Not all Thursday Night Football matchups are created equal. Let’s get into it in our Rams-Seahawks betting preview.
After enduring the Tennessee at Jacksonville slop fest two weeks ago, we were treated last week to a classic shootout between the Eagles and Packers, a game that wasn’t decided until the final moment. Undoubtedly, the result of that one pleased bettors who backed the local team and the over at PA online sportsbooks.
This week, we get another marquee matchup when the Rams travel north for an important early-season NFC West showdown with the Seahawks.
Both teams enter with identical 3-1 records. The winner will have a chance to close the weekend atop the NFC West standings, depending on the outcome of Monday night’s 49ers-Browns game, while the loser will fall two games back in the division’s loss column when the curtain falls tonight.
Gather ‘round, friends. For this is a most delightful autumnal treat bequeathed upon us by the scheduling gods!
Will it be Seattle that avoids taking a second straight “L” at CenturyLink Field, or will Los Angeles rebound after a shocking loss to Tampa Bay last week?
Let’s get into it with our Rams vs. Seahawks betting preview.
How to Bet on Rams-Seahawks
Don’t be fooled. It’s not just about what you bet, it’s also about where you bet.
With big odds boosts, generous welcome offers, and awesome promotional offers to be had at all of the PA online sportsbooks,we urge that you shop around and take advantage of all the best deals.
As always, it’s a good idea to compare spreads and odds across multiple sportsbooks to ensure you’re maximizing your chances of winning. As experienced bettors know, it’s all too often that an occasional extra point of value can make the difference between a win and a loss.
With that said, here are some of the top promos and welcome offers out there to kickoff the NFL’s Week 5 slate.
In addition to a variety of bet boosts and custom bet options, FOX Bet is also running a Custom Sal’s Money Back Special for tonight’s game. Grab a solid +310 payout if both teams go without throwing an interception and the game doesn’t go to overtime.
Not a bad proposition, at least not on the end of Seattle QB Russell Wilson, given that he hasn’t been picked off in 133 pass attempts this season.
The same confidence probably shouldn’t be placed in Jared Goff. He’s been picked off an NFL-worst six times on 173 pass attempts, including three times a week ago against the Bucs.
I’m guessing head coach Sean McVay won’t have his QB chucking it 60+ times tonight, so maybe he’s in line for a clean game.
FanDuel Sportsbook PA also remains a strong option with its $500 risk-free bet offer to new users. FanDuel is also offering close loss insurance of up to $50 on all moneyline wagers lost by six points or less. Give tonight’s short spread, this promo could come in handy.
For those of you in the state of New Jersey, check out our comprehensive NJ online sports betting page that is loaded with sportsbook reviews, welcome offers, and sign-up bonuses.
Like the Seahawks tonight?
FOX Bet is offering Chris Carson to score and the Seahawks to win at +260 (boosted from +240). Think the Rams get it done? There’s a boost on Todd Gurley to score and the Rams to win at +290 (boosted from +270).
How to Watch Rams-Seahawks
Date: Thursday, October 3
Time: 8:20 p.m. EST
Location: CenturyLink Field (Seattle, WA)
Network: FOX and NFL Network
Announcers: Joe Buck (play-by-play), Troy Aikman (color analyst), Erin Andrews and Kristina Pink (sideline)
Radio: 710 ESPN (Seattle), KCBS 93.1 FM (Los Angeles), Westwood One (National)
There’s nothing worse than betting on a high-octane passing offense or hammering an over play only to find out the game is going to be played in a stiff wind or driving rainstorm, so let’s take a quick look at the weather.
Tonight’s game is expected to be played under cloudy skies with a chance of an occasional shower. Temperatures are expected to be in the upper 50s and drop into the mid 50s as the game wears on, so the weather shouldn’t play much of a role this evening.
Here are the current Rams-Seahawks betting odds at some of the top legal online sportsbooks as of 10:00 a.m. Thursday morning.
|Rams||+1.5 (-110)||+105||O 49 (-110)|
|Seahawks||-1.5 (-110)||-125||U 49 (-110)|
|Rams||+1,5 (-110)||+106||O 49.5 (-110)|
|Seahawks||-1.5 (-110)||-122||U 49.5 (-110)|
|Rams||+1.5 (-114)||+102||O 49.5 (-110)|
|Seahawks||-1.5 (-107)||-124||U 49.5 (-110)|
|Rams||+1.5 (-110)||+106||O 49.5 (-110)|
|Seahawks||+1.5 (-110)||-120||U 49.5 (-110)|
As we do with every game that we preview, we like to include a look at the current implied win probability of the moneyline odds around the various legal sportsbooks and how they stack up with FiveThirtyEight’s ELO point spread and win probability projections.
It should be noted that ELO and other similar models aren’t an exact science, nor are they necessarily accurate predictors of a game’s outcome, but we believe it’s a worthwhile exercise to compare the two sources in search of possible betting value.
As for tonight, the ELO projection has the Seahawks favored by 1.5 points and at a 55% win probability. With the Seahawks currently favored by 1.5 points at most legal sportsbooks, the ELO measure is in lockstep with oddsmakers.
Notably, this rarely occurs.
Meanwhile, the implied win probability of FanDuel’s Seahawks -122 moneyline odds is 55%, which is also right in line with the ELO projection.
As for the Rams, the implied probability of their +106 moneyline odds is 48.5%, which is slightly higher than ELO’s 45% win probability projection. Therefore, there is no added value on a Rams moneyline play.
Not only does this figure to be a good game between two solid teams, it’s also an important game.
