NFC Wildcard Weekend Betting Preview: Los Angeles Rams vs. Seattle Seahawks – Saturday, Jan. 9, 2021

The middle game of Saturday’s Wild Card slate features familiar foes from the NFC West as the Los Angeles Rams visit Seattle for a showdown with the Seahawks at Lumen Field. Kickoff is set for 4:40pm EST. The teams split their two-game series during the regular season, each winning on their own home field, as the Rams held court in Week 10 while the Seahawks emerged victorious in Week 16.

Los Angeles Rams Betting Preview: Front and (Under) Center

The Rams earned their third playoff bid in four years under Sean McVay by virtue of their Week 17 win over the Cardinals, finishing the regular season 10-6 to secure the 6th seed in the NFC. Backup QB John Wolford was forced into duty after Jared Goff injured his thumb a week earlier against these same Seahawks. That story has taken center stage as they prepare for the Wild Card as McVay plays it close to the vest, announcing that he won’t decide (or at least make public) who will be starting on Saturday.

Wolford threw an interception on his first pass attempt against Arizona, but settled in after that and relied on his defense to carry the team into the postseason. Whoever starts at QB will have the tall task of going up against a defense that has allowed just 14 PPG over their last six games.

Seattle Seahawks Betting Preview: Won Not Done or One and Done?

After clinching a playoff berth and the NFC West crown against the Rams in Week 16, Seattle’s team motto has become ‘Won Not Done’, meaning they may have won the division, but they ultimately have their sights set on another trophy: the Lombardi. The Seahawks have earned postseason trips in four of the last five seasons, but haven’t been able to advance past the divisional round in any of them.

The biggest question facing Seattle on Saturday will be the availability of safety Jamal Adams. The former Jet injured his shoulder last week and could be a game-day decision this weekend. Adams’ 9.5 sacks were a team-high and the most for a defensive back since they started recording them in 1982.

Rams at Seahawks Betting Odds & Lines

MyBookie lists the Seahawks as 4.5-point favorites for this Wild Card matchup, with an over/under of 42.5. The spread is the second-shortest of the weekend slate, while the total is the lowest of the Wild Card round. As noted, both home teams won and covered during the two regular season meetings, with the games going well under the posted total on both accounts.

Free Betting Pick

Seattle has feasted on backup or below-average (in terms of QBR) quarterbacks in the second half of the season. Wolford would qualify in that category, but Goff too, as he finished the season 23rd in QBR among all signal-callers.

Lumen Field won’t be the same without the 12th man present and rocking, but Russell WIlson will still emerge from this one to move on to the divisional round. Goff and Adams are key here, but Seattle can win (at least this week) without him, while the Rams won’t be able to without Goff.

Spooky Express Free Pick: Seahawks -4.5

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