The Arizona Cardinals will travel to take on the Atlanta Falcons in a Sunday afternoon NFL matchup at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, ringing in the New Year. With that said, it’s a good time to check out our NFL odds series, which includes a Cardinals-Falcons prediction and pick, laid out below.
Arizona has disappointed enormously this season, with their 4-11 record putting them in last place in the NFC West. Kliff Kingsbury may be doomed here, and the final two games could prove the end of his tenure. Quarterback injuries have augmented a five-game losing streak.
Atlanta has gone 5-10 this season, last place in the awful NFC South. A four-game losing streak has buried any sliver of playoff hope for head coach Arthur Smith’s team. The rebuild has reached a critical juncture, with a new quarterback deciding how far this team will go.
Here are the Cardinals-Falcons NFL odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
NFL Odds: Cardinals-Falcons Odds
Arizona Cardinals: +6 (-110)
Atlanta Falcons: -6 (-110)
Over: 41 (-114)
Under: 41 (-106)
Why The Cardinals Could Cover The Spread
Oh boy. Well, with Kyler Murray out, the quarterback carousel has begun, rotating between Colt McCoy and Trace McSorley. Not exactly confidence-inspiring. McCoy is now healthy and will start again for the Cardinals, throwing for 780 yards with a touchdown and three interceptions across four games. McSorley had thrown for four interceptions without a touchdown, making McCoy the better option. James Conner leads the team with 703 rushing yards and seven touchdowns, playing in just 12 games due to injury. Murray still ranks second in both rushing yards and touchdowns. Atlanta has allowed 2,002 rushing yards and 15 touchdowns to opponents this season.
DeAndre Hopkins leads the team with 717 receiving yards, tied for second with three touchdown catches. Marquise Brown is second with 641 receiving yards and three touchdowns. Atlanta has allowed over 3,700 passing yards to their opponents. Arizona has averaged 20.5 points this game, ranking 21st in the league.
Arizona’s defense has been shaky, ranking 30th with 26.1 points allowed per game. JJ Watt, who is set to retire at the end of the season, has totaled nine and a half sacks, accounting for nearly a third of the team’s 31 sacks. Atlanta has allowed 34 sacks to their opponents. Watt will be the key to disrupting a young quarterback.
Why The Falcons Could Cover The Spread
Desmond Ridder is set to make his third start this season, going 0-2 with 315 passing yards without a touchdown or interception. Ridder has added 46 rushing yards this season. Tyler Allgier leads the team with 817 rushing yards, adding two touchdowns on the ground. Cordarrelle Patterson leads the team with six rushing touchdowns and is second with 635 rushing yards. Atlanta has totaled 2,412 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns as a team, and Arizona has struggled on defense.
Rookie Drake London leads the team with 699 receiving yards and four touchdowns. Olamide Zaccheaus is second with 496 receiving yards, catching two touchdowns. MyCole Pruitt has replaced Kyle Pitts admirably, ranking second with three receiving touchdowns. Atlanta has averaged 21.0 points, which is 17th in the league.
Atlanta’s defense has struggled a bit, allowing 23.3 points per game, which ranks 23rd in the league. Atlanta’s 19 sacks are likely to go up against Arizona’s porous offensive line, which has allowed 41 sacks. Atlanta has intercepted 10 passes, and Arizona has struggled with turnovers.
Final Cardinals-Falcons Prediction & Pick
Atlanta seems like the better team, and at least have a better coach.
Final Cardinals-Falcons Prediction & Pick: Atlanta -6 (-110), under 41 (-106)