Pro Football Picks: Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers

Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers
Saturday, 1/12/12, 8:00 PM EST, TV:  FOX
Opening Point Spread:  San Francisco -3
Current Betting Line:  San Francisco -3
Opening Total:  45
Current Total:  45
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Eagles Packers NFL Preview
The Green Bay Packers are dangerous road underdogs with Aaron Rodgers under center

Green Bay opened the playoffs with a 24-10 win over the Minnesota Vikings as 10.5-point home favorites last week, while going UNDER the posted total of 44.  Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers will certainly be ready for this affair, as he’ll be playing against the team he grew up rooting for and the one that bypassed him in the 2005 NFL draft.  He has compiled an incredible 103.0 passer rating on the road since taking over as the franchise’s starter in 2008.  Green Bay is 2-2 ATS as a road underdog of three points or less since 2010, while the UNDER is 3-1 in that situation.

The Packers are 30-17 all-time in the postseason, while winning four of the five previous meetings against the 49ers in the playoffs.  Green Bay has actually won 13 of its last 15 games in this series of NFC rivals.  Since the start of the 2010 playoffs, the franchise has tallied a 14-5 record on the road, which is the second-best mark in the league behind the New England Patriots (12-4).  The team has turned the ball over five times over the last six games, but has a plus-five turnover ratio in that span.

San Francisco earned the No. 2 seed in the NFC playoffs by winning its division and finishing with an 11-4-1 record, as it tries to improve to 13-3 at home in this particular round of the postseason.  The 49ers are led by a defense that allowed just 311.3 yards per game during the regular season, while they get after the quarterback with Aldon Smith, who finished with a career-high 19.5 sacks this year.  San Francisco is 16-8 ATS at home over the last two-plus seasons, which must be consider when making your pro football picks Saturday.

The 49ers are just one of three NFL teams this season to have the same starting five offensive linemen in every game, which has played a major part in their success in running the football.  Running back Frank Gore finished the year with 1,214 rushing yards, while wide receiver Michael Crabtree amassed 1,105 receiving yards.  Many believe the game hinges on the play of second-year quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who took over for Alex Smith and ranks first in the league in averaging 8.32 yards per pass attempt.

Sports bettors will likely back the Packers due to their 13-4 ATS mark versus winning teams, while the 49ers are 1-4 ATS in their last five playoff games.

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