Finally, one of the match-ups football fans have been waiting all season for will get underway during the second slate of game action on Sunday of Week 9. The New Orleans Saints will host the undefeated Los Angeles Rams. This truly will be a battle between the beasts of the NFC and could provide fans a potential preview for what the NFC Championship match looks like come January.
The Rams escaped a scare last week, but showed their superiority in storming back against a rested and hungry Packers team. Los Angeles has no discernible weaknesses at the moment, and despite a tough schedule down the stretch, the Rams certainly have visions of an undefeated season in the back of their heads. They also made some noise at the trade deadline, by going out and further improving their defense with Dante Fowler coming in. This team is loaded.
For the Saints, they’ve been led by a resurgent Drew Brees and an elite offense. They are also a much stronger team at home, and know that if they do want to get back to the Super Bowl – winning this match and playing in front of their own fans come January, gives them a much better chance.
This promises to be a riveting encounter between two of the best teams in the NFL, and it’s just Week 9. Though it is just regular season, expect this game to have big ramifications on playoff positioning down the road. So, keep reading below as we look to line your pockets with added cash with our official betting selection for this Rams/Saints showdown.
Rams vs. Saints Betting Odds:
Los Angeles Rams -2 (-111)
@ New Orleans Saints +2 (-109)
Over 56.5 (-115)
Under 56.5 (-105)
Rams vs. Saints Pick:
Though Los Angeles went out this past week and made yet another acquisition and splash by bringing in Dante Fowler, I don’t anticipate him being all that effective immediately – and definitely not this week vs. New Orleans. The Saints do a great job of protecting Drew Brees on his outside, and when you factor in how quickly Brees releases the ball, the Rams pass rush could be significantly nullified in this contest. Aaron Donald is a beast in the middle – but I don’t think Brees will be flustered by a dominating pass rush.
For all of the Rams’ strengths, right now they seem bitten by the injury bug within their secondary. If and when they do get healthy, they should be fine, but at the moment they are walking wounded with some key injuries. Aqib Talib remains out injured, while Marcus Peters should be suiting up, but is clearly still injured. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers last week passed the ball all over them, and Drew Brees and his prolific attack should be able to do the same.
On the ground, look for the Saints’ two-headed monster to also be effective in keeping the chains moving. Alvin Kamara can be huge as a receiver coming out of the backfield, while Mark Ingram should be able to find holes his offensive line creates. The Rams have been vulnerable to giving up some big rushing outings so far this season.
On the other side of the football, the Rams too will get in on the action. Their offense is efficient and prolific, and the Saints’ stop unit will really need to focus on limiting them opposed to stopping them outright. Look for Jared Goff to attack the Saints deep and it’ll be helpful if he has Cooper Kupp back in the lineup as well. That has to be the area in which the Rams find success, because as good as Todd Gurley is – the Saints have been dominant at stifling the run game. If there’s no room for Gurley to operate, it could force the Rams’ into being a little too one-dimensional on Sunday.
The Saints are too good in my mind to be home underdogs to anybody, especially a banged-up Rams group. The New Orleans crowd will be downright rowdy on Sunday afternoon, and I think there is value here on a Saints squad that is surely putting an emphasis on claiming the top seed in the NFC. In order to do that, they need to hand the Rams their first loss of the season – and look for them to do just that on Sunday. A 31-27 scoreline seems fitting for what should be the game of the week.
PICK = Saints +2 (-109)