No Real Favorite in NFL Spread for Rams vs Vikings Game
The Minnesota Vikings (-2.5) host the St. Louis Rams in Week 9, after they ended a big losing streak at Soldier Field by toppling the Chicago Bears, 23-20 in Week 8. That was the Vikings’ second consecutive division road win. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was not all that great, going just 17 for 30 for 187 yards with a score and a pick), but in crunch time he was terrific as the Vikings put the game’s final 10 points on the board, outscoring the Bears 13-7 in the fourth quarter and covering the NFL spread.
Adrian Peterson got over 100 yards on the ground, doing most of his damage in the first half with 75 yards. Rookie wideout Stefon Diggs had a 40-yard grab and run for a score in the fourth quarter; for the game, he caught six balls for 95 yards.
— Pro Football HOF (@ProFootballHOF) November 6, 2015
The St. Louis Rams have dominated their last two games with a combined score of 51-12, behind an ironclad defense and a running game that features terrific rookie Todd Gurley. Gurley is already being compared to Peterson, having picked up 575 yards in his first five games in the NFL. The Rams also have wide receiver Tavon Austin emerging as a threat for the Rams, as Austin has scored five touchdowns (four on receptions) in his last four games, racking up 327 total yards (243 through receptions) in that time. He brings a big-play possibility to the game that no other receiver for St. Louis can, so he will need to be a focus for the Vikings’ secondary this Sunday.
Both the Vikings and the Rams need a win to solidify their position in playoff contention within the NFC, and the two solid defenses mean that the game on Sunday is likely to be close.
Here are some numbers to consider as you peruse this matchup:
- Adrian Peterson has three runs of 40+ yards this season. The only running back with more is Gurley, who has four. Gurley and Peterson rank #1 and #2 in rushing yards per game in the NFL this season.
- Playing in their temporary stadium while waiting for their new digs, the Vikings have gone 8-3 (.727). This is the highest home win percentage of any team playing its home games in a temporary stadium.
- The Vikings have fewer penalties (39) than any other team in the NFL. The offense has only taken 12 penalties, the fewest in the NFL. The special teams unit also ranks #1 with only three penalties thus far.
- The Vikings are the only NFL team that has two rookies (Eric Kendricks – 4, Danielle Hunter – 1.5) with at least 1.5 sacks so far.
Marcus Sherels picked up his third career punt return for a touchdown, setting a new record for the most punt return touchdowns in franchise history for the Vikings. He also holds the franchise record for career punt return average (10.6 yards). On the other end, the Vikings are tied for #1 in the league, permitting only 4.0 yards per return on punts. They have given up only 40 yards on punt returns this season, on 10 punts.
Vikings kicker Blair Walsh has mad 13 straight field goals and is 17 for 19 so far this season. Against Chicago, he nailed his fourth career game winning field goal, connecting from 36 yards as the clock expired.