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Jaguars Must Seize On Rams Opportunity

October 13, 2017

The Jacksonville Jaguars dominated the Pittsburgh Steelers last week to move to 3-2 in their campaign.

The Jaguars issued the perfect response to their defeat at the hands of the New York in their previous outing. The defense were all over Ben Roethlisberger, intercepting the Steelers quarterback five times in the contest, allowing Doug Marrone’s men to secure a dominant win.

Leonard Fournette continued his impressive start to life in the NFL, icing the game with a 90-yard run for a touchdown. He and Chris Ivory have formed a powerful one-two punch in the backfield, easing the pressure on quarterback Blake Bortles.

Bortles’ struggles had held the Jaguars back in the past, but the ability of the running backs to carry the weight of the offense has allowed the Jags to improve.

Jalen Ramsey is beginning to emerge as a star on defense along with Yannick Ngakoue and Myles Jack. The defense will be aiming to build on their performance against the Steelers, and will have a solid opportunity against Jared Goff and the Los Angeles Rams.

Los Angeles have made a bright start to the season under new head coach Sean McVay. However, they spurned the chance to knock off the Seattle Seahawks on home soil.

The Rams could have taken control of the NFC West with a victory. A number of drops and turnovers prevented them from claiming the win, putting them in a battle with Seattle for the division.

The match is a crucial contest for two sides that have struggled immensely in recent years. A victory for either could send them on a charge for the playoffs.
We’ll now break down the two sides and look at the latest betting odds for the game.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Fournette has enjoyed a great start
Credit: USA TODAY Sports

The Jaguars proved a point by defeating the Steelers last week. Marrone’s men needed a strong performance after a surprise loss on the road to the New York Jets.
Their defense dominated Roethlisberger and Pittburgh’s offense, with Ramsey recovering from an early mistake against Antonio Brown.

Roethlisberger was intercepted five times, two of which were returned for touchdowns by Telvin Smith and Barry Church.  Tashaun Gipson and Ramsey also notched picks, highlighting the talent on the Jags’ defense. They also shut down the running game, holding Le’Veon Bell to 47 yards.

Calais Campbell has been a great addition to the defensive line, while the young players Ngakoue and Dante Fowler Jr are on the rise as pass-rushers. The unit has the talent to be a top-five unit, and shutting down Goff and the Rams will further enhance those claims.

Fournette has been huge for the Jaguars’ offense. He has become the leading man for the club, carrying the ball 109 times for 466 yards and five touchdowns.

He has been the workhorse for the club this season, but the 22-year-old has been helped by Chris Ivory. The back has been solid in his relief duties, easing the strain on Fournette.

Bortles had been throwing the ball too much for the Jaguars in the past. The rise of the running game has stopped him making the crucial mistakes that have plagued his career.

Jacksonville have to hope that continues for the rest of the campaign to return to the playoffs for the first time since 2007.

Los Angeles Rams

Goff took a stepback last week

The Rams have made significant progress this season under new head coach McVay. However, last week was a missed opportunity against the Seahawks. Goff had ample time to win the game, but committed a number of turnovers to allow the Seahawks to put points on the board.

The 22-year-old still had the chance to win the game, only for Cooper Kupp to drop the match-winning touchdown in the endzone. It was not a complete performance from the Rams. Todd Gurley, who has enjoyed a strong start to the campaign, made a costly error when Earl Thomas caused him to fumble through the endzone.

Those points would prove to be decisive in allowing the Seahawks to clinch a six-point victory on the road. Goff and company have made strides this season, but have to become more clinical in the redzone against the elite sides in the NFL.

Los Angeles need better production from their wide receivers. Tavon Austin, Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods have to raise the standard of their displays to ease the pressure on the quarterback.

The Rams have been up and down on defense, with last week being one of their stronger performances.

They’ve had issues in the secondary at times, but Trumaine Johnson and Nickell Robey-Coleman are quality players and have the ability to lock down the Jags’ wideouts this week.
Aaron Donald has been a force in the middle of the defensive line and is on course for a challenge for Defensive Player of the Year.

Outside of Donald, Alec Olgetree’s strong displays have earned him a lucrative contract extension. However, the Rams need more from Robert Quinn and Connor Barwin off the edge.

Betting Options

This contest could be pivotal in the playoff hopes for both teams. The two sides are 3-2 in their respective seasons, with a victory for either team giving them impetus for the rest of the term.
The Jaguars have the ability to shut down the Rams’ offense much like they did to the Steelers last week. Ramsey and company in the secondary will restrict the wideouts.

That will force Goff to hold the ball and allow the pass-rush to get after the quarterback in the pocket. Campbell and Malik Jackson in the middle of the line will stop Gurley on the ground game, forcing a low-scoring contest.

Jacksonville will have their problems moving the ball. Donald and his defensive team-mates will be keyed on Fournette and that could force Bortles to throw downfield.

It will be a close match, but expect the Jags to secure the win at odds of 21/25  with 888Sport. Due to the close nature of the contest, taking +1.5 points with the Rams at odds of 15/14 .

Fournette has been on form on the ground. However, the Jags may use play-action as a fake near the goalline. Therefore back tight end Marcedes Lewis for an anytime touchdown with Bet365 at 5/2 . This should be a low-scoring game, so take the under on 35.5 points at 43/20  with 888Sport.

Tips Summary

Jacksonville Jaguars To Beat Los Angeles Rams
Sunday 15th October 2017 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 21/25

Take +1.5 Points With Los Angeles Rams
Sunday 15th October 2017 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 15/14

Marcedes Lewis Score Anytime Touchdown
Sunday 15th October 2017 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 5/2

Under 35.5  Points In The Contest
Sunday 15th October 2017 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 43/20


  • Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Jared Goff
  • Leonard Fournette
  • Los Angeles Rams
  • NFL

    About the author

    Eric Roberts
    Eric Roberts

    Sports Journalist

    Eric has been a sports journalist for over 20 years and has travelled the world covering top sporting events for a number of publications. He also has a passion for betting and uses his in-depth knowledge of the sports world to pinpoint outstanding odds and value betting opportunities.