The Rams came into the season as the favorite in the NFC West. Instead of leading the decision, they enter their match-up with the Seahawks three games behind their opponent. If Jared Goff and company want to make the playoffs, they need to defend their home turf against Russell Wilson and company.
Interestingly, the Seahawks are only favored by half a point despite their 10-2 record. Home field gives the Rams approximately three points, but that’s still not a ton of respect for Pete Carroll’s team. This spread will only feed into the popular narrative that teams from the Pacific Northwest don’t get the credit they deserve nationally.
If you want to know whether or not you should trust this line, our exclusive Statschecker Site must be on your required reading list. In this piece I’ll give you five interesting nuggets about Sunday Night Football, but if you really want to gain an edge you need to visit the site for yourself.
1. The Seahawks are money on Sunday night
One of the most amazing stats about this game is the fact that Seattle has covered the spread in each of their last seven Sunday night games. Some of that has to be chalked up to good fortune, but it also proves that Seattle plays their best football when the lights shine the brightest.
Wilson exemplifies the team’s attitude. He’s playing at an MVP level this season and he’ll need to have an excellent game against a really talented Rams’ defense.
2. This could be a shootout
The last four times these two teams have gotten together have all ended up hitting the over. Despite the talent both defenses possess, there’s a strong chance this game ends up showcasing offensive fireworks.
Jared Goff has to have a good game if he wants to keep up with Wilson. Sean McVay will draw up a terrific game plan for him, but his starting quarterback still needs to execute it. Goff will either be the star or the goat of this game. The chances of him landing in between are minimal.
3. The Seahawks are road warriors
The last six times Pete Carroll has led his team onto the team as visitors have ended up as Seahawks’ victories. To put it mildly, Seattle won’t be cowed by the road atmosphere that Rams’ fans can create.
Part of the calculus for Seattle will be to take the crowd out of the game by running the football. Priority one for the Rams must be to blunt whatever the Seahawks try to establish at the point of attack. If the Seahawks run the ball effectively this game will be over before it starts. Fortunately for the Rams, they have Aaron Donald on their side.
4. 24.4 is a surprisingly large number
The Seahawks have raced out to 10 wins, but this year’s defense is far away from deserving a nickname like the “Legion of Boom.” They’re much closer to a legion of doom. Seattle’s defense is giving up 24.4 points per game.
That’s good news for Todd Gurley and the rest of his offensive teammates. As long as Goff protects the ball, they should put up a reasonable point total. The Rams might not outscore the Seahawks, but they aren’t going to be shut down either.
5. The Rams aren’t tough underdogs
McVay’s team hasn’t played many games as underdogs this year, but they haven’t emerged victorious in any of them. They’ll have to break that streak if they want to beat the Seahawks on Sunday night.
The game plan for the Rams will be to set everything up with the run. Gurley has looked increasingly dangerous over the last several weeks. If he can play like a franchise back against Seattle’s defense, he should be in for a really big day. It could be just large enough to power the Rams to an upset win.
The Rams just don’t have it this year
McVay’s magic just isn’t working for the Rams this season. They will put up a spirited effort against the Rams in the first half, but the Seahawks will have too much quality down the stretch. Wilson will conduct a few drives in the third quarter that will effectively end Los Angeles’ hopes of an unlikely playoff run. Make your bet on the Rams and you can even consider teasing the line as high as 6.5 if you’re feeling bold.