49ers vs. Rams NFL Picks: Back San Francisco to Cover Large Spread

Jason Lake

Saturday, October 31, 2015 6:34 PM GMT

Saturday, Oct. 31, 2015 6:34 PM GMT

The St. Louis Rams are only 3-3, but they're the biggest favorites on the Week 8 NFL odds board. That's what playing the San Francisco 49ers at home can do for you.

Jason's 2015 record as of Oct. 31: 22-17-1 ATS; 0-1 ML (-1.00 units); 18-26 Total

They might not admit it, but the St. Louis Rams would love to go 8-8. They've put together eight straight losing seasons, so going .500 would be a breath of fresh air. It might even get the Rams a Wild Card berth in the NFC – just like it did in 2004, the last time St. Louis made the playoffs.

The San Francisco 49ers (2-5 SU, 3-4 ATS) can only aspire to mediocrity. It's been an awful start to the 2015 season for the rebuilding Niners; they show glimpses every once in a while, but on the whole, this is the worst team in the NFL. The gap between these division rivals is so wide, St. Louis is the biggest favorite on our NFL odds board at –8 and higher for Sunday's matchup (1:00 p.m. ET, FOX) at the Edward Jones Dome.

 

Dumpster Diving for Dollars
Too much chalk, perhaps? Our consensus numbers show 55-60 percent of bettors picking San Francisco throughout the week. And according to our expanded report, over 65 percent of the cash is landing on the road dogs at press time. The average bet on the 49ers: a chunky $281. The Rams are still getting a hefty $183 a pop, and they've pulled in five $1000+ bets to San Fran's three, but it's safe to say the Niners are the sharp NFL pick.

It's not the first time the wiseguys have been on the 49ers this year. There's definitely something to be said for buying low and selling high, and however poorly San Francisco might be playing, things probably aren't as mind-numbingly awful as they might appear on the surface. Speaking of which: The Niners are last (No. 31 offense, No. 32 defense, No. 23 special teams) on the DVOA charts at Football Outsiders.

 

Don't Date Who You Wouldn't Estimate
St. Louis is right where a 3-3 team should be, in the middle of the table at No. 16 overall (No. 30 offense, No. 5 defense, No. 12 special teams). Both the Rams and Niners have played very tough schedules thus far – welcome to the NFC West – but St. Louis has performed well enough to earn 3.3 Estimated Wins, while San Fran has 1.5 Estimated Wins to go with those two Actual Wins.

Hmmmph. Hard to call the Niners an undervalued commodity given those numbers. But we are looking at a pretty big spread in what figures to be a low-scoring game, judging by that 39-point total. As a matter of principle, we're going to side with the sharps and recommend San Francisco plus as many points as we can find. Don't bet the college fund on it, and may the prolate spheroid be with you.

NFL Picks: Take the 49ers +9.5 (–125) at 5Dimes

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