Seahawks – 49ers rivalry renewed in Thanksgiving Day special

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Image credit: PhilipRobertson

One of the burgeoning rivalries in the NFL hits our screens once again on Thanksgiving Thursday as the San Francisco 49ers host the Seattle Seahawks at Levi’s Stadium.

It’s not difficult to see how the rivalry has really caught fire in recent years. 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh and his Seahawks adversary Pete Carroll had a tempestuous relationship whilst coaching in college with Stanford and USC respectively, and that has continued after both landed roles in the NFC West.

 

Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers Betting Odds:

49ers win -125

Seahawks win +105

(All odds provided by AllYouBet.ag are accurate as of today and subject to change)

 

It’s been one way traffic of late in these games though, with the Seahawks winning three of the last four meeting between the two sides – though all of those victories have been at home, in front of the vaunted CenturyLink Field crowd.

Finally winning against their biggest rivals on the road would really prove that Seattle are back, having stumbled their way to a 7-4 record just months after being crowned Super Bowl champions.

The keys to the game are simple; Seattle will hand the ball to star running back Marshawn Lynch time and time again, and rely on quarterback Russell Wilson to avoid turning the ball over in order to win.

It’s not a dynamic offense, with the Seahawks having only scored 30+ points in three of their 11 games this season, and it sometimes holds them back, leaving them to rely on their defense.

 

On the other side of the ball, we’ll finally get to see cornerback Richard Sherman go up against 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree again after their public spat in the NFC Championship Game back in January, whilst the return of linebacker Bobby Wagner helped the Seahawks to end Arizona’s winning streak on Sunday.

Wagner’s presence will make it harder for San Francisco to have joy in the running game, though in Frank Gore and Carlos Hyde, they have a promising one-two punch at running back, whilst quarterback Colin Kaepernick is also a threat with his legs.

Defensively, the 49ers were superb against Washington on Sunday, with the return of pass rusher Aldon Smith serving as a huge boost – and he’ll be smelling blood once again as he takes on a porous Seahawks offensive line.

The emergence of rookie linebacker Chris Borland has been a welcome boost for the 49ers with Patrick Willis on injured reserve, with the former Wisconsin standout proving his reputation as a tackling machine.

 

Both teams are lagging behind Arizona in the race to win the NFC West, giving this clash something of an early play-off feel – so expect to see a feisty encounter with huge hits, plenty of running yards and a low scoring encounter as two of the NFC’s heavyweights lock horns once again.

 

Betting Instinct tip – we should expect a tight game, and under 19.5 first half points is -105 with Intertops.eu

Intertops Sportsbook is offering stake-backs up to $100 on the ‘first touchdown scorer’ market in this game, if either Colin Kaepernick or Russell Wilson scores a rushing TD. For this, and for more Thanksgiving NFL props, visit www.intertops.eu

Olly avatarOLLY DAWES is a Sports Management graduate and sports journalist for Here Is The City, whilst he also writes about NFL for Colts Authority.

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The best four teams are just what the doctor ordered for NFL Conference Championships

On Sunday two of NFL football's greatest-ever quarterbacks renew their age-old rivalry

On Sunday two of NFL football’s greatest-ever quarterbacks renew their age-old rivalry.

The very nature of the NFL playoff system, where one off-day means the end of your season, means it is not always taken for granted that the best four teams in the league make it to the Conference Championship Games. This season, however, this is the case! Sports fans across North America will be glued to their screens on Sunday when two of the game’s greatest-ever quarterbacks renew their age-old rivalry, whilst a couple of young guys who look destined to emulate their stardom, continue to build the story of theirs.

The AFC title game sees Tom Brady and his Patriots travel to Mile High Stadium in Denver to face Peyton Manning and the Broncos. The two star quarterbacks duelled for supremacy in the AFC many times during Manning’s time at Indianapolis, but it’s Brady who enjoys an overall 10-4 record against his foe. The last time Brady played an AFC Championship Game on the road, however, was in 2007 when he lost 38-34 to Manning’s Colts and most experts expect a similar scoreline this time around. Denver has enjoyed a formidable season and home advantage could well see them through.

