NFL Week 1 Picks: 49ers vs. Seahawks Vegas Odds & NFL Predictions: The San Francisco 49ers vs. the Seattle Seahawks in Seattle get's underway on Sunday in a NFL picks contest set for 4:15PM. The Las Vegas odds have placed the 49ers as 3-point NFL picks road favorite. The 49ers were 5-3 against the spread (ATS) on the road in the 2009 NFL picks season and the Seahawks were a dreadful 1-7 at home ATS as the underdog. The two teams split the season NFL picks series and have gone 2-2 since 2008.
Seattle’s offense was middle-of-the road last NFL picks season with Matt Hasselbeck as their starting quarterback. Hasselbeck was inconsistent, throwing 17 TDs and 17 INTs. He will have the reigns once again under new head coach Pete Carroll but the rope will be short with Charlie Whitehurst in the wings. The Seahawks cut disappointing wide receiver TJ Houshmandzadeh and have installed Notre Dame rookie Golden Tate as the starting wideout opposite veteran Deion Branch. Seattle also has an underrated TE in John Carlson. Hasselbeck could find success through the air against the 49ers defense that ranked 21st against the pass during the 2009 NFL picks season. Seattle struggled in the running game but Carroll has instituted a new offensive scheme which might give running backs Julius Jones and Justin Forsett some more room.
Defense has been the San Francisco 49ers calling card the past few years under head coach Mike Singletary. Last NFL picks season, the defense ranked fourth in scoring, leading to ten games decided by a score or less. The 49ers feature an attacking defense with a variety of players getting sacks on their way to accumulating 44 sacks in 2009. The linebackers are the motor of this team with stud Patrick Willis, Manny Lawson, and veteran Takeo Spikes making most of the plays. Against Seattle in Sunday's week 1 NFL picks match-up, this group should take away the run but with the team only getting 11 interceptions in 2009 that might not be a good thing. Shawntae Spencer is their best DB while veteran Nate Clements got burned often.
Seattle’s defense was horrible during the 2009 NFL picks season and even with the additions of CB Earl Thomas in the draft and LB Chris Clemons from the Eagles in a trade, this unit could struggle again for the 2010 NFL picks season. 49ers’ quarterback Alex Smith could find success finding young receiver Michael Crabtree and tight end Veron Davis loose in the secondary. Davis became an amazing red zone talent in 2009, scoring 13 TDs. After his hold-out, Crabtree found success too, nearly catching 50 passes in limited action. At running back, Frank Gore racked-up over 1,500 all-purpose yards in what was a down year for him. Gore should find success against Seattle’s front seven.
The 49ers are capable of making more plays than the Seahawks and, if the team wants to take the next step in 2009, they can start with a first weekend NFL picks victory!
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