NFL Picks: Several Trends Point Towards Rams vs. Raiders Preseason Opener Going Over the Total

Ross Benjamin

Friday, August 14, 2015 5:35 PM UTC

Friday, Aug. 14, 2015 5:35 PM UTC

We’re going to analyze Friday’s NFL preseason game between St. Louis and Oakland. This compelling betting preview article culminates with our pick on the total.

Rams Travel to the West Coast in Preseason Opener
The Raiders and Rams will collide in their 2015 preseason debuts on Friday. The opening kickoff in Oakland is set for 10:00 PM ET. According to current NFL odds at GTBets, Oakland is a 1.0 point favorite, and the posted total is 35.0. This will be the first preseason game between these teams since 2007.


Compelling Preseason Head Coaching Histories
Jeff Fisher begins his fourth season as the St. Louis Rams head coach. Fisher held the same title of the Tennessee Titans/Houston Oilers franchise from 1994 to 2010. The former Chicago Bears defensive back possesses a very unique, if not remarkable, preseason trend pertaining to an NFL head coach. In his previous nineteen years in a head coaching capacity, Fisher’s team’s have gone 49-12 (80.3%) over the number when there’s a total of 38.0 or less. His teams are also 15-4 over the total in their preseason openers regardless of the number.

Jack Del Rio enters his first year as head coach of the Oakland Raiders. He was previously the head coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars from 2003 to 2011. Del Rio’s teams in Jacksonville were 6-1 over the total from 2005 to 2011 during preseason opening games. Jacksonville was also 18-10 over the number when there was a total of 36.5 or less with Del Rio in charge.


Quarterback Depth Charts
I place a fair amount of emphasis on quarterback depth charts during preseason games. That’s especially the case early in the process when coaches have a tendency to not play, or sparingly use, what’s expected to be their starting quarterback. When surveying the top three quarterbacks for St. Louis and Oakland, I discovered a significant finding. All six signal callers have started at least one NFL regular season game. I wouldn’t say that’s extremely rare, but the instances in which that occurs is far less than the alternative.


Final Analysis
I have covered two NFL preseason handicapping aspects (head coach history/quarterback depth) in this article that weigh heavily from my personal perspective. As a result, I like this to be a high-scoring game for one of my NFL picks on Friday.

NFL Pick: Play St. Louis and Oakland over 35.0 at GTBets

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