The NFC West’s top two teams square off in a Thanksgiving battle this week as the San Francisco 49ers travel to Seattle to face the Seahawks. This game has big division and playoff implications for both teams. Check out odds, predictions, and best bets for this NFC West rivalry below.
San Francisco 49ers vs. Seattle Seahawks Preview & Prediction
The Seahawks are coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Rams, and it was all their fault. Despite being up by two scores in the third quarter, a fourth-quarter disaster cost them the game. Coupled with 12 penalties that cost them 130 yards and a missed game-winning field goal from the otherwise consistent Jason Myers, the Hawks are now 6-4 and lost their spot atop the NFC West.
San Francisco is coming off an impressive offensive performance that saw Brock Purdy post a perfect passer rating. Following a three-game losing streak, they seem to have found their rhythm again, and it’s very threatening. They are dangerous on the ground and in the air
The Seattle defense has been the highlight of this team through the first half of the year. Devin Witherspoon is making his case for DROY every week, and he and his star-studded secondary should be a good matchup for Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel this week. This defense will have their work cut out for them as they face one of the most dynamic offenses in the league (ranked first in offensive DVOA and EPA).
The Seattle offense has been good but hasn’t played up to its full potential this year. Kenneth Walker is likely not playing this week after suffering an oblique injury last week however Zach Charbonnet has proven to be a very efficient second choice. Geno Smith was also injured last week but is expected to play, though the short turnaround does not help him from a recovery standpoint.
The most exploitable part of San Francisco’s defense is their secondary, which is now without Talanoa Hufanga, so there should be room for Geno Smith to move the ball downfield to DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. But first, he has to get through Chase Young and Nick Bosa, who orchestrate one of the most dominant pass rushes in the league. Young, Bosa, and the rest of the defensive line face a Seahawks offensive line that ranks seventh in adjusted sack rate.
There are good matchups all over the field here. These two teams continually bring out the best in each other every year, making for a competitive game, though San Francisco is the better team here. Still, betting on San Francisco to cover the spread doesn’t feel like the right move – they are 2-3 ATS as road favorites, and Seattle is a difficult place to play in general. The stats may tell one story, but the history between these teams tells another.
If Smith feels healthy enough to play, the Seahawks covering a 7-point spread seems plausible, especially at home in primetime.
49ers vs. Seahawks Best Bet: Seahawks +7
San Francisco 49ers vs. Seattle Seahawks Betting Odds
The 49ers moved from 4.5-point favorites to 7-point favorites following Week 11 results. The over/under is 43 points.
The Seahawks are 0-3 on hitting the over against NFC West opponents this year. The 49ers are 2-0 in that category, so there is some ambiguity there for bettors. Both teams have five wins ATS this year.
Kenneth Walker is not expected to play this week for Seattle which is a big hit to the run game. Geno Smith is expected to play despite suffering an elbow injury last week.
San Francisco lost star safety Talanoa Hufanga to a torn ACL last week – a massive loss for the 49ers. They are otherwise healthy.
San Francisco 49ers vs. Seattle Seahawks Key Matchups
Check out the key matchups and mismatches for the 49ers vs. Seahawks game below.
Christian McCaffrey vs. Seahawks front seven
This could either be a huge mismatch or a great matchup.
There are a lot of bright spots in Seattle’s front seven: Boye Mafe is coming off a seven-game sack streak (franchise record), and Bobby Wagner just became the third player in NFL history to record 100 or more tackles in 12 seasons. The defensive line is ranked seventh in adjusted line yards and 12th in rush defense success rate.
While the Seahawks front seven has been solid, they are facing the league’s best running back this week, which stands to test them. The last time they faced a top running team (Baltimore), they gave up 298 yards on the ground. Christian McCaffrey and this running game rank third in rush offense DVOA, and its offensive line ranks fourth in adjusted line yards.
49ers secondary vs. Seahawks receivers
While the San Francisco secondary is talented, there are weak spots that this Seattle passing game can exploit. They give up the third-most passes per game (38.9) and rank 21st in opponent completion percentage (66.58%). Hufanga’s absence won’t help this.
They also rank 31st in opponent pass play percentage (67.10% ), so expect Smith to throw the ball if he can. Seattle is ranked sixth in pass play percentage (60.98%) and eighth in pass offense success rate. The recent increase in production from Seattle rookies Jake Bobo and Jaxon Smith-Njigba adds more depth to this already dynamic receiving corps.