The Arizona Cardinals (2-4) host the New Orleans Saints (2-4) for "Thursday Night Football." The Cardinals open as home favorites by a mere -1.5 with the game total set at 44.5.
- Moneyline: Saints (+100) | Cardinals (-118)
- Spread: Saints +1.5 (-110) | Cardinals -1.5 (-110)
- Total: 44.5 Over (-110) | Under (-110)
Both NFC teams have underperformed expectations this year and have lost twice as many games as they have won so far.
The Cardinals have covered 50 percent of the time, and they failed to win in the only game they were favored this year. The three games they covered all came as the underdog.
The Saints have covered only 33 percent of games this year, and they lost all three games where they were the underdog.
The over has hit in only 33.3 percent of Cardinals games, but it has hit 66.7 percent of the time in Saints games.
Arizona's offense has looked dysfunctional, with some already calling for head coach Kliff Kingsbury’s dismissal. Kyler Murray has not been the team leader the Cardinals hoped for when they signed him to a $230 million contract extension, and just this week he lost his alpha deep-threat receiver, Marquise “Hollywood” Brown to a foot injury. The Arizona run game has also been unable to get going with James Conner and Darrel Williams dealing with injuries and Eno Benjamin being left to pick up the slack.
But, there is some good news. This week we will see the return of star wideout, DeAndre Hopkins, after serving a six-game suspension. The Cardinals also traded for some help, adding former Panther Robbie Anderson as a deep threat, and Rondale Moore will continue to soak up targets in the slot role. Tight end Zach Ertz, who has commanded 41 percent of the team’s red zone targets this year, is a weapon Murray looks for in the end zone. He should be able to sustain some success vs. this Saints defense that has allowed 26.3 points per game this year while surrendering 260 passing yards per game and seven total passing touchdowns across the last three contests. The Saints won't have No. 1 cornerback Marshon Lattimore for this game, and that lines up well for Cardinals receivers. Arizona has attempted the second-most passes this season (256) despite scoring only 19 points per game.
The visiting Saints have been hit hard by injury, and will either be starting backup QB Andy Dalton or a banged-up Jameis Winston. Michael Thomas and Jarvis Landry will be sidelined, but there's optimism that Chris Olave, the team's first-round pick, will be able to play after being cleared from concussion protocol earlier this week. Expect Olave to see the bulk of the targets if he goes, and expect a heavy dose of running back Alvin Kamara, who has seen 15 targets across the past two contests and finally looks fully healthy. Last week Kamara logged 124 all-purpose yards vs. the Bengals, and he should be a big part of this game plan vs. a Cardinals defense that has allowed the most yards per target (7.76) and an 84 percent catch rate to opposing running backs. Taysom Hill could make a cameo appearance just in time to steal one of Kamara’s touchdowns. The Cardinals have allowed only 18.8 points per game while the Saints have averaged 23.5.
Since 2019, "Thursday Night Football" home teams have gone 26-22 SU and 18-29-1 ATS (38.3 percent).
So let’s take the home team on the moneyline (-118). There’s no benefit in the -1.5 spread that only pays out -110.
As far as the game total, Thursday night games have gone under 60.4 percent of the time. We’ll bet that trend continues this week.
Cardinals ML (-118)
Under 44.5 (-110)