Home advantage is something very much on people’s minds when talking about the NFC Conference Game. Seattle’s CenturyLink Field is renowned throughout football as being the loudest and most inhospitable stadium for road teams to visit. San Francisco has been undoubtedly one of the best teams in the country over the last two seasons but even they have lost on both their visits to Seattle – and that by a combined score of 71-16! Most eyes will be on the duel between rising quarterback stars Kaepernick and Wilson, but both teams have defensive lineups that can make the difference on any given day. Points could indeed be at a premium in this one, but that crowd could just make the difference.

New England Patriots @ Denver Broncos Odds
Patriots 2.90
Broncos 1.43

San Francisco 49ers @ Seattle Seahawks Odds
49ers 2.65
Seahawks 1.53

(All odds supplied by www.allyoubet.ag are accurate as of today and subject to change)

 

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chrisives-50CHRIS I. (tipsterchris) is a European sports blogger who’s hooked on football — both NFL American football and European football.  Chris discusses betting tips and trends and includes betting odds in his regular posts at BI.

Hawks flying higher?

Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers

Seattle Seahawks travel to San Francisco hoping to underline their dominance in the NFC West

What a week for the Seattle Seahawks – Monday saw their fans make the earth tremor whilst the team caused an earthquake on the field by running all over another potential NFC title contender New Orleans, this weekend they travel to San Francisco hoping to underline their dominance in the NFC West. Another win for the 11-1 Hawks would not only see them land a franchise-record sixth road win of the season, but would also clinch the NFC West crown and first round playoff bye – and all that right under the noses of their fiercest rivals!

It is hard to see any weaknesses in coach Pete Carroll’s team after a near perfect season so far, but four consecutive road defeats at Candlestick Park will be very much on the minds of both teams as they go into the game. Quarterback Colin Kaepernick and his 8-4 Niners may not have rediscovered the irresistible form that took them to the Super Bowl in February, but they go into Week 14 holding a one-game lead in the race to the NFC’s final wild-card spot and will be doubly motivated to avenge their humiliating 29-3 loss at Seattle on September 15th. It’s the first time in a while that the team with the league’s best record starts a game as the bookies’ underdog, but can the 49ers live up to expectations?

Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers Betting Odds

Seahawks            2.25

49ers                     1.65

(Odds obtained from AllYouBet.ag, subject to change)

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chrisives-50CHRIS I. (tipsterchris) is a European sports blogger who’s hooked on football — both NFL American football and European football.  Chris discusses betting tips and trends and includes betting odds in his regular posts at BI.

Fired-up Patriots Could Edge Out Denver in NFL Game of the Week

Tom Brady

Can Tom Brady lead the Patriots to victory?

Broncos @ Patriots

The marquee matchup of week 12 of the NFL season is the 7-3 New England Patriots (2.04 with GEObet.com) taking on the 9-1 Denver Broncos (1.73). Or more pertinently, it’s the 14th instalment of Tom Brady v Peyton Manning.

They are two of the greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game, happen to have played against each other for almost all of their careers and in the same way people will debate Messi v Ronaldo, The Beatles v The Stones, De Niro v Pacino, Hypno Disc v Chaos 2 (Not sure our American readers will get that one – ed.), who is better out of Brady and Manning will be argued for decades to come. Brady has the more Super Bowls, the super model girlfriend and an appearance on Entourage, while Manning has the better stats, the sibling rivalry (brother Eli has won two Super Bowls with the New York Giants) and the scowl of a Supervillain.

This year Manning is winning their particular duel, the Broncos scaling new heights when it comes to their offense, with him on pace to break records for touchdowns, passing yards and quarterback rating. To break those records, aged 37 and just two years after neck surgery which stopped him playing for the whole of 2011 and nearly ended his career would even by his lofty standards be the zenith of his career to date.

But as awesome as the Broncos are on offense, their defense is fallible. They rank 21st out of 32 in points against and are 28th against the pass. The secondary in particular is weak and prone to collapse when pressured. While they may have the most potent offense in league history, there are obvious weaknesses. And if there’s a team good at targeting a weakness, it’s the Patriots.

