The NFC West-leading 11-4 Los Angeles Rams will travel east in Week 17 to face a desperate 8-7 Baltimore Ravens team, clinging to waning playoff hopes. DraftKings Sportsbook sees this as a close game, with LA opening as a 3-point road favorite.
The Ravens may be forced to once again play without the 2019 NFL Most Valuable Player Lamar Jackson, who hasn’t practiced since injuring his ankle early in the second quarter of a Week 14 loss to the Cleveland Browns. His availability will almost certainly impact the betting line and the 46-point over/under.
During their four game losing streak, the Ravens have been forced to be uncharacteristically pass-happy, throwing the ball 159 times (averaging 39 passes per game) during that stretch of losses. Baltimore had to start their third string quarterback Josh Johnson in a 41-21 blowout loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, due to their regular backup Tyler Huntley testing positive for COVID-19.
Head coach John Harbaugh’s team has been ravaged by injuries, especially in the defensive backfield. Missing two All-Pro cornerbacks in Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey has left the secondary in shambles.
Ravens cornerbacks:— Ryan Mink (@ryanmink) December 26, 2021
❌ Marcus Peters
❌ Marlon Humphrey
❌ Anthony Averett (questionable)
✔️ Tavon Young
❌ Jimmy Smith
❌ Chris Westry
❌ Khalil Dorsey
✔️ Robert Jackson
✔️ Daryl Worley
The Ravens defense has given up over 3,700 yards through the air, ranking them 31st in the league against the pass. Please pardon the sound of Cooper Kupp licking his chops.
Mackensie Alexander trying to cover Cooper Kupp pic.twitter.com/dobSf4prmd— flo (@wholsfloo) December 26, 2021
According to Weather.com the game day weather report currently calls for rain throughout the day, perfect for a game script featuring a ton of Sony Michel.
Unfortunately for Rams fans who want head coach Sean McVay to commit to running the damn ball, Baltimore has been stout against the run; they’ve allowed 1,207 rushing yards, the least in the NFL.
The Rams enter the game on a four game winning streak, with a freshly punched ticket to the playoffs courtesy of their 30-23 road victory over the Minnesota Vikings. LA will look to keep their winning ways going in the “Charm City,” and hopefully get one game closer to clinching the NFC West.