NFL Picks: Packers vs. 49ers Week 1 Early Picks

Jeff Grant

Wednesday, June 5, 2013 7:43 PM GMT

Wednesday, Jun. 5, 2013 7:43 PM GMT

Let’s take a closer look at the NFL betting odds for this Week 1 matchup between the Green Bay Packers and the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, Sept. 8, with the opening kickoff scheduled for 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX.

The Green Bay Packers will attempt to avenge a pair of losses against the San Francisco 49ers last season, as the two teams open up a new season in the Bay Area.

Bounced out of the playoffs 

The Green Bay Packers were bounced out of last year’s playoffs by San Francisco in the divisional round, as it suffered a 45-31 defeat as three-point road underdogs on Jan. 12, while going well OVER the betting total of 45. 

The Packers were out-gained by a significant 579-352 margin in that affair, as they held the ball for just under 22 minutes (21:59). 

Another step 

San Francisco advanced to the Super Bowl last year, but was handed a 34-31 loss by the Baltimore Ravens as 4.5-point favorites, while going OVER the betting total for the 10th time in its last 11 contests dating back to the regular season.

It was a disappointing result, but the franchise is looking at it as another step towards capturing a championship, as it was eliminated by the New York Giants in the NFC championship the previous season.

Rodgers 

NFL handicappers need to be careful in looking past Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers as this type of underdog in the NFL betting odds, considering he’s thrown for 84 touchdowns and 14 interceptions the last two seasons. 

Rodgers connected on 56 of 83 passing attempts for 560 passing yards in his two meetings with the 49ers a season ago, while throwing for four touchdowns and two interceptions. 

Kaepernick 

49ers signal-caller Colin Kaepernick burst onto the NFL scene in November last year, with starter Alex Smith going down with an injury.  He led the team to a 5-2 record over the last seven regular season games. 

Kaepernick is one of the more exciting players in the league, but he’ll likely need to spend more time throwing the ball this year, as opposing defenses have had an entire offseason to learn how to attack the read-option.

[gameodds]16/226879/43/us[/gameodds]

Prediction 

I’m going to recommend that readers back the Pacers as one of their early Week 1 NFL picks, as they’ll be motivated by revenge during the offseason, while the 49ers may suffer a bit of a letdown after failing to walk away with the Lombardi Trophy last year.

NFL Pick:  Green Bay Packers +5.5

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