Rams vs 49ers Odds, Prediction: Monday Night Football Preview
Getty Images. Pictured: George Kittle (left) and Aaron Donald.
- The Rams go for a third straight win tonight against the 49ers.
- San Francisco won both regular-season meetings last season against the Rams.
- Stuckey breaks down the matchup and makes his betting pick below.
Rams vs. 49ers Odds
|Moneyline||+105 / -125|
|Odds via BetMGM.|
We wouldn't be referring to the Rams as defending champs had Jaquiski Tartt held on to a Matthew Stafford pass that should've been intercepted in the NFC Championship Game. I'm sure the 49ers have had this game circled ever since.
A Rams win would move them to 3-1 and in sole possession of first place in the division, while a 49ers victory will move them into a tie atop the NFC West at 2-2. This could be a major swing game in terms of how the division ultimately plays itself out.
Rams vs. 49ers Matchup Analysis
Toggle the dropdowns below to hide or show how the Rams and 49ers match up statistically:
Rams vs. 49ers DVOA Breakdown
Rams vs. 49ers Matchup Analysis
The Rams offense has looked a bit off to start the season. Maybe Stafford isn't fully healthy or maybe it's subpar play from the offensive line, which will be without center Brian Allen. The receiver room has also underperformed outside of Cooper Kupp, who will always get his on a weekly basis. Allen Robinson has been a massive disappointment, and Van Jefferson's injury has removed a reliable deep threat to open up the offense.
We can argue over the primary driver for days, but the bottom line is the offense needs work. The Rams' offense ranks 29th in EPA per play on early downs (which are more predictive) and only the Patriots and Bears have a lower EPA per dropback.
Now, they will face an elite 49ers defense that ranks second in the NFL in EPA per play on early downs, trailing only the Buffalo Bills, who dominated the Rams in the season opener. I don't see Los Angeles consistently moving the ball in this one with a high probability of some costly Stafford errors.
The 49ers offense also has similar problems along the offensive line, especially without arguably the best left tackle in the league in Trent Williams, who suffered an injury last week in Denver. The run game is nowhere close to as efficient as we are used to seeing under Kyle Shanahan in large part due to a struggling offensive line plus injuries in the running back room. Containing Aaron Donald will be priority No. 1 on Monday night.
The passing game has been inconsistent, but that's no surprise with Jimmy Garoppolo replacing the injured Trey Lance after getting no reps in the preseason. He should look much more comfortable with each passing week. Plus, getting a healthy George Kittle back in the mix does wonders for both the rushing and passing attacks.
Garoppolo should have some opportunities to make plays against a Rams defense that is struggling to generate pressure and has a cluster of injuries in the secondary. That's not a great combination in today's NFL. Outside of Jalen Ramsey, there are major question marks on the back end.
Much like Kupp, you can count on Deebo Samuel putting up numbers, especially against the Rams. In five games against LA over the past two seasons, Samuel has 30 receptions on 37 targets for 463 yards and three reception touchdowns. He's also amassed more than 100 yards and two touchdowns on the ground over that span.
Look for Shanahan to get Samuel the ball in a variety of ways after he totaled 20 combined rushing attempts in these teams' three meetings last season.
In all seriousness, Shanahan has gotten the better of Sean McVay more times than not since arriving in the Bay Area. Including the postseason, Shanahan boasts an 8-3 against the spread (ATS) record against McVay, covering by an average margin of almost five points per game. That includes a perfect 3-0 ATS record last season against Stafford with the Rams.
Of the three games Shanahan didn’t cover, two came back in 2018 when the eventual 4-12 49ers started C.J. Beathard and Nick Mullens.
Shanahan has always schemed a brilliant offensive game plan against the Rams, which I expect him to do once again. He has an extra day of preparation, and Garoppolo has an extra week of practice after doing nothing in the preseason.
The 49ers defense will be the best unit on the field. I have them ranked as a top-three unit in the NFL with no more questions about the secondary. It all starts with a defensive line that can generate pressure naturally and an elite group of linebackers that serves as the engine.
In a matchup of two underwhelming offensive lines, I trust the 49ers to get more pressure on Stafford in this particular matchup, even without Williams. In 2022, the 49ers are one of only three teams with a sack rate north of 10%, while the Rams sit at a below average 6.1%.
I also have more faith in the 49ers' rushing attack against the Rams defense (which has been stout against the run, in fairness) than I do in the Rams offense (which ranks below average in both EPA per drop back and rush on early downs) against San Francisco.
Lastly, the situational spot favors the 49ers, who will be at home after a loss with revenge on their minds from that NFC Championship Game. That's an impossible angle to quantify and could ultimately be nothing, but it'd only work in the 49ers' favor.
I've been looking to fade the Rams early in the season, as I'm lower on them than the market. Last week was not one of those times, as McVay simply owns Kliff Kingsbury. It's actually the opposite this week, so I'm jumping back in on a Rams fade and backing the home 49ers.
Bet 49ers -1.5 at FanDuel | Play to -2.5