The Los Angeles Rams haven’t been an underdog all season, but that’s the situation as they visit the New Orleans Saints in this weekend’s NFC Championship game.
The Saints opened as 3.5-point favorites at Bovada Sportsbook as they look to advance to the Super Bowl for the first time since winning their lone championship in 2009. This battle of the conference’s top two offenses sees an over under of 57 points.
Can the Saints Cover the Spread?
New Orleans booked its spot in the conference title game by defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 20-14 as an 8-point favorite last week. By failing to cover the spread, the Saints have now lost four straight against the spread, and they’re 1-5 ATS in their last six.
Since 1980, the Saints have been playoff favorites 11 times and covered just twice (2-9 ATS). At home in their last eight games overall, the Saints have been nearly unbeatable at 7-1 straight up, but they still struggle ATS at 4-4.
New Orleans has taken full advantage of home field in the playoffs with seven straight wins at the Superdome. Again, it hasn’t translated to big profits for bettors as they were 3-4 ATS in those seven wins.
Can the Rams Cover the Spread?
The Rams punched their ticket to the conference championship with a 30-22 win over the Dallas Cowboys as a 7-point home favorite. That was the Rams’ third straight win both SU and ATS, but on the road they’re 2-2 SU and ATS in their last four.
This week marks the first time this season the Rams have been listed as the underdog. Looking at the trends that could be bad news for Los Angeles.
In their last 14 games as an underdog, the Rams are 2-12 SU and 2-11-1 ATS.
The Rams and Saints clashed in New Orleans back in Week 9 and the Saints won a shootout 45-35 as a 2-point home underdog.
Looking at a few NFC Championship game trends, the home teas has won five straight in the title game and covered in the last three. The favorite is also 5-1 SU in the last six title games.
The way New Orleans is rolling at home we expect that trend to continue, as they defeat and cover against the Rams to head to Super Bowl 53.
Pick: Saints -3.5