Rams vs. Panthers Spread Prediction
The last time we saw the Rams they were laying an egg against the Patriots in the Super Bowl. The defending NFC champs will open their season on the road on Sunday when they visit the Panthers at 1:00 p.m. ET. Will Carolina pull off the small upset?
467 Los Angeles Rams (-2.5) at 468 Carolina Panthers (+2.5); 50
1:00 p.m. ET, Sunday, September 8
Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, NC
Public Betting Trends
According to our NFL Football Public Betting Chart page, the Rams are receiving 66% of the betting tickets from online sportsbooks.
Los Angeles Rams
The Rams are using the "veteran plan" to limit Todd Gurley's reps this training camp. That means Gurley won't play in preseason games and will receive multiple practices off. When he suited up yesterday, Gurley "looked good" but he did take more reps off than usual. With Gurley's knee acting up late last year, the Rams are taking a cautious approach with their All-Pro running back, allowing rookie Darrell Henderson to get more reps with the first-team offense. Gurley remains a risky pick in the second round of fantasy drafts, but he'd be a massive bargain if his knee holds up in 2019.
Speaking Tuesday, Panthers coach Ron Rivera said the team is not concerned about Cam Newton's (foot) status for Week 1. "There’s no doubt in my mind," was Rivera's response when asked if Newton would be ready to face the Rams on Sept. 8. Newton figures to do very little in practice until next Wednesday, but fantasy owners can leave him locked into their starting lineups.
NFL Betting Trends
The Panthers are 4-0 against the spread in their last four games versus NFC opponents.
The Panthers are 4-1 against the number in their last five games played in Week 1.
The Rams are every bit as potent offensively as they were a year ago, but I can imagine plenty of bettors fading them in Week 1 based off their performance in the Super Bowl. Todd Gurley’s health remains a mystery, but this passing game should pick up where it left off before the dud against the Patriots. Armed with a new contract, a healthy Cooper Kupp, Robert Woods and Brandin Cooks, Jared Goff should move the ball consistently versus a Carolina defense that has potential, but plenty of question marks as well.
NFL Week 1 Prediction: Los Angeles Rams -2.5