL DeForest Buckner in the off-season and LB Kwon Alexander earlier this week.

Aaron Rodgers is healthy and the Packers will be tough as long as that’s the case. That being said, there will be a lot of pressure on him on Thursday night. Green Bay could be without its top three RBs which, of course, includes Aaron Jones. Fortunately for the Packers, Aaron Rodgers is used to operating without a stand-out run game. WR Davante Adams is going to play and that is crucial especially given Jones’ uncertain status. Despite there not being much on the outside aside from Adams, Rodgers is one of those QBs who can get the most out of every pass catcher. The Packers’ defense has been far from lock-down but it should have an easier time against a depleted 49ers offense.

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Key Stats

  • Aaron Rodgers is 21-24 in November in his career
  • San Francisco ranks 4th in pass defense, top-10 in rushing, scoring and total defense
  • Green Bay is 3rd in scoring offense, top-10 in passing, rushing and total offense

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Predictions

Despite being gutted by injuries, San Francisco still has a solid defense statistically. Aaron Rodgers presents a stiff challenge and especially when your offense is depleted. Green Bay’s offense isn’t at full strength and the defense is coming off a rough performance against Minnesota but the Packers are in better shape overall than the 49ers. San Francisco has some puzzling losses and that was with a healthier team than it’ll have on Thursday night. The offense has close to zero fire power so unless the defense forces multiple turnovers, San Francisco will struggle to score. Green Bay should have an easier time but barring turnovers, I don’t see a huge outburst from the NFC North leader either. The underdog has covered in every TNF game but I think that streak ends this week.

Neither offense is lighting it up as of late and the defenses haven’t been too porous recently either aside from last week. Both teams are dealing with significant injuries on offense. Outside of a 43-point clunker against Miami, San Francisco gives up an average of 24 points at home. The Packers have only faced one defense that’s top-10 in the four categories listed above, (Buccaneers), and it leveled them. I expect the total be very close to 50 but ultimately fall short. I’ve taken the under the past two weeks and it hit both times.

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers Pick

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