Sunday Night Football Preview

Packers at 49ers

Each week, TheLines will provide a daily betting breakdown and analysis for the upcoming Sunday Night Football game. We’ll look at the odds and see why they’re moving a certain way, along with breaking down the matchup and providing the best sportsbook promotions for SNF.

The San Francisco 49ers (9-1) recovered from their first loss of the season to beat the Arizona Cardinals 36-26 in Week 11 and will welcome the Green Bay Packers (8-2) to Levi’s Stadium for Sunday Night Football in Week 12. Green Bay returns from a Week 11 bye.

The 49ers and Packers lead the NFC West and North, respectively. This game is likely to have a significant impact on deciding home field through the postseason as the two teams battle with the New Orleans Saints for the conference’s top seed and a Wild Card Round bye. The 49ers haven’t hosted a playoff game since 2012. The Packers are looking to return to the playoffs after just their second two-year absence since the turn of the millennium.

SNF betting odds and analysis

The early lines at all three of DraftKings Sportsbook, FanDuel Sportsbook and PointsBet favored the hosts by a field goal at open, with equal odds on either side. DraftKings and FanDuel each opened the total at 45.5 while PointsBet listed it at an even 46.

All three sportsbooks should be expected to pivot off of the even three points on the spread and shift to a hook on one side or the other. The Packers are the bigger public favorite, so I’d expect the line to drop to +2.5 for the visitors. Money should also come in on the Over through the week with fans and bettors wanting an offensive shootout between the two NFC juggernauts.

49ers vs. Packers game matchup

The Niners lead the NFC in both points for (29.5) and points against (15.5) while starting 4-1 at home. The Packers are 3-1 as visitors and rank in the top half of the conference in scoring (25.0) and defense (20.5).

San Francisco ranks second in the NFL with 149.0 team rushing yards per game, led by RB Matt Breida’s team-high 542 yards. Tevin Coleman leads the team with five rushing touchdowns. Aaron Jones has taken over the Packers’ backfield to lead in yards (589) and touchdowns (11) over Jamaal Williams.

49ers QB Jimmy Garoppolo has completed 68.8% of his pass attempts for 2,478 yards and 18 touchdowns against 10 interceptions in his first full year at the helm after missing most of last season due to injury. Packers QB Aaron Rodgers has 2,718 passing yards with 17 TDs and just two interceptions.

The Niners rank third in the NFL with 22 takeaways (11 interceptions, 11 fumble recoveries), while the Packers are sixth with 16 takeaways. Only the New England Patriots have a better turnover differential than Green Bay’s plus-nine. San Francisco is plus-five in the turnover margin. The 49ers have 39 sacks as a team, led by DE Arik Armstead’s eight. LB Preston Smith leads the Packers with 10 sacks and LB Za’Darius Smith has eight, but the team has a total 25.

The Niners have the greater injury concerns in Week 12 with TE George Kittle (knee) missing each of the last two games and DL Dee Ford (hamstring) leaving Week 11’s contest. Breida (ankle) sat out Week 11 and OT Joe Staley (finger) is expected to miss at least one more week following surgery. The bye is expected to have allowed the Packers to get healthy after dealing with several key injuries through the first half of their season.

Sunday Night Football betting breakdown

The Packers are 7-3 against the spread with the Niners just 5-4 ATS despite their superior straight-up record. Green Bay is 3-1 ATS on the road and San Francisco is just 2-2 at home. Rodgers and Co. are 5-0 ATS against teams with a winning record and 4-2 ATS against NFC opponents. Green Bay is listed as an underdog for the first time since closing at 3.5 on the road against the Dallas Cowboys in a game which they won outright, 34-24.

The 49ers are just 3-5-1 ATS with a rest disadvantage against their opponents since Kyle Shanahan took over as head coach to begin the 2017 season. They’re also 0-3-1 ATS in their last four November games, including a push last week as 10-point favorites against the Cardinals.

Both teams are just 5-5 against the Over/Under. The Niners fall an average of 0.3 points shy of the projected total while the Packers fall an average of 1.1 points below the number. However, three of the 49ers’ five home games played to the Over at an average of 6.2 points above the projection. Their last four games overall all hit the Over while Green Bay’s last two outings before the bye fell short of the number.

The two sides met in Week 6 of last season with C.J. Beathard under center for the Niners. The Packers came away with a 33-30 victory at Lambeau Field on Monday Night Football. Rodgers completed 25 of 46 pass attempts for 425 yards and two touchdowns. Mike McCarthy was still the head coach of the Packers.

