2014 NFL Postseason: Divisional Round Predictions

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Jan 5, 2014; Green Bay, WI, USA; San Francisco 49ers tight end Vernon Davis (85) celebrates a touchdown with wide receiver Anquan Boldin (81) and wide receiver Quinton Patton (11) in the 4th quarter as Green Bay Packers cornerback Tramon Williams (38) looks on during the 2013 NFC wild card playoff football game at Lambeau Field. The 49ers beat the Packers 23-20. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

Sunday, Jan. 12
San Francisco 49ers at Carolina Panthers
1:05 p.m. EDT

This is the most interesting game of the weekend, I believe. I really like what the 49ers (13-4) are doing, and even though they are the away team, I believe the 49ers are a better team than the Panthers headed into the game.

I’m not saying the Panthers (12-4) are a pushover, because I really like their defense, but what worries me for Carolina is the health of Steve Smith as he goes along in that offense.

He’ll play, but he’s not near being as healthy as he would like to be, and it could make a difference.

In their Week 10 meeting on Nov. 10, the Panthers defeated the 49ers, 10-9.

Both teams will have to play better than a combined 19 points to win this divisional round game, and I don’t see the 49ers being held to three Phil Dawson field goals in this meeting or being held scoreless in the second half.

There is no way either team will be held without a touchdown in the second half either as they battle to win not only a chance to go to the NFC Championship, but the love and admiration of “Nature Boy” Ric Flair. Woooo!

Game Prediction: 49ers 21, Panthers 20