Today's Free Picks for
Posted at 9:30 AM EST odds are subject to change.
San Francisco -1½ @ L.A. Rams
4:25 PM EST. When a team goes on its bye, it is out of sight and out of mind. Enter the Rams, who went into their break after a 24-10 win and cover over the Panthers in Week 6. L.A. did not play last week, but that win looks much better here in Week 8 after Carolina dummied Tom Brady and the Buccaneers last Sunday. The Rams didn’t even have to take the field for their stock to uptick. In a results based business with a short memory, that win and cover doesn't look bad at all.
Prior to that game with the Panthers two weeks ago, the Rams were on their heels after two straight defeats to Dallas (Week 5) and these 49ers (Week 4), respectively. In that game at Levi’s Stadium in NoCal, the Rams were a small 1-point pooch. They lost 24-9. Now, 3½ weeks later, with these teams headed in opposite directions, the Rams are a dog to the 49ers at home in Los Angeles. How can that be?
We discuss the impact that stand alone prime time games have on the market because they are seen by the masses. There are only three stand alone games each week (unless there’s a London game or a holiday)—Thursday Night Football, Sunday Night Football and Monday Night Football. However, every week, there is “America’s Game of the Week,” which is the feature contest in the late window.
We may watch every second that we can of this product, but not everyone is that lucky. Some only have the ability to watch one game at a time. Many only have cable or just an antenna and therefore must watch what their local stations are playing. Most weeks, you’ll have a high profile game with much star power. Think of that main game at 4:25 PM EST as the “fourth major” of NFL broadcasts. It’s a game that has almost as much influence as the prime time contests.
The 49ers were featured nationally in that late window last Sunday, where they were Molly walloped by Kansas City, 44-23. The ‘Niners many warts were on full display. The result was not positive, but a closer look shows the 49ers deserved a better fate. San Francisco had more first downs, won the time of possession by 7:30, and were down just five points with 14:16 to play. However, San Fran would not score again, allowing the Chiefs to rack up 16 unanswered points.
To recap, the 49ers have lost two straight by double digits, once to Atlanta by 14 (not a good look) and they followed that up with a 21-point home loss to the Chiefs. Therefore, this is not the time to be selling the 49ers. Au contraire, my friends, as it is the time to be buying up as much as this team as possible at this hugely discounted rate.
We would be remiss not to mention Super Bowl winning QB Matt Stafford this week. It's only because Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Russell Wilson are playiong so horribly that Stafford is able to hide behind them. If that quartet of aging QB's were having their normally good years, Stafford would be the QB taking all the heat. Stafford is actually a charisma-free turnover machine (8 picks in six games) that has been sacked 22 times. Dude has his ring but like Ryan, Brady, et all, he’s no good anymore (he was never great) and he couldn’t care less. If you’re looking for an absolute true bargain this week, this is it.
San Francisco -1 +103 (Risking 2 units - To Win: 2.06)