SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: GREEN BAY PACKERS AT SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS

BY ADAM GREENE

For the first time this season we have a Sunday Night Football meeting featuring a team that didn’t make the playoffs in 2020. Of course, when it comes to the San Francisco 49ers, that hardly counts against them.

Last season, embarking on a defense of their NFC title, the Niners lost pretty much every key player in their Super Bowl run to injury on both sides of the ball. Their luck remains bad, with a lengthy injury report, but as of now they remain a serious contender as they host the (perhaps) resurgent Green Bay Packers.

This will be the 71st meeting between Green Bay and San Fran, with the Pack holding a 37-32-1 edge in the all-time series. However, plenty of those 49ers victories have come since 2012. The Niners have a 6-3 advantage in that span, including three victories in the playoffs and one in the NFC Championship.

GREEN BAY PACKERS AT SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (-3, O/U: 50)

Location: Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara, Calif.

Broadcast: NBC

Kickoff: Sept. 26, 8:20 p.m. EST

GREEN BAY PACKERS (1-1)

In the official Aaron Rodgers story, the 49ers are his arch nemesis as they passed over him for Alex Smith in the 2005 NFL Draft. Rodgers, a first-ballot Pro Football Hall of Famer then, presumably (as he’s not exactly the most chill dude when it comes to grudges), has this game circled on his calendar every year. It’s not translated to wins on the field. Rodgers is 5-6 against San Francisco in his career, regardless of who the Niners have at QB or head coach. Last year’s 34-17 Packers win over San Francisco came with Nick Mullens at QB. It was a quarterback duel that won’t be featured in an NFL Films retrospective.

Green Bay bounced back from an historically bad Week 1 performance with a 35-17 win over the Detroit Lions. Rodgers finished 22 of 27 for 255 yards and four touchdowns.

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (2-0)

The 49ers are one of just five 2-0 teams in the NFC as Week 3 began and that number will drop by at least one with the Los Angeles Rams hosting the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They’ve done it with an explosive offense and a grinding defense, just not in the same game. Last week in a 17-11 win over the Philadelphia Eagles, they did just enough on O, with Jimmy Garoppolo getting all the snaps at QB, finishing 22 of 30 for 189 yards and a touchdown.

THE PICK

I have no clue what the Packers win over the Lions means considering it was Detroit and, at one point, Jared Goff forced his own fumble by patting the ball too hard with his left hand on a drop back. This game will tell us a lot about both teams. Has Green Bay shaken off its offseason drama and Week 1 egg? Is San Francisco ready to reclaim its spot atop the NFC? It’s a coinflip, but I like the Niners at home. 49ers 26, Packers 23

Last week

Straight up: 11-5

Against the spread: 7-9

Season

Straight up: 21-11

Against the spread: 16-16

The NFL season is underway and the Week 3 Schedule is up and taking bets at BetOnline.AG.

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