By Hamish Girvan
The NFC West was one of the worst divisions 7 years ago. The Seattle Seahawks won the division winning 7 games and went the playoffs. Everything is cyclical in the NFL and maybe this is the start of their Superbowl run. Watch out for those Rams though.
Los Angeles Rams at New York Giants – Monday 7am NZ time
The Rams are a revelation this year. Shows what happens when a decent coach is at the helm. Two seasons ago they were located in St Louis, Missouri however a move to LA has turned this perennial 8-8 team into something different this season. Rookie head coach Sean McVay (a Jon Gruden sound-alike) has turned them into a competitive 5-2 team so far. This week they travel to the hapless Giants who are a team on the wane. Zero offensive threat and an average defence they are potentially going to be picking in the top 5 of the draft next year. Rams quarterback Jared Goff is a different player under McVay and running back Todd Gurley is the player we all thought he was. The Rams head to New York as a 3.5 point favourite. Unheard of in the past. The Rams should on form do this comfortably.
Arizona Cardinals at San Francisco 49ers – Monday 10.05am NZ time
The two weakest teams in the division face off with win/loss records really meaning nothing in terms of competiveness. The 49ers made a major move toward their future this week by trading for Patriot backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. Hot property he only cost the 49ers a second round draft pick in 2018. He may not start in this game however if things start going pear shaped he may make an appearance. The Cardinals have their own quarterback issues with veteran Carson Palmer going down injured in week 7 and out for the season with a broken arm. They were struggling before then regardless. The Cardinals are a 1.5 point favorite however the 49ers will make them work for every point. Take the Cardinals to just sneak in.
Washington Redskins at Seattle Seahawks – Monday 10.05am NZ time
This is a good match up for Seattle. Fresh of toe to toe win over the Houston Texans last week (in what many are calling his game of the season) they should have an easier match up against a Redskins team who have been struggling. Both teams’ offensive lines are not great however Washington’s is worse and with the Seahawks legion of boom defence Washington will have to play at their best. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is hitting his straps after a slow start to the season and this is when they start their run traditionally. The Seahawks are being given a 7.5 point start. They should end up winning by more than that so take them.
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