NFL Picks: Defenses & Weather Prompt Seahawks & Vikings Low Scoring Game

Ross Benjamin

Sunday, January 10, 2016 12:08 PM UTC

Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016 12:08 PM UTC

Our NFL consultant provides us with a betting preview regarding the total in Sunday’s clash between Seattle and Minnesota. Check his free NFL Pick here. Don't miss it!

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NFL Pick: Under 40
Best Line Offered: at TheGreek


Seahawks vs. Vikings
The Minnesota Vikings will host the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday in the NFC Wild Card Round. The opening kickoff at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis is slated for 1:05 PM ET. My area of concentration in this betting preview article will be on the total. Current (1/8) NFL odds indicate the total in this contest is 40.


Regular Season
These non-division teams met during the regular season, Seattle was a 38-7 blowout winner at Minnesota, and the game narrowly went over the total of 43.5. Seattle held Minnesota to a mere 125 yards of total offense in that contest. The only Vikings score came by virtue of a 101 yard kickoff return by Cordarrelle Patterson with Seattle on top 35-0 at the time.


The Defenses
Seattle was #1 in the NFL regarding scoring defense, allowing just 17.3 points per game. They were the top rushing defense as well, allowing a paltry 81.5 yards per contest. Despite the Seahawks offense scoring 29 points or more in seven of their last eight games, Seattle went under the total in each of its last four.

Minnesota was #8 in scoring defense by allowing only 18.9 points per game. The Vikings recorded 43 sacks this season, and that ranks 9th best in the NFL. Minnesota went 11-4-1 under the total during regular season action.


Recent Team Totals Trends
Seattle has gone 9-3 under the total in their last twelve as an away favorite, and when they’re facing an opponent with a win percentage of .250 or better.

Minnesota has gone 14-5 under the total in their previous nineteen games when installed as an underdog, and that includes 6-1 the last 7 when facing an opponent with a win percentage of .600 or better. As a matter of fact, Minnesota went 5-1 under the total this season versus opponents that finished with a winning record, and is 9-2 under  during the previous two seasons versus better than .500 teams.


Final Thoughts
According to, this total opened at 42.0, and is currently 39.5 or 40.0 depending on what sportsbook you’re privy to. The reason for line movement has more to do with weather rather than money wagered. Game time temperatures are expected to hover around 0 degrees with a wind chill of -17. Regardless of what climate you’ve become accustomed to, playing in those conditions is bound to have an effect even on the most hardened and grizzled players.

Finally, both Pete Carroll and Mike Zimmer have moved their ways up the NFL coaching ladder as a result of their defensive expertise. When looking at how these two team’s defenses have performed this season, you certainly can make a strong case that their head coaches were very influential.

I like this game to be a hard fought and low scoring affair. One of my NFL picks this weekend will emulate that prediction.

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