Thursday Night Football - Packers at 49ers
What a shitshow this 2020 season is shaping up to be for some teams who had high expectations entering the year. The injury (+Covid) bug has hit some squads in ways that are almost without historical precedence. In what felt like a blink of an eye, the 49ers have gone from serious contenders, to a team that could easily lose double-digit games. George Kittle could be out as much as 8-weeks or as little as two. Jimmy G has a fresh high ankle sprain and is expected to be out a minimum of 6-weeks, to possibly longer if a surgery is required. This was in addition to losing Nick Bosa and Solomon Thomas on that treacherous NY turf. Oh, and let's not forget Richard Sherman, Deebo Samual, Raheem Mostert all being out multiple weeks. And to top it off... the 49ers had to shut down the team facility on Wednesday due to Covid and placed Trent Williams, Deebo Samuel, and new top-target Brandon Aiyuk on the Covid list. In short, the data we have on this 4-4 football team is completely fucked.
If we blindly followed our data for this game, we would have San Francisco as about a 2-point favorite. Obviously, no logical person would vote for that approach, but it does give you some valuable information. The market spread on this game is Green Bay -7 points. So, the question is: are 9-points of extra wiggle room enough to compensate you for all of the 49ers injuries and roster shuffling? We think you'd be crazy to hang your hat on that evaluation because it's basically impossible to quantify how impactful the plethora of changes are going to be.
Due to the insanity of what's happening in the Bay area, we will back the Pack in the RedZone. The Packers are angry, coming off a surprising divisional loss to the Vikings, and have the majority of their roster intact. This isn't a "middle of the fairway" game for anyone, so we highly recommend entertainment bets only, but think going with Green Bay and Rodgers in primetime is a much better proposition than Nick Mullens with basically no running backs, no WRs, no pro-bowl TE, no pro-bowl LT... it ain't pretty, folks. This could be a zero-dimensional offense against a top-3 offense running on all cylinders. It's hard to imagine a scenario where SF can put up enough points to keep this one within coverage range, so we'll take the big road fave on a short week (man, 2020 is wild).