Super Bowl 2013 Picks: Baltimore Ravens vs. San Francisco 49ers

Baltimore Ravens vs. San Francisco 49ers
Sunday, 2/3/13, 6:30 PM EST, TV:  CBS
Opening Point Spread:  San Francisco -5
Current Betting Line:  San Francisco -4
Opening Total:  49
Current Total:  47.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Ravens vs. Bengals NFL Preview

The Baltimore Ravens have been led by QB Joe Flacco in this year’s NFL playoffs

Baltimore has reached this point by winning three games in the AFC playoffs, including two back-to-back victories as road underdogs versus the Denver Broncos and New England Patriots.  The Ravens know they’ll have to prepare for the 49ers running their piston offense with quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who is the favorite to win Super Bowl XLVII MVP honors.  “We’re going to have to keep him inside,” stated Ravens head coach John Harbaugh.  Baltimore is 8-6 ATS as an underdog the last two-plus seasons, which is important to consider when making your NFL picks against the spread for the biggest game of the year.

The Ravens set a single-season franchise record by scoring 398 points during the regular season, which was made possible by producing the NFL’s fourth-best home scoring average of 31.8 points per game.  Baltimore signal-caller Joe Flacco has been tremendous during the postseason, while he also threw for a career-high 3,817 yards and tossed just 10 interceptions.  The team has produced a 4-2 record since Harbaugh made the switch to make Jim Caldwell the team’s offensive coordinator.

San Francisco returns to the Super Bowl for the sixth time in franchise history, as it looks to keep its perfect record intact in this situation.  The 49ers reached this point by picking up a convincing victory over the Green Bay Packers, which was followed by a 28-24 win over the Atlanta Falcons, as they were able to overcome a 17-0 first-half deficit.  Tight end Vernon Davis figures to be a main weapon for Kaepernick to target in the passing game, averaging 110.5 receiving yards in four career playoff games.  San Francisco is 4-0 SUATS in non-conference games this year, with the OVER going 3-1 in those affairs.

The 49ers have scored 51 points on their first possession of the second half, which is important for sports bettors to monitor when looking over the pro football odds page at halftime.  San Francisco’s offense can dominate an opponent on the ground due to being one of just three teams in the league to have the same five offensive linemen start in every game.  Head coach Jim Harbaugh has compiled a solid 27-8-1 record in his first two seasons in the Bay Area, which ties him for the third-best mark in such a span in team history.

Sports bettors will likely back the Ravens due to their 4-0 ATS mark in the last four playoff games, but I definitely suggest getting 4.5 points or higher in terms of the point spread.

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