This may be wishful thinking, as I’m clearly expecting the offense to produce more points than they have in any game this season. The Rams offense seems to score at ease, and can easily toss up 30 points on a good defense. I think Atlanta has the better roster, but it’s tough to give them the edge on playcallers with Wade Phillips and Sean McVay helping the Rams to a dominant season. Even while being optimistic, I think the score remains close. The Rams are a very good team, but Atlanta’s roster and playoff experience should give them a small edge.
Falcons 30 - Rams 29
IF the Falcons were going to win a playoff game at all, it was going to be this one. You don’t have to go back far to remember a complete dismantling of the Rams at the hands of the Falcons, though both these teams have seen their fortunes changed in the months since their last matchup. The Rams defense is scary, but it has one notable flaw: run defense. It’s probably too late to expect a transformation from the Falcons passing game, but if we can stay ahead of schedule on early downs and grind out this game, we can absolutely win this one. Of course, that’s easier said than done. The “Rule of 20” (10-0) will likely go by the wayside for this matchup. We’ll need at least 25, maybe 30 points to stand a chance, but in the end I think the Falcons’ valuable playoff experience prevents them from folding against a team that probably isn’t quite as good as it looks.
Falcons 28 - Rams 27
I’ll concur with the good gentleman above me and keep this one within a point. The playoffs are a weird place where weird things happen, and it’s just hard to really gauge where the pendulum will swing with how your team will do (unless you’re the Patriots, which bleh). The Falcons haven’t been as good as the Rams have been this season, but the Falcons have a plethora of playoff experience, and the Rams barely have any. Not to mention, since 2013, teams with a green playoff QB are 1-10 (the only winner was former Texans QB Brock Lobster, who played a bad team that shouldn’t have been in the playoffs, so that doesn’t count). So, age comes before beauty, perhaps? The Rams’ killer regular season evens itself out with the Falcons’ postseason experience, and we get a real schoolyard brawl.In the end, the Falcons sneak out with a win, and live to see the Eagles in a game that could, somehow, propel them to the NFC Championship. How’s that for weird?
Falcons 30 - Rams 26
Let me say first and foremost that the Rams are a team on the rise and while likely be a repeat playoff team for the next several seasons. Just like in the Carolina game, the run game on both sides will be under the microscope. Rams running back Todd Gurley is a force and led all running backs in total touchdowns with 19. His success (or lack of) will dictate a lot for the Falcons. The Rams are 28th in rushing defense and 30th in yards allowed per carry so Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman must be an ultra-important part of the game plan. In this one, I think the Falcons playoff experience plays a huge part and the defense rises up and makes a few extra plays against a Rams offense that is hot. A possible deep playoff run starts here.
Falcons 24 - Rams 21
Such is my belief in this defense’s recent resurgence that I’m willing to predict that they’ll hold the Rams to just three touchdowns (and maybe a missed field goal or two). It will be the offense’s job to manage 20+ points, something they haven’t always managed in recent weeks. If the defense plays well and the offense doesn’t shoot itself in the foot, this is an eminently winnable game, albeit one that’s likely to be hard-fought and come down to the wire. I believe, though.