The Seahawks now find themselves essentially alone (with a tiebreaker win at the 49ers) in first place in the NFC West for the first time this season. Seattle is 10-2 yet only has a plus-36 point differential in those games. Per Elias Sports Bureau, this is the lowest point differential for a 10-win team through 12 games in NFL history. They have absolutely gotten the breaks to fall their way as they are 9-1 in games decided by seven points or fewer and have now won five in a row. A victory in Los Angeles would clinch a playoff spot.
Meanwhile, the Rams have gone 4-5 in their last nine games after a 3-0 start. After a home loss to the Buccaneers in Week 4, the Rams went to Seattle and probably should’ve won the game outright, but the usually reliable Greg “The Leg” Zuerlein pushed a 44-yard field goal wide right with 11 seconds remaining and Seattle won another close one.
The last time the Rams were at home in prime time, they received a 45-6 drubbing at the hands of the Ravens. Off that putrid performance, the recency bias of bettors led them to bet the Cardinals as three-point home underdogs against a seemingly lost Rams bunch.
Unfortunately for Arizona, they saw the Rams play arguably their most complete game of the season in a 34-7 dominant victory. Todd Gurley (remember him?) rushed for 95 yards and a touchdown and had over 100 yards from scrimmage for just the second time this season, but the second time in three weeks. Jared Goff went 32 of 43 and threw for 424 yards and two touchdowns. Goff finally had his entire receiving corps at his disposal and the Rams come into Sunday Night as healthy as they’ve been all season.
Rams head coach Sean McVay is 11-4 straight up and 9-6 against the spread in NFC West divisional games, but is 8-1 SU and 7-2 ATS in divisional spots during the second half of the season. Perhaps he has gotten this group over a midseason rut after they apparently ran out of ibuprofen for what is usually the Super Bowl loser hangover.
The mainstream sports media has frequently pointed to the clutch play of Russell Wilson and this season, by and large, they’ve been correct. Nevertheless, before the 2019 season, Wilson was only 31-33 SU in games decided by seven points or less since he became the starter in 2012. Here lies another opportunity to fade the media here as this looks to be a proverbial “pros vs. Joes” prime-time game.
This is a short week for the Seahawks, who beat the Vikings on Monday night, against a team that should’ve beaten them earlier in the season. Sharper bettors took out the Rams +2 ¹/₂ earlier in the week and the line went to pick ’em. Nevertheless, there still is some value at this number as the Rams were -7 ¹/₂ late this past summer in the preseason lookahead lines. The Rams last stand to make any playoff push should come right here.
The play: Rams, pick ’em.