Los Angeles Rams 2019 Betting Predictions, Odds and Expert Best Bets
Best bet- Rams under 10.5 wins
Worst bet- Rams to make the playoffs at -350
What’s happened the past two years with the Los Angeles Rams has been one of the most remarkable turnarounds in recent NFL history. The team went from being a perennial loser under Jeff Fisher to NFC champions in just two years, and it’s been incredible to see. Sean McVay has done a masterful job rebuilding the culture, and general manager Les Snead has constructed a very talented roster.
The Rams, of course, came up just short in the Super Bowl last year, but the fact that they even made it was remarkable. After going 13-3 in the regular season, the Rams dispatched with the Cowboys in the divisional round to make it to the NFC Championship Game. They won that game in controversial fashion thanks to a now-infamous pass interference non-call.
Jared Goff took another step forward in his development, and had an excellent season. Aaron Donald was once again the best defensive player in football, and the Rams never really faltered during the regular season even though they did have some tough injuries.
Cooper Kupp tore his ACL and missed the second half of the season, Aqib Talib missed eight games with an ankle injury, and Todd Gurley’s knee flared up right before the start of the playoffs. Assuming Kupp makes a full return, the Rams will have one of the best receiving corps in the league yet again as he rejoins fellow studs Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods.
Gurley reportedly has arthritis in his knee, and it’s unclear what kind of workload he’ll be able to handle in 2019. The Rams have been tight-lipped about his status, although their trade up to draft running back Darrell Henderson in the third round back in April was somewhat of a red flag.
The Rams made some big additions this offseason, going out and signing veterans Eric Weddle and Clay Matthews. They also lost some key members of last year’s team, like Ndamukong Suh and Rodger Saffold. While the Rams will have most of their guys back as they look to make another Super Bowl run, they’ll also be counting on a bunch of inexperienced players to step up. It’ll be interesting to see if they answer the call.
Rams Win Total: O/U 10.5 Wins
Oddsmakers set the Rams’ win total at 10.5. That means Vegas expects Los Angeles to take a step backward in 2019, and it’s understandable why. They still have a ton of talent, but there are also some areas of uncertainty. For the first time in the McVay era, there are questions on the offensive line. The O-Line has been one of the biggest reasons for the Rams’ success the past couple of years, and it’s going to look a lot different next season. The Rams had to let Saffold walk in free agency since he got priced out of their range, and they declined the option on starting center John Sullivan’s contract.
That means the Rams will have two new starters on the interior, and they’re going with a couple of unproven options. Second-year players Joseph Noteboom and Brian Allen appear set to take over for Saffold and Sullivan respectively, and neither one has ever started an NFL game. That’s a lot of inexperience for a team coming off a Super Bowl appearance, and that isn’t the only position of weakness. The Rams’ run defense quietly allowed the most yards per carry of any team in the league last year, and then they lost Suh in free agency. They’re replacing him with Greg Gaines, a fourth-round rookie.
Simply put, the Rams have downgraded at a few positions. A Super Bowl hangover should ensue, and I expect them to take a step back.
One of my favorite future bets of the year is on the Rams under 10.5 wins.
Odds to make the playoffs: Yes -350, No +275
The Rams of course have a ton of upside, but there’s also some downside that isn’t being talked about much. The Rams’ secondary was shaky last year, as Talib’s injury really hurt them. Talib is 33 now, and there’s no guarantee he’ll be able to not get hurt again, or play at the level he has in the past. If Marcus Peters is inconsistent again, the Rams’ cornerbacks could go from being a strength to a weakness very quickly. A lot of teams often have disappointing seasons the year after they make the Super Bowl, so a good amount of regression wouldn’t be that surprising here.
I can’t lay -350 here.
Odds to win the NFC West: -180
The Rams are massive favorites to win the NFC West for a third straight year. For a few reasons, I wouldn’t lay this steep of a price. For one, the division should be pretty tough. The Seahawks won ten games last year, and should be back in good form in 2019. The 49ers were crippled by injuries last year, and now that they’re fully healthy they’ll be a tough threat. The Cardinals added Kliff Kingsbury and Kyler Murray, and they won’t be the doormat that they were last year.
McVay isn’t the only young offensive guru in the division anymore, and every team should be very competitive. If the Rams catch the downside of variance or have some bad injury luck, they very easily could wind up tumbling in the division.
I’m passing on them at this price.
Odds to win NFC Championship: +375
If the Rams can get a first round bye they’ve got a pretty good shot at winning the NFC for the second straight year. Their offense is going to be elite, and they’ll have the confidence in the playoffs of being the defending champions. There will be some tough competition, but this is very realistic.
I’d probably rather a Super Bowl bet considering you’re getting better odds there, but this isn’t a terrible choice.
Odds to win the Super Bowl: +900
This one is more interesting. Even though I think the Rams might regress, there’s also a chance they come out reenergized for another crack at a championship. If they’re able to get back they wouldn’t be as inexperienced in big moments as they were last year, so I think they’d perform better.
This team has all the upside in the world, so a Super Bowl bet at 9/1 makes some sense.