The Degenerate: Week 14, Monday Night – Are You Really Going to Watch This Game?

So we finally got ourselves a winner on Sunday. The Eagles looked pretty good. Yeah, they put up 24 of their 26 points in a big 2nd quarter burst, but they looked pretty good on defense with nine sacks, two fumble recoveries and an interception. And Shady was able to find the end zone twice (but only managed 38 yards rushing). But really the Dolphins showed that they just aren’t that good, and Matt Moore isn’t a big game QB. Besides that nice TD pass to Brandon Marshall he really didn’t do too much before he left with an injury.

The Eagles defense was swarming on Sunday

So yeah, the Eagles are still alive for the division title. We still need a ton of help and alot of breaks have to go our way, but it’s not over (yet). Actually it probably is, but I’m #ALLIN and I’m not giving up hope until we are mathematically eliminated.  We get the Jets at the Linc next week. Rex Ryan comes into town, so hide your daughters… and lock up your refrigerators.

But let’s put away the pipe dreams for one more week. Tonight is Monday Night, so you know what that means: Jaws, Jon Gruden, Mike Tirico and quite possibly the worst Monday Night Football matchup all season.

5-7 Seattle is hosting 2-10 St Louis. Rams QB Sam Bradford is hurting and backup AJ Feeley is already declared OUT, so the Rams could be playing some guy named Tom Brandstater at QB (no shit, I’m not making that up). They also claimed Kellen Clemons off of waivers, so he could get some action too. So your starter could be an injured Sam Bradford,  Tom Brandstater, or some guy they signed last Wednesday.

We’ve already had to sit through Tyler Palko and the Chiefs at New England. And Jacksonville hosted San Diego last week and that wasn’t that great either. But this one is a crappy matchup of epic proportions. But no worries, I’ll break it down and pick a winner for us (para la única diversión).

Marshawn should have another big game

Seattle is a -9 point favorite in this one, the Over/Under is 38. Vegas was hesitant to make a line on this game without knowing the status of Sam Bradford. The Hilton Supercontest put the line as Seattle -7.5, and people jumped all over it. 109 contestants picked Seattle -7.5, while only 22 went with St. Louis. (The Supercontest is an open invitation contest where entrants pony up $1500 to try to prove they are the best handicapper in the country, picking five games against the spread every week. Winner takes all.) We know that the Supercontest 7.5 point spread was low because the true “opening number” for this game was Seattle -9.5 (at least the ones I saw). The line has settled on -9 this morning after being bet up to -10 over the weekend. Seems like the news this morning that Bradford should be playing brought in some Rams money.

But really, the question here isn’t if the Seahawks can win, it is can they cover the 9 point line? And we might see this line go up even more, I mean if you’re betting on the game you aren’t going to put your money on the 2-10 Rams and their shaky QB situation, are you?

One saying I learned early in my gambling life was “never rely on a bad team to do good things.” And tonight you’re going to rely on the Rams (and whomever their QB is tonight) to get motivated and go into a hostile stadium and hang with a Seattle team that is still (barely) alive for a wildcard playoff berth.

Hey look, it's the last four Rams fans.

Seattle had an impressive win at home last week over the Eagles, and they’ve won three of their last four games and covered the spread in four of their last five. To say St Louis has struggled would be an understatement. They’re 2-10 straight up and against the spread, and they got shutout last week at San Francisco.

I don’t see how the Rams can stay in this game. They have the #31 ranked team in overall efficiency (thankfully for them the Colts are playing even worse), and the 32nd (worst) ranked offense. Seattle counters with the #11 defense. The Rams will have a tough time moving the ball. With all the problems at QB lately, opposing teams really only have to key on Steven Jackson, you stop him, you stop the Rams offense. Seattle should be able to do that, they come in with the #9 rush defense.

Seattle has owned the Rams lately. Since 2005 the Seahawks are 12-1 SU and 10-3 ATS in this series. These two teams met back in Week 10, and the Seahawks won that one 24-7, holding the Rams (with Sam Bradford at QB) to 210 yards total offense.

The combination of the Seattle defense, Seattle home field advantage and the Rams inept offense means that I’m taking Seattle -9 in this one.

I don’t expect alot of points, I could see the Seahawks playing a conservative game, alot of Marshawn Lynch on the ground (remember him, Eagles fans?) and Tarvaris Jackson trying not to lose the game and sticking with short passes. Even if Sam Bradford sucks it up and plays, I don’t see him being effective with his injured ankle.

I see Seahawks getting it done in a low scoring game, boring game. Good luck if you’re going to watch it. How about Marshawn Lynch leads the Seattle offense, the Rams continue to struggle on offense and the Seahawks win 24-10.

The Line: Seattle -9, O/U 38
The Pick: Seattle -9
Game trends (via St. Louis: 1-7 ATS in their last 8 road games; Seattle: 6-2 ATS in their last 8 home games.

The Over/Under on ‘Skittles’ mentions tonight? I’m setting it a 5. And I’m going OVER.





Season Record: 17-16. You can see all my picks for the 2011 season documented here.

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