Super Bowl predictions heading into wild card weekend
NFL Super Bowl LIII Odds Provided Via: 888sport-Place Your Bets Now
The NFL regular season is in the books, and we officially know the 12 teams whose dreams of hoisting the Lombardi trophy are still alive. The Wild Card Round kicks off on Saturday, but chances are that neither the NFC nor the AFC representatives in the Super Bowl will be playing this weekend.
NFC Champs – Los Angeles Rams (6.00)
The Rams have a lot going for them. They own the second best betting sites odds to reach the Super Bowl from their conference, and they finished tied for the best record in all of football. Even better than the record itself, is the amount of wins they were able to capture despite resting all-pro Todd Gurley for the final two games of the regular season. In Gurley’s absence, CJ Anderson rushed for a combined total of 299 yards over the final two weeks of the season. This cemented LA’s O-Line as an elite positional group, and allowed Gurley, their best offensive weapon, time to get healthy for what should be a deep playoff run.
Defensively, Los Angeles stepped up in a big way throughout the final month of the season. They held opponents to a score of 16 points or less in three of their final five games. The Rams closed out the season by forcing four turnovers in a victory over the ‘9ers, while Aaron Donald finished off his brilliant season tied for the 4th most sacks in a single season in NFL history.
The path to the big game in Atlanta lines up nicely for the fair weathered team from Los Angeles. At the very worst, the only road game they will participate in during the playoffs would take place in New Orleans in the Superdome. If Los Angeles gets the opportunity for revenge after their week 9 loss to the Saints (3.50), chances are things will go down very differently this time around.
Drew Brees has thrown for 203+ yards just once over his last five games, and thrown no more than two touchdowns passes in four straight weeks. The Rams improved defense could put a glove on the Saint’s passing game, while punching their ticket to the Super Bowl.
AFC Champs – New England Patriots (7.00)
In a conference full of question marks, the New England Patriots have once again risen to the top. A few weeks ago the Pats looked dead in the water. Tom Brady didn’t look himself, Josh Gordon was suspended, and the defense was struggling. Fast forward and the Pats’ defense hasn’t surrendered more than 12 points in three straight games, while Brady wrapped up the regular season tossing four touchdowns in week 17.
The Chiefs (5.50) may own the best betting sites odds of any AFC team to reach the Super Bowl, but I believe the Ravens (15.00) may give the Patriots the biggest matchup issues. Yet, when it comes down to it, I will take Tom Brady in Foxborough, over Lamar Jackson, a rookie, any day of the week.
Super Bowl 2019 Matchup: NE Patriots vs. LA Rams
(Possible Super Bowl Matchup Odds: +950 via MyBookie)
The old faithful versus the new kid on the block. Sean McVay’s high-powered offense should have a field day against New England’s putrid secondary. The league’s 22nd ranked pass defense will have fits trying to keep pace with the NFL’s 2nd ranked offense. If the Rams can exploit the Pats backend, it will force the safeties and linebackers to back off, leaving holes for Todd Gurley and football’s 3rd ranked rushing attack to gash. With a solid lead, Los Angeles will force New England to abandon the run, where Aaron Donald can peel his ears back and do what he does best, get to the QB.
Super Bowl LIII Champions: Los Angeles rams