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49ers vs. Packers, Divisional Round — game pick and open thread

An NFC heavyweight bout serves as your Saturday playoff nightcap

Syndication: Journal Sentinel Mike De Sisti / The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel / USA TODAY NETWORK

One of the more intriguing matchups this weekend is the seven-seed Green Bay Packers taking on the one-seed San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers had a bye week to open the playoffs after securing the top seed in the NFC, while the Packers are coming off a decisive 48-32 victory over the Dallas Cowboys, knocking the two seed out of the playoffs.

Niners-Packers could provide plenty of late-night fireworks on this playoff Saturday. Let’s take a look at the odds for tonight’s game, preview the matchup, and then enjoy this space as your open thread for tonight’s game. Catch all the action live beginning at 8 p.m. EST on (FOX, FOX Deportes).

The current odds at DraftKings Sportsbook heavily favor the 49ers, with a -10 point spread, an over/under set at 50.5, and a moneyline of +340 for the Packers and -440 for the 49ers. That over/under of 50.5 is the predicted total number of points scored by both teams, and the moneyline of +340 for the Packers and -440 for the 49ers indicates the potential winnings or losses of a bet on either team.

In my opinion, the 49ers are the best team in football. Despite not having a superstar, first-round draft pick at quarterback, Brock Purdy has been nothing short of phenomenal and has led a very efficient and high-powered offense that’s seldom able to be stopped or slowed down. Additionally, running back Christian McCaffrey has paid huge dividends for the team. McCaffrey’s put up incredible stats this season, including 1,459 rushing yards (5.4 yards per carry) and 14 rushing touchdowns. He also added 564 receiving yards and seven receiving touchdowns to his impressive totals. In my opinion, McCaffrey is the rightful MVP of the league this season, despite the award typically being given to quarterbacks in recent years.

The Niners’ defense is also very talented and will pose a tough challenge for the Packers and quarterback Jordan Love. The Packers started the season with their offensive line struggling to protect Love, and had difficulty staying healthy throughout the 2023 campaign. However, Green Bay seems to be healthy on offense right now, with running back Aaron Jones having a standout performance last week against Dallas. Jordan Love also showed out, throwing for 272 yards and three touchdowns. Wide receiver Romeo Doubs has emerged as one of Love’s favorite targets, and the Packers’ offense is firing on all cylinders.

In this game, as much as I’ve been impressed with the Packers’ recent play, I believe the 49ers are simply too complete of a team to lose in the same way the Cowboys did. San Francisco secured the one seed for a reason — they’ve consistently dominated teams all season. While it’ll be interesting to see how the game plays out,

Game prediction: 33-24, 49ers over Packers. This score may seem close, but I believe the Niners will continue their quest to return to the Super Bowl.