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NFL: Rams (+3.5) vs. Ravens


Posted by Murat (2019-11-25 20:40 CET)

If you don't want to fade a red hot, MVP frontrunner QB and a team on six games winning and four games ATS crushing streaks, then I totally understand. But, I'll keep trusting my numbers.

Ravens are red hot no doubt about that, but does this justify them being more than a field goal favourite on the road against the reigning NFC champions? My answer is no.

Yes, Rams are a different team, simply because they suddenly have a terrible offensive line and a QB who must consistently play in favourable environment to be successful. But, I will not sleep on the much improved offensive line play Rams had shown last week. That performance was against Bears' defense, not a vanilla unit for sure. Bears had problems to contain the run since losing Hicks, Ravens have a 25th DVOA run defense and will be without their best run plugger, Pierce. 

One more thing to note is that Goff will finally have his receiving corpse fully intact and healthy after several weeks. Yes, Ravens have an incredible secondary, but the pass rush struggles to create consistent pressure without heavy blitzing, so if the running game works as much as it did against Bears, then Goff should play at least passable and have one, or two favourable match ups here and there. 

On the other side of the ball, I'm not here to say anything bad against Jackson. He's my MVP even if he plays mediocre from now on. And, I don't like Rams had never seen him before. But, Rams have one of the league's best run defense and the personnel to win consistently against Jackson's underwhelming receiving options. And I tend to believe Rams' defensive coordinator Phillips is experienced enough to put a proper game plan even if he never saw Jackson before.

Anyway, I'm more interested about the line itself rather than the field. The advanced line here was pick'em, Rams had beaten and covered against Bears despite not having both Cooks and Woods, whereas Ravens had destroyed Texans at home, and the line had moved to 3,5, why? Also, the visitors are reported to be a huge public play, which is not surprising a bit, as suddenly everyone in mainstream media started to think it's their Super Bowl to lose, yet the odds had never moved during the week to the favour of the visitors. Meaning, there is some `smart` money placed on the hosts.

This will be the first time Rams being underdogs at home since McVay had arrived, except the meaningless week 17 game back in '17, when they were resting almost all the starters. Yet, it's an absolute must win game for the hosts. Whereas, Ravens had been flying high lately and had more than enough time to hear how good are they. 

It might not make any sense, but I'll side with the underdogs here. My calculated line is 1.5, so there is enough value to pull the trigger, wake up at the middle of the night and watch a game on the edge of wherever I will watch it.


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