The San Francisco 49ers host the Minnesota Vikings in an NFC divisional round matchup on Saturday at Levi’s Stadium. Kickoff is set for 4:35 p.m. ET in San Francisco. The Vikings beat the Saints in overtime in the wild-card round of the 2020 NFL Playoffs, while NFC West champion San Francisco had a first-round bye. The teams take similar approaches, with both ranking in the top six in rushing during the regular season, and both were in the top eight in scoring defense. Minnesota’s Kirk Cousins and San Francisco’s Jimmy Garoppolo are likely to face pressure, with the defenses tied for fifth in the league with 48 sacks.
San Francisco is a seven-point favorite in the latest Vikings vs. 49ers odds, while the over-under for total points scored is 45. Before you make your 49ers vs. Vikings picks or NFL playoff predictions, make sure you see what SportsLine’s proven projection model has to say.
The model, which simulates every NFL game 10,000 times, is up over $7,000 for $100 players on its top-rated NFL picks since its inception four-plus years ago. It has nailed its recent top-rated NFL picks, entering the divisional round of the 2020 NFL playoffs on a strong 34-22 run that dates back to last season. It’s also on an incredible 96-65 roll on top-rated NFL picks that dates back to the 2017 season.
The model ranked in the Top 10 on NFLPickWatch the past three years on straight-up NFL picks and beat more than 96 percent of CBS Sports office pool players last season. Anyone who has followed it is way up.
- Vikings vs. 49ers spread: San Francisco -7
- Vikings vs. 49ers over-under: 45
- Vikings vs. 49ers money line: San Francisco -292, Minnesota +239
- SF: QB Jimmy Garoppolo is averaging 270.5 yards.
- MIN: RB Dalvin Cook has 12 TDs in Minnesota’s 11 victories.
Why the 49ers can cover
The model has taken into account that the home team is 5-2 against the spread in the last seven meetings between the teams, and the 49ers’ defense will try to keep Cousins off balance. Defensive ends Arik Armstead (10 sacks) and Nick Bosa (nine) lead the pass rush, while tackle DeForest Buckner has 7.5 sacks and recovered four fumbles. Linebacker Fred Warner leads a unit that allows 112.6 rushing yards per game and has 118 tackles, three sacks, nine passes defended and three forced fumbles.
San Francisco is 7-3 against the spread in non-divisional games this season and Garoppolo has thrown for 3,978 yards and 27 touchdowns. George Kittle is one of the top tight ends in the league, catching 85 balls for 1,053 yards despite missing two games. The Niners also have a potent trio of running backs in Raheem Mostert (772 yards), Tevin Coleman (544) and Matt Breida (623). Deebo Samuel is the top downfield threat, averaging 14.1 yards on 57 receptions.
Why the Vikings can cover
But just because San Francisco has put together a winning formula doesn’t mean it will cover the Vikings vs. 49ers spread on Saturday. The Vikings are 4-1 against the spread in their last five games and Dalvin Cook rushed for 1,135 yards and 13 touchdowns in 14 games during the regular season. He also was No. 2 on the team in receptions with 53. Cousins completed 69.1 percent of his passes for 3,603 yards and has big-time targets in receivers Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen, as well as tight end Kyle Rudolph, who scored the winning touchdown against the Saints.
Minnesota’s defense allows 108 rushing yards per game, and Eric Kendricks anchors the unit. The linebacker had a team-high 110 tackles in the regular season and batted down 12 passes. Defensive end Danielle Hunter posted 14.5 sacks in the regular season and forcing a critical fumble against the Saints.
How to make 49ers vs. Vikings picks
We can tell you that the model is leaning under, and it’s also generated an against-the-spread pick that cashes in more than 50 percent of simulations. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Vikings vs. 49ers in the NFL Playoffs 2020? And which side of the spread is hitting over 50 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the 49ers vs. Vikings spread to jump on Saturday, all from the advanced model that is up more than $7,000 on its top-rated NFL picks, and find out.