We have ourselves an NFC West showdown to begin the NFL playoffs. After squeaking into the postseason thanks to an overtime win over the Rams and the Lions taking down the Packers in Week 18, the Seahawks are the No. 7 seed in the NFC and will travel to San Francisco to square off with the 49ers.
Both of these teams have made rather unlikely runs to the playoffs for varying reasons. For Seattle, this was projected by most to be a transition year following the trade of Russell Wilson. However, Geno Smith stepped up in his departure and kept the offense afloat. Meanwhile, San Francisco is looked at as a legit Super Bowl contender, but are doing so with third-string quarterback Brock Purdy following injuries to both Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo.
In this space, we'll specifically be looking at the different betting angles that this matchup has on deck for us. Below, you'll read picks from both CBS Sports and SportsLine experts on this game, as well as a handful of player props that catch our eye.
All NFL odds are via Caesars Sportsbook.
How to watch
Date: Saturday, Jan. 14 | Time: 4:30 p.m. ET
Location: Levi's Stadium (Santa Clara, California)
TV: Fox | Stream: fuboTV (try for free)
Odds: 49ers -9, O/U 42
Eagles at Buccaneers spread picks
"The 49ers beat the Seahawks twice during the regular season, once with rookie Brock Purdy starting. He hasn't lost a start yet, but things change in the playoffs. The intensity goes up. I think Kyle Shanahan will find a way to make it easy on Purdy, even in the postseason. The 49ers defense will be all over Geno Smith. This will get ugly." --- CBS Sports Senior NFL Analyst Pete Prisco on why he is taking the Niners to edge out a win over Seattle. To read the rest of his picks, click here.
"For the Seahawks, their magic number on the ground has been 75: In games where they've rushed for more than 75 yards this season, they've gone 9-3, but they're 0-5 when they are held under 75 yards. And in news that probably won't surprise you, the Seahawks didn't hit 75 yards in either of their two regular-season games against the 49ers. As a matter of fact, they only averaged 53 rushing yards per game.
"The only thing that concerns me about the 49ers is that they're starting a rookie quarterback and rookies tend to struggle in the playoffs in the same way that the Titanic struggled against the iceberg. It's not pretty. However, I'm not actually overly concerned about Brock Purdy because I think Kyle Shanahan will ease him into the postseason. The Seahawks surrendered the third-most rushing yards in the NFL this season (150.2 yards per game) so I won't be surprised if Shanahan draws up a run-heavy game-plan that calls for Purdy to do almost nothing.
"The one quarterback I am concerned about though is Geno Smith. He'll be making his first career playoff start and let me just say that the 49ers have the one defense in the NFL that you don't want to be facing when you're making your first career playoff start." --- CBS Sports NFL writer John Breech on why he is taking the 49ers to win by a touchdown. To check out the rest of his picks for Super Wild Card Weekend, click here.
SportsLine's Josh Nagel is a Nevada-based handicapper with more than 20 years of experience in the sports wagering industry and has hit 54% of his NFL spread picks (749-636-22) since the start of the 2016 season. On top of that, Nagel is an outstanding 21-8 in his last 29 spread picks involving the Seahawks. We can tell you he's lean Over the total, but to see which way he is leaning with the spread you'll have to head to SportsLine.
"San Francisco owned this matchup throughout the regular season, sweeping Seattle and outscoring it 48-20. Not only that, but the Niners had 754 yards of total offense to the Seahawks' 493 yards, and San Fan forced four turnovers. Kyle Shanahan's defense has also played Geno Smith well; the quarterback has an 87.4 passer rating against the 49ers this season and a 102.3 passer rating against all other opponents.
"While Brock Purdy is a virtual unknown in this playoff setting, he will be able to lean on a stout defense and Christian McCaffrey, who could be in for a massive day. Seattle's run defense is among the worst in the NFL, and McCaffrey has dominated this team throughout his career. In three games against the Seahawks, the back is averaging 183.3 yards from scrimmage and 1.7 touchdowns. If he comes anywhere close to those averages, Purdy won't have to do too much." --- CBS Sports NFL writer Tyler Sullivan, who is picking the 49ers to cover over Seattle. To see all of his picks, click here.
Seahawks at 49ers total pick
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NFL game 10,000 times and is up well over $7,000 for $100 players on top-rated NFL picks since its inception. It also enters Super Wild Card Weekend on an incredible 161-113 run on top-rated NFL picks that dates to the 2017 season. The model knows that the Niners offense hasn't skipped a beat as rookie Brock Purdy has led the NFL in passer rating (119.0), yards per attempt (8.9) and touchdown tosses (11) since making his first career start. Meanwhile, the model is also aware that Seahawks signal caller Geno Smith was fourth in the league with 30 touchdown passes.
That said, we can tell you that the model is leaning Under the total. But, the model also has one side of the spread hitting in over 50% of simulations, so you'll absolutely want to check that out. To see which way the model is leaning with the spread, head over the SportsLine.
Best prop picks
Christian McCaffrey total rushing yards: Over 73.5 (-135). To say McCaffrey has dominated the Seahawks would be an understatement. In three career games against Seattle, the Niners back is averaging 183.3 yards from scrimmage. That includes a 108-yard rushing performance against this team back in Week 15. The Seahawks are 25th in the NFL in DVOA against the run and gave up 150.2 rushing yards per game during the regular season (third-most in the NFL).
George Kittle total receptions: Over 3.5 (-135). Kittle started to come alive down the stretch, which coincided with his targets share increasing just a bit. In his first 10 games, Kittle was averaging 5.4 targets per game. That has gone up to 6.4 targets in his final five games of the regular season. Over that stretch, he's hauled in at least four catches, including in Week 15 when he caught two touchdowns against this Seattle defense.
Kenneth Walker III total rushing attempts: Over 16.5 (-108). Seattle's offense works best when they are rolling through the running game and Walker is the key cog in that attack. He should see heavy work early and often out of Seattle's backfield and has gone over this numbers in seven of the 11 games he's started this season, including three straight to end the regular season.