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Los Angeles Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks Point Spread - Pick

Los Angeles Rams (9-4 SU, 8-5 ATS) vs. Seattle Seahawks (8-5 SU, 5-7-1 ATS)
Week 15 NFL
Date/Time: Sunday, December 17, 2017 at 4:05PM EST
Where: CenturyLink Field, Seattle, Washington
TV: Fox

By Loot, NFL Football Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Point Spread: LA +1/SEA -1
Over/Under Total: 48

The Los Angeles Rams take on the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday in a high-stakes NFC West battle in the Pacific Northwest. The division is still up for grabs, with the top two dogs doing battle in what will be a critical game toward deciding the NFC West. Neither team was successful this past week. The Seahawks went on the road and came up short to a good Jacksonville team, 30-24. The Rams, meanwhile, lost in a wild one at home to the Eagles, 43-35. It was a really tough loss for the Rams, who led 35-34 with less than 4 minutes left. Who can get back on the winning track and start making that big playoff push this week?

As NFC West rivals, these teams have already faced each other this season. In a week five matchup from the LA Coliseum, the Seahawks pulled out a 16-10 win. The Seahawks probably won't be able to bank on the five turnovers they got in that game and the Rams are playing better than they were earlier in the season. While it illustrates something we already knew, with the Seahawks being a tough matchup for the Rams, it was an out-of-range result that might not matter a ton for the purposes of this week 15 game.

The Rams really hung in there in what was a good game against the Eagles on Sunday. The Eagles got an early upper-hand, with the Rams battling back and taking a second-half lead. Back and forth they went, until Philly scored three times in the last 10 minutes to seal it. A strip-sack of Jared Goff led to the go-ahead score and a Goff lateral was taken back for a TD in the game's final play, making what was a 2-point deficit look more conclusive than it was, which was a razor-close war. The Rams are in a real tough part of the season, taking on one contender after the next, with another one this week. And while they came up short to the Vikings and now the Eagles, those who sleep on the Rams might be doing so at their own peril.

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There were some miscues on offense for the Rams on Sunday and they got off to a slow start and always seemed to be going in uphill-mode. Still, they made the most of what they had. Seven of their 35 points came on a Kayvon Webster blocked punt-return. But they made some things happen against a really tough Eagles' defense. Against the best rushing-defense in the league, Todd Gurley got off for 96 yards and two touchdowns. He added 39 yards receiving, while rookie Cooper Kupp had 118 yards and a TD. It wasn't a very big aerial day for Goff, though he was efficient, also connecting with Sammy Watkins in the end zone. Watkins has 7 TD catches this season, but only 34 catches. It's harder to say this after a loss, but the offense wasn't bad on Sunday.

The Rams' defense didn't have its best day on Sunday, but the Eagles didn't get to be 11-2 by opposing defenses having good days. It's been typical for the Eagles offense to thrive this season, even if they lost Wentz in this game. There was some good individual play, especially by Webster who also had a pick on the day. Unfortunately, they lost Webster to a torn Achilles. Robert Quinn and Michael Brockers both had sacks. And they were pretty tough to start the second half, which helped stage the Rams getting back in the game. It's important to remember for the purposes of this game that only the top offenses have done well against this defense lately.

Seattle will be eager to atone for the loss to the Jaguars on Sunday. They fell behind early, and trailed in the fourth quarter, 27-10. Two long Russell Wilson TD throws to Paul Richardson and Tyler Lockett gave the Jags a little stress, but it was too little, too late. It wasn't a great showing on either side of the ball, as the Seahawks were looking for more after beating the Eagles the previous week.

Sunday was an uncharacteristic performance by Wilson, as he tossed three picks. He did connect on TDs with Baldwin, along with the two late ones. They couldn't really get the run-game going after falling behind. But Mike Davis has been giving them some good runs in recent weeks, with a dizzying rotation of backs having been used this season. The aerial-game has become the best part of the offense and they have created a nice identity. With Lockett, Richardson, and Baldwin, along with TE Jimmy Graham, it's a pretty dynamic group. But there will still be games where you tune in and see long stretches of ineffectiveness. On Sunday, one had to wait until there was 8:30 left in the third for them to first hit the scoreboard.

These next few weeks will be critical for the Seattle defense to see if they can perform closer to their peak on a consistent basis. If not, these personnel issues will have proven to be too much to overcome. They didn't look all that great on Sunday. Jacksonville had one of its better aerial days of the season, with Leonard Fournette going for over 100 yards. The Jaguars put up 429 yards and Seattle didn't get to Blake Bortles one time. We'll have to see the statuses of Bobby Wagner and KJ Wright, who left the game on Sunday. With guys like Richard Sherman, Kam Chancellor, and others already out of action, it will be interesting to see how they perform down the stretch.

There are many different angles in which to analyze this game. One could expect more points than the 16-10 grind they had the first time around. It's of fairly-equal importance to both teams, but Seattle would certainly be facing a dicey playoff future with a loss in this game. Though they haven't always been great at home this season, it still makes for a tough spot for the Rams. I just think that despite the loss last week and the earlier loss to the Seahawks, the Rams are just better right now. A simplistic notion it might be, and possibly an incorrect one, but it's the one I'm going with this week.

Loot's Prediction to Cover the Point Spread: I'm betting on the Los Angeles Rams plus one point. Tired of your credit card not working for sportsbook deposit? End that problem today and bet the Rams vs. Seahawks game by signing up at Bovada Sportsbook where your credit card WILL work and where you'll receive a generous 50% sign-up bonus!

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