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On Saturday, January 6th, the (10-6) Atlanta Falcons will be on the road to take on the (11-5) Los Angeles Rams in the 2017 NFL Playoffs.
“The Crowd” is projecting a final score of Rams 27.5 – Falcons 22.0 with an over/under of 49.5.
2017-18 Statistics (32 total teams):
Yards per game: Falcons 364.8 (8th) > Rams 361.5 (10th)
Points per game: Rams 29.9 (1st) > Falcons 22.1 (15th)
Turnover margin: Rams +7 > Falcons -1
Fewest yards allowed per game: Falcons 318.4 (9th) > Rams 339.6 (19th)
Fewest Points allowed per game: Falcons 19.7 (8th) > Rams 20.6 (12th)
The Falcons have won three on of their last four games including a 22-10 home victory over the Carolina Panthers on Sunday. The Falcons outgained the Panthers 371-248 in total yardage. Matt Ryan was 28-45 for 317 yards and a touchdown. The Falcons struggled to run the football garnering 60 yards on 26 carries (2.3 average). Devonta Freeman was a threat as a receiver catching 9 passes for 85 yards and a touchdown. Atlanta’s defense was dominant forcing Cam Newton into three interceptions. Atlanta (+38) ranks 11th in the NFL in point differential.
The Rams suffered a 34-13 home loss to the San Francisco 49ers. The Rams rested the majority of their starters including Jared Goff and Todd Gurley II. Sean Mannion got the start at quarterback and was 20-34 for 169 yards. The Rams running game combined for 102 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries (3.9 average). The Rams defense forced two turnovers but had little answer for Jimmy Garoppolo who has dazzled since being acquired from the Patriots. The Rams (+149) rank 3rd in the NFL in point differential.
The Rams are in the playoffs for the first time since 2004 while Atlanta is fresh off a Super Bowl appearance last year. The Falcons snuck into the playoffs in the final week but are certainly a dangerous team with something to prove after last season’s mishap. Stopping Todd Gurley II will be key as the Falcons ranked 9th in defending the run (104.1 YPG). The Falcons offense hasn’t lived up the high expectations from last year but I think they can get the job done in crunch time. I’m picking Matt Ryan and an experienced Falcons team to pull off the road upset.
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