St. Louis Rams Week 7 Prediction Roundup: Carolina Panthers

Oct 6, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) watches his pass while being tackled by Arizona Cardinals linebacker Matt Shaughnessy (91) during the second half at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

 

Another week, another round of “experts” picking against the St. Louis Rams for reasons they can’t quite put their finger on. Some look at the quarterbacks and cannot possibly believe that the less-than-dynamic Sam Bradford could conquer the all-mighty poster-boy that is Cam Newton. Others look at the St. Louis Rams through the last couple of weeks, and merely chalk up the numbers to luck or “poor quality” of opponents, especially after their performance in Week 3 and 4. Other “paid analysts” have absolutely no idea about either team, pick two numbers out of a hat, and throw the win to the home team, because… why not, right? In reality, this should be a solid matchup between two NFC Wild Card-hopefuls battling to stay relevant in the early post-season fight. The Carolina Panthers, being the home team, have naturally received plenty of support this week. Will anyone pick the Rams to come out on top?

 

Road to MetLife: Week 7 Cheat Sheet

The Rams defense came alive in Houston last weekend and showed they can perform outside of St. Louis. The Panthers have Cam Newton. I’m all in on that dude. I’ve been all in since the very start. Games like this are the ones he needs to win to be put in that Wilson, Luck, Kaepernick conversation. He will.

The Pick: Panthers 31, Rams 23

 

Sports Illustrated’s Week 7 Picks

The Panthers have a little something something to be proud of on defense this season, with an NFC-best 13.6 points allowed per game, and ranking third in yards allowed. And let’s hear it for linebacker Thomas Davis, the longtime Carolina veteran who earned the NFC Defensive Player of the Week honor for a two-sack, 10-tackle showing in last week’s 35-10 blowout win at Minnesota. Davis’ hard-luck story is well-known. He tore the ACL in the same knee three times in less than two years, but is back in top playmaking form. Carolina 27, St. Louis 17

 

Pro Football Talk’s Week Seven picks

MDS’s take: The Rams are coming off a dominant win over the Texans and are, at 3-3, a lot better than most people thought they’d be. But Carolina is playing excellent defense, and St. Louis is playing mediocre offense, and so I like the Panthers to win a low-scoring game at home.

MDS’s pick: Panthers 17, Rams 9.

Florio’s take:  Here’s a game that likely will be underrated but could produce a potential wild-card contender in the NFC.  Both teams have been inconsistent, and both teams won in Week Six over franchises currently in a funk.  Edge goes to the home team, as long as the Panthers can get the upper hand early.

Florio’s pick:  Panthers 24, Rams 21.

 

Some sites prefer to merely throw out their picks, instead of outlining boldly predicted scores. In the Week 6 “expert picks” for ESPN, 10 out of 14 picked the Carolina Panthers to win, although a choice few, like KC Joyner, Mike Ditka, and Chris Mortensen, did choose against the presumed favorites. In CBS Sports’ “Against the Spread” predictions, five  out of eight went with the “underdog” Rams, with the (2-3) Panthers set as a +6.5 point favorite on Sunday. However, in their “Straight Up” picks, the voters were unanimous in their decision to take the Panthers over the Rams on Sunday.

Last week, the St. Louis Rams opened as +7.5 underdogs to the spiraling Houston Texans. To return that love to Vegas, they destroyed the spread, winning the game by 25 points, the largest margin in Rams history since 2001. Taking home the “W” in the battle against Carolina would require winning their second-consecutive road game against a heavily-favored opponent. Are the new-look St. Louis Rams up to the task? We’ll find out on Sunday…

Topics: Carolina Panthers, St. Louis Rams

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  • Joe Domingo

    Everybody picked the Texans and the Rams won. That goes to show you nobody knows anything until the game is done. The way you play the Panthers is to keep Cam off the field. So what if he can run? So can Kaepernick and Wilson and they are average runners against the Rams. Let Cam beat you with his arm, steady dose of Stacy and the Rams should be in it come the fourth quarter.

    • Nathan Kearns

      Cannot disagree with you there! Cam loves losing games while throwing for 350+ yards…

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  • Oscar Alejo

    They win a hard fought game in Carolina to get them ready for Seattle, they defeated them last year ,they know how to take them down.

    • ricdram

      RESPECT TO ” DDJ ” !
      Chris Givens & Zac Stacy will
      each score TDs this Sunday.
      Quinn/Long & Co.need to get
      about 5 sacks & we are cool.
      GO RAMS GO ! ! !

  • Sky Langford

    i wont say anything…….. but these are the very same nostradummies who picked against them last sunday……

  • http://www.cnsqonline.com cesarnoel

    As long as the Rams play Fisherball (run the ball, play action passing, create turnovers on defense and good special teams play) the will win regardless of the score.

  • Jack in NC

    #4 against the run. #7 against the pass. #2 in points allowed…but the Rams are going to run all over the Panthers? It’s going to be a close one but I wouldn’t put all your eggs in the running game basket. We are talking about the #28 Rush Offense against the #4 Rush Defense, right? The key to a Rams win lies in one thing…. If you pressure Cam, he will make mistakes. If the blitz starts getting to him he gets sloppy. If the Rams can’t create pressure on D then their running game will be useless by the second half. Pressure, pressure. Looking forward to a good game. Good luck to both teams. (No injuries, please!!)

    • Nathan Kearns

      Well, if you want to arbitrarily rank an entire unit based off of one raw statistical category, you can make almost anyone look good… it also helps when you are using “yards allowed” to rank a defense that has played one fewer game than a majority of the league, and has yet to face a team with a winning record (aside from the Seahawks in Week 1).

      You can also use that “yards gained” to rank the Rams “rushing attack,” but that doesn’t take into account the total number of attempts, or the fact that the Rams switched from Daryl Richardson to Zac Stacy in Week 5. Since then, Stacy has finished among the Top 10 rushers both weeks (7th in Week 5; 9th in Week 6), averaged the 5th most yards per attempt, and the 3rd most yards after contact.

      Agree on the “pressure” deal though! Cam can be dangerous when given time, and the Carolina Panthers D is (despite what my comments might suggest) extremely stout against the run and in the pass rush.

      It should be a good game! Thanks for the comment, and good luck on Sunday

      • Jack in NC

        I was using a stat of yards per game not total yards allowed. That was a messy game…. Hate to see anyone go down with an injury. I still think Sam Bradford is the your QB after he fixes that ACL injury. He’s got a great arm and seems to make pretty good decisions. Best of luck to y’all from here on out.

        • Nathan Kearns

          I do too. Good win for you all. Thanks for the support. Good luck this season!

  • Melting in Phoenix

    Newton has yet to have back-to-back games with a QB rating over 80. This is a good week for the Rams to face him since he played great last Sunday. Rams win 20-17 in OT.