We’ve been waiting eight long months for Sunday Night Football! But our analysts are ready to close out the first NFL Sunday with Bears at Rams.
Find their four best bets for the final game of the day below.
Rams vs. Bears Picks
|Matthew Stafford To Throw For 300+ Yards (+188)||FanDuel|
|2-Leg, 6-Point Teaser: Rams -2 & Over 40.5||FoxBet|
Raheem Palmer: The Rams have upgraded the offense by moving on from Jared Goff to Matthew Stafford, which should work wonders against a Bears defense that has slipped recently, dropping down to 18th in drop back EPA/play last season.
Furthermore, the Rams are facing a 28th-ranked Bears offensive line, according to PFF. This doesn’t bode well for the Bears, who have to deal with Aaron Donald and his 456 pressures over the past five seasons — that’s 86 more than any other defender despite being double teamed.
With Andy Dalton being a statue, look for the Rams defense to dominate. They should have no problem covering, although it’s worth noting that this line has moved from -7.5 to -8.5 over the past 24 hours, and I would not bet it past -9. As long as the line is at -8.5, you can also add the Rams to six-point teasers.
- Matthew Stafford shouldn’t have to light up the scoreboard because the Rams defense is unlikely to give up 30 points — in fact, it may not even give up half that.
- The Bears are averaging only 10.6 points over the past three meetings against the Rams — and now Chicago may have downgraded at quarterback.
I make this total 45, so I like the under down to 45.5 points.
Billy Ward: The Rams expended significant draft capital to land Matthew Stafford from the Lions, and I expect them to use their new toy on Sunday night.
Head coach Sean McVay was limited in his play-calling by Jared Goff’s inability to throw the ball downfield, which has never been an issue for Stafford. Especially after losing Cam Akers to injury, the best path for the Rams will be through the air.
They take on a Bears team that was better against the run (fourth) than the pass (13th) last season. Stafford has eclipsed this mark in seven of his last 20 fully healthy games, a 35% mark. And he pulled all of that off with lesser talent — especially from the coaching staff — around him. Now he has Cooper Kupp, Roberts Woods and Tyler Higbee to target.
The +188 line converts to 34.72% odds (check out our Betting Odds Calculator), so this would be value if Stafford can match his recent performance with the Lions, but I expect him to exceed it.
I’d bet this down to +150.
Michael Arinze: The Rams will finally welcome their fans into their new state-of-the-art stadium in primetime this Sunday. In addition to showing off their new digs, they’ll also have a new toy to trot out with Matthew Stafford at quarterback. Stafford is viewed as an upgrade to Jared Goff, who was jettisoned to Detroit with multiple draft picks to complete the trade.
Sunday night’s game will feature a familiar foe for Stafford in the Chicago Bears, who will also have a new quarterback after signing Andy Dalton to a one-year deal. The fact that the Bears preferred Dalton to Mitchell Trubisky suggests they feel Dalton can add more to the team offensively, but Chicago needs much more dynamism in its offense, especially with head coach Matt Nagy and general manager both on the hot seat.
This game figures to have plenty of excitement as both teams look to make a lasting impression on their fan bases. As a result, I expect we’ll see an offensive-minded game plan by both sides. Stafford will be very familiar with the Bears’ defense from his time in Detroit.
Last season, Stafford played in both games against the Bears, and both teams combined to score at least 50 points in each game. Given how I expect this game to play out, I think we’ll see more of the same with Stafford in a Rams jersey.
Of all the quarterbacks who started at least eight games last season, Stafford was fourth in league with 8.7 air yards per pass. I think the Rams will force the issue in this game, which will prevent the Bears from taking a conservative approach.
This total opened at 45 and has now been bet up to 46.5 (check real-time NFL odds here). I agree with the move, but I like the option of including the over as part of a two-leg, six-point teaser (-110) that takes the Rams from -8 down to -2.