The NFL is in London as the New England Patriots (4-3) play the St. Louis Rams (3-4) at 1 pm ET today, which is 6 pm in England. Looking at these two teams, both of which need a win for different reasons, it looks like a lopsided contest. And in the end it may be. Here’s what I’m considering prior to the game.
Rams as of Late
The Rams have lost two straight to the Packers and the Dolphins. There’s an irony here in that in the two weeks prior they beat two teams that defeated New England this year—the Seahawks and the Cardinals. That just goes to prove how difficult it is to predict outcomes in the NFL.
The Rams tend to generate around 18 points per game while allowing 20. They have very little offense with their running game being the best part of their attack. The Pats should be able to contain the St. Louis offense and hold them to 10 points. That is if they don’t have another fourth quarter spasm.
New England’s Strengths
The Pats are averaging 31 points per game while allowing about 22. I like those numbers when it comes to this meeting. Both the Patriot passing and running games are ranked fifth in the league. On the other side of the ball, New England does a fine job of stopping the run. Of course, their 22nd ranked pass defense is sketchy but not sketchy enough to lose this game.
If the defense performs as I think it will, I believe Brady and the rest of the offense will spend a lot of time on the field. Look for the New England team to put about 30. points on the scoreboard in London.
The Pats win today by about two or even three TDs. That leaves them in first in the AFC East and the Rams in last in the NFC West. Next week is the bye week for the Patriots and then it is two straight home games with the first being against the Bills and the second against the Colts. I should not look ahead but it would be great if New England could rattle off four straight (which includes last week’s OT win versus the Jets). That would put them in a great place going into the final quarter of the 2012 NFL season. Go Pats!