Rams vs. Washington Betting Odds & Pick: An Under Worth Actually Playing In Week 5
Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images. Pictured: Jared Goff
Rams vs. Washington Odds
The Rams are off to a 3-1 start and sit one game behind the Seahawks for first place in the NFC West.
Jared Goff and Sean McVay seem to have returned to their 2018 form, which should scare the rest of the league, as the Rams are top-six in both passing and rushing success. The Rams defense has held up through their first four games, but will need to improve against the run if L.A. is going to be a threat in the playoffs.
Meanwhile, Dwayne Haskins struggled to move the ball move this ball this season, and Ron Rivera has had enough of it. Washington announced that Kyle Allen will now be starting, and the change could turn things in the right direction, but keep in mind that this is a rebuilding year for Washington — with a new coach, new president and a lot of new players on the roster, Washington is going to go through some growing pains in 2020.
Now let’s take a closer look at how to bet this matchup.
Los Angeles Rams
Despite scoring only 17 points against the Giants last weekend, the Rams offense has been clicking on all cylinders. The Rams rank sixth in passing success and first in rushing success (per Sharp Football Stats).
Goff took a step back in 2019 as issues with the Rams’ offensive line took a toll on the former No. 1 overall pick. His passer rating dropped all the way down to 88.8, which ranked 25th among qualified quarterbacks last season. So far he’s improved drastically in 2020, increasing his passer rating to 112.8 and throwing for 9.1 yards per attempt. However, he may find life difficult vs. Washington’s secondary, which ranks third in defensive passing success.
Losing Todd Gurley hasn’t seemed to matter in 2020, as the Rams are running the ball for 4.2 yards per attempt behind the duo of Malcom Brown and Darell Henderson.
Coming into the season, the Rams offensive line had all sorts of issues, but have seemed to figure things out through their first four games.
The Rams have not been able to stop the run at all in 2020. They are dead-last in the NFL in defensive rushing success and are allowing 5.0 yards per carry. Aaron Donald has once again been wreaking havoc in the backfield, as he already has 3.5 sacks and 4.5 tackles for loss.
The problem for the Rams, though, is building around Aaron Donald on the defensive line. Right now there isn’t another above-average lineman to complement Donald, however the good news is that Washington has struggled to run the ball this season.
In the secondary, the Rams have one of the best corners in the game in Jalen Ramsey. However, outside of Ramsey, things look pretty bleak. The Rams have been pretty successful against the pass this year, ranking 13th in defensive passing success.
Even though Washington is making the change to Allen, L.A. should be able to hold Washington’s passing attack in check.
Washington Football Team
The question marks coming into the season for Washington have not been answered through the first four games. The Football Team is averaging only 4.6 yards per play and only 3.6 yards per carry. Even though they’re facing the worst run defense in the NFL, its hard to imagine they’ll be able to run the ball with a bunch of no-names in the backfield and a below-average offensive line.
Haskins’ inability in the passing game, along with the constant turnovers, ended up being his downfall. Washington is 30th in passing success and 26th in passing explosiveness. They’ll now turn to Allen, who struggled as the starter for Carolina last season. He ranked 31st among qualified quarterbacks in passer rating and threw 16 interceptions compared to only 17 touchdowns in 2019.
That said, Allen does know Ron Rivera’s system better than Haskins, so Allen could be an upgrade a quarterback for the Football Team.
Washington’s defensive line will no doubt improve in 2020 after the team drafted Chase Young with the second overall pick. However, Young is questionable for Sunday’s game.
Washington finished as one of the worst defenses in 2019, ranking 24th in defensive passing success and 27th in defensive rushing success. However, the Football Team has improved so far in 2020, especially in the secondary — it ranks third defensive passing success in 2020 and is allowing only 6.6 yards per pass attempt.
Washington has been pretty average vs. the run this season, allowing 4.4 yards per carry. However, they’ll have a tough matchup on Sunday trying to defend the Rams’ two-headed rushing attack, especially if Young cannot play.
The matchup to watch in this game is Goff and the Rams’ passing attack vs. Washington’s secondary — Landon Collins is starting to play like an All-Pro safety again and could be a key factor in slowing down the Rams offense.
On the flip side, the change from Haskins to Allen isn’t going to make a huge difference. Washington doesn’t have a running game, a decent offensive line or any weapons other than Terry McLaurin. Based on those factors, points will be hard to come by in this game.
I’ve projected 42.32 points for this game, so I there’s some value on Under 46.5 points, but I wouldn’t play it any lower than that.
PICK: Under 46.5