2013 NFL Playoffs - NFC Championship - Seahawks vs. 49ers Betting Odds Preview

Line: Seahawks -3

While the AFC conference championship game features two veteran Hall of Fame quarterbacks, this game features two up and coming stars that have the potential to take the place of Peyton Manning and Tom Brady when they decide to end their careers. The Seahawks have the best home field advantage in the NFL. Their stadium is so loud that the crowd noise reached Earthquake levers during a regular season game this season. So it is easy to imagine the amount of noise that the home crowd is going to generate with a chance to go to a Superbowl on the line.

San Francisco went all the way to a Superbowl last season with largely the same cast of players that they have now. The biggest difference is the maturation and experience that quarterback Colin Kaepernick gained during last seasons run. He has all of the tools in regards to arm strength and the ability to see the field. Where he seperates himself from most other quarterbacks is he can match this explosive arm strength with the ablity to run the football. Whether on designed runs or scrambles outside of the pocket, he is a dangerous threat that opposing defenses must prepare for. Early on in the season it looked like running back Frank Gore may have started to show wear and tear from his many years in the league. Those reports of his demise have proven to be greatly inaccurate as he has remained the teams top running back and he will be called upon in all big situations. Second year RB LeMichael James provide the element of speed that Gore lacks and he is used in passing situations as well as plays where the team will be looking to run a draw play. Kendall Hunter is a combimation of both backs and can be used in any situation. The return to health and the active lineup of wide receiver Michael Crabtree has bolstered Kaepernick and made this one dimensional offense an all around threat. Tight End Vernon Davis remains amongst the games elite and is a big red zone target.

The Seahawks are awaiting word on whether off season signing Percy Harvin will be healthy enough to play. If he plays he provides the big play capability from the wideout position that the team lack overall. Running back Marshawn Lynch was dominant last week scoring two touchdowns and rusuhingfor over 140 yards. It will be interesting to see who wins the battle at the line of scrimmage. If the Seahawks are unable to get anything going on the ground against a tough defensive line of the 49ers it will take away from the passing game especially the play action pass. It may come down to Russell Wilson using his legs to either run for yardage or extend the play to allow his receivers to get open down the field. Either way this should be a fantastic matchup

Pick: 49ers +3

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