NFL Picks: Play Rams ATS Odds to Win Preseason Finale Against Chiefs

Jason Lake

Wednesday, September 2, 2015 5:47 PM GMT

The St. Louis Rams have yet to beat the football odds this preseason. They'll get one more opportunity this Thursday night against the 2-1 ATS Kansas City Chiefs.

Have the St. Louis Rams resigned themselves to another year of mediocrity? They haven't had a winning season in over a decade, and the last time the Rams went to the playoffs, Marshall Faulk was still their running back. Giving QB Nick Foles a spin might be enough to get St. Louis over the hump this year, but based on his recent body of work, probably not.

That body of work includes these past three exhibition games. Foles played well in one of them, but St. Louis still honked all three SU and ATS. Now the Rams are going to battle without Foles – and likely No. 2 QB Case Keenum – as they prepare to host the Kansas City Chiefs Thursday night (8:00 p.m. ET) in the preseason finale. Our NFL odds board as press time has the Rams getting the requisite 2.5 points at home.

 

Austin City Limits
Foles wasn't the main focus of the quarterback competition in St. Louis. Instead, Keenum got the bulk of the reps during the preseason, and head coach Jeff Fisher has already anointed Keenum as the primary back-up behind Foles. Fisher's plan for Thursday is to split the reps between No. 3 QB Austin Davis and No. 4 Sean Mannion.

This isn't necessarily a bad thing for Rams supporters. Davis is almost certainly going to be cut loose after this game, but there are other teams in the NFL who might want to pick him up, so Davis will be motivated to show his stuff against Kansas City. He was a bit below average last year in terms of passing DVOA (–8.8 percent), ranking No. 30 in the league behind Tennessee Titans back-up Charlie Whitehurst. However, that should be good enough to beat most teams' second- and third-string defenders.

 

Chase Bank
Which just happens to be the plan for the Chiefs. Like most teams, they won't be using their starters on Thursday; ESPN's Adam Teicher was at Arrowhead Stadium on Tuesday, and according to his observations, QB Chase Daniel will be starting against St. Louis. Daniel played very well in the first two exhibition games before skipping last week's game against the Titans. Even then, No. 3 QB Aaron Murray did a fine job as Kansas City won 34-10 as a 5-point home chalk.

It might not be a bad idea to take the OVER given the reasonable QB talent we're going to see in this matchup. But we're going to roll the dice on the Rams. Fisher is 12-5 SU lifetime in Week 4 of the preseason, while Chiefs head coach Andy Reid is 5-11 SU. Kansas City also has a few more injuries to worry about than the Rams do. We certainly wouldn't bet the farm on it, especially with our consensus reports showing nearly two-thirds support for the Chiefs. A small wager will suffice, and may the prolate spheroid be with you.

Free NFL Pick: Take the Rams –2.5 at WagerWeb.