Los Angeles Rams (13-3) at New Orleans Saints (13-3)
NFL Football: Sunday January 20th 2019 at 3:05 PM EDT (Mercedes-Benz Superdome)
Line and Odds: New Orleans Saints -3
FREE ESPN NFL PICKS New Orleans Saints vs Los Angeles Rams
Welcome to the NFC Title game between the two teams that battled all season for the first seed in the conference and in the NFL Power Rankings. Everyone knew the Rams would be something special this season and now this team is four quarters away from a Super Bowl appearance. In 17 games, the Los Angeles Rams have scored 30 points in 13 games and when they hit that magical number, this team is 12-1. The only problem is that, that one loss was to the Saints. New Orleans beat Los Angeles on November Fourth 45-35. You can bet that the Saints will look at the film from that game and try to duplicate that performance. Drew Brees was 25/36, with 346 passing yards, and four touchdown passes. Michael Thomas was also a great marching saint with 12 catches, for a total of 211 yards, and one touchdown catch. The depth scoring was great as well as four Saints had a touchdown reception. However, that game was over two months ago and a just another football Sunday. Now a trip to Super Bowl LIII is on the line. Sundays starting quarterbacks are Jared Goff vs Drew Brees.
Going into this season, the Los Angeles Rams knew that they hard some great talent and could make a potential Super Bowl run. The Rams rammed the competition early by starting the season going 8-0. Then they ran into the always great Saints and the game was done at halftime, as New Orleans built a 35-17 lead and never looked back. The loss didn’t stop the Rams, as they went on to beat the tough Seattle Seahawks and win the 50 point shootout against the Kansas City Chiefs. They would get stopped by the Chicago Bears and lose a head scratch game to the Philadelphia Eagles, before getting some feel good, blowout wins, over the Arizona Cardinals and San Francisco. Now, looking at the Rams Divisional round win over the Dallas Cowboys, the team was able to pull ahead in the second quarter and they rattled the Dallas offense early. It was all about the running game to get this win, as Todd Gurley rushed 16 times, for a total of 115 yards, and one touchdown. C.J. Anderson also played amazing with 23 carries, for 123 yards total, and two touchdowns. The Rams will be just fine against the Saints if these two guys deliver the one-two punch again in rushing. Goff will need to match Brees in passing yards and get some depth scoring from his receivers. The Los Angeles defense has been okay this season, but clearly brick wall defense hasn’t meant anything in this years playoff games and it won’t in this one either.
The New Orleans Saints have always been a great team, thanks to their veteran quarterback Drew Brees, but surprisingly, New Orleans has only been in one Super Bowl. They beat the Indianapolis Colts 31-17 in Super Bowl XLIV and you know it helps with a players legacy, when people see how many rings that athlete has. So, you can that the 40 year old Brees will be ready to go against the mighty Rams. The Saints have had a lot of different types of games this season. Some blowout wins, close games to good teams, and a few low scoring games. This team even had some interesting games against the messy Carolina Panthers. Despite all this, the Saints are just like the Rams. Amazing offensive numbers, okay defense, and playing well all season. However, in the playoffs, you should always expect the unexpected. The New Orleans are lucky they got by the Philadelphia Eagles. When, Wil Lutz missed a 40 plus yard field goal, late in the game, it set up the Eagles for a potential game winning drive. As Philly got close to the 20 yard line, it took an easy dropped catch, and a Marshon Lattimore interception, to give the Saints the win. Even though Michael Thomas had 12 catches, for 171 yards total, and one touchdown catch, it was Lattimores two interceptions that saved the day. So, its nice to see the defense getting the job done from time to time because its been all about the offense for the Saints. New Orleans was down 14-0 in this game and they can also thank the defense for putting up zeros in three straight quarters. The Saints will need to start better against the Rams because if they start slow again. Los Angeles will cruise to a victory.
ESPN NFL Scores Los Angeles Rams vs New Orleans Saints
So, who will win the NFC Title game? Both these teams have flip flopped a few times in the rankings, but who has the real power? The Rams are the far better team in rushing and will use that a lot in this game. Drew Brees has more experience, a better completion number of 74.4%, and less interceptions. Bree’s also has shown that age doesn’t mean anything because this guy is still putting up incredible numbers. However, Jared Goff has thrown for more yards this season and has shown great confidence in his arm. The Saints offense was a little out of sync in the last month of the season and it showed in that Eagles game. The Rams will show their worth and win 34-28.