The Tampa Bay Bucs last season became the first team to play in a Super Bowl in their own stadium – and they of course won it. The Los Angeles Rams have that chance this season and they open their year in the first Sunday night game against the Chicago Bears at the site of Super Bowl 56. LA is a solid favorite on the NFL odds.
In the preseason, the Bears grabbed two wins in three games, giving the team much-needed momentum. Meanwhile, the hosts finished their 2020 campaign with a 10-6 record to qualify for the playoffs. They secured a Wild Card round victory against the Seahawks before losing to the Packers in the Divisional round.
In this preview, we put together the following: event information, team and player statistics, the latest NFL odds, timely betting trends, and expert betting predictions. Let the NitroBetting team help you lock in on the best picks as more NFL games head in our direction. Check out the latest 2021 NFL odds at out online Bitcoin sportsbook.
Bears vs. Rams Game Information
Soooo close ‼️ pic.twitter.com/ZY1pRoQV81— Los Angeles Rams (@RamsNFL) September 9, 2021
- When: Sunday, September 12th, 8:20 PM ET
- Where: SoFi Stadium, Los Angeles, California
- TV: NBC
- Radio: WBBM Newsradio 780 AM (Bears) / ESPN 1420 AM (Rams)
- Live Stream:NFL Game Pass
- NFL Odds: Chicago Bears (+7.5) / Los Angeles Rams (-7.5)
Why Bet on the Chicago Bears?
The Bears went on a roll in their first six games of last season, documenting five wins and a loss. However, they stopped dead on their tracks and hit a six-game losing streak. Thankfully, the team pulled themselves out of the rut to fight for a postseason appearance but were eliminated right away in the Wild Card round.
This season, veteran Andy Dalton runs the offensive show, which means Justin Fields fans will have to wait before he inevitably becomes the starter. The receiving unit features the duo of Allen Robinson and Darnell Mooney. Both are considered underrated players due to their lack of playing time alongside an elite passer. If Dalton gains some traction, he can connect well with Robinson and produce a constant threat.
Dalton, signed to a one-year free-agent deal this offseason, is simply keeping the spot warm for rookie first-round pick Justin Fields – who could see the field perhaps in a play or two on Sunday. Rams head coach Sean McVay said the team is preparing to face Fields in special offensive packages. Fields is listed as the backup to Dalton, so if Dalton were to get injured it would be the rookie.
Chicago’s offensive line looks like a major weak spot. The team traded up in the second round of this year’s draft to take Oklahoma State’s Teven Jenkins and planned to start him at left tackle, but Jenkins may miss the season with back troubles.
This will be the team debuts of Chicago’s Andy Dalton and the Rams’ Matthew Stafford. The expectations are quite different for both veterans. On defense, we expect Khalil Mack to make things happen. The Bears are known for their defense, and they can give the Rams a hard time once they get all warmed up.
Why Bet on the Los Angeles Rams?
This is the fourth straight season these teams have met and each has been very low-scoring – so perhaps consider under that total of 46.5. The Rams have won the past two at home. It was 24-10 in Week 7 last year on a Monday night. Frankly, the MVP of that one probably was Rams punter Johnny Hekker. He punted it five times, and all five were downed inside the 11-yard line: at the 7, 10, 1, 6 and 5.
The Rams rushed for 166 yards on 31 carries. Darrell Henderson had 64 yards on 15 attempts, while Malcolm Brown gained 57 on 10 carries with one touchdown. Henderson should be the featured back this year with Cam Akers having suffered a season-ending injury early in training camp. Brown is now in Miami. Jared Goff threw for two scores, but he’s now in Detroit. Nick Foles was the starting QB for Chicago and was terrible with two picks – he’s now third-string.
The Rams traded Goff and a couple of future first-round picks to the Lions for Stafford, the former No. 1 overall pick who has arguably Hall of Fame numbers but has never won a playoff game. Stafford is 11-9 all-time against the Bears, completing 63.6 percent of his passes for 5,440 yards, 32 touchdowns, 23 picks and a passer rating of 86.3.
The Rams are definitely Super Bowl or bust. Anchored by All-Pros Aaron Donald and Jalen Ramsey, the Los Angeles defense ranked first in the NFL in total yards allowed, yards passing allowed, touchdown passes allowed, first downs allowed and total points allowed last year. Donald won a record-tying third NFL Defensive Player of the Year Award. Donald needs 2.5 sacks, which he could easily get in this game, to become the Rams’ all-time sacks leader. Leonard Little holds the mark with 87.5.
Pretty much everyone is back from that unit, but coordinator Brandon Staley left to be the head coach of the other Los Angeles team, the Chargers. He was replaced by former Bucs and Falcons head coach Raheem Morris.
For what it’s worth, and I’d say not much, Chicago has 55 wins on Kickoff Weekend, the second-most in NFL history, while the Rams have won four consecutive Week 1 games, the second-longest streak in the NFL.
Bears vs. Rams Betting Trends
- The Bears are 4-1 ATS in the last 5 games in September.
- The Bears are 2-5 ATS in the last 7 games as an underdog.
- The total went over in 5 of Chicago’s last 7 games.
- The Rams are 4-0 ATS in the last 4 games in Week 1.
- Rams are 8-3-1 ATS in the last 12 games as a home favorite.
- The total went under in 11 of LA Rams’ last 15 games.
Bears vs. Rams Expert Betting Predictions
Holding home-field advantage means a more confident Chiefs team. They enter the game as favorites and look to start their 2021 season with a win. A loss in the Super Bowl only means that this team is hungrier than ever, and that’s a dangerous thought if you want to root for the Browns in this game. Nevertheless, with the odds, the Browns are capable of covering the spread. It’s interesting how the team performs following multiple changes in the offseason and an undefeated preseason record, which gives the team more confidence coming into the contest.
Check out our latest sports betting guides for the 2021 NFL Regular Season. Stay tuned for more Football previews and articles and don’t forget to check out the latest Football betting odds at our online Bitcoin sportsbook.
*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice.