The NFC Championship Game between the L.A. Rams and San Francisco 49ers should be a lot of fun.
It’s ripe with plenty of storylines, as we’re treated to a battle of familiar foes from the NFC West. This will be the third time these two teams have met this year, giving us plenty of intel to dig through.
The Rams remain 3.5-point favorites at WynnBET with the total sitting at 46.5; even odds on both sides.
With a trip to the Super Bowl on the line, which young running back will have more success on the ground — Elijah Mitchell, or Cam Akers?
Elijah Mitchell has been a surprising force as a rookie
When the 49ers drafted Trey Sermon and Elijah Mitchell, many expected Sermon to run away with the starting running back job. Instead, it’s been Mitchell that put a stranglehold on the lead back duties for the 49ers. He’s been leaned on heavily and has thrived with the workload, seeing 17 or more carries in all but two games this year.
Mitchell has seen a heavy workload and has found success in both of the prior meetings with the Rams. In Week 10, Mitchell had 27 carries for 91 yards. In their second meeting, he had 21 carries for 85 yards. There’s no reason to believe that Mitchell won’t see a similar workload, as he has had between 21 and 27 carries in six of his last seven games. This ground attack, which also utilizes Deebo Samuel very effectively, will be relied on against a strong Rams secondary.
Cam Akers is back, but the efficiency isn’t there yet
It’s a marvel that Akers is even back on the field after suffering a torn achilles last July. He’s back, and they’re giving him the workload, but the production hasn’t quite been there. Last week against Tampa Bay, he saw 24 carries, but converted that into only 48 yards.
It’s not going to get any easier for him this week. The San Francisco 49ers defense was the second-best unit in opponents Rush EPA this season. They gave up the seventh-fewest rushing yards in the NFL, and are coming off a game that held the Packers offense to only 67 rushing yards. Akers might have a hard time finding much success this weekend.
Over on WynnBET, the rushing props are set for these two running backs. The over/under for Mitchell is set at 70.5, while it’s set at 61.5 for Akers. Mitchell looks poised for a much better day, and I like his prop bet to hit the over.
LEAN: Elijah Mitchell OVER 70.5 Rushing Yards
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