- After Monday night’s win, the Seattle Seahawks sit atop the NFC West odds
- The Rams and Cardinals are second and third after last-second losses on Sunday
- With five weeks left in the season, we examine who is the best bet to win the NFC West
While it wasn’t always pretty, and it was against the beleaguered Eagles, the Seahawks extended their lead atop the NFC West on Monday.
The win took on added importance after both the Rams and Cardinals lost on last-second field goals Sunday.
With the calendar flipping to December, the NFL is hitting the stretch run. And with five weeks left and the rest of the division behind them, are the Seahawks the best bet to claim the NFC West?
NFC West Odds
|Team||Record||NFC West Odds|
|Los Angeles Rams||7-4||+220|
|San Francisco 49ers||5-6||+4000|
Odds as of Dec. 1st from BetMGM
The 49ers’ struggles in 2020 saw them fade quickly from the NFL Divisional Odds. Seattle assumed favorite status ahead of Week 3, and held on until last week. That’s when the Rams took a slight lead.
Now the Seahawks are back on top again, with an eye on closing out the season.
Seahawks Have Advantage with Remaining Schedule
When a division is as close as the NFC West, one of the easiest things to look at is who’s left. It can go a long way in determining whether a team can extend its lead, or if a gap will shrink.
For Seattle, they have the upper hand when it comes to the final five weeks.
Remaining Schedule: NFC West
|Week||Seattle Seahawks||LA Rams||Arizona Cardinals||San Francisco 49ers|
|Week 13||vs New York Giants (4-7)||@ Arizona Cardinals (6-5)||vs LA Rams (7-4)||vs Buffalo Bills (8-3)|
|Week 14||vs New York Jets (0-11)||vs New England Patriots (5-6)||@ New York Giants (4-7)||vs Washington FT (4-7)|
|Week 15||@ Washington FT (4-7)||vs New York Jets (0-11)||vs Philadelphia Eagles (3-7-1)||@ Dallas Cowboys (3-8)|
|Week 16||vs LA Rams (7-4)||@ Seattle Seahawks (8-3)||vs San Francisco 49ers (5-6)||@ Arizona Cardinals (6-5)|
|Week 17||@ San Francisco 49ers (5-6)||vs Arizona Cardinals (6-5)||@ Los Angeles Rams (7-4)||vs Seattle Seahawks (8-3)|
|Remaining Opponent Record||20-35||25-30||26-28-1||29-26|
After downing the Eagles on Monday Night Football, Seattle gets three very winnable games. The key is that they’re at home for two of them.
Despite the lack of a 12th Man, the Seahawks are 5-0 at home. After starting 2-0 on the road, they had dropped three straight before their win in Philly.
49ers will host their Weeks 13 and 14 home games against the Buffalo Bills and Washington Football Team at State Farm Stadium in Arizona. pic.twitter.com/OIQMeQEjVx
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 30, 2020
For those hoping the 49ers can climb back into the race, they have the hardest remaining schedule. Not to mention they just got the boot from Santa Clara.
Keep an Eye on Kyler’s Health
While he was removed from the injury report, Kyler Murray was nursing a sprained A/C joint in his throwing shoulder heading into Week 11 against the Patriots.
Murray downplayed the injury, but it was a talking point on Sunday’s broadcast. And the Cards’ next few games will definitely test it.
Patriots' defense the last five possessions: Punt, Downs, Punt, INT, Punt. And Kyler Murray's right shoulder didn't seem to enjoy taking that sack on third down
— Ben Volin (@BenVolin) November 29, 2020
The Patriots are ranked 23rd in coverage and 26th in pass rush according to Pro Football Focus. Murray finished 23-for-34 for 170 yards and an interception.
The Rams, Giants and Eagles are all among the top 15 when it comes to rushing the passer. The Rams and 49ers are top ten in coverage.
Rams’ Offense Needs Consistency
When Los Angeles needed a spark against San Francisco, they turned to their defense. But if they’re going to push Seattle, the offense will need to shine in big moments.
Sunday was the fourth time Jared Goff had been held under 225 yards. LA is 2-2 when that happens. They’re ninth in the league in Net Yards/Attempt through the air (7.0), but one of three teams in the top ten with fewer than 16 TD passes.
Jared Goff being the worst quarterback in a game with Nick Mulles on the opposite side is incredible.
— Sosa K (@QBsMVP) November 29, 2020
The game that could determine if the Rams stay in the race is Week 14 against Bill Belichick. He shut down Goff in Super Bowl LIII.
While New England is not what they once were, it’s a must-win game considering LA faces Seattle two weeks later.
Seahawks Benefit From Next Three Weeks
The next three weeks definitely gives Seattle the inside track to the NFC West.
Provided the Seahawks take care of business, the Rams need to match them for a chance to take the division lead in Week 16. Between that, and the Cards sitting two games back, Seattle will hold onto first in the division.
The Pick: Seahawks (-222)