If you’re looking for action on Saturday afternoon’s NFL Playoff matchup between the Rams and Packers then you came to the right place. We have plenty of skin in the game as Green Bay gets set to host Los Angeles from Lambeau!
Spread: LAR +6.5 (-108) | GB -6.5 (-112)
Money Line: LAR (+253) | GB (-303)
Total: 45.5 (O -108, -112)
Kickoff: 4:35 ET | Lambeau Field | Green Bay, WI
Trent’s Best Bet on a Side
The number one ranked Green Bay Packers went 7-1 at home during the 2020 regular season but they’ll have their work cut out for them on Saturday against the league’s number one defense. The Rams enter off of a 30-20 win on the road against the Seahawks in which they held Russell Wilson to only 11-27 for 174 yards. Their prize? Travel to the frozen tundra of Green Bay to take on the front runner for league MVP in Aaron Rodgers. This is going to be an excellent matchup between a premier defensive line and an offensive line that seems to give Rodgers infinite time in the pocket.
So from a betting standpoint, I’m taking Green Bay on the “Big Win Little Win”: Green Bay to win by 1-13 points (+136). No doubt in my mind that the Packers win this game outright (which also makes this a great option for a teaser). We’ve seen Jared Goff struggle in cold weather situations before and he’s also still recovering from the hand injury. He’s certainly not going to be 100% out there but Sean McVay will look to establish the run game, which they’ve done very well recently. The Rams ran for 100+ yards in 15/17 games this season and in seven straight contests. The Rams rushing offense vs. the Packers rushing defense is a great matchup in which I give L.A. the edge. The other intriguing matchup is L.A.’s third down defense (3rd, 56.6% holding on third down) against Green Bay’s third down offense (2nd, moving the chains 50.6%). If you’re really into X’s and O’s, then you’re in for a treat on Saturday. This is going to be a chess match between these two teams when third down rolls around. Ultimately though, I believe that the Packers come away victorious but not in blowout fashion. They’re at home in winter weather (predicted to be 32 degrees), they have the league MVP, and Green Bay always seems to be beneficiaries of the refs involvement. Packers win outright but the Rams keep it within 13 points due to their speedy receivers on the outside, fantastic defense, and advantage at head coach. Good luck!
Emily’s Best Bets
With the Rams QB situation not at 100% with Jared Goff, I believe RB Cam Akers will need to dial it up for his offense. One of my best bets for this matchup against the Packers is for the Rams RB Cam Akers to rush for over 70.5 yards (-114). Last week, Akers racked up 176 yards on 30 touches with a TD to top it off. Let’s not forget that while their former opponent (Seattle Seahawks) were ranked 31st against the pass, they were ranked 5th against the run and Akers managed to bulldoze through them. The Packers run defense is ranked 13th in the league and they surrender an average of 113 yards per game on the ground. Not to mention Akers is a dynamic and physical back notorious for his downfield speed.
My other best bet is headlined by potential MVP frontrunner Mr. Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers once again impressed this season with his miraculous playmaking abilities. However, the Rams defense sports the #1 spot against the pass, holding their opponents to under 190 passing yards per game. With defensive players on the Rams such as Jalen Ramsey, Troy Hill, and Jordan Fuller, I think Rodgers will have his hands full. Therefore, my best bet for the Packers QB is to be held UNDER 263 passing yards. I feel like the Packers offense will attempt to establish a run-heavy game and they will succeed exceptionally well with RB Aaron Jones. The Rams run defense is 4th in the league, but we all know how difficult it is to stop Aaron Jones in the backfield. I do expect a mix of short passing routes to Davante Adams, and a few deep balls to Allen Lazard and Marquez Valdes-Scantling, but Rodgers will find it difficult to hit the over against a stout Rams passing D.
Logan’s Best Bet
Like Trent, I am on the Packers in this one, but I am going the old-fashioned way and just laying the 6.5. The Rams were gritty in their win last week, vanquishing division foe Seattle with a combination of two dinged-up quarterbacks, but this is the end of the road for them here.
Quite simply, Aaron Rodgers and Matt LeFleur are money, especially at home, and even more so off of a bye: Rodgers covers the spread in Lambeau at an almost 65% clip in his career (61-35-4), and is 10-5-1 with over 12 days to prepare.
They match up well in what will be critical areas in this game as well: they are the league’s best offense in the red zone, scoring touchdowns at an 80% clip, and have been the best in the NFL; their 8.5 first-half point differential is tops in the league, and will make for trouble for LA if they face an early deficit, especially with compromised QB play.
In order to pull of an upset, the Rams will have to do so with a number of their best players at less than full strength: Goff/Wolford are both banged up, but as is WR Cooper Kupp (who is battling bursitis in his knee), as well as all-world defender Aaron Donald, who will be fighting through a rib injury of his own.
Historically, #1 seeds haven’t been a great bet in the divisional round, but the quarterback and health edge here are too great to bet against, and the Packers have been an elite team in their home stadium. Packers -6.5 is the play here.
Other Divisional Round Previews & Best Bets
4:35 ET: Los Angeles Rams vs. Green Bay Packers
8:15 ET: Baltimore Ravens vs. Buffalo Bills (coming soon)