The San Francisco 49ers (12-3) and Seattle Seahawks (11-4) battle for the NFC West crown on Sunday Night Football in the finale to the NFL’s 100th regular season. Kickoff is set for 8:20 p.m. ET at CenturyLink Field. The winner will win the division, while a first-round bye and home-field advantage through the NFC playoffs are also up for grabs. The 49ers simply need to win, while the Seahawks will need help elsewhere Sunday afternoon. Below, we’ll make our picks for the moneyline, spread and over/under between the 49ers and Seahawks. We’ll also look for the game’s best prop bet at DraftKings Sportsbook and FanDuel Sportsbook. Actionable betting advice on each bet type will be provided as either a “pick” or a “lean”. Picks can be made at any point in the week based on the odds and lines at the time of publishing, matchup advantages or a perceived advantage over the sportsbooks. Leans are reserved in anticipation of the lines shifting toward a more desirable number as a result of public betting action.
The 49ers enter the week atop the division and the conference following their 34-31 win over the Los Angeles Rams Saturday night. The Seahawks were upset 27-13 on home field by the rival Arizona Cardinals. Already without RB Rashaad Penny for the remainder of the season, Seattle also lost RBs Chris Carson and C.J. Prosise to injuries in Week 16. RB Marshawn Lynch, who starred for the Seahawks from 2010 through 2015, was signed this week and will back up rookie Travis Homer.
While researching for your 49ers at Seahawks picks, be sure to check out my Sunday Night Football Preview at TheLines. It breaks down the statistical and betting trends of both teams and highlights the key on-field matchups.
49ers at Seahawks picks: Moneyline
The Seahawks beat the 49ers 27-24 in overtime in the year’s first head-to-head meeting. They’ve now won 11 of the last 12 matchups, losing only by a 26-23 score in San Francisco last December. The Week 10 meeting was a sloppy affair in which both sides scored a defensive touchdown. Neither QB Russell Wilson or Jimmy Garropolo topped 250 yards passing. Both finished with just one touchdown and one interception.
Seattle is just 4-3 at home this season and enters Week 17 as the loser of two of its last three games overall. San Francisco is 6-1 on the road, losing 20-17 at the Baltimore Ravens in Week 13. The Niners have gone 4-2 since the loss to the ‘Hawks snapped an 8-0 start to the year. The Niners are 4-1 against the NFC West, the Seahawks are 3-2. San Francisco enters with an extra day of rest, but it is just 3-6 with a rest advantage since Kyle Shanahan took over as head coach to start the 2017 campaign.
The Niners and Seahawks rank second and third, respectively, in team rushing yards per game. They’re second and ninth, respectively, in points per game. San Francisco takes the advantage on defense. It ranks second in yards per game allowed and eighth in points per game allowed. With Seattle having to work Lynch back into the offense, it’ll be far too one-dimensional against one of the league’s best defenses. Back the Niners to win outright as road favorites but wait for better odds closer to game time.
The Lean: 49ers -182 (DraftKings Sportsbook)
49ers at Seahawks picks: Against the spread
The 49ers failed to cover as 6.5-point favorites while losing outright in the year’s first meeting between the two. They also failed to cover in each of their last two games, losing outright to the Atlanta Falcons as 10-point favorites in Week 15 and falling four points shy of the line as 7-point favorites last week against the Rams. The ‘Hawks are 0-2-1 against the line over their last three games. The Niners are 8-6-1 ATS for the year. They’ve won by 10.9 PPG and cover by an average of 6.8 points. The Seahawks are 7-7-1 ATS overall, winning by an average of 0.8 points and falling 1.9 PPG shy of the line.
San Francisco is favored for the 10th time in 16 games. Seattle is an underdog for just the third time overall and the first time at home. They won both of the previous two games outright as underdogs. Both books are offering equal -110 odds on either side of the spread of 3.5 points. Liking the Niners to win outright, back them again on the spread to win by at least 4 points.
The Pick: 49ers -3.5 (-110 at FanDuel Sportsbook)
49ers at Seahawks picks: Over/Under
Both books have the projected total set at -110 this week. The Niners have closed with a higher total five times this year. They went 1-4 against those lines, but most recently hit the Over on a closing line of 49.5 in the Week 15 loss to the Falcons. They’re 8-7 against the O/U overall and top the projections by 3.7 PPG. The ‘Hawks are also 8-7 and top the projections by 2.8 PPG. This week’s projection is their lowest since Week 12 (46 at Philadelphia Eagles). They’ve gone 2-2 against the O/U over their last four games.
The two teams combined to average 55.8 points per game but they allow a combined average of just 44.1 PPG. They hit the Over in the Week 10 meeting while combing for 51 points on a closing line of 47. With Seattle’s running game depleted by injury and the offenses likely to play it safer than in the mistake-filled Week 10 encounter, take the Under.
The Pick: UNDER 47 (-110 at FanDuel Sportsbook)
Sunday Night Football best bet
Game to go to Overtime: Yes (+1000 at DraftKings Sportsbook)
Given the fact the year’s first meeting needed extra time and all that’s at stake this week, these odds are too enticing to pass up. We’re projecting this as a low-scoring game and it’s a narrow spread. The Niners will be able to contain Wilson and they’ll control the clock with their own dominant run game. Don’t expect many big plays in what’s essentially the first playoff game of the season. Both teams will be trying to get through without further injuries, as their postseason berths are secured.
A 20-14 score in favor of the visitors easily cashes all of our bets.