History appears to favor the New Orleans Saints as they prepare for Sunday’s NFC Championship Game against the visiting Los Angeles Rams. It’s a 3:05 p.m. ET kickoff from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Under coach Sean Payton, the Saints are 6-0 all time in home playoff games following their 20-14 divisional round victory over the Eagles. L.A., however, enters in better current form, having scored 129 points in its past three games. Bookmakers list New Orleans as a 3.5-point favorite, with the over-under for total points scored set at 57 in the latest Rams vs. Saints odds. The winner heads to the 2019 Super Bowl. Before you make any Rams vs. Saints picks and NFC Championship Game predictions, check out what the SportsLine Projection Model has to say.
SportsLine’s proprietary computer model went 176-80 straight up last season and beat more than 95 percent of CBS Sports Office Pool players in 2016 and ’17. It also performed better than 98 percent of experts tracked by NFLPickWatch.com during that span. Additionally, it went 48-34 on A-rated picks against the spread last season, and $100 bettors who have followed it the past two seasons are up nearly $4,000.
The model has continued to nail its top-rated picks in 2018-19, entering the championship round on a blistering 16-6 run. For the season, it is now 30-15 on all top-rated picks, extending its two-year run to a strong 78-49. It also went 170-84 on straight-up NFL picks during the regular season, ranking inside the top 10 on NFLPickWatch.com. Additionally, it is 7-1 on all against-the-spread 2019 NFL playoff picks. Anyone who has followed it is way up.
Now, it has crunched the numbers for Rams vs. Saints (stream live on fuboTV) and simulated the must-see NFC title game 10,000 times. We can tell you it’s leaning over, but it has also generated a point-spread pick that hits well over 50 percent of the time. You can only see that one at SportsLine.
The model knows that in Week 9, the Saints outlasted L.A. 45-35 despite closing as 1.5-point underdogs. New Orleans dominated time of possession, 33:41 to 26:19, while handing the Rams their first loss. The ageless Drew Brees threw for 346 yards and four touchdowns without a turnover. In fact, it was the seventh straight time the home team covered in this rivalry.
New Orleans is well-suited to contain the Rams’ vaunted rushing attack. The Saints rank second in rushing yards allowed (80.2 per game) and yards per carry allowed (3.6).
But just because the Saints are at home and have already handled L.A. doesn’t mean they’ll cover the NFC Championship Game spread.
The Rams, 14-3 just like New Orleans, have looked unstoppable the past three weeks. They embarrassed the Cowboys, an elite defensive team, with 273 rushing yards in a 30-22 divisional round victory. Running back C.J. Anderson has gashed L.A.’s past three opponents for 422 yards and four touchdowns, meaning the Saints can’t rest when Todd Gurley takes a breather.
Sean McVay, at 32 the youngest coach to win an NFL playoff game, devised a brilliant game plan that befuddled the Cowboys. And most observers believe he is as good, if not better than Payton at calling plays. McVay’s quarterback, Jared Goff, has five touchdown passes and no picks the past three weeks.
Who covers in Rams vs. Saints? And which side of the spread cashes well over 50 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Saints vs. Rams spread you need to jump on Sunday, all from the computer model that has returned nearly $4,000 to $100 bettors over the past two seasons.