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Los Angeles Rams


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Week 3

NFL Free Pick


The Los Angeles Rams head to Tampa Bay in Week 3 after picking up their first win in their return game to L.A. Both the Rams and the Buccaneers find themselves at 1-1 heading into this matchup. Both teams have a close win and a blowout loss credited to their name to this point. They go about things in a different manner as the Rams have struggled to score but usually play good defense; the Buccaneers have given up a lot of points, but they present a respectable threat to score as well. Tampa Bay is listed as a 4.5-point favorite.

Los Angeles has struggled mightily on offense as they enter Week 3. They have the NFL's worst offense. They have only averaged 234 yards and 4.5 points per game so far. Both statistics rank at the bottom of the league. The Rams were shut out in the opener, 28-0 and won last week, 9-3, versus Seattle. As the scores indicate, Los Angeles has not yet scored a touchdown through 120 minutes of play.

There will be a lot of discussion and controversy surrounding the Rams' quarterback situation. Case Keenum has started each of the first two games and has been abysmal. Rookie Jared Goff has been elevated to second-string as Week 3 begins. There will be many supporters of Goff taking over on offense amid the anemic display the offense has been early. Keenum has only completed 53.8 percent of his passes for an average of 169.5 net passing yards per game (removes sack yardage from his total passing yards). To top things off, he's thrown two interceptions (and obviously hasn't thrown any touchdowns as the Rams have lacked the ability to reach the end zone at all so far).

To make matters worse, Todd Gurley has been absolutely locked down in the running game. He's averaging only 2.7 yards per carry on 36 attempts. That's a far cry from the 1,106 yards he ran for as a rookie with a 4.8-yard average per carry.

Tampa Bay has high hopes this season of showing a lot of progress with second-year quarterback Jameis Winston. Caution was inserted last week as Tampa Bay was blown out by Arizona, 40-7. Winston barely completed over 50 percent of his passes in Week 2 for 243 yards, one touchdown and four interceptions -- a reversal of the four touchdowns and one pick that he threw in Tampa Bay's Week 1 victory.

Mike Evans has been a big-time threat, as expected, for Tampa Bay in the early going. He only has 11 receptions on 24 targeted attempts, but he's made the catches count. Evans has 169 yards and two touchdowns so far.

Prediction: If Jameis Winston takes care of the ball, Tampa Bay likely wins. Los Angeles is bound to get in the end zone at some point. Todd Gurley is bound to have a good game at some point. Winston may struggle some against the Rams' defense, but he should be better than the four picks he threw a week ago. Pick: Buccaneers 20, Rams 10


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