NFL betting lines handicappers will get a good look at what is being touted as a much improved passing attack for the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday Night.
The 49ers will host the Minnesota Vikings in a preseason matchup that could very well be a playoff preview. The game can be seen on NBC TV with kickoff time set for 8:05 PM Eastern.
sbg global.com opened with San Francisco as a 3.5-point favorite with an over/under of 34.5.
Quarterback Alex Smith has come full circle in his career with the 49ers. Smith was the number one overall draft pick in 2005 and was hailed as the savior of the franchise. He immediately was made the starting quarterback and his career crashed and burned quickly thereafter as he struggled with the typical rookie mistakes made by NFL quarterbacks in their on the job training and was also criticized by former coach Mike Nolan and teammates for lacking toughness as he also missed a lot of time with a wide variety of injuries.
Last year Smith was buried as the clear number two backup quarterback to Shaun Hill but ended up taking over the reins of the top spot in mid-October and has never looked back. Smith now enters the 2010 season in firm command as the starting quarterback and offensive leader and with new found respect from the team.
Smith has shown comfort and professionalism and is noticeably less irritable now that he is the clear number one signal caller. He is coming off his best sports betting campaign and is one of the reasons that San Francisco is favored to win the NFC West.
“Now it’s different,” said Smith. “My focus is to do every single thing we can to get ready for opening day.”
Smith is in the final year of his contract, which gives him added incentive to have the big year.
“The expectations have definitely risen” said Smith. “We all expect so much more.”
The 49ers and handicappers betting NFL preseason games are also impressed with the arsenal that Smith has to work with. Wideouts Michael Crabtree and Josh Morgan offer speed to go along with fellow deep threats Ted Gin and Brandon Jones. Tight end Vernon Davis and running back Frank Gore are additional effective threats to give Smith plenty of options and to keep defenses guessing.