Cardinals vs. Jets Betting Odds & Pick: How To Find Value on This Game
Scott Taetsch/Getty Images. Pictured: Le’Veon Bell
Cardinals vs. Jets Odds
The Arizona Cardinals travel to MetLife Stadium to take on the winless New York Jets after two consecutive outright losses as favorites.
The Jets will turn to quarterback Joe Flacco in this matchup, with starter Sam Darnold nursing a shoulder injury. On the other side, the Cardinals are expected to get back some key defensive members, including Budda Baker.
Nearly at full strength, expect Arizona’s defense to make Flacco’s first start of the year a difficult one.
Just a few weeks ago, some were talking about the Cardinals as the dark horse out of the loaded NFC West. Following losses to the Detroit Lions and Carolina Panthers, those same pundits may have pumped the brakes.
However, this could be the right time to buy low on Arizona, which is getting healthy again on the defensive side of the ball.
Baker, the team’s stud safety, was deemed active Wednesday and corner Dre Kirkpatrick is expected to be a go as well. Against a banged-up Jets team that is trotting out a backup quarterback, no matter what Flacco’s accolades say, this is the right opportunity for the Cardinals defense to find its past mojo.
On offense, Kyler Murray will likely welcome Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams’ heavy-blitzing scheme. Murray has done a fine job staying on his feet, turning pressure into his advantage via drop backs that result in scrambles for positive plays.
With the Jets reeling with an 0-4 record, as well as dealing with a host of issues on the field and sideline, Arizona will happily travel to the East Coast for this get-right spot.
New York Jets
Flacco is filling in for Darnold, who has performed admirably amidst a host of injuries and a poor offensive line. Darnold has shown the ability to keep plays alive with his legs to create some big plays. However, the slow-footed Flacco is going to be under fire often due to a poor offensive line that ranks 22nd in Adjusted Sack Rate (per Football Outsiders). Flacco is likely going to be counted on to play from behind the sticks on most possessions.
Rookie Mekhi Becton did not suit up, but the Jets finally got some good news that running back Le’Veon Bell has been activated from injured reserve and will be in the lineup for the first time since opening week. Make sure to monitor Bell’s game status up to kickoff, but getting him on the field should give Flacco some insurance in the backfield, as the team may have ran the aging Frank Gore a bit too thin already this season.
Arizona has been a solid defense all around, but hasn’t been able to force many turnovers just yet. Where it has succeeded is limiting the run and getting off the field on third down.
Even though Bell is back, I don’t foresee him transforming the offense, especially with Flacco on the field. Jets head coach Adam Gase is going to be forced into going more vanilla in the passing game and try to control the possession with the veteran Flacco running the offense. That could force Bell into pass protection when he is on the field.
Bell also may run into some trouble with the Jets’ banged-up line going against the Cardinals’ strong run defense. Arizona is above league average in terms of running back success allowed, according to Sharp Football Stats. On top of that, Arizona has been able to get off the field on third down, tied for fifth best in the league at 37%.
Arizona presents a strong 6-point teaser option, where you can get the team down to -1. Personally, I’ll be looking to play the Cardinals with the Cleveland Browns, whom I teased to +7.5 points. Carolina and Pittsburgh provide attractive options as well to get through the key numbers of 3 and 7 (compare real-time odds here).
I also see value in the Jets’ team total under at anything above 17 points. The Jets’ offense looks hopeless thus far, so asking Flacco to come in and light a fire under this team seems like a lost cause.
Even with Bell back, he’s not the offensive presence he was in Pittsburgh, and the Jets offense will likely struggle again to get into the end zone. Arizona may have been a bit overvalued following its 2-0 start, but this team does have promise and is getting back the likes of Baker to make life difficult for Flacco.
Considering the line did not change off -7 with the news of the shift to Flacco, I’m going to stay away from the spread. Instead, I am looking to play the Cardinals in teasers and the Jets team total under the number.
PICKS: Jets Team Total Under 17 (or better)
Tease Cardinals -1 (or better)