Pro Football Picks: Green Bay Packers vs. St. Louis Rams
Green Bay Packers vs. St. Louis Rams
Saturday, 8/17/13, 8:00 PM EST, TV: N/A
Opening Point Spread: St. Louis -3.5
Current Betting Line: St. Louis -4.5
Opening Total: 40.5
Current Total: 41
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
Green Bay had 17 players ruled out because of injury in its NFL preseason opener, which led directly to a disappointing 17-0 defeat to the Arizona Cardinals as two-point home favorites, while going UNDER the betting total of 35. “We didn’t give the fans a lot to cheer about,” commented Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers. Offensively, the team picked up just 13 first downs on 223 total yards, while averaging 2.7 yards per rush. Head coach Mike McCarthy suggested the quarterback rotation would be similar this week, with Rodgers giving way to Graham Harrell and Vince Young, which is important to consider when making your pro football picks Saturday.
The Packers have played more regular-season games against the Rams under McCarthy than any other opponent outside of their division, which can’t be ignored when looking over the NFL betting lines. Green Bay visited St. Louis last year in Week 7, with Rodgers connecting on 30 of 37 passes for 342 yards and three touchdowns. The squad has won four straight games in the series and 10 of the last 13.
St. Louis suffered a 27-19 setback to the Cleveland Browns as 3.5-point road underdogs on Aug. 8, but still won the statistical battle by 76 yards, while going OVER the betting total of 35. “The first preseason games is never an indication of where you’re at because there are so many different things going on,” stated Rams coach Jeff Fisher. The defensive unit must play better on third down in this affair, as it allowed the Browns to convert on 9-of-16 opportunities in that category in the opener.
The Rams running back situation is unclear heading into this contest, with Isaiah Pead, Daryl Richardson and Zac Stacy all vying for the top spot in the rotation. St. Louis will also look to get its receiving core involved, as the combination of Tavon Austin, Jared Cook and Austin Pettis accounted for zero catches and few targets last week. Kicker Greg Zuerlein put both his attempts through the uprights last week, as he made 54-yard and 55-yard field goals.
Sports bettors will likely back the Packers due to their 6-1 ATS record on the road after a double-digit loss in exhibition play.
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