St. Louis Rams (0-1,0-1 ATS) vs.Oakland Raiders(0-1,0-1 ATS), Week2NFL Football, Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, (Natural Grass)Oakland California, Sunday, September 19th, 2010,4:00 PM Eastern
By Jeff Hochman of JHSportsline.com
Betting Odds:STL +3.5/Oak -3.5
Line Movement:This was one ofyour bigger moves this week as the opening line was a Pick Em. The total has been bet down from 38.5 points.
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Rookie Quarterback Sam Bradford and the Rams battled right to the end against division-rival Arizona Cardinals in their home openerlast week. In his first game as a pro he threw for 253 yards with one touchdown. On the down side was his three interceptions and 53.1 quarterback rating. He did show a very strong arm and poise in the pocket, which is what you want to see from rookies. They abandoned Steven Jackson and the running game as Bradford threw for an opening gameclub-record 55 passes.
It was the same ole’ Oakland Raiders in week one. The offensive linegave upfour sacks while allowing Chris Johnson to run for 142 yards, including a 76-yard TD gem. The Raiders had 180 yards passing and could not get out of their ownshadows. Maybe playing the 1:00 PM E time zone gameaffected them more than theyadmit. When the game started their clocks were on 10:00 AM E. You would think that playing itsfirst game of the season the effort would have been a lot better.
St. Louis seems to be more talented in their front seven than last season.The Rams played pretty good defense last week as they were flying all over the place. Chris Long has always been good against the runbut he put a ton of pressure on Derek Anderson. IfLong can be that duel threat, than the Rams defense figures to improve this season.
I really believe Oakland has a better defense and offense than they showed last week. NnmadiAsomugha is consider to be best cornerback in the league. Most teams don’t even look his way. The Rams are very inexperienced at wide-receiver and also dealing with key injuries. WRDonnie Avery is Out, WRLaurent Robinson is questionable, CB Justin King is questionable, DB Keven Dockery is doubtful, andGuard Mark Setterstorm is Out.
The Raiders are also dealing with some key injuries of their own. Robert Gallery, RB Michael Bush, and DTDesmond Bryant are alllisted as questionable. The biggest loss would beAll-Pro Guard Robert Gallery. He’s real good at opening up holes for Darren McFadden and company. The last game between these two teams that had meaning occurred in 2006. The Rams shutout Oakland 20-0 as 3-point underdogs.
Jeff’s Pickto Cover the Point Spread: Oakland Raiders -3.5
The Oakland Raiders return home after getting blown-out on the road in week one. The Raiders figure to be a winning team but the Rams figure to win no more than five games. Just like in horse racing, teams face different class teams. The Raiders take a major step down in “Class” and should blowout the Rams. Fading a rookie quarterback making his first NFL road start is always a good idea. This might be one of my service plays this week. Raiders by 7!