The St. Louis Rams will look to continue their recent success against the Washington Redskins when they hit the road for the first time this season Sunday. The Rams are 6-1 against the spread in their last seven meetings with the Redskins, and they are coming off a big overtime win against the Seattle Seahawks in the season opener as 3.5-point home underdogs.
Point spread: Rams opened as 2.5-point favorites; the total was 41.5 early in the week, according to sportsbooks monitored by Odds Shark (line updates and matchup report).
NFL pick, via Odds Shark computer: 25.1-22.7 Rams
Why the Rams can cover the spread
There’s no question St. Louis has gotten the better of the 2012 trade that allowed Washington to draft quarterback Robert Griffin III with the second overall pick. Every time these teams meet, the Redskins have to be reminded how much they gave up for a player now backing up the fourth-round pick from the same year in Kirk Cousins.
The Rams got three first-round draft picks and a second-rounder, and they have been able to build up their defense over the past few years to become one of the elite units in the NFL. Last year, St. Louis showed off that D in a dominant 24-0 road win at Washington, covering the spread for the third time in four meetings as an underdog.
Why the Redskins can cover the spread
Some could argue the Redskins will be playing with revenge in this spot, particularly Cousins, who saw Colt McCoy start instead of him. Washington head coach Jay Gruden is already on the hot seat and could be fired soon if his team continues to finish games like Week 1 when the Miami Dolphins stole a road victory with 10 points in the fourth quarter, including the game-winning touchdown by Jarvis Landry on a 69-yard punt return with 10 minutes, 22 seconds remaining.
The Redskins can’t afford to lose many more home games like that, and the Rams are definitely limited enough offensively to give them a chance here. St. Louis was 1-5 straight up and against the spread in its previous six games during the month of September before upsetting Seattle, so Washington has a shot as a small home dog.
There tends to be a lot of overreaction in the NFL, especially early in the season. The Rams looked awesome thanks to the OT victory, but a loss there would have possibly made this game a pick ’em instead.
While the Redskins certainly deserve to be the underdogs in this situation, it’s a great spot for them to bounce back with a win. They did play the Dolphins very tough for three quarters defensively and should be able to hold St. Louis in check offensively to cover the spread and possibly get their first win.
The Rams are 6-1 ATS in their last seven games against the Redskins.
The Rams are 5-1 SU and ATS in their last six games as road favorites.
The Redskins are 1-5 SU and ATS in their last six games.