49ers vs. Packers: TV Info, Spread, Injury Updates, Game Time and More

Chris Roling@@Chris_RolingFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2014

Sep 8, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers (12) passes the ball against the San Francisco 49ers during the first quarter at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

The Green Bay Packers (8-7-1) are set to play host to the San Francisco 49ers (12-4) at Lambeau Field on Sunday, Jan. 5, at 4:40 p.m. ET in a frigid NFC Wild Card affair between bitter rivals.

While the NFC North champs are at home, neither team has an advantage with eye-popping inclement weather poised to make an appearance, as ESPN and Kevin Seifert illustrate:

San Francisco guard Alex Boone is not concerned, as Cam Inman of the San Jose Mercury News captures:

Boone's team will be looking to defeat the Packers for the second time this season, with the first victory coming in the form of a Week 1, 34-28 victory in San Francisco.

Despite a 6-2 mark on the road this season, the 49ers will have to weather rare elements against a Packers team propelled by the recent return of former MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers, who made his comeback in Week 17 and tossed an epic touchdown with 38 seconds left to upset the Chicago Bears and claim the NFC North crown.

Suffice to say, this matchup between titans will be one for the ages.


When: Sunday, Jan. 5, at 4:40 p.m. ET

Where: Lambeau Field, Green Bay, Wis.

Watch: FOX

Live Stream: NFL Sunday Ticket

Betting Lines (via Vegas Insider

  • Over/Under: 46.5 points
  • Spread: San Francisco (-2.5)


Team Injury Reports

Baldwin, Jon WR Illness DNP FP - -
Bowman, NaVorroLB Wrist FP FP - -
Brown, Tarell CB Ribs FPFP - -
Goodwin, Jonathan C Not Injury Related DNP FP - -
Gore, Frank RB Knee FP FP - -
Iupati, Mike G Knee FP FP - -
Rogers, Carlos CB Hamstring DNP DNP - -
Skuta, Dan LB Foot LP LP - -
Smith, Justin DT Shoulder DNP FP - -
Wright, Eric CB Hamstring - LP - -
Lacy, Eddie RB Ankle LP LP - -
Matthews, Clay LB Thumb Out Out - -
Neal, Mike DE/LB Abdomen DNP LP - -
Perry, Nick LB Foot DNP LP - -
Pickett, Ryan DT Knee LP LP - -
Lacy, Eddie RB Ankle LP LP - -
49ers.com, Packers.com


Can the Packers Beat the 49ers at Their Own Game?

Nov 10, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore (21) carries the ball against the Carolina Panthers during the second quarter at Candlestick Park. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Based on what the forecast projects, both offenses will be grounded into a more traditional attack on Sunday.

While this does not eliminate the passing game entirely, Green Bay cannot expect a mega performance from Rodgers, and San Francisco cannot expect another 412 passing yards and three scores from Colin Kaepernick, as he did in the Week 1 victory.

Dec 29, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick warms up prior to the game against the Arizons Cardinals at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

San Francisco is well-versed in winning games on the ground. Behind the ever-churning pistons that are Frank Gore's legs, the 49ers rank No. 3 in the league on the ground with an average of 137.6 rushing yards per game.

The Packers will have to leave their comfort zone to notch a win. Outside linebacker Mike Neal understands that his unit must stuff the run again to have a chance, as he told Mike Spofford of the Packers' website:

If we can do what we did the first game and eliminate the run game, and force him to pass, I think we have a better deal going on this time to be able to stop it.

Perhaps more importantly, Green Bay will have to produce consistently in the running game through running back Eddie Lacy. As receiver James Jones told the team's website, Lacy is far from the inexperienced rookie that rushed 14 times for 41 yards and a score in the season opener:

Totally different back. Night and day. He’s way more comfortable, way more confident.

They’ll have to account for him, and I know by them watching film and seeing what he’s done during the season, they know he’s not the same player he was in Week 1. It’s good for us to have him in the position he’s in now.

But as ESPN illustrates, Lacy had quite the dominant season—just not against San Francisco:

It is easy to attribute that stat to it simply being Lacy's first-career start, but the 49ers have done that to all backs this season and rank No. 4 overall with an average of 95.9 rushing yards allowed per game.

In a heavyweight bout, it may be a rookie who ultimately decides the outcome.



Dec 29, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Green Bay Packers running back Eddie Lacy (27) runs with the ball during the second quarter against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports
Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Spor

Observers should not be fooled by statistics that seemingly weigh in the 49ers' favor, such as the fact the Packers defense gives up 4.6 yards per carry. San Francisco guard Mike Iupati understands this best, per via Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle:

It doesn't matter about the stats. It just matters about that day, that game. You can have the worst stats and it comes game day and you can ball out. They have a great defense.

Add in the fact Gore went to the sunny desert in Arizona in Week 17 and posted 14 yards on 13 carries, and suddenly the notion that the Miami (Fla.) product will find easy sledding against Green Bay in the snow holds little weight.

Bottom line—San Francisco will post a hearty amount of points if it creatively involves Kaepernick on the ground, as will Green Bay with Lacy pounding the rock and Rodgers getting receiver Randall Cobb involved consistently.

At Lambeau Field in the playoffs, it is silly to bet against Rodgers.


Final Score: Packers 28, 49ers 24


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