NFL 2018-19 Playoffs: Super Bowl LIII Preview & Betting Tips

January 30th 2019, 1:30pm, By: andyrosos

NFL 2018-19 Playoffs: Super Bowl LIII Preview & Betting Tips

It's that time of year again, when all of the sporting world looks upon the United States for the climax of the National Football League season, the Super Bowl! Super Bowl LIII (53) will be played from the Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta this Sunday, the 3rd of February (Monday AEDT) between the New England Patriots and Los Angeles Rams!

We take a look at the game in full and give our betting tips for the day’s action including some prop bets below!

Super Bowl LIII Betting Tips

One of the best betting days on the sporting calendar, the annual Super Bowl provides a fantastic day of punting filled fun and because it falls in the Australian summer, it generally leads right into the BBL or international cricket later in the day!

The Patriots will be squaring off in their third straight Super Bowl, this season, against the Los Angeles Rams. The Rams have been one of the most dynamic offences throughout the year and while the Patriots regular season left a little to be desired, they have come alive in the playoffs.

Los Angeles Rams

Many think that the Rams are lucky to be playing off in the Super Bowl this weekend after arguably one of the most controversial no-calls in NFL history in the NFC Championship game against the Saints went their way. With the game tied at 20 with just 1:49 on the clock and the Saints in the RedZone, Drew Brees threw a pass into the endzone that would have surely gave the Saints an unassailable lead, however, Rams defender Nickell Robey Coleman delivered a hit on the receiver that was amazingly not called pass interreference. The call would have given the Saints a first down at the one-yard line and a guaranteed victory.

After a fantastic regular season that saw them finish atop the NFC West with a 13-3 record the Rams defeated the Cowboys in the divisional round of the playoffs before going on to beat the Saints. Their offence was the 2nd best in the league in the regular season, racking up 32.9 points per game on the back of some brilliant play from quarterback Jared Goff and star running back Todd Gurley.

Gurley lead the league in total touchdowns with 21 through just 15 regular season games. He finished second in the league in total rushing yards behind only Ezekiel Elliot but was a little lackluster in the NFC Championship game against the Saints, rushing just four times for 10 yards as the Rams favoured second string running back CJ. Anderson for the majority of the game.

Anderson has been dominant for th Rams since being traded from the Panthers just before Week 16. He racked up three 120+ rushing yard games in a row in Week 16, 17 and the divisional round game agains the Cowboys, finding the endzone four times in that span. He also had a down week against the Saints, who possess a good run defence. Stopping the tandem of Anderson and Gurley will be a major focus for the Patriots, who ranked 11th in rushing yards allowed per game in the Regular season.

New England Patriots

The Patriots claimed the top spot in the AFC East for the 10th straight season this year and while they couldn’t claim the No.1 seed in the AFC as they have done for the last three seasons, they managed to secure the first-round bye and defeat the Chargers comfortably in the divisional round.

They then went on to Kansas City, where they had lost their last two games in a row and captured a fantastic overtime win in the Conference Championship game. Tom Brady was dominant in the championship game, passing for 348 yards and a touchdown while the Patriots running game was also in full flight as rookie Sony Michel racked up 113 yards and two touchdowns.

Star receiver Julian Edelman was back to his brilliant best as well, catching seven passes including two clutch 3rd and 10 chances in the final quarter to rack up 96 yards. Edelman has been one of the most important players in the Patriots winning two of the last four Super Bowls and will be a massive factor this week.

Tom Brady turns into another beast completely in Super Bowls. In his eight championship games so far, the star averages a ridiculous 322 yards per game, almost 50 yards more than his career average and has a quarterback rating of 98.0. In his last three Super Bowls against the Seahawks, Falcons and Eagles respectively, Brady has racked up 433 passing yards per game and 9 touchdown passes with an average QB rating of 104.9. Considering he passed for 505 yards against the Eagles last year, who possessed a much better pass defence than the one he’ll face on the weekend, we think his passing yard line is a little low here.

Tips

The Rams will be back in Atlanta for another Super Bowl this year, the same city where they won their last Super Bowl back in 2000. Granted, they were the St.Louis Rams back then and the game was played in the Georgia Dome, not in the brand new Mercedes-Benz Stadium, home of the Falcons, however, that part of the superstition seems to be in the Rams favour.

The last Super Bowl the Rams competed in, however, ended in a heartbreaking loss to the New England Patriots as Tom Brady marched down the field late in the fourth quarter to claim victory on the back of a Adam Vinatieri field goal. That final drive as well as Tom Brady’s ability to get it done in big games will haunt the Rams heading into this weekend.

Hard to look past the Patriots here, Brady and Belichick might have had an up and down season but they have put it together in the post-season where it counts most. They were able to stifle the run against the Chargers in the divisional round, allowing just 19 total rushing yards for the game and then again against the Chiefs where they allowed just 41. If they stop the run of Anderson and Gurley again this weekend, it will be almost a certain win.

 

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