Los Angeles Rams vs. New Orleans Saints Point Spread – Pick

Los Angeles Rams (14-3 SU, 8-8-1 ATS) vs. New Orleans Saints (14-3 SU, 10-7 ATS)
NFC Conference Championship
Date/Time: January 20, 2019 at 3:05PM EST
Where: Mercedes-Benz Superdome, New Orleans, Louisiana
TV: Fox

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Point Spread: LAR +3/NO -3
Over/Under Total: 57

The Los Angeles Rams face the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Championship game on Sunday at the Superdome. The LA Rams looked every bit the part of a Super Bowl contender with their 30-22 win on Saturday over a red-hot Dallas team that had won seven of their last eight games. Their high-powered offense did its part, while the “D” kept things in-order. There is no questioning whether they are legit, as they will not be easy to dissuade in this spot. But the Saints are at home, coming off a divisional round playoff win over the defending champion Eagles, 20-14. They are the top-seed in the conference and look to show why this weekend. Who comes out ahead in this NFC title game?

In week nine, these two teams met in the Superdome, with the Saints posting a 45-35 win at home. The Rams were able to unleash a big aerial attack, with Jared Goff near 400 yards, but Drew Brees and the Saints took to the air, as well, with a little most push in the run-game to tip things in their favor. The conditions have changed and it’s iffy how much this game really matters in the big picture. But for those who use it as justification that this might be a high-scoring and competitive affair, that might not be entirely off-base.

The Rams are a handful. The offense wields so many different weapons and approaches that opposing defenses are left in a tizzy. And while their big-name and high-money defense may have underwhelmed in the regular season in spots, they still have massive playmaking ability and we saw some of that against Dallas in the divisional round. The season ended a bit unevenly for the Rams, as they slipped in a few big tests, before getting their act together at the end of the season. After getting their postseason bearings against Dallas in a nice win, one should expect them to ratchet it up a notch this week, as the Super Bowl is within grasp.

BET THE NFC TITLE GAME FROM HOME! DEPOSIT $100 AND GET $50 FREE AT ONE OF THE WEB’S OLDEST SPORTSBOOKS: BOVADA SPORTSBOOK

On Saturday, the versatility of the Rams’ approach was on full-display. Jared Goff connects on every type of pass—screens, short throws, intermediate throws, and downfield tosses. Receivers Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks are clutch and can make the difficult catches, while doing a little of the dirty work, as well. Receivers take handoffs, as well, giving the Rams yet another wrinkle. Todd Gurley is one of the best backs in the league and ran for 115 and a TD against Dallas. But the performance of CJ Anderson gives them a little underdog appeal, as well. He ran for 123 yards and two scores on Saturday, as the Rams’ run-game was in full-bloom. That line just moves hordes of people and is one of the better units in the league. This offense has everything. They have shown this season that they don’t fire automatically regardless of the conditions, but they’re pretty darn reliable and at or near their best they’re very hard to stop.

Again, the Rams’ defense has caught a lot of flack this season. And in all fairness, they were not the unit some envisioned with all the big-name acquisitions. But on Saturday, we saw them looking pretty good, with some of those big-names delivering with Ndamukong Suh, Aqib Talib, and Marcus Peters making plays. Aaron Donald is a difference-maker up-front. There are mistakes on this side of the ball at a higher clip than some groups. The secondary is prone to getting burnt or suffering painful penalties. The massive power of their front has strangely not manifested in an effective way against the opposing run, as they can be leaky against the rush. But this is where these guys make their money and last Saturday, we saw a lot of good signs, with a lot of guys stepping up with big and timely plays.

The Saints did what they needed to do against a red-hot Eagles’ bunch on Sunday. It wasn’t the best Saints’ performance, but it was enough. The “D” showed their teeth at home, playing a big role in the win. Going back to the regular season, they failed to eclipse 20 points for the third time in four games. Facing a Rams’ team that put up 35 against them in the regular season, they will likely need more than that this week.

