St. Louis Rams at Kansas City Chiefs
Friday, 8/26/11, 8:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread: St. Louis PK
Current Betting Line: St. Louis -1.5
Opening Total: 35
Current Total: 35
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
St. Louis heads out on the road for the first time during the 2011 preseason after picking up consecutive wins over the Indianapolis Colts (33-10) and Tennessee Titans (17-16). Expectations were certainly high for the team after posting a 7-9 record last season behind rookie quarterback Sam Bradford. “The believe and the expectation from everyone in this building is that we’re going to win the Super Bowl,” Bradford commented. “You have no idea how ticked off I was just to have our season end without the playoffs.” Many around the league expect the franchise to take the next step, especially with the addition of offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. St. Louis is 4-0 ATS on the road during preseason action.
The Rams main focus after last week’s win over the Titans was tightening up a rush defense that allowed 198 yards. Offensively, the team is anxiously waiting to see if wide receiver Donnie Avery will be ready for the season opener, as he returned to practice on Aug. 17 after rehabbing from knee surgery. He scored on a 19-yard reception last week, but still suffers from occasional pain and soreness. The running game was unable to get on track in Week 2, rushing for 44 yards on 21 attempts, which was disappointing due to the 169 yards it gained versus the Colts in the preseason opener.
Kansas City continues to fail miserably under head coach Todd Haley against-the-spread, posting a 0-10 mark in his two years on the sidelines. The Chiefs have been outscored by 43 points in their two losses to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (25-0) and Baltimore Ravens (31-13). Haley will likely play his starters a little longer in this contest due to the nature of this rivalry and the fact they’ve had plenty of time to learn the playbook. “This is a home game for us, and that’s important for our team,” he commented. “Our home field advantage, our ability to win games at home is very important to our overall success. Kansas City is 12-23 ATS in its last 35 preseason home games.
The Chiefs’ defense was starting to make some strides during the offseason under coordinator Romeo Crennel, but the unit suffered a major injury this week in camp. Former San Diego Chargers linebacker Brandon Siler is expected to miss the 2011 season with a torn Achilles. He was brought over to add depth to the position and was also a standout special teams player. On the other side of the ball, Tyler Palko seems to be winning out to backup quarterback Matt Cassel, connecting on 8 of 13 passes for 95 yards last week.
Bettors will likely back the Chiefs due to the line movement that has occurred in this contest, while the Rams haven’t been a road favorite of three points or less in a preseason game the last three years.
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