Saints Vs Cardinals Betting Odds: Picks & Predictions For Thursday Night Football Total & Point Spread

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It has been a disappointing 2-4 start for the Arizona Cardinals, but the team looks to right that ship in their first primetime matchup of the season, Thursday night against the New Orleans Saints.

The Thursday Night Football odds opened with the Cardinals favored between -2 and -2.5 depending on where you shopped. Aside from a quick dip to -1.5 Tuesday, the line has held relatively firm through the short week of wagering action.

The game’s over/under opened at 44.5 total points, significantly lower than the 47 points some shops hung in the look-ahead line over the summer, and bettors have driven the current offering up to 45.5 as of Thursday afternoon.

New Orleans Saints vs Arizona Cardinals Betting Odds Via BetOnline

Saints vs. Cardinals Money Line

  • Saints +119
  • Cardinals -119

Saints vs. Cardinals Point Spread

  • Saints +2.5
  • Cardinals -2.5

Saints vs. Cardinals Total

  • Over 44
  • Under 44

Bettors appear to be putting faith in the return of DeAndre Hopkins, as the Cardinals wide receiver returns to the field after serving a 6-game suspension for violating the league’s PED policy.

As part of his suspension, the five-time Pro Bowler was prohibited from practicing with the team until this week. Considering that the Cardinals are near the bottom of the league in third-down efficiency and red-zone production, Kyler Murray will be eager to look to his favorite target in his quest to jump-start the team’s anemic offense.

Unfortunately for Cardinals fans, Hopkins’ return sees him take to the field as Hollywood Brown makes his way to the injury list with a broken foot. Brown had become one of Arizona’s most productive offensive weapons, and the team now finds themselves with a solid replacement rather than the tandem deep thread duo they had hoped for.

Kyler Murray has struggled to find consistency this season, completing only 65% of his passes while averaging 244 yards in the air through his first six games. Murray has tossed only six touchdowns this season with four interceptions in his 2-4 start, but tonight’s matchup could provide an ideal situation for the young QB to regain his footing.

New Orleans will field a defensive unit that ranks 22nd in yards allowed per passing attempt, surrendering 6.9 yards per attempt to opposing teams. Given that Hopkins was unable to participate in team practices, it could take a few series for the receiver and Murray to reignite their synergy. Still, expect the duo to connect and find success as they both are looking to overwrite the recent past.

Arizona also made a move on Monday to acquire wide receiver Robbie Anderson via a trade with the Carolina Panthers.

In short, the Cardinals have one of the league’s top-receiving talents returning to action with only a few days of reps with a team he has not practiced with all season, and another receiver making his debut with a few short days to review the playbook. All of this with the team’s most reliable receiving weapon ruled out with injury.

The one cornerstone for the team’s offense will be tightened Zac Ertz, who Murray has made one of his favorite targets in recent weeks. With 35 catches for 299 yards and two touchdowns to his name this season, Ertz now ranks third in the league as the most targeted tightened. He will offer a reliable outlet for Murray on plays where the team’s receiving corps struggles with assignments and play calls.

When you account for the light line shading typically given to home teams, you have to feel pretty content getting Arizona with less than a field goal in this position. Then again, the Cardinals have lost their last eight matchups in State Farm Stadium.

Sure, there are plenty of question marks and personnel changes to account for, but the Saints don’t find themselves in much better of a position.

I am siding with the 1st Half Under 21 points, as both teams look to establish some sort of rapport, with the Cardinals ultimately getting a few big plays later in the game to cover the short line at home.