The Patriots are not the team they were a few years back, but in Brady and Coach Bill Belichick have the smartest, brawniest, most cunning player-coach combination in perhaps all of sports. If you wanted a coach to concoct a plan so cunning you could brush your teeth with it, Belichick’s your man.

The Broncos with their awesome offense will be favoured to win. But the Patriots are as tough and cunning an opponent as you can get, and will be fired up after a controversial loss to Carolina last week. Don’t be surprised if they win this one.

Betting Instinct tip: Patriots to win by 1-6 is 5.00 with AllYouBet.ag

49ers @ Redskins

These are troubled times for the nation’s capital NFL team. For a start, a story that has been rumbling in the background this season has been the realisation amongst certain people (it’s only taken a couple of centuries) that naming a team ‘Redskins’ might just be a teensy bit offensive towards Native Americans. The team was named the Redskins in 1933 by owner George Preston Marshall – the “Leading racist in the NFL.” Quite something to win this award decades before the Civil Rights Movement. Nonetheless, current owner Daniel Snyder is refusing to change the team name, despise protests by demonstrators and calls ranging from writers to ex-players for the name to change.

On the field, Washington (3.05 with Bulldog777.com)  is having a miserable season, 2-8 with one of the league’s worst defenses. They are also squabbling in the media, with a botched play in last week’s 24-16 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles the catalyst for this game of claim and counter-claim. Star quarterback Robert Griffin III said after the game the Eagles defense ‘kind of knew what was coming’, a supposed barb at the almost certainly soon to be fired head coach Mike Shanahan. Shanahan a day later refuted this. Then veteran wide receiver Santana Moss stuck his oar in, saying Griffin III should take more accountabilitybut that he has ‘no issues’ with the young QB. Issues, schmissues – Washington are currently a band where none of the members are happy talking to one another.

All the dirty washing Washington are hanging out in public for all to see is taking attention away from the 49ers (1.36) who themselves are in the middle of a slump in form. Amongst the Super Bowl favourites before the season, they are currently only 6-4, coming off two consecutive losses and have an offense looking more and more anaemic by the week. The defense frankly looks more likely to score points a lot of the time than the offense.

But that defense of theirs is still amongst the NFL’s finest units, and should comfortably be enough against Washington. Even without Aldon Smith they possess a boatload of talent on that side of the ball and last week, with little help from the offense, kept New Orleans down to only 23 points and almost won them a game they had no business winning.

Expect a 49ers victory.

Betting Instinct Tip: 49ers -6 is 1.91 with Intertops Sportsbook

Rest of the league

8-2 New Orleans should thump a 2-8 Atlanta team torn apart by injuries…the New York Jets record so far is WLWLWLWL so by that token should see them win against 4-6 Baltimore…4-6 Cleveland have lost four of their last five while the also 4-6 Pittsburgh have won four of their last six and will surely make that five wins in seven…6-4 Detroit are inconsistent but even they surely can’t lose at home to 2-8 Tampa Bay…6-4 Green Bay may have a quarterback’s no one heard of in Scott Tolzein but have you heard of 2-8 Minnesota being good enough to win at Lambeau Field? Me neither…2-8 Houston were so bad last week they booed their own coach in his first game back after suffering a mini-stroke in the middle of a game, so it’s good they take on human punching bags 1-9Jacksonville…9-1 Kansas City have a monstrous defense which should ease them to victory at home to 4-6 San Diego…6-4 Chicago should have too much for 4-6 St Louis…6-4 Indianapolis with their laughable power running game are up against one of the NFL’s best defences as they take on 6-4 Arizona in a genuine pick ‘em matchup…McGloinmania may heat the NFL if undrafted rookie Matt McGloin leads 4-6 Oakland to victory against collapsing 4-6 Tennessee…5-5Dallas’ quest to be the most entertaining ever .500 team in NFL history sees them take on division rivals, the 4-6 New York Giants.

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avatar-jackhowes-50JACK HOWES (debaser92) is an avid sports fan who writes about football and Asperger’s Syndrome. The only things he loves more than Mars Bars are his family and Tottenham Hotspur FC.