Date/Time: October 13th, 4:25 PM ET
Spread: San Francisco -11
Week 6 of the NFL season is here! With all of the games on the docket each and every week, we are going to be zeroing in on just one side or total that we think is the best of the bunch. Join us today, look at the game on Sunday, October 13th between the Arizona Cardinals and the San Francisco 49ers.
We faltered last week in our first really bad call of the year on the NFL betting lines for our NFL pick of the week, and though we have dropped to 2-3 ATS in these plays, realize that the sample set is small, and some breaks have gone against us in a lot of examples. We’re right back on the horse on Sunday, and we’ve got another game that we think the oddsmakers have overreacted on.
The overreaction is clearly on San Francisco. The 49ers watched all day on Sunday as they plummeted from -7 all the way down to -4 at kickoff against the Houston Texans, and it was clear that that line movement just wasn’t justified. Many think that the win against Houston proved a lot, but we think that the game was one that very little was proven. QB Matt Schaub threw three interceptions for the game, the first of which was returned for a touchdown and the second of which was returned most of the way and was quickly put in the end zone on the ensuing drive. QB Colin Kaepernick really never had to put the ball in the air, something that he is going to have to do at some point in this one.
Remember too, that the 49ers have their share of problems on the defensive side of the ball. Normally speaking, this vaunted defense would have four different faces in the rotation, and though this unit is still quite good, we don’t think that it is as good now as it would have been with the regulars in there.
Out of the lineup include DB Nnamdi Asomugha, DT Ray McDonald, LB Aldon Smith, and LB Patrick Willis. It’s possible that some of these men, especially Willis, might be back on Sunday, but things aren’t looking all that good from this respect for any of these players. Remember too, that WR Michael Crabtree, RB Marcus Lattimore, WR Mario Manningham, DT Ian Williams, and DB Chris Culliver are all out for at least several more weeks, and most are lost for the season. No matter how deep your team is, you can’t possibly be as strong as you would be when you have at least seven or eight guys who would be starting and playing vital roles on your team out.
And then there are the Cardinals, who, oh by the way, are also 3-2 through three games. Are the Cards nearly as good as the Niners are? Probably not. But are they a lot better than a lot of the teams that San Fran has been playing of lately? It’s entirely possible.
QB Carson Palmer has an offense that is doing the job, at least just a bit. RB Andre Ellington is getting his 30 or so snaps a game, and when the ball is in his hands, exciting things are happening. The goal line offense is playing well, and though RB Rashard Mendenhall isn’t averaging a lot of yards per carry, he is proving to be effective, even against some great rush defenses like the one that the Cardinals are about to go up against.
It’s the defense though, that really has us sold on Arizona. This unit held the Carolina Panthers down to just six points and 353 yards last week, and QB Cam Newton, a very comparable quarterback to Kaepernick, only had 25 yards on four carries. Sound familiar? Kaepernick only had five yards on three carries in the second meeting of the year of these two teams. LB Darryl Washington came back from his suspension at the start of the year and posted eight tackles, two sacks, and a stunning pick six that helped put the game away for the Cards last week, and he clearly makes this unit a lot more dangerous.
Is Arizona going to win this game? It probably won’t. History really isn’t on the side of the Cardinals either, as they are only 2-7 ATS in the last nine games of this series. However, we are wondering if there is going to be a level of complacency here with San Francisco. The team has games against Arizona, Tennessee, Jacksonville, and Carolina in its next four, and we really want a lot of points in a lot of these games. The 49ers had failed to cover five straight games in division before killing the St. Louis Rams two weeks ago, but we think that they are destined to be dropped back on their heads in this one. San Fran will win this game, but only by a touchdown at most.
Week 6 NFL Pick of the Week: Arizona Cardinals +11
Andrew Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.