- Week 14 SNF sees division rivals collide as NFC West division leader (10-2) Seattle Seahawks look to end the playoff hopes of the (7-5) Los Angeles Rams
- Todd Gurley’s usage has seen a uptick lately, the Rams will need to lean heavily on the star running back if they want to hang with the Seahawks
- After finishing Week 13 2-1 and +0.82 units my season total sits at -12.98 units
Week 13 was oh-so-close to a big week, about four minutes away. As Tom Brady led the Patriots to 13 points in the last 4 minutes in their Week 13 SNF clash with the Houston Texans, I watched my big week dwindle away thanks to Tom’s garbage time heroics. Ending the week 2-1 and +0.82 units I was still able to chip away at my dismal season total of -12.98 units with my fourth winning week in the last five weeks.
Back to work in Week 14. Let’s have a look a three interesting props for the SNF matchup between the Seattle Seahawks and Los Angeles Rams.
Prop #1: Margin of Victory
All odds taken Dec. 7th
The Seahawks and Rams’ first matchup of 2019 was way back in Week 5, when the Seahawks squeaked out a 30-29 victory on the fortune of a missed game-winning field goal in the last minute by the Rams. That missed field goal was a sign of things to come for each team, as the Seahawks are 6-1 since that game and looking at a possible first round bye while the Rams have went 4-3 and find themselves on the outside looking in in the NFC playoff race.
Home field advantage has not been kind to the Rams in their last season at the Coliseum, as they enter this one just 3-3 at home. Meanwhile, the Seahawks have been road warriors this year, not losing an away game in their first six road contests.
The last three Seahawks vs Rams games have been decided by a total of eight points, with the Rams taking both games in 2018 and the Seahawks winning the Week 5 matchup earlier this year.
Head-to-Head Statistical Comparison
|3rd||Total Yards per Game||10th|
|3rd||Rush Yards per Game||25th|
|10th||Pass Yards per Game||5th|
|5th||Points Per Game||12th|
|24th||Total Yards Allowed per Game||12th|
|8th||Rush Yards Allowed per Game||13th|
|29th||Pass Yards Allowed per Game||9th|
|23rd||Points Allowed per Game||13th|
Talk about a role reversal, in recent years the Seahawks have boasted a solid defense while the Rams have had a potent offense. But it’s the Seahawks who enter the game the division leaders at 10-2 behind a offense that can seemingly pick the way they want to beat their opponents. On the other side, the Rams ca thank their defense for their slim shot at the playoffs, as their offense struggles through this year.
Turnover differential has also played a large part for both teams in 2019, as the Seahawks sit third in the league with a +10 turnover differential, while the Rams, behind turnover-prone Jared Goff, currently reside 24th at -4.
Pick: Seahawks 1-13 (+184)
Risk: 1 unit to win 1.84 units
Prop #2: Most Rushing Yards Gurley vs Carson
|Most Rushing Yards||Odds|
With a quick glance at team and individual stats this does not look like much of a contest.
Head-to-Head Statistical Comparison
|4.17||Yards Per Carry||4.25|
Clearly, Todd Gurley’s usage has seen a major hit in 2019, but when asked this week what’s up with the uptick in usage in recent weeks, Rams coach Sean McVay simply said “Me not being an idiot.” The Rams are willing to run Gurley more as the season wears on, with at least 19 carries in two of the Rams’ last three games. The other game, they got way behind the Baltimore Ravens really early and only ran the ball nine times the entire game.
#LARams RB Todd Gurley on Head Coach Sean McVay calling himself “an idiot” for not using Gurley more until recently:
“He said it, not me.”
— TurfShowTimes (@TurfShowTimes) December 6, 2019
The usage trend between the two backs has leaned Gurley’s way recently, as he has seen 50 of the 66 (75%) total running back carries over the Rams last three contests. Carson’s usage has trended the other way: since the Seahawks’ Week 11 bye, Carson has 31 of the Seahawks 61 running back carries (51%) in part due to his fumble issues (seven fumbles, four lost) and with the significant contributions of backfield mate Rashaad Penny since the bye (29 carries, 203 yards, 2 TDs).
Pick: Todd Gurley (-106)
Risk: 1 unit to win 0.94 units
Prop #3: Todd Gurley Over/Under 62.5 Rushing Yards
|Todd Gurley Rushing Yards||Odds|
A matchup with the team giving up the eighth fewest rushing yards per game in the NFL may seem daunting. However, game script for opponents facing the Seahawks may have more to do with that ranking then the actual stoutness of the Seahawks’ run defense. Seattle has seen the third fewest rush attempts per game this season at 21.7, surrendering 4.6 yards per attempt, good for 23rd in the league. Sitting at 10-2 behind an efficient offense, the Seahawks have played a high-octane form of football, forcing opposing teams to take to the air.
Todd Gurley was ELITE in Week 13 at Arizona ? pic.twitter.com/Hn6qAD6jWS
— PFF (@PFF) December 5, 2019
With Goff struggling the Rams will look to Gurley to keep their slim playoff hopes alive as long as this contest is close. Over the Rams’ last four games Gurley has accumulated 287 of his 642 rushing yards. That is 45% of his 12-game total in four games.
At an average of 71.8 rush yards per game over that span, Gurley has cleared 62.5 yards in three out of the Rams’ last four games. If Gurley is indeed capable of a full workload, now is the time to find out as the Rams’ playoff hopes are quickly fading away.
Pick: Gurley over 62.5 rushing yards (-114)
Risk: 3 units to win 2.63 units
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