On Monday, September 10th at 10:20 PM EST, the Los Angeles Rams will head into Oakland to face the Raiders for the second of two Monday Night Football contests to kickoff this season of MNF. The returning NFL Offensive Player of the Year, Todd Gurley, will put the Khalil Mack-less Raiders to the test in this late affair.
Rams vs. Raiders Preview
When: Monday, 9/10 at 10:20 PM EST
Where: Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum in Oakland, CA
I hope Jon Gruden and the Oakland Raiders brass were not watching Sunday Night Football where Khalil Mack put on a first-half clinic. There is clearly some parts of that story that are and will always be untold, but trading away Khalil Mack will certainly haunt the Raiders in the short-term. The Rams return after a stellar year of breakout performances and will certainly be a top team in the NFC once again. Whether they can get over the hump against some healthy competition will be the question.
Significant additions to the Raiders offense includes Brandon Lafell, Doug Martin and Jordy Nelson while losing Michael Crabtree. They did improve both the offensive and defensive lines through the draft and free agency (Kolten Miller, PJ Hall, Arden Key, Tank Carradine, etc.). However, the loss of Khalil Mack is VERY significant.
The Los Angeles Rams were clearly not pleased with their early exit in the playoffs and added the likes of Brandin Cooks, Ndamukong Suh, Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib, Sam Shields and only lost a few significant pieces such as Sammy Watkins and Tavon Austin. They also locked in their two superstars, Todd Gurley and Aaron Donald. They are not messing around with 2018-2019.
In what could POSSIBLY be the final season in Oakland, with the possible opportunity to play at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas next year and a permanent move planned for 2020 to Las Vegas, the Raiders begin a new chapter with their new head coach Jon Gruden. Gruden signed a 10-year deal and Derek Carr is expected to sign long-term soon. A lot of their roster is aging quickly and Gruden has a lot of work to do to make the Raiders a playoff caliber team in the next few years.
TOP DRAFTKINGS VALUE
In DraftKings ‘Monday Night Special’ contests containing the two MNF games, the clear move is to plant your flag with the Rams. The ownership will be high, but you can find some pivot spots with the Jets/Lions game or with contrarian Raiders plays. Jared Goff ($7000) is the top priced QB on the slate. After an 0-7 showing in his rookie campaign, Goff went off for 3,804 yards, 28 TDs and an impressive 11-4 effort (sat for the finale). This Raiders defense is not ready for the pain of a fresh Goff and company.
Todd Gurley ($9600) is far and away (by $2300) the most expensive player on the slate. I don’t care, he is a must start and I HOPE his price scares DFS players away. I believe Goff will test the range of Cooks right off the bat. Brandin Cooks ($5800) may only end up with 3-4 catches on Monday, but all he has to do is rip one or two big ones. Cooper Kupp ($5400) has developed as a solid slot receiver and he should see his fair share of targets in game 1.
On the other side, I think Jordy Nelson poses some value at $5300 as he builds a repor with Derek Carr but this would mostly be a pivot play or game stack. The tight ends available on Monday Night are the bottom of the barrel. As a safety blanket for Carr, Jared Cook ($3800) should produce enough to provide value at that cost.
Dollars will be tight, especially if you roster Goff and Gurley (as you should), but don’t mess around and just settle in with the Rams D at $3700. The Suh/Donald combo is as scary as anything this league can offer and their secondary is lethal.
Will a special teams or defensive TD be scored? Yes +175
Pretty straight forward with this game, don’t over think it. The Rams will come out firing to keep up with the elite of the NFC. I’m expecting a fireworks show for Los Angeles and they may even flirt with the over themselves. I also think there is decent value for a special teams/defensive score in this game at Yes +175.
Rams 38 Raiders 14
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