The Los Angeles Rams (1-0) host the Arizona Cardinals (0-1) this weekend in an early season NFC West clash. Kickoff is set for 4:05 PM EST on Sunday, September 17th at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The game will be televised on CBS.
Oddsmakers originally had the Rams listed as 13-point home favorites. The line hasn’t moved much after early betting, as Los Angeles is currently available at -13. The total for this matchup is 45 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 2 NFL odds and for more links to our individual game previews.
Rams vs Cardinals Vegas Odds & Game Preview
Arizona will look to avoid an 0-2 start on Sunday, something they have done successfully since 2005. The Cardinals are coming off of a tough 24-6 home loss against the Washington Redskins. Arizona had little success on both sides of the ball, although the offense had an especially rough afternoon. Sam Bradford and Co. only managed to score six points, all of which came in the 4th quarter when the game was already out of reach. Bradford barely threw for over 150 yards and also threw an interception while averaging 4.5 yards per passing attempt. He also completed just 58% of his passes, which allowed Washington to really focus on the run. RB David Johnson did manage to find the end zone late in the game but was held to under 50 yards total on the ground.
The Cardinals also didn’t give their best performance defensively in Week 1 either. Arizona allowed 24 points on over 400 total yards against the Redskins, something that will need to be addressed immediately if they hope to stay competitive against a very strong Rams team. Defending against the run was a problem all game last week for the Cardinals, as they allowed ageing RB Adrian Peterson to rush for almost 100 yards and a touchdown in his Washington debut.
Los Angeles embarrassed the Oakland Raiders on national television in the final game of Week 1. The Rams gave up a touchdown early, but took over full control of the game soon afterwards largely due to another phenomenal performance by RB Todd Gurley. Gurley racked up almost 150 total yards and scored a big touchdown during the 1st quarter on Monday night. QB Jared Goff also played well, passing for 233 yards and throwing two touchdowns. He had plenty of help from new WR Brandin Cooks, who made five catches for 87 yards in his LA debut.
The Rams also played quite well on the other side of the ball, limiting Oakland to just 13 points. Los Angeles also picked off Derek Carr three times and limited RB Marshawn Lynch to just 41 yards rushing on eleven carries. However, LA did allow their former TE, Jared Cook, to have a monster game – Cook finished the game with nine receptions for 180 yards.
Free NFL Betting Prediction: Rams -13
This game will likely be another blowout, as these two teams are heading in completely opposite directions. Los Angeles is extremely impressive on both sides of the ball and will likely be a legitimate Super Bowl contender this year. Arizona, on the other hand, looks to he starting a downwards spiral towards the basement of the NFC West. This used to be one of the tightest divisions in the entire NFL, but times have certainly changed. The Rams are clearly superior in pretty much every category that counts, and I fully expect them to steamroll Arizona in front of a rowdy home crowd on Sunday.
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Goff simply has too many weapons on offense for the Cardinals to keep pace – especially since Arizona will be up against a Top 5 defense. Although the 13 point spread is currently the largest on the board here in Week 2, I still think LA should be able to cover with relative ease. Gurley, Cooks, Kupp, Woods – there are so many options for Goff to utilize. He has also been extremely consistent as of late, throwing for at least two touchdown passes in six straight games. Sam Bradford looked brutal last week against Washington and I have a hard time seeing him turning it around this week against an extremely tough secondary. The Rams completely shut down Derek Carr and Amari Cooper, and I fully expect them to have the same level of success against Arizona – especially with the addition of Aqib Talib to an already formidable defense.
Arizona is 2-6 ATS over their past eight road games while going 0-5 ATS over their past five games in the month of September. They are also just 2-4 ATS in their last six meetings with the Rams. This should be a perfect spot for the Rams offense to keep rolling – they get to face an opponent that just dropped their home opener and allowed Alex Smith to have a big game. Washington is certainly an average team at best, so Los Angeles should really put some points on the scoreboard in this one – especially at home. I’m happy to take the Rams and lay the points.