Bet Vikings & the 'Over' vs. Rams in Week 1 NFL

Nikki Adams

Monday, September 1, 2014 7:48 PM GMT

Monday, Sep. 1, 2014 7:48 PM GMT

Minnesota Vikings descend on the St. Louis Rams in Week 1 NFL betting. Here’s a premier on this clash, complete with NFL Game Lines and picks for your consideration.

Minnesota Vikings (0-0, 0-0 away)
NFL Betting Line:+170, +4.0 -110 Total 44.0
Betting Analysis
Preseason results don’t count towards the NFL season proper, but they do provide us with a measuring stick against which we can gauge a team and give us an idea of what we could potentially expect from them, particularly in the early weeks when everything is up in the air and getting NFL picks right is challenging. Minnesota’s preparations suggest the Vikings are poised for a memorable season, so say the experts. How memorable is to be seen, but early signs are promising if we’re taking preseason results with a measure of seriousness.

The Vikings went undefeated in August with wins over Oakland, Arizona, Kansas City and Tennessee. Most importantly, the quarterback role promises to be intriguing with draft pick Teddy Bridgewater impressing and established veterans Matt Cassel and Christian Ponder enjoying positive turnouts. New coach Mike Zimmer has named Matt Cassel as the starter in week 1, as the veteran didn’t do anything to lose the job. Teddy Bridgewater is the No.2 after working up to a 117.3 passer rating in preseason, four touchdowns and ZERO turnovers. If Cassel enjoys a poor start, Bridgewater would be promoted. The Vikings have Adrian Peterson, who is still the best in the business at running back and defense has shown marked improvements in the offseason that only augur well for them going forward.


St. Louis Rams (0-0, 0-0 home)
NFL Betting Line: -200, -4.0 -110 Total 44.0
Betting Analysis
The Rams went a disappointing 1-4 in preseason, but the headline grabber was Sam Bradford’s injury –an ACL injury that’s effectively ended his season. Granted, losing Bradford isn’t great news. Suggesting he’s left a ‘gaping hole’ though is overstating his value at the expense of an all in all solid team built around the centre role.

Sam Bradford has hardly been special since joining the Rams so his absence shouldn’t make the team worse. Replacement career-backup Shaun Hill matches up well enough against Matt Cassel in NFL week 1. Put another way, he’s definitely not inferior to his Vikings’ opposite to suggest the visitors will have a serious advantage at centre. The good news for the Rams is they have plenty of depth and quality around their quarterback. Zac Stacy is an emerging running back to spot, particularly on your NFL fantasy picks. WR Kenny Brit is now with the Rams and finally healthy after three seasons with knee problems and Brian Quick was also impressive in the offseason, to name a few. What’s more, the Rams have enviable depth on the D-line, so much so that they’ve had to cut many excellent candidates from their roster.


NFL Betting Verdict
Despite Sam Bradford’s injury, the Rams enter NFL week 1 betting as the firm favourites at -200 on the moneyline to win straight up and the 4-point favourites on the spread. Meanwhile, the Vikings are matched as the  +170 underdogs to deliver the road win and as the 4-point underdogs on the spread.

Clearly, Bradford’s injury hasn’t impacted this game to the point of undervaluing the Rams as the home favourites. Bookies seem confident they are still the better team on paper. It remains to be seen whether markets are just being overly optimistic about the Rams chances, but the Vikings have to be looking upon the banged-up Rams as an opportunity to turn the NFL odds in their favour. That’s why we recommend the Vikings on your NFL picks to turn the odds in their favour.

NFL Picks: Vikings to win straight up +170; Over 44.0 at 5Dimes

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