Seattle Seahawks vs San Francisco 49ers Matchup Preview - January 14th, 2023


Geno Smith and the Seattle Seahawks faceoff against Brock Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers. The 49ers enter the game as a huge favorite (-490) as the home team. San Francisco is currently favored by -9.5 points while the Game Total is currently sitting on 42.0.

San Francisco's primary advantage has been their run offense, which ranks #2 in football at 4.97 yards per carry. The most important component of a strong ground game is a good offensive line. If the line isn't opening up holes and creating space, it doesn't matter how good a team's running backs are. To that point, San Francisco's line ranks #8-best in the league in run blocking. Given their ground game success, this has opened up opportunities through the air too; San Francisco's 7.97 yards per target puts them #2 in football. When it comes to their defense, the 49ers check in at #2 in football when it comes to total yards allowed per game. Opposing air attacks have notched 227 yards per game against San Francisco this year (#21 in football). Opposing ball-carriers have ranked #2 against them with 3.53 yards per ground attempt. This 49ers defense hits their peak effectiveness when it comes to defending opposing running backs, keeping them in check at just 4.28 yards per target (#1-best in the league). San Francisco's defensive effectiveness bottoms out when it comes to defending opposing wide receivers, who have scorched them for 158 yards per game (#5-worst in the league).

Seattle's biggest weakness has been their defense, ranking #30 in the league while allowing 380 yards per game. Much of their struggle has come in trying to shut down the run game, as they've allowed opposing ball-carriers to rush for the #6-most yards per carry: 5.14. That's not to give any unnecessary credit to their pass defense, though, which checks in at #9-worst in yards per target (7.98). What makes Seattle's issues all the more troublesome is that they've struggled in spite of stacking the box with an extra defender 19.9% of the time -- #7-most of any team in football. The Seahawks defensive ends have played a big part in their inability to stop the run, ranking #7-worst in the NFL by this measure. This represents a particular disadvantage for Seattle given that the 49ers have excelled in the run game this year, accumulating 4.97 yards per carry (#2-best in the league). In terms of their offense, the Seahawks have ranked #7 in the league in total yards per game. They've passed for 256 yards per game (#8 in football). On the ground they've ranked #7 with 4.77 yards per carry.

Seattle Seahawks Insights

  • The Sharp Model projects Geno Smith to be a much bigger part of his offense's run game this week (18.1% projected Carry Share) than he has been this year (6.4% in games he has played).

  • DK Metcalf has compiled significantly more air yards this season (103.0 per game) than he did last season (96.0 per game).

  • The San Francisco 49ers defense has performed very well when opposing pass-catchers have gotten into space, conceding an average of 3.87 yards-after-the-catch this year: the 2nd-least in the league.

San Francisco 49ers Insights

  • The forecast calls for light rain in this game... which generally means reduced pass volume (and increased run volume) and worse passing efficiency.

  • The Seattle Seahawks safeties rank as the 2nd-best safety corps in the NFL this year in covering receivers.

  • The San Francisco 49ers have gone for it on 4th down a mere 15.8% of the time since the start of last season (9th-least in the NFL), which typically means less offensive volume, less TD potential, and lower offensive statistics across the board.

Betting Trends

  • The San Francisco 49ers have hit the 1H Game Total Over in 10 of their last 13 games (+6.80 Units / 48% ROI)

  • The Seattle Seahawks have hit the Moneyline in 4 of their last 7 away games (+2.55 Units / 28% ROI)

  • Geno Smith has hit the Rushing Yards Over in 12 of his last 14 games (+9.90 Units / 64% ROI)