In last week’s forecast, I wrote about how one Los Angeles team seemed poised for a rebound and the other didn’t. As it turned out, the Chargers beat the Browns on the road, improving to 3-2, and the Rams had another disappointing and downright pathetic offensive performance against the Cowboys to drop to 2-3.
Luckily for the Rams, the Carolina Panthers come to SoFi Stadium on Sunday with a team even more broken and battered than themselves while the Chargers a day away from an intriguing Monday Night Football game against the Denver Broncos.
Panthers at Rams (-10, 42)
Curious how the betting market sees the difference between Baker Mayfield and PJ Walker? Based on past spread movement, there is no discernible difference between the two. In fact, Walker Mayfield might even be preferred as the +10.5 and +11 lines available earlier in the week are almost all +10 at this point.
There’s a level of respect for the Rams and what they’ve accomplished over the past few seasons that’s burned into this streak, but they’re so popular because the Panthers are in shambles. Coach Matt Rhule was fired Monday and this is one of the few offenses with numbers as bad or worse than the Rams.
Without getting too deep into the weeds, is the difference between Kevin O’Connell and Liam Coen that big? Coen learned under O’Connell in 2020 when he was assistant quarterbacks coach and O’Connell was in his freshman year as the Rams’ offensive coordinator. Coen became offensive coordinator in Kentucky, where he found a ton of success, and then returned to the Rams for his first season as OC.
He’s not the one trying to block for Matthew Stafford and the running backs, but he’s the one tasked with designing plays to open receivers. The Rams have turned the ball over 12 times and conceded 21 sacks. They’ve produced few explosive plays and Cooper Kupp is just over 10 yards per reception due to last week’s 75-yard catch and run. Running backs average 3.2 yards per carry. Every level of this offensive has failed in some way, scoring 10 or fewer points in three of the five games this season.
Will the defense, which has mostly gotten a pass so far, wake up? The Rams have the fourth-best red zone defense, which helped obscure how poor they are in third place (22nd in third down conversion rate vs.) and at rushing the passer (31st in Pressure% and Rush%) were. .
And here are the Rams, challenged to win by 11 or more points to cover the span. Is this the week the offensive wakes up? The week the defense creates some negative plays? Taking the Rams against the spread is a tall order, but Carolina could also hit rock bottom this week.
Maybe it’s best to just go under with this offense for now.
Choice: Under 42
Visit www.VSiN.com for more sports betting content. Sign up as a subscriber at VSiN.com/subscribe.
https://www.latimes.com/sports/rams/story/2022-10-14/rams-vs-carolina-panthers-betting-odds-lines-picks-against-spread Rams vs. Panthers: Betting odds, lines, picks against spread