Rams at Saints NFC Championship Lines, Preview & Pick.

Rams at Saints NFC Championship Lines, Preview & Pick

Written by on January 15, 2019

Just like in the AFC, the NFC Championship Game is chalk as the top-ranked New Orleans Saints host the No. 2 Los Angeles Rams in a rematch of a terrific regular-season game. The Saints are not just NFL odds for this game but to win the second Super Bowl in franchise history.

Before getting into the preview, be sure to check out our exclusive 2019 NFL Playoffs Bracket!

How to Bet Rams at Saints NFC Championship Lines & Game Info

Patriots vs Chiefs AFC Championship Odds & Expert Prediction

Weather Forecast

  • Partly Cloudy: 8°C/46°F
  • Humidity: 55%
  • Precipitation: 0%
  • Cloud Cover: 44%
  • Wind: 20 mph NNW
  • Stadium Type: Indoor

First meeting

TThe Saints and Rams finished with identical 13-3 records. The reason this game is in New Orleans is that the Saints beat the Rams 45-35 in Week 9. Michael Thomas caught a late 72-yard touchdown reception and then celebrated with a cellphone in a throwback to former Saints WR Joe Horn. Drew Brees passed for 346 yards and four touchdowns and Thomas finished with a club-record 211 yards receiving.

Alvin Kamara scored three times, twice on runs and once on a 16-yard catch-and-run — all in the first half. Los Angeles rallied to tie it at 35 with 21 unanswered points in less than 21 minutes, starting with Greg Zuerlein’s 56-yard field goal as time expired in the first half. Jared Goff passed for 391 yards and three TDs.

Why Bet on LA Rams?

TThe Rams handled the Cowboys in the Divisional Round, 30-22. They had a franchise playoff record 273 yards rushing, the most ever allowed by Dallas in the playoffs. Todd Gurley rushed 16 times for 115 yards and a touchdown. Gurley was surprisingly out-touched 23-18 by C.J. Anderson but ripped off a number of huge runs. Anderson rushed 23 times for 123 yards and two touchdowns. Big and bulky, Anderson was simply punishing a Cowboys defense that was excellent against the run this season. It helped that his offensive line was paving massive lanes.

Jared Goff completed 15-of-28 passes for 186 yards, zero touchdowns, and zero interceptions. Goff’s primary task was handing the ball off, as the Rams dialed up a whopping 48 runs, unveiling a two-headed attack between Gurley and Anderson. Two of the oldest Rams on the roster earned their first playoff victories on Sunday — left tackle Andrew Whitworth and left guard Rodger Saffold.

Defensively, Los Angeles allowed 5.1 yards per carry during the regular season. But vs. Dallas, the Rams held the Cowboys to just 50 yards rushing. That was Dallas’ lowest rushing output of the season, and the fewest yards on the ground L.A. has allowed all year. Defensive lineman Ndamukong Suh was a significant factor in the Rams shutting down the Cowboys ground game as Suh picked up four total tackles — one for loss — with two quarterback hits.

Coach Sean McVay said having cornerback Aqib Talib should help against New Orleans’ well-oiled offense. Talib watched from the sidelines as cornerback Marcus Peters tried to slow Michael Thomas on his career day.

“When you get your two guys out there on the edges, I think that will enable us to do some different things coverage-wise — be a little bit more flexible,” McVay said.

Why Bet on New Orleans?

The Saints rallied from an early 14-0 deficit to beat the Eagles 20-14 on Sunday and advance to the second NFC title game in team history. Drew Brees completed 28-of-38 passes for 301 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. Brees threw an interception of the first play of the game, a horribly underthrown deep ball to Ted Ginn that should have been a long touchdown. Brees later underthrew Taysom Hill on a deep ball again. The entire offense, including Brees, was off for the entire first quarter, not showing up until a converted fake punt seemed to give the team a jolt.

Michael Thomas caught 12-of-16 targets for 171 yards and one touchdown. Thomas saw a whopping 42.1% target share. His long gain went for 42 yards, and Thomas’ touchdown was a two-yard box-out play in the third quarter to give the Saints their first lead, and one they wouldn’t relinquish.

Rams vs Saints should be a high scoring game.

The news wasn’t all good as an MRI Monday confirmed Saints DT Sheldon Rankins tore his Achilles’ tendon in Sunday’s Divisional Round win. Rankins was a huge presence, literally and figuratively, in the middle of the Saints’ defense this season, gobbling up the run and generating pass-rushing heat to the tune of eight sacks.

Rankins, the 12th pick in the 2016 draft, out of Louisville, had a breakout year in his third season with eight sacks, 15 quarterback hits, 12 tackles for loss and a forced fumble. He had started 44 straight games, including the playoffs after returning from a broken leg he suffered in his first NFL preseason in 2016. The Saints have decent depth at defensive tackle, though, with third-year backup David Onyemata and undrafted rookie Taylor Stallworth likely to take on bigger roles now.

Also, Saints left guard Andrus Peat played Sunday despite suffering a broken hand in Week 17 and having surgery during the bye week. Peat had four penalties (including two holding calls).

The Saints are 6-0 at the Superdome in the postseason since coach Sean Payton was hired in 2006.

Rams at Saints NFC Championship Betting Trends

  • Home team is 7-0 ATS in their last 7 meetings
  • Over is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings in New Orleans
  • LA is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games
  • LA is 14-3 SU in its last 17 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 5 of LA Rams’ last 6 games on the road
  • New Orleans is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games
  • New Orleans is 14-2 SU in its last 16 games
  • The total has gone UNDER in 6 of New Orleans’s last 8 games

Expert NFL Betting Prediction for Rams at Saints

Buy this down to -2.5 and give the points.
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