Game Predictions & Player Projections - STL vs SD

Game Predictions & Player Projections - STL vs SD


Game Predictions & Player Projections - STL vs SD


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Prediction: STL 14, SD 20 (Line: SD by 5)

UPDATE: Jared Cook was held out of practice on Wednesday and then was limited on Thursday and Friday because of his back. He has not been ruled out but is questionable to play so I have lowered his projections slightly.

The 4-6 Rams surprised the Broncos last week with a win while the Broncos watched several key players leave for the locker room during the game. The 6-4 Chargers are only one game behind the Chiefs and Broncos with a 4-1 mark at home. As much fun as the Rams had in their trap game over the Broncos, road games have not been ending nearly so well for them.

St. Louis Rams

1 MIN 6-34 10 @ARI 14-31
2 @TB 19-17 11 DEN 22-7
3 DAL 31-34 12 @SD —–
4 BYE —– 13 OAK —–
5 @PHI 28-34 14 @WAS —–
6 SF 17-31 15 ARI —–
7 SEA 28-26 16 NYG —–
8 @KC 7-34 17 @SEA —–
9 @SF 13-10  
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vs Rush Catch Pass

The Rams should rename themselves the Ninjas because teams just do not see them coming. They’ve only won four games and yet three were against the Seahawks, at San Francisco and the Broncos that just seemed fated from the start. Switching to Shaun Hill was hardly the reason why they won and the offense continues to struggle to score more than one or two touchdowns in any game. But they have served notice that their defense is good enough that opponents cannot try to mail in a win and get away with it.

QUARTERBACK : Austin Davis was benched and Shaun Hill took over last week. And he threw 220 yards and one score just like Davis had for the last month. This time it was enough to get a win. Hill did not turn the ball over but he only attempted 29 passes in the game. He remains the newest mediocre quarterback for the Rams.

RUNNING BACK : Tre Mason comes off his best game so far with 113 yards on 29 carries but he has just one score on the year and virtually no role as a receiver. It is positive that the Rams are willing to feed him a lot of carries when they can and not share much with Benny Cunningham. But on the road for three games, Mason only averaged about 48 rush yards.

WIDE RECEIVER : The biggest chunk of passing success and only touchdown by Hill came early last week when Kenny Britt caught a 63-yard strike for a touchdown. He would end with 128 yards on four catches while the next best wide receiver was Tavon Austin with two catches for ten yards. Granted – that was with Hill in the game. But Britt had been a nonfactor all year and rarely topped 50 yards in any game. His only other time playing with Hill was in the opener when he failed to catch any of his three targets. There is no fantasy value here though Britt deserves to be watched.

TIGHT END : While Jared Cook finally scored in week ten with Davis still the quarterback, he was back to a more normal three catches for 19 yards last week with Hill. Cook has just the one score and bounces around from ten to 80 yards per week – mostly on the lower side.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Chargers defense at home has been great against the pass and allowed just four touchdowns over the last five opponents. And none had more than 254 yards so consider Hill to be fortunate to reach his mediocre level of last week. There have been no wideouts to catch a touchdown in San Diego this year. The tight ends do not fare well and Cook is unreliable anyway. The Chargers are a but weaker against the running backs and Mason is a low end fantasy start this week but none of the other Rams stand out as worth the risk.

Gaining Fantasy Points STL 31 23 28 10 24 21
Preventing Fantasy Points SD 13 20 8 3 2 3

San Diego Chargers

1 @ARI 17-18 10 BYE —–
2 SEA 30-21 11 OAK 13-6
3 @BUF 22-10 12 STL —–
4 JAC 33-14 13 @BAL —–
5 NYJ 31-0 14 NE —–
6 @OAK 31-28 15 DEN —–
7 KC 20-23 16 @SF —–
8 @DEN 12-35 17 @KC —–
9 @MIA 0-37  
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vs Rush Catch Pass

The Chargers swept the Raiders but won the two games only by a combined six points. And more was expected coming off a bye and following the beatdowns they received from the Broncos and Dolphins in the previous weeks. The Chargers beat the Seahawks earlier this year but so far they’ve limited themselves to beating just the bad teams like the incoming Rams.

QUARTERBACK : Philip Rivers is another quarterback who was churning out three-touchdown games with healthy yardage and then these last two weeks he just disappeared. Rivers was held to 138 yards and three interceptions in Miami and then only managed 193 yards and one score on the Raiders only four weeks after he posted 313 yards and three scores in Oakland. Rivers needs bounce back because the schedule is about to get really brutal.

RUNNING BACK : Ryan Mathews returned from his eight week absence and immediately took a full load with 16 carries for 70 yards versus the Raiders. Never mind that Branden Oliver posted 26 carries for 101 yards and a score when he faced the Raiders in Oakland and he added four catches for 23 yards. Oliver still ran the ball 13 times last week for 36 yards so the two are still in a committee backfield. It’s just the two running backs now and Mathews said he experienced no knee problem from his first game back.

WIDE RECEIVER : Keenan Allen still lags last season by a considerable margin but at least he is gaining 60+ yards in most games and increasing his targets and catches. Allen still has just one score on the year and just one 100 yard effort. Malcom Floyd scored last week but ended with just 44 yards on four receptions which is roughly his norm. He’s accounted for four touchdowns so far while Eddie Royal leads the bunch with five though non in the last four games.

TIGHT END : These last two weeks when the offense struggled left Antonio Gates with barely 30 yards per game and ended his four game scoring streak. While he has been limited to around 60 yards in most games, he scored six times from week five through week eight before going silent.

MATCH TO THE DEFENSE: The Rams pass defense has been weak even if they held Manning to one score last week. Six other quarterbacks posted two or three touchdowns on them along with healthy yardage. Rivers at home should be good for moderate stats but he’s been off lately and a big game is not likely. The Rams against the run have been very good and they have only allowed top backs to succeed or score against them and that is not what the Chargers are bringing to the party. Expect only moderate yardage from the running backs and more likely no score. Have to like both Allen and Floyd more this week from a good situation but both carry risk of a bad game. Gates faces a defense that has only allowed two tight ends to score this year and none had more than 61 yards.

Gaining Fantasy Points SD 11 27 21 5 17 31
Preventing Fantasy Points STL 24 8 29 8 16 31

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