The Saints’ offense is a lot like the Rams’ offense. Anchored by an effective line, the Saints can run the heck out of the ball with Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram. Both were instrumental on Sunday in helping the Saints overcome an early 14-0 deficit. Brees threw for over 300 yards, connecting well with WR Michael Thomas, who caught 12 balls for 171 yards and a score. Dormant for most of the season, Ted Ginn, Jr. is available and starting to pay off in the postseason. At home against an exploitable Rams’ defense that they scored 45 points against earlier in the season, we could see things come together better for the Saints’ offense this week.

Granted, the Eagles’ run-game isn’t great, but they got very little against the Saints on Sunday, which has been customary this season. That looms as a matchup-concern for the Rams this week, as running the ball might not come as easy. The Saints made a lot of big plays on Sunday, highlighted by CB Marshon Lattimore’s two picks. The magic of Philly QB Nick Foles was held to a minimum, with the secondary playing very well. The way this Saints’ defense is playing right now, it’s one of the best New Orleans defenses seen in years.

This is not an easy one to call. Both teams are hungry to get to the big game, as each franchise poured a lot into this season’s effort. I see that reflecting on Sunday with a competitive game between teams with a lot on the line. Again, it’s not clear how much their regular season matchup matters, but I see this road spot against the Saints being a tough element of this game for the LA defense. I’m taking the Saints.

Loot’s Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I’m betting on the New Orleans Saints minus 3 points. Did you know… that you could be wagering on the Rams vs. Saints NFC title game at discounted odds? There’s a better than good chance that you’re laying -110 odds (or more) with your book. Stop overpaying TODAY by making the switch to BetAnySports Sportsbook! You will be so glad that you did!

SAVE BIG MONEY BY BETTING AT -105 REDUCED ODDS!
Quit wasting your hard earned money! Make the switch from -110 to -105 odds today
You'll be so glad that you did! Click Here!
DOCS

NFL Betting

Reduced Juice – Loot explains how reduced odds football betting works and where you can find this valuable asset.

What is a Point Spread? – Many new to the game struggle to understand why one side has a (+) while the other has a (-) in front of a team. We explain what the spread is and how it works.

Football Bets – All the different types of wagers that you can make when betting on football games.

What Professional Handicappers Do – Learn the tricks of the trade and increase your odds of beating the books!

Key Numbers – The article that bookies don’t want you to read!

NFL Betting Quiz – Test your football wagering prowess with Loot’s 10 question quiz!

Super Bowl 52 Predictions – Loot gives his preseason picks for which teams are most likely to win “the big game” along with middle of the road and a longshot that is sure to surprise you!

2017 NFL Season Wins Predictions – Loot breaks down every team and gives his opinion on how they’ll do vs. the number!

2017 NFL Bye Weeks – The first set start in Week 5 and the final byes take place in Week 11. Loot also gives tips on betting on teams coming off byes.

2017 NFL Coaching Changes – We seem to be in an era where football coaches become disposable in an instant if they don’t win. 2016 was no different as a handful of teams made the switch. Check out who went where right here!

Misc.

Famous Football Players – Biographies of the best and greatest NFL football players of all-time.

Greatest NFL Players of All Time – A list of all time greats at each position. Each position has it’s own dedicated article!

Best Quarterbacks of All Time – Joe Montana heads our list of top 10 QB’s, however, Tom Brady is a sure bet to give him a run for his money by the time his career is said and done.

Best Running Backs of All Time – We list the top 10 greatest ball carriers of all-time. The order may be debatable, as Jim Brown, Barry Sanders and Walter Payton all brought something special to the gridiron.

Football Lingo – One must be very familiar with all of the terms, slang and jargon associated with this game to win at football betting. Find a slew of pigskin terminology right here!

Football Quotes – Funny and memorable sayings from around the National Football League including comments made by Vince Lombardi and John Madden.