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Rams To Defeat Chargers In Los Angeles Rivalry

September 22, 2018

The Los Angeles Rams have laid down a marker in the opening two games of the 2018 campaign, easing to a 2-0 record, although their credentials will be tested by the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Rams were able to up the ante in the second half of their clash against the Oakland Raiders to secure a comfortable victory on the road. Sean McVay’s men then hammered the Arizona Cardinals on home soil, putting 34 points on the board, shutting out the Cardinals in the process.

The NFC West outfit are one of the leading contenders to win the Super Bowl this term. They’re certainly playing like it at the moment, brushing aside their opponents with ease. Jared Goff has taken the next step in his development, carving teams apart in the opening two weeks of the term.

The move for Brandin Cooks was an astute trade by the club. He has shone in the early stages of the campaign. On the other side of the ball, the Rams’ additions have also bore fruit as Marcus Peters along with Ndamukong Suh have looked right at home in Los Angeles.

Anthony Lynn’s men bounced back from their opening-day defeat to the Kansas City Chiefs by crushing the Buffalo Bills. Philip Rivers has not lost a step even at the age of 36. He continues to lead the way for the Chargers, connecting with his talented targets Keenan Allen, Tyrell Williams, Mike Williams and Melvin Gordon.

Los Angeles’ defense has had issues without Joey Bosa, which could be decisive in the city rivalry.

Will the Rams continue their impressive start?

Los Angeles Rams

The Rams have lived up to their billing as one of the leading teams expected to challenge for the Super Bowl this term. After a slow start against the Raiders, they were able to put their foot down in the second half to take the game away from Jon Gruden’s men.

The clash against the Cardinals proved to be a lot more straightforward. Goff and company were able to dominate from the off, delivering an emphatic victory as the defense stifled Arizona’s offense led by Sam Bradford. The Rams are playing good complementary football in the opening weeks of the term.

It took a first-round pick to prise Cooks away from the New England Patriots. Los Angeles were willing to pay the 26-year-old like a top wideout that the Patriots would not. He appears to be a perfect fit in McVay’s system, recording 246 yards off his 12 receptions. Cooks provides a big play element downfield, while Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods take care of the intermediate routes.

Gurley has not been as effective out of the backfield in the opening two games of the term. He does have three rushing touchdowns on the campaign, although the 24-year-old only averages 3.8 yards per carry. Gurley has been effective catching Goff’s passes, but there should be more to come from him this season, which is a worrying prospect for their future opponents.

The defense stifled the Cardinals on home soil. It did not take a great deal as Arizona played into their hands with a tentative approach. Aqib Talib and Peters have formed a lockdown unit in the cornerback positions, and although the Rams have talent on the front four, it has only yielded two sacks thus far. Aaron Donald and Suh are sackless between them, which should change very soon given the immense talent of the duo.

Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers are in familiar territory in their campaign, displaying the same inconsistencies as previous seasons. Los Angeles were exposed by the speed of the Chiefs in their opener before bouncing back with a commanding performance against the Bills. Buffalo appear to be one of the worst teams in the NFL this term, but the Chargers still had to deliver. Lynn’s men took command of the game in the early stages and were unrelenting, easing to their first victory. The Chargers have a lot of talent on their roster, but the quality needs to rise to occasion to match teams of the Rams’ ilk.

Rivers has enjoyed an outstanding start to the term. He has thrown for 680 yards along with seven touchdowns to just one interception. The 36-year-old’s accuracy has been pinpoint, dissecting the Chiefs and the Bills with relative ease. Los Angeles are blessed with outstanding receivers even without the injured Hunter Henry. Mike Williams has enjoyed a decent start to his second term in the NFL, catching seven passes for 108 yards and a touchdown. After being selected in the top 10 of the 2017 NFL Draft, the wideout needs to prove his worth this season. Tyrell Williams and Gordon have been solid, while Allen continues to show that he is one of the best players at his position in the league, already notching 175 yards on the campaign. Those players have to shine against the Rams.

Bosa’s foot injury is a massive concern for the club. He will miss his third-straight game due to the ailment. The absence of the defensive end leaves a huge void in the Chargers’ pass-rush. It places more pressure on Melvin Ingram to provide the threat on the opposing quarterbacks. Ingram does have 1.5 sacks on the season, while rookie Uchenna Nwosu has also impressed. In the secondary Derwin James appears to have been the steal of the 2018 with the 17th pick. He has starred for the Chargers and will be aiming to make a statement on Sunday.

Betting Options

The Rams are playing excellent football on both sides of the ball, although the Chargers will be a step up in quality from the teams that they have played in the opening two weeks of the campaign. Lynn’s men were cut open by a talented offense in the first game of the term and without Bosa they will be vulnerable. The Rams have the diverse weapons to trouble the visitors’ defense, and the depth in their secondary to limit the Chargers enough to secure win at the Coliseum.

Back McVay’s side to take the win at odds of -305  with BetOnline, although take the Chargers on the +5 spread at odds of 5/4  with 888Sport. The over/under line is set at 48 points and given the talent of both offenses involved in the contest take the over at -108  with BetOnline.

Cooks has not found the endzone this term. He’s usually good for at least eight scores per season therefore back him to get off the mark at odds of 37/20  to notch a touchdown anytime. Mike Williams scored his first touchdown of the term last week against the Bills, back him to make it two on the bounce at odds of 3/1  with 888Sport.

Rivers has been on form this term, take him to record over 268 passing yards at 17/20  and for him to have the most yards in the game at 4/5  with 888Sport. Cooks should record over 73 receiving yards, while Allen will have over 75 both at 17/20  with 888Sport. Gurley has had a slow start to the term, but back him to record over 92 rushing yards at 17/20 .

Tips Summary

Los Angeles Rams To Beat Los Angeles Chargers
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: -305

Take Los Angeles Chargers +5 Spread
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 5/4

Over 48 Total Points To Be Scored
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: -108

Brandin Cooks To Score Touchdown Anytime
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 37/20

Mike Williams To Score Touchdown Anytime
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 3/1

Philip Rivers To Throw Over 268 Passing Yards
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 17/20

Philip Rivers To Throw Most Passing Yards
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 4/5

Brandin Cooks To Record Over 73 Receiving Yards
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 17/20

Keenan Allen To Record Over 75 Receiving Yards
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 17/20

Todd Gurley To Record Over 92 Rushing Yards
Sunday 23rd September 2018 16:05 ET (21:05 BST)
Odds: 17/20

  • Jared Goff
  • Los Angeles Chargers
  • Los Angeles Rams
  • NFL
  • Philip Rivers

    About the author

    Simon Sinclair
    Simon Sinclair

    Sports Writer

    Simon is a freelance sports writer from the UK. He passionately writes about all kinds of sports, sharing his predictions on everything from the latest cricket matches and golf tournaments to major horse racing events and popular American sports.