Sam Bradford & Upstart St. Louis Rams (+3) Underdogs At Winless Detroit Lions

October 10th, 2010 – Alex

One season after they both combined for three wins on the entire year, the St. Louis Rams (2-2) and Detroit Lions (0-4) will square off on Sunday to show how much they’ve grown since that point, and even though Detroit is winless, they may be the best 0-4 team in the NFL. Kickoff of this game is slated for 1pm EST and coverage can be seen on FOX as well as DirecTV channel 710.

The Rams are coming into this game attempting to win their third straight game for the first time in four years. Currently sitting at 2-2, they are riding a wave of momentum and excitement brought about by their No. 1 overall pick from this year’s draft, quarterback, Sam Bradford. While Bradford kicked the season off in rocky fashion with a pair of losses by a total of only six points combined, he and the rest of the St. Louis squad have done nothing but win since that point.

After beating the Washington Redskins 30-16 two weeks ago, they followed that performance up by destroying the Seattle Seahawks 20-3 this past Sunday. This is the first time this team has won back-to-back games since the 2008 season.

Look for the Rams to continue to play behind Bradford’s skill against an average and somewhat undisciplined Lions defense. The Rams quarterback is coming off a career-best 289 yard, two touchdown performance from last week, and he’ll likely try to build off that in this week’s action. Also, look for the Rams to try to force some turnovers on Detroit. Thus far in this season, the Rams have forced 10 turnovers, tied for fifth most in the NFL.

Meanwhile, the Lions who were a disappointing 2-14 in their 2009 campaign are coming into a year where improvement is a must. Thus far, the losses have still been pulling on, they’ve been coming by smaller margins. In their last three games, the Lions have lost by five, three and two points respectively.

Offensively the team is performing better than expected after the loss of starting quarterback, Matthew Stafford in the team’s season premier. Subbing in for Stafford, Shaun Hill passed for 331 yards and two touchdowns to receiver, Calvin Johnson in the first game of the season. From that point on, Hill has carried the Lions to the sixth best offense in the league with 401.3 yards per game. On the flip side, however, the team has shown a lack of discipline putting up 30 penalties over the past three weeks to lead the league.

Continued good play from Hill will be key for the Lions if they hope to take this game from the Rams. The receiving game, led by Johnson, will be instrumental in making sure that defenses don’t collapse on the Detroit running attack. Also, look for the defense step up and try to pressure St. Louis’ young quarterback. While he is coming off a career-best performance, he has thrown three interceptions in his last three games. Finally, they will need to make sure to keep the lid on Steven Jackson who has traditionally lit the Lions up to a 134.5 career average.

Game Lines: The Lions, no doubt due to the home field advantage, are a 3 point favorite for this game with the upstart Rams and Sam Bradford. Other NFL betting odds for the game have the over/under at a total of 42.5 points. Looking at how both teams have fared against the spread, the Rams are 2-2 ATS and the Lions boast a 3-1 mark ATS according to the NFL Against The Spread Standings.

NFL ATS Betting Trends: The Rams are 7-3 ATS versus teams with losing records and 8-18 ATS in their last 26 games getting less than 90 yards rushing the previous game. Meanwhile, the Lions are 8-20-2 ATS in their last 30 games following an ATS win and 5-13 ATS in their last 18 home games.

Over/Under NFL Betting Trends: The Under is 6-1 in the last 7 games overall for the St. Louis Rams and 5-1 in the last 6 against the NFC. Furthermore, the under is 4-1 in the Rams last 5 games away from home.

The Over is 4-1 in the Lions last 5 home games and 4-1 in their last 5 games played as the favorite. Beyond that, the under is 4-1-1 in Detroit’s last 6 games in the month of October.

See more NFL Betting Trends

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