The Rams and Seahawks both trail undefeated San Francisco, and the loser tonight runs the risk of falling two games behind in the NFC West loss column. While it’s a bit too early to make any definitive judgments about the validity of the upstart 49ers, at the very least, this remains an important game between two teams that are expected to contend in the NFC this season.
Seattle rebounded last week with a convincing 27-10 road win at Arizona following a rare September loss at CenturyLink Field to the Saints. How rare? It was the first time under Pete Carroll that Seattle lost at home during the month of September since he took the job, spoiling his 15-0 record.
For those of you thinking a play on Seattle makes sense because the Seahawks are so good at home, and thus won’t lose consecutive games in front of the home crowd, well, just know they dropped two-straight home games there in both 2017 and 2018.
Russell Wilson has gotten off to a fast start this season by completing 72.9% of his pass attempts for 1,141 yards and eight touchdowns against zero interceptions. He’s on pace to finish with a career-best in completion percentage, passing yards per game (285.3), yards per attempt (8.6), and passer rating (118.7), all while also rushing for 88 yards and two touchdowns.
His electric start and continued ability to make something out of nothing has him squarely in the MVP conversation at the season’s quarter pole.
— Samuel Gold (@SamuelRGold) September 29, 2019
As for the Rams, head coach Sean McVay might have an uncanny ability to remember playcalls, but he may want to forget several of Jared Goff’s 68 dropbacks against Tampa Bay last Sunday, which included three interceptions.
I’m not sure that anybody knows exactly what to make of their shocking 55-40 loss to the Buccaneers, but we do know that playing in Seattle hasn’t been an issue for this team. The Rams have won each of their last two trips to CenturyLink Field and have won three of their last four games in Seattle.
As for Goff, he has been up and down this season.
He’s completing nearly 65% of his passes, but he’s coughed up six interceptions through four games and has often looked uncomfortable and out of sync for prolonged stretches. Also of concern for Los Angeles is the mystery surrounding Todd Gurley. After rushing for 97 yards on 14 carries in the Rams’ Week 1 win at Carolina, Gurley hasn’t cracked four yards per carry in any of the team’s last three games.
Perhaps more troubling is that he only received five carries last week, though he did catch seven passes and score twice on the ground.
Certainly, part of the reason McVay only called 10 runs last week had something to do with an early 21-0 deficit, but if he doesn’t commit to the run tonight—a week after Goff attempted the third-most pass attempts in league history—then it’s time to officially sound, nay, pound the alarm.
I anticipate that McVay renews a commitment to offensive balance tonight, and that’s part of the reason I like the Rams in this game.
Rams-Seahawks Betting Trends
Why Backing the Rams is a Good Bet
Some Concerning NFC West Trends for Favorites
Home field advantage is important, obviously, but there are several trends beyond the Rams’ recent success at CenturyLink Field giving me pause ahead of this one:
- Since the 2003 season, NFC West teams favored by three points or less at home in division games are 7-18-1 ATS, while the Seahawks are 2-5 ATS in this role.
- NFC West home favorites are 1-4 ATS in Thursday night division games.
- NFC West home favorites are 8-16 ATS in division games when playing a team that’s on a one-game losing streak.
- NFC West home teams that are favored by three points or less that are playing a division opponent that failed to cover in its previous game are 1-8 ATS (Seattle 0-2 ATS).
It Ain’t September Anymore
Pete Carroll’s Seahawks have been dominant at home during the month of September, but that dominance fades in October–particularly against the spread. The Seahawks are only 2-6 ATS as a home favorite under Carroll in October.
Rams’ Road Success
There are a few different layers to consider about the Rams’ road success:
- Not only have they won three of their last four games in Seattle, Los Angeles is also 12-2 straight up over their last 14 road games.
- They have covered five of their last six contests away from home.
- The Rams are 3-1 ATS as a road underdog and 3-0 ATS when playing as a road underdog after failing to cover in their previous game under Sean McVay.
The Seahawks are averaging 25.8 points per game through four weeks, important because since the start of the 2017 season, the Rams are 4-1 ATS against teams averaging between 25-30 points per game. Meanwhile, Carroll’s Seahawks teams are 0-4-1 ATS against teams averaging 29-31 points per game (Los Angeles is averaging 29.3 points per game).
Why Backing the Seahawks is a Good Bet
Seattle Has Been Lights-out in Primetime Games
The Seahawks are an incredible 22-6-2 ATS in all regular season primetime games under Carroll and 13-4-2 ATS as a favorite. They’re also 17-2 straight up at CenturyLink Field in primetime games under Carroll. (It should be noted, however, that two of their ATS losses have come when favored by two points or less, as they are tonight.)
McVay Hasn’t Been a Good Primetime Bet
There are a ton of pro-McVay trends, but his performance in night games hasn’t been good. The Rams are only 1-4-1 ATS in such games since he became head coach.
A Quick Word on the Total
Since 2003, the under is 19-11-1 in primetime games between two NFC West teams, and it’s 5-11-1 ATS when the Seahawks are involved.
During that time, the under is also 14-5-1 in NFC West division games when the home spread is between -2 and +2.
If you look at the information I supplied above, you probably already know my Rams-Seahawks pick.
Seattle’s success at home and its overwhelming success in night games under Carroll is no doubt impressive, but the several trends of short home favorites in NFC West division games are major red flags. Moreover, McVay has been good in rebound spots, and the Rams are coming off an embarrassing loss a week ago. I think they find some offensive balance tonight and find a way to outlast Wilson and the Seahawks.
In what could be a close game, I’ll skip the moneyline and grab the points.
Prediction: Rams (+1.5) over Seahawks