49ers vs. Packers: Breaking down who has the advantage at each position?

Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers against the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers against the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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Nick Bosa, Arik Armstead, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa (97) Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

49ers Defense vs. Packers Defense

The 49ers can take some comfort knowing their defense finished in the top 10 in scoring with 365 points allowed, while Green Bay finished the regular season tied for 13th in this category at 371 points allowed.

It’s a marginal difference, although one could argue the offenses elsewhere in the NFC North afforded the Packers a slightly easier road than that of the Niners.

Still, San Francisco has some advantages here.

Defensive Line

Only one team, the Baltimore Ravens, finished with a better defensive DVOA than the 49ers against the run this season, whereas Green Bay’s run defense clocked in at No. 26. That’ll be a matchup head coach Kyle Shanahan and Co. will want to exploit.

The Niners also finished the year with 48 sacks, tied for fifth best, while the Packers boasted 39, tied for 15th.

If San Francisco gets EDGE Nick Bosa back from the concussion protocol in time for the game, the advantage is pretty clear.

Edge: 49ers


Packers linebacker De’Vondre Campbell finished 2021 as a first-team All-Pro and was Pro Football Focus‘ second-best graded linebacker behind the Dallas Cowboys’ Micah Parsons.

The 49ers can counter somewhat with a quality trio of backers, led by another previous All-Pro in Fred Warner, along with complementary linebackers like Dre Greenlaw and Azeez Al-Shaair.

Green Bay’s depth here might not be as good in the middle, but Campbell makes up the gap on his own. And EDGE Rashan Gary’s nine sacks from the year give the Packers a slight edge.

Edge: Packers


Green Bay does have a distinct advantage here at cornerback, although the Niners have seen steady improvement with rookie Ambry Thomas over the last few weeks, and the return of fellow corner Emmanuel Moseley has solidified the boundary duo.

The Packers have nevertheless allowed an average of just 5.8 pass yards per attempt, fifth best during the regular season, and their cornerbacking crop of Eric Stokes and Rasul Douglas, the latter boasting five interceptions on the season.

Edge: Packers


Perhaps two of the more underrated safety tandems in the league, Green Bay’s duo of Darnell Savage and Adrian Amos in contrast to San Francisco’s Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt is quite the push.

Ward and Amos both finished within PFF’s top-15 safeties on the year, and their presence on the field makes their respective defenses that much better.

Hard to pick a clear-cut advantage here.

Edge: Even