Packers Rams
Todd Gurley #30 of the St. Louis Rams carries the football against the Green Bay Packers in the third quarter at Lambeau Field on October 11, 2015 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

The Green Bay Packers find themselves in an unfamiliar position in Week 8 of the 2018 NFL season. Not only is the team expected to lose on the road against the Los Angeles Rams, but the game won’t be particularly close if the betting odds are any indication.

L.A. is favored by nine points Sunday afternoon, according to OddsShark. Aaron Rodgers has never been this big of an underdog in his career as Green Bay’s starting quarterback.

It might be hard to believe that Rodgers and the Packers could be getting so many points against any opponent, but the point spread makes plenty of sense when examining how each team has played this season.

The Rams have been the NFL’s best team in 2018. That’s not in dispute. Los Angeles is the only remaining undefeated team, and they are the Super Bowl LIII favorites, even well ahead of the New England Patriots.

Coming off a bye, the Packers have only won half their games. They are winless on the road, having allowed exactly 31 points in losses to both the Washington Redskins and Detroit Lions.

Neither of those teams is the offensive force that the Rams have been. Los Angeles ranks second with 6.9 yards per play. Detroit is ninth in the NFL. No other team that Green Bay has faced ranks higher than 15th.

Los Angeles hasn’t had a bad offensive game all season. The closest they came was a 23-20 win in Denver when Todd Gurley ran for 208 yards. The final score makes that game seem more competitive than it actually was. The Rams have scored more than 30 points in every other contest.

While Green Bay has struggled on the road, Los Angeles hasn’t had any trouble winning at home. They’ve outscored opponents 107-54 at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum, including a 12-point win over the Los Angeles Chargers and a seven-point victory against the Minnesota Vikings. You can be sure that the Rams will have no problem scoring at least 30 points, and possibly much more, Sunday afternoon.

Green Bay is allowing 4.5 yards per rush, which ranks 23rd in the league. When you take out their games against the Buffalo Bills and Vikings, who have two of the worst rushing attacks in football, that average jumps to 4.78 yards per carry. The Packers won’t have an answer for Gurley.

Josh Allen and Mitchell Trubisky are really the only two quarterbacks that have struggled against the Packers. Green Bay sacked them a total of 11 times in victories over Buffalo and the Chicago Bears. The other four quarterbacks that have faced the Packers have thrown for 10 touchdowns and three interceptions while all posting passer ratings above 100. Even C.J. Beathard had a big game when the Packers hosted the San Francisco 49ers in their last game, allowing him to post a 115.3 passer rating.

Don’t expect the Packers to put much pressure on Jared Goff. He’s tied for 23rd in sacks, and the Rams might have the best offensive line in all of football.

Rodgers should put up big numbers, but it’ll be tough for him to keep pace with this high-powered Rams’ offense on the road. Khalil Mack and Detroit’s NFC-leading pass rush had success against Green Bay’s offensive line. Aaron Donald could do the same and disrupt enough Packer drives to allow the Rams to pull away.

The total is 56.5, and there should be plenty of points scored. It’s just that most of them will come from the Rams.

Prediction: Los Angeles over Green Bay, 40-24