I’m not sure saying the Rams season has been the product of a “Super Bowl Hangover” is valid this far into the season but whatever you want to call it, the LA Rams have been bad this season. The Rams enter this week with a 3-6 record and fresh off a loss to the Cardinals, a game in which they lost star receiver, Cooper Kupp, to injury.
With all that being said I still think the Rams are a good bet this weekend as underdogs against the New Orleans Saints. We’ll go over why this might be a good spot for them to cover and also a preview of the game.
The Rams are currently +3 point favorites on the road this weekend against the 3-7 Saints. New Orleans announced this week they’ll be sticking with quarterback Andy Dalton as their starter despite losing to a struggling Steelers team last weekend. Neither team has been good on either side of the ball this season but I still trust this Rams team much more than I do the Saints and with the return of Matt Stafford this week I think the Rams are the best bet.
It’s crazy to see how lackluster this Rams' offense has been this season as they possess no run game at all and have struggled to find someone to target outside of Cooper Kupp.
I think the Kupp injury is actually going to force them to expand the offense and make guys like Allen Robinson and Van Jefferson step up to fill a bigger role. This might not be a long-term thing but experimenting more with the run game could pay off big this weekend against a Saints defense allowing 130.5 rush yards a game.
Outside of the offense, I think a big factor that has me backing the Rams is their run defense which is still at the top of the league in most statistical categories. The Saints clearly don’t have much faith in either quarterback but have one of the best running backs in the league Alvin Kamara.
When the Saints are forced to pass due to the running game being shut down like it was last weekend in Pittsburgh they struggle to consistently move the ball downfield. LA is allowing only an average of 96.1 rush yards a week and if that continues I trust the Rams as the road underdog here.
The Rams might be getting Matt Stafford back from injury but he won’t be able to ease into anything as this Saints pass defense has been phenomenal all season. New Orleans is sixth in the league in average passing yards allowed and ninth in average yards per pass so they’ll be a challenge for Stafford and this depleted receiving group.
In the absence of Kupp, running backs Darrell Henderson and Cam Akers will need to step up big time and turn this rushing attack around. They have not gotten much help from their offensive line but in order to take advantage of this mediocre Saints rush defense they’ll need a complete turnaround from both running backs and their blockers.
I mentioned previously the Saints will be sticking with Dalton at quarterback so they will need rookie Chris Olave to continue his rookie season to help carry this passing game like he’s done most of the season. Olave leads the team with 658 yards and has caught two touchdowns on the year so the probable match-up between him and Jalen Ramsey will be an interesting one to watch unfold.