The Los Angeles Rams will travel to San Francisco to take on the 49ers in the second game of the Monday night double header. The Rams are coming off a disappointing 7-8 record last season and have returned back to California after 21 years spent in St. Louis. The 49ers have only won 12 games over the last 2 seasons and have brought in new head coach Chip Kelly to try and turn things around. These two teams met in the last game of last season and the 49ers won 19-16. Blaine Gabbert threw for 351 yards and touchdown while Case Keenum threw for 231 yards and 0 touchdowns. Rookie Pro Bowl running back Todd Gurley didn’t play in that game as he missed the final 3 games with a toe injury.
Todd Gurley was excellent in his first NFL season leading the team in rush yards with over 1,100 to go along with 10 touchdowns. He also caught 28 passes for another 188 yards and is fully recovered from his toe injury. Case Keenum has been announced the starter for the Rams after making 6 starts last season completing over 60 percent of his passes. He threw 4 touchdowns and only 1 interception. Tavon Austin led the receivers last year with 5 touchdowns and Kenny Britt averaged 19 yards per reception gaining 681 yards on only 31 catches. Their defense allowed 367 yards per game last year and is led by Pro Bowl defensive tackle Aaron Donald who had 11 sacks. Defensive End Robert Quinn was second on the team with 5 sacks.
Blaine Gabbert outplayed Colin Kaeprenick last season and this pre season for Chip Kelly to name him the starter for game 1. He finished with a quarterback rating of 86 and had a higher completion percentage and averaged more yards per reception than Kaepernick. Anquin Boldin led the receivers with 789 yards and 4 touchdowns. Torrey Smith emerged as a deep threat by catching 33 passes for 663 yards, which is an average of over 20 yards per reception. Carlos Hyde led a disappointing running game with 470 yards and 3 of the teams 7 total rushing touchdowns. Defensively they only had 28 sacks as a team while the offense allowed Gabbert and Kaepernick to be sacked 53 times.
The Rams are 2.5-point favorites in this game and went 7-8-1 against the spread last season. San Francisco went 7-9 against the spread last year but went 5-3 when playing at home. Last seasons finale was a loss for St. Louis but they were leading 16-10 at half time and lost on an overtime field goal without Todd Gurley. San Francisco finished last year 29th in the league in rushing yards allowed. They allowed an average of 126 rushing yards per game while also giving up 387 total yards per game. If the 49ers cannot find a way to contain Gurley, they could be in for a long afternoon.
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