Here is a look at what NFL experts, analysts and writers are predicting for the outcome of Sunday's NFC Championship Game between the Seattle Seahawks and San Francisco 49ers. As you might expect, there is no consensus.
The Seahawks are a slight favorite at ESPN, where 7-of-13 experts chose Seattle to win on Sunday.
The 49ers are a slight favorite at USAToday, where 4-of-7 experts chose San Francisco to win on Sunday.
"Seattle’s offense won’t score against the 49ers, but its defense will get two touchdowns, and two field goals by Steve Hauschka - 33 of 35 during the regular season and all three attempts last week - will be the difference." - Tom Couzens, Bee sports editor.
Odds and Latest Spread for Seahawks vs. 49ers | Bleacher Report
“Both franchises are built with a run-first mentality to the offensive attack and are predicated on elite defensive play. Each team prides itself on hard hitting and sending a message, and the lack of intimidation from either side will result in a chippy battle, no doubt.” – Donald Wood
(It should be noted that Wood right after the 2012 NFL Draft, wrote that Russell Wilson was the worst pick of the entire draft. Read more about it here)
How Seattle Will End San Francisco's Run | Bleacher Report
“So how exactly did the Seahawks score? Oh yeah, a guy that goes by the name of Beast Mode. The same man who has crushed the 49ers in his career—he has 207 yards and three total touchdowns this year against them in two games—appears to be at the top of his game after a 140-yard, two-touchdown game against the Saints last week.” – R. Cory Smith
NFC Championship 2014 picks and predictions: 49ers vs. Seahawks | SB Nation
“History may not be on the 49ers' side, and the fans certainly won't be, but that doesn't mean Seattle is a lock to win. Seattle didn't play its best football in the final stretch, losing two of its last four regular season games. Additionally, quarterback Russell Wilson hasn't been as effective recently as he was early in the season.” – Mark Sandritter
“The Seahawks are going to aim Marshawn Lynch at the heart of the 49ers defense and hope he can move the pile all game long. But Seattle needs more than last week's 103 yards passing and nine completions from quarterback Russell Wilson, and at some point in Sunday's fourth quarter he's going to have to produce the same kind of difference-making pass...” – Don Banks
Championship Sunday predictions: Broncos, 49ers feeling Super | NFL.com
“So what is the best way to approach the task of beating the hottest team in football? Do the same things you've been doing: Don't ask Russell Wilson to do too much, play your NASCAR package (defensive line rotation) so that you always have fresh legs chasing Colin Kaepernick, and use the heck out of Marshawn Lynch.” – Elliot Harrison
“Russell Wilson has lost only one home game as the Seahawks' starting quarterback. Colin Kaepernick has helped the 49ers win three consecutive playoff road games. So what gives between these two athletic young guns?” – Vinnie Iyer