#467 Buffalo Billsvs.#468 Los Angeles Rams
Written by Chuck D
When and Where: Sunday, Oct. 9, Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, Calif. 4:25pm EDT (CBS)
Spread: Los Angeles -3; Total: 40
Both of these squads enter Sunday’s contest coming off of big divisional-road wins. The Bills went into New England for the Patriot’s final game without Tom Brady and took advantage of that fact, shutting out the Pat’s, 16-0. The Rams held off the Cardinals for a 17-13 win and now share first-place in the NFC West with Seattle. The squads have met 76 times with the series all knotted up, 37-37-2.
Buffalo began their season with two straight six-point losses . . . first at Baltimore, then in Buffalo against Rex Ryan’s former team, the New York Jets. The squad has rebounded with two straight wins since then, including a 33-18 home-victory over the Cardinals, followed up by Sunday’s big win over New England. The offense was not necessarily impressive, but the defense was. The Bills outgained the Patriots 378 to 277. LeSean McCoy had 19 carries for 70 yards while the team as a whole ran for 134 yards. Robert Woods had 89 yards receiving from seven catches with a long of 23. Tyrod Taylor threw for 246 and a score plus had a 28-yard run.
On the season, Taylor now has 773 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions. Marcell Dareus, who was serving a four-game suspension will be back on Sunday and should bolster the team’s defense in Los Angeles.
Truth be told, not much was expected of the Rams in their first season back in the City of Angels. No. 1 overall draft pick Jared Goff could not beat out undersized quarterback Case Keenum, and of course there was also the Hard Knocks curse hanging over their heads after the squad appeared on HBO’s training camp television show. Frankly, I watched the show and did not think much of them either. Opening the season with a 28-0 road loss to San Francisco did nothing to encourage hopes either. All Los Angeles has done since then is go 3-0, first beating Seattle at home, then earning back-to-back road wins over the Buccaneers and Cards.
Keenum did not play like an undersized QB against Arizona, completing 18 of 30 passes for 266 yards and two scores, both to Brian Quick. The leading receiver on the day was veteran Kenny Britt who hauled in four catches for 82 yards. David Johnson was the game’s leading rusher with 83 yards on 17 carries with a long of 31. Keenum is not having the most impressive season statistically as he now has 825 yards, four scores and three interceptions, but as long as the Rams keep winning it is hard to foresee Goff taking over the starting role any time soon.
Los Angeles is:
After two weeks on the road with two victories the home side is going to be amped to see their Rams return to the Coliseum. 40 points is a low under with Los Angeles playing the way they are right now, it is hard to pick against them.
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Chuck Dowling is a 30-something University of Florida J-School alum that lives in his mother’s basement. Just kidding... there are no basements in Florida (the ground is too moist). He has been in the “biz” for his entire adult life and specializes in NCAA football and basketball, as well as soccer, boxing, and MMA. When not writing, Chuck moonlights as a high school athletics radio and internet-television broadcaster.