49ers vs. Rams: NFC Conference Championship betting odds, preview, and pick
The sixth-seeded San Francisco 49ers and fourth-seeded Los Angeles Rams will meet in the NFC Conference Championship Game for an all-NFC West clash, set for Sunday, 6:30 p.m. ET, at SoFi Stadium.
Sun, January 30 2022, 11:40 PM
Defense and special teams lift Niners over top seed
In the fifth-coldest playoff game in Lambeau Field history, San Francisco could hardly get anything going on offense in its Divisional Round matchup.
Through their first four series, the 49ers had minus-10 yards and opened with four straight three-and-outs — something the franchise had not done since a 27-24 loss to the Minnesota Vikings in September 2009.
Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo went just 11-of-19 for 131 yards and threw one interception, and did not complete his first pass until a 15-yard throw to George Kittle with nearly six minutes remaining in the second quarter.
Garoppolo's counterpart, Aaron Rodgers, went 20-of-29 for 225 yards and appeared at ease to start the game, as the Packers capped a 69-yard drive with an AJ Dillon score on their first possession.
However, momentum halted from there, and the Niners' defense and special teams kept San Francisco in the fight.
Packers scored a touchdown on their opening possession, the 49ers didn’t score an offensive touchdown all game, and still San Francisco finds itself in next Sunday’s NFC Championship Game.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 23, 2022
On the opening play of the second half, wideout Deebo Samuel returned the kickoff 45 yards, which set up Robbie Gould's first field goal of the night.
Gould's only other field-goal attempt would decide the contest as time expired. He has now made all 20 of his career playoff field-goal tries.
The only other points by the 49ers came on a blocked punt returned for a touchdown with 4:41 left in regulation to tie the score 10-10.
San Francisco also blocked a 39-yard field-goal attempt by kicker Mason Crosby on the final play of the first half to prevent Green Bay from building a 10-0 lead before halftime.
With the Niners' win, Rodgers became the first quarterback in NFL history to lose four playoff starts to a single opponent.
Rams survive second-half meltdown against Bucs
The Rams' offense got off to a much better start in their Divisional Round tilt with the defending champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but a second-half implosion nearly ruined their chances of an NFC championship berth.
Through the first 30 minutes, Los Angeles owned a 20-3 lead that could have been larger, had it not been for a goal-line turnover by running back Cam Akers near the end of the second quarter.
That blunder seemed to spark a rush of mistakes by the Rams, who committed three more fumbles — two of which led to Bucs touchdowns — in the second half.
Despite trailing by 27-3 up until the final three minutes of the third quarter, quarterback Tom Brady got his team back on track and spearheaded a massive fourth-quarter comeback to tie the game, 27-27, with 42 seconds remaining.
Unfortunately for Tampa Bay, that was all the time Matthew Stafford needed to find stud wideout Cooper Kupp for a pair of deep passes. Kicker Matt Gay then sealed the win with a 30-yard field goal as time ran out.
9️⃣ TO 1️⃣0️⃣ TO SET UP THE WIN! pic.twitter.com/1hrjkOa4lQ— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) January 23, 2022
Stafford finished the day with 366 passing yards and three total scores in his second career postseason win. Kupp pulled down nine receptions for 183 yards and a touchdown, while Akers rushed for only 48 yards on 24 carries.
49ers vs. Rams injury report
|San Francisco 49ers||Los Angeles Rams|
CB Ambry Thomas: Questionable (knee)
OT Andrew Whitworth: Questionable (knee)
OT Trent Williams: Questionable (ankle)
FS Taylor Rapp: Questionable (concussion)
WR Deebo Samuel: Questionable (ankle)
DB Dayan Ghanwoloku: Questionable (undisclosed)
RB Jeff Wilson: Questionable (ankle)
RB Darrell Henderson: Questionable (knee)
49ers and Rams betting trends
- San Francisco is 4-0 ATS in its last four games as an underdog
- San Francisco is 4-1 ATS in its last five playoff games
- Los Angeles is 6-2 ATS in its last eight games overall
- Los Angeles is 5-2 ATS in its last seven playoff games
- The Under is 7-1 in San Francisco's last eight playoff games
- The Under is 19-7 in Los Angeles' last 26 home games
- The underdog is 6-0 ATS in the last six meetings between these teams
- San Francisco is 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings
Rams will get revenge in rubber match
While the Rams won the NFC West behind a 12-5 record, the 49ers (10-7) had their number all year.
In Week 10, San Francisco bested Los Angeles, 31-10, as Stafford opened the game with back-to-back interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown, and the 49ers controlled the clock with 44 carries for 156 yards.
Then, in Week 18, the Rams built a 17-point lead on their rival but failed to hold on, as San Francisco kicked a game-winning field goal in overtime and earned a postseason bid in the process.
Akers made his season debut in the latter matchup, but only ran for three yards on five carries. He has since combined for 107 yards on a team-leading 41 carries and could make the difference in these two teams' third matchup of the season.
The Rams possess far more offensive firepower and should get the job done at home in this pivotal divisional clash, so long as they can cut back on the careless mistakes from their previous game.
The Niners own a six-game win streak against LA and should keep the competition close, but LA will use its Divisional Round scare as a wakeup call and maintain home-field advantage in Super Bowl LVI.
Score prediction: Rams 24, 49ers 20
NFC Championship Game Pick: Rams -3.5
49ers vs. Rams Pick powered by The Quant Edge
Our predictive engine is calling for the Rams to win outright.