Super Bowl Pick – Baltimore Ravens vs San Francisco 49ers
The Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers meet in Super Bowl XLVII on Sunday, Feb. 3 at the Superdome in New Orleans (6:30 pm ET, CBS). The NFL Odds for the 2013 Super Bowl have the 49ers as a 4-point favorite and the over/under total at 49.
Why the Ravens will cover
One word: defense. Actually, two words: Ray Lewis.
Ever since Lewis told his teammates that he would retire after this year’s playoffs, the teams has stepped up in all areas, but none more so than on defense.
The Ravens defensive play has started to resemble the dominant Baltimore defenses of the past decade.
The numbers don’t lie: Through three postseason games, Baltimore has given up a league-low 19 points per game.
And it’s not as if Baltimore has stifled weak defenses – or weak quarterbacks. All the Ravens have done is effectively frustrate and/or dominate two future hall of fame QBs and one of the NFL’s best rookie pivots.
Against the Indianapolis Colts, Baltimore held Andrew Luck and his offense to no touchdowns and were in his face all afternoon. The Colts ended up with nine points. In the divisional round, the Ravens made quarterback Peyton Manning look average. While Denver scored 35 points, Manning was picked off twice.
And in the AFC Championship, Tom Brady and the Patriots managed just 13 points, and were shut out in the second half.
Harbaugh is 11-3 ATS in road games vs. excellent passing teams with a completion pct. of 64% or better as the coach of Baltimore.
Why the 49ers will cover
An equally stout defense and a dynamic – and adaptable – offense.
The 49ers have even more momentum than Baltimore, having fallen just twice in the last 15 weeks, thanks to both the defense and offense.
With six Pro Bowlers on D, San Francisco has allowed opponents just 17.1 points per game, and was one of just three teams to limit opponents to less than 300 yards per game. And that’s not just in the playoffs; that’s all season long.
And the offense has become much more diverse and explosive under Colin Kaepernick, who took over when starter Alex Smith went down with a concussion nine games ago. Since, then the 25-year-old Kaepernick has led the Niners to a 7-2 SU record.
SAN FRANCISCO is 23-12 ATS in all games over the last 2 seasons.
SAN FRANCISCO is 10-2 ATS in all games where the total is between 42.5 and 49 points over the last 2 seasons.
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