California Love: Both LA Teams Will Cover In NFL Week 10

Unfortunately, we Californians still can’t legally bet on this stuff but there’s value in both the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers in their NFL Week 10 matchups.

The Rams host a familiar victim in the Arizona Cardinals at SoFi Stadium in the 4 p.m. ET window. Then the Chargers visit the San Francisco 49ers at Levi Stadium for Sunday Night Football.

At the time of writing, neither team is getting much support from their home fans or the betting market. According to Pregame.com, more bets have been placed on both the Cardinals and 49ers.

The public is butt-hurt that the Rams keep costing them money and no one wants to fade this scary Niners team. Especially with this banged-up Chargers roster.

But, it pays to fade the public in sports betting …

Arizona Cardinals (3-6) at Los Angeles Rams (3-5)

Betting Details (DraftKings)

  • Moneyline (ML): Cardinals (+100), RAMS (-120)
  • Against the spread (ATS): Cardinals +1.5 (-110), Rams -1.5 (-110)
  • Total (O/U) — 41.5 — O: -110, U: -110

First of all, Rams head coach Sean McVay owns Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury. Since 2019 (Kingsbury’s 1st year in Arizona), the Rams are 7-1 straight up (SU) and ATS vs. the Cardinals with a +6.8 ATS margin.

Also, Week 10’s Cardinals-Rams game is mispriced due to an overreaction to LA’s recent poor performance and the return of Arizona WR DeAndre Hopkins.

Sure, the Rams have lost four of their last five games. But, they visited the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last week and pushed as 3-point underdogs.

Two of the other three losses came against the Niners (Weeks 4 and 8). And San Francisco coach Kyle Shanahan owns McVay like McVay owns Kingsbury.

Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay and Arizona Cardinals Kliff Kingsbury shake hands following a Rams' whooping of the Cardinals at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay and Arizona Cardinals Kliff Kingsbury shake hands following a Rams’ whooping of the Cardinals at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

The final loss in LA’s 1-4 stretch over the past five games was at home to the Dallas Cowboys in Week 5. Dallas has one of the best defenses in the NFL and the Cowboys had more fans in LA than the Rams.

In the first Cardinals-Rams meeting (Week 4), LA was a 3.5-point road favorite and won 20-12. Based on that spread and result, the Rams should be at least 6-point home favorites this weekend.

Arizona lost SU and ATS vs. LA in Week 4 despite converting 4-of-5 fourth down attempts, having more total yards with nearly eight more minutes of ball possession, and winning the turnover battle 1-0. The Cardinals couldn’t win or cover at home while winning the box score in a landslide.

Furthermore, LA’s defense makes Arizona’s offense even more one-dimensional than it already is. Outside of Kyler Murray and Hopkins, who are you worried about in the Cardinals’ offense?

The Rams are the NFL’s best rushing defense by expected points added per play, second-best by success rate, and allow the 2nd-fewest rushing yards to opposing QBs.

Arizona Cardinals QB Kyler Murray evades Los Angeles Rams' Aaron Donald.
Arizona Cardinals QB Kyler Murray evades Los Angeles Rams DT Aaron Donald. (Jevone Moore/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Murray rushed for 8 yards on two carries vs. the Rams in Week 4 and threw 58 passes. Rams’ future Hall of Famer Aaron Donald has four sacks in his last two regular-season games vs. the Cardinals and will dominate Arizona’s weak offensive line.

In fact, the Cardinals have the worst run-blocking mismatch in Week 10, per Pro Football Focus. LA also has two of the best cover cornerbacks in the NFL — Jalen Ramsey and Troy Hill — to throw on Nuk Hopkins.

Buyer beware: RAMS QB MATTHEW STAFFORD IS IN CONCUSSION PROTOCOL

Rams QB Matthew Stafford was put in concussion protocol as I was writing this handicap. Upon further review, I’m going forward with the Rams bet.

LA backup QB John Wolford‘s only career start was in Week 17 of the 2020 season vs. Arizona. Wolford replaced an injured Jared Goff and the Rams beat the Cardinals 18-7.

The Rams were only one-game better than the Cardinals entering that game and closed as one-point favorites. LA’s defense shut down Arizona’s defense and Murray left the game with an ankle injury.

Since I didn’t mention Stafford’s name in any of my Cardinals-Rams handicap, I’m cool with taking LA’s ML at a cheaper price. Also, Murray is dealing with a hamstring injury and is considered “day-to-day”.

I don’t believe the Cardinals can win without Murray whereas I know McVay and the Rams can with a different starting quarterback.

BET: Rams 1.5 (-110) ML at DraftKings, up to -3.5 ATS if Matthew Stafford plays


Los Angeles Chargers (5-3) at San Francisco 49ers (4-4)

Betting Details (DraftKings)

  • ML: CHARGERS (+250), 49ers (-300)
  • ATS: CHARGERS +7 (-110), 49ers -7 (-110)
  • Total (O/U) — 45.5 — O: -110, U: -110

For all the love San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan gets, he’s three games below .500 for his career (43-46). Shanahan is seen as a master game planner but can’t do anything without QB Jimmy Garoppolo and routinely whiffs in high-leverage situations.

The 49ers typically struggle in these spots under Shanahan (est. 2017). San Francisco is 6-10-1 ATS as home favorites of -3.5 or more and 4-10 ATS as favorites in primetime in the Shanahan era.

Shanahan’s systems are known for getting the ball to their playmakers in space and the Chargers have the third-fewest missed tackles in the NFL. LA’s defense sucks but can at least make tackles in the open field.

Also, this has been a profitable spot for LA in recent seasons. Since Chargers QB Justin Herbert‘s rookie season (2020), LA is 7-3 ATS as road underdogs and 3-1 ATS as primetime road ‘dogs.

Los Angeles Chargers QB Justin Herbert rolls out to pass in the 2nd quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium in Houston.
Los Angeles Chargers QB Justin Herbert rolls out to pass in the 2nd quarter against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium in Houston. (Bob Levey/Getty Images)

Plus there’s backdoor cover potential with the Chargers at this number. Herbert can make big-time throws against any defense and LA’s offensive line has the best adjusted sack rate in the NFL, per Football Outsiders.

We are getting a buy-low spot on the Chargers and a sell-high spot for the 49ers. LA is 4-1 SU in the last five games but has looked unimpressive over that span. San Francisco pummeled the Rams 31-14 in LA prior to last week’s bye.

But, the Niners are just 3-3 ATS after a bye in Shanahan’s tenure. They also lost by double digits to both the Falcons and Kansas City Chiefs in Weeks 7-8. LA covered vs. KC on the road in Week 3 and beat Atlanta last week.

I don’t trust either coach in this spot so give me the better QB who’s getting more than a TD.

BET: Chargers +7 (-110) at DraftKings, down to +6. “Sprinkle” on the Chargers’ ML


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Written by Geoff Clark

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