Packers vs. 49ers picks and predictions

Watch this space later in the week as Matt Brown offers his thoughts on the spread, moneyline, total, player props and more for Sunday Night Football.

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How to watch Sunday Night Football

The first Sunday Night Football game of the 2019 NFL season was played between the Pittsburgh Steelers and New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium Sunday, Sept. 8.

The network will continue carrying SNF games through the regular season. The Week 17 TV spot on Dec. 29 will remain unfinalized until much later in the season, as potential playoff battles will factor into the league’s flexible scheduling decisions.

The games can also be streamed all season on NBC’s website and the NBCSports mobile apps. NBC is also included in most packages on streaming services such as fuboTV, Hulu, PlayStation Vue and Sling TV.

SNF drew an average of 19.3 million live+same day viewers in 2018, an increase of seven percent from 2017. The program was the primetime slot’s No. 1 television show for an eighth consecutive year.

SNF betting tips

How to bet Sunday Night Football like a sharp

Casual bettors can get swept up by the hype and hoopla circulating Sunday Night Football. Analysts, reporters and local news crews have a full week to pump out every different angle to the game and dig for stories. Players can add to the mirage on social media whether by talking up their own team or taking too many shots at the opposition.

Learn to seperate the hype from fact and don’t fall victim to live-betting out of boredom if the game ends up being a dud. Look at the lines early in the week to assess the odds before the public money starts pouring in and either bet on the numbers set by the books or sit and wait to see if the line shifts in your favor. Reassess later in the week and bet against the public if the line shifts too heavily based on nothing more than favoritism.

The standalone nature of the game also draws in more bets as the entire nation is focused on one single game, which, more often than not, is no bigger than the dozen or so games which preceded it that week. If you want to be a winning bettor, never bet just to add to the excitement (or create excitement around a lackluster matchup). Wait to see if the favorite falls behind early and then is given a high number as a sudden in-game underdog. Carefully browse through lines on prop bets, looking at different sportsbooks and pick the best value. Shop around and pick on a book that seems out of touch with the others. Don’t scoff at an easier play on the point spread in search of a big payday with a heavy underdog winning outright.

Home teams are often overvalued in primetime games. Do the research, keep up to date with injury news and look at the matchup in a vacuum and see if the odds check out. Be careful not to look too much at individual players returning to their hometown, being reported as having “extra motivation” or who may be close to statistical milestones. Few wide receivers, for example, can seriously impact a game on their own, especially when facing a top corner who’s fully aware of their motivation in the one-on-one matchup.

Look for teams and especially head coaches who thrive under the spotlight and more importantly the additional preparation time. The Pittsburgh Steelers, Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots are given more primetime slots than the average team. This experience can give them an edge in certain matchups against teams who may be overwhelmed from all the added media attention and interview requests.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does Sunday Night Football start?

Sunday Night Football kicks off every week from Sept. 8 through Dec. 29 at 8:20 p.m. Eastern. The ‘Football Night in America’ pregame show begins at 7 p.m. Eastern. NBC first started airing SNF for the 2006 season, taking over from ESPN.

How to stream Sunday Night Football?

Never miss a SNF game when you’re on the go with the NBCSports mobile apps. Cord-cutters can also use streaming services such as Hulu which includes NBC in most of its packages.

What is the highest-scoring Sunday Night Football game ever?

The Philadelphia Eagles (45) and New York Giants (38) share the record for the highest-scoring SNF game since 2006 with the Kansas City Chiefs (40) and New England Patriots (43) at a combined score of 83 points. The latter was set last October. The New Orleans Saints set the individual team record of 62 points in 2011.

Who are the SNF announcers?

The SNF broadcasts are brought to us each week by booth announcers Al Michaels (play-by-play) and Cris Collinsworth (color commentary), field reporter Michele Tayofa and rules expert Terry McAulay. Mike Tirico, Tony Dungy, Rodney Harrison and Mike Florio make up the pregame show.

Who was the original Sunday Night Football broadcast crew?

Chris Collinsworth replaced legendary former head coach John Madden as the color commentator beside Michaels in 2009.

Who sings the Sunday Night Football theme song?

Country music star Carrie Underwood has been singing the SNF theme since 2013, replacing fellow country star Faith Hill, who replaced pop star Pink after just one season in 2007. The current song is titled “Game On,” replacing “Oh, Sunday Night” which updated “Waiting All Day For Sunday Night” in 2016.