It’s been a tumultuous year for the L.A. Rams, not producing nearly the level of play they showed when they took the NFL’s Super Bowl LVI last year. As they prepare to face the Las Vegas Raiders on Thursday Night Football, it’s time they start developing a new strategy for next year.
That strategy might involve QB Baker Mayfield, who headed to the Carolina Panthers before the start of the current season. However, things didn’t work out there and a day after he walked away from the team, the Rams picked him up.
That only happened this week, and Mayfield still needs time to adjust to his new team. However, with any hope of making the playoffs gone, today’s contest against the Raiders could be a great way for him to get a crash course in the Rams offense.
Rams Need Help
Mayfield replaces Matthew Stafford, who was responsible for leading the Rams to a Super Bowl win against the Cincinnati Bengals last year. However, the chance to defend the title fell apart after Stafford went down for the rest of the year with a spinal cord injury earlier in the season.
|Spread||-6.5 (-115)||+6.5 (-105)|
|Over/under||O43.5 (-110)||U43.5 (-110)|
|Courtesy of Caesars|
As a result, the Raiders will look for victory and a spot in the playoffs. They will take advantage of tonight’s game and a physically and morally depleted Rams sideline, who have suffered six straight losses.
Las Vegas (7-5) has once again become one of the teams close to making the playoffs in the AFC. This comes off a recent winning streak that reached three games, culminating in last week’s 27-20 win against the L.A. Chargers.
Since a dismal outing in Week 8 at New Orleans in which he had just 101 passing yards, Raiders QB Derek Carr has improved his game significantly. The 31-year-old quarterback has thrown for at least 248 yards and two touchdowns in five straight games, racking up 11 touchdown passes with just three interceptions.
Carr knows who he can count on to put up the points. Wide receiver Davante Adams has had four 100-yard performances this season, putting him in fourth place in the league with 1,176 receiving yards. The 29-year-old caught a pair of TD passes from Carr last Sunday to tie Kansas City Chiefs’ Travis Kelce for first in the league with 12.
Raiders With the Series
The Raiders need a win today to be able to stay in contention for a wild card spot in the playoffs. They’ve shown how to defeat the Rams before, and only need one more good game under the team’s first-year head coach Josh McDaniels.
In the series matchup between these two, the Raiders have won eight of the 14 meetings. However, more recently, the Rams have won four of the last five. The changes going on in the Rams locker room will play a big role in today’s outcome.
The Rams aren’t showing that they have the energy they had last year, and the loss of their star QB is going to hurt them once again. Mayfield is capable, but not on a one-day notice. The Raiders should control the Week 14 opener tonight, but L.A.’s lack of power keeps the total under.
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