Rams To Get Back On Track Against 49ers

Week three of the 2017 NFL season begins as the San Francisco 49ers host the Los Angeles Rams.

The 49ers have struggled at the start of the term, losing back-to-back matches to the Carolina Panthers and the Seattle Seahawks.

New head coach Kyle Shanahan has failed to bring the offense to life in the opening two weeks. The club have not scored a touchdown in their first two matches of the term.

As a result, there is pressure on quarterback Brian Hoyer and the offensive coaching staff to respond.

The Rams came back down to earth in a defeat to the Washington Redskins. Sean McVay’s men hammered the Indianapolis Colts in week one, putting 46 points on the board.

Jared Goff produced the best performance of his fledgling career, throwing for over 300 yards. Although he put in a decent performance against the Redskins, the 22-year-old made the costly error by throwing a late interception.

The Rams have failed to produce a winning record since the 2003 campaign. The next match could determine if they are to continue their cycle of failure in 2017.

We’ll now break down the contest looking at both sides, featuring the latest betting odds.

San Francisco 49ers

Hoyer has to improve

The 49ers have picked up where they left off last season. The club went 2-14 in the last campaign, struggling immensely on offense to put points on the board.

Shanahan opted to sign Hoyer instead of drafting a quarterback in the first round, and his decision looks to be questionable in the early stages of the season.

Hoyer threw for 193 yards in the opener against the Panthers, but also a costly interception. Against the Seahawks, he struggled even more throwing for just 99 yards off 27 pass attempts.

The 49ers have put only 12 points in the board in the opening two matches. The club have failed to score a touchdown in the first two games of the season for the first time in franchise history. Not pleasant reading for Shanahan, despite the impressive performances of running back Carlos Hyde.

Hoyer and Shanahan were together at the Cleveland Browns and did find rhythm in the 2013 term before he sustained an injury. It may take time to bear fruit along with playing agains less potent defenses in the coming weeks.

San Francisco’s defence have enjoyed an outstanding start to the term. They held Cam Newton in check for large portions of the opener and dominated Russell Wilson in Seattle. However, in both matches the pressure became overwhelming and ended in defeat.

Arik Armstead, Tank Carradine and DeForest Buckner have been excellent to start the term. However, they may need to raise the level of their performances to atone for the woes of their offense. Injuries are increasing the pressure on the unit, but there’s enough talent there to stifle the Rams on Thursday.

Los Angeles Rams

Goff has to bounce back from his error

The Rams were handed a gift on the opening day of the season when they played the Colts. Scott Tolzien’s two pick-sixes allowed McVay’s men to canter to an easy victory, while Goff was able to pick apart the defense to build confidence.

Life was always going to be harder against the Redskins, who suffered a defeat in week one to the Philadelphia Eagles. They had a point to prove against their former offensive coordinator – McVay – and were able to put 27 points on the board.

Los Angeles’ defense failed to hold up late in the contest, despite the talent on the defensive line and secondary. Aaron Donald’s return to the fold offered penetration, but the Rams only notched two sacks of Kirk Cousins. The Washington quarterback drove his side down the field late in the game before throwing a strike to Ryan Grant in the endzone.

The score would be the decisive moment in the game as Goff failed to respond. Although Goff had a decent outing, his performance will be remembered more for the interception that ended the match. The 22-year-old stared down Cooper Kupp and allowed Mason Foster to read his eyes and make the game-sealing pick.

He cannot afford to keep making those sorts of mistakes if the Rams are to progress this term. Running back Todd Gurley had a solid return to form, including a great play to score his receiving touchdown. He leapt over a defender before reaching for the line to register the touchdown.

The 23-year-old had 88 yards and another score on the ground, suggesting that he could be on course to rediscover the form of his rookie season. That would be a huge boost for McVay and the Rams.

Betting Options

Both sides are short of quality, but the Rams do have the talent on the offensive side of the ball to win the game. However, the 49ers tend to fare well against their rivals in the NFC West. They beat Los Angeles in their season opener in the 2016 campaign, shutting them out in the process at Levi’s Stadium.

Hyde ran all over the Rams’ defense and McVay must ensure that his side are up to the challenge on this occasion. Los Angeles have more talent in key areas, but they cannot take that for granted, especially against a Shanahan offense. They must cut off the easy throws for Hoyer and make Hyde beat them on the ground.

Gurley struggled to make an impact against the 49ers in the last contest at Levi’s Stadium, while then-starter Case Keenum had a game to forget at quarterback. Goff must rise to the challenge as there will be throws to make against San Francisco’s secondary, succeeding where his predecessor failed last term.

The 22-year-old has to take the next step forward in his development and firing the Rams to victory in a division game would be a positive sign. Therefore backing the Rams at odds of -135   with TopBet sportsbook would be a solid bet.

Games played within the division are always close, especially in the NFC West. Taking the Rams to cover the -3.5 spread at odds of +145   with Winner Sports is a solid option.

The 49ers have had real trouble on offense this term. That is unlikely to change against the Rams, with odds of +300   to score under 13.5 points with SkyBet.

Tips Summary

Los Angeles Rams To Beat San Francisco 49ers
Thursday 21st September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 22nd September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: -135

Los Angeles Rams To Cover -3.5 Spread
Thursday 21st September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 22nd September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +145

San Francisco 49ers To Score Under 13.5 Points
Thursday 21st September 2017 20:30 ET (Friday 22nd September 2017 01:30 BST)
Odds: +300


Brian Hoyer
Jared Goff
Los Angeles Rams
San Francisco 49ers

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