Cardinals vs. Jaguars Odds, Picks, NFL Sunday Predictions For Week 3: Don’t Overthink Betting This Matchup
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- The 2-0 Cardinals find themselves as betting favorites on the road against the Jaguars.
- Find Cardinals vs. Jaguars odds in our preview of this NFL Week 3 matchup below.
- Can we trust Arizona to cover this spread in Jacksonville? Our analyst is betting on it.
|Cardinals Odds||-8 (-110)|
|Jaguars Odds||+8 (-110)|
|Moneyline||-380 / +290|
|Over/Under||51.5 (-105 / -115)|
|Time||1 p.m. ET|
|Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NFL odds here.|
After a hot start to the season, the Arizona Cardinals will head into TIAA Bank Field to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon.
The Cardinals (2-0) snuck by the Minnesota Vikings last week in a close 34-33 victory behind strong performances from quarterback Kyler Murray and wide receiver Rondale Moore, while the Jaguars (0-2) struggled to find any consistency in a 23-13 loss to the Denver Broncos.
As heavy road favorites, can we count on the Cardinals offense to continue firing on all cylinders in this one, or is there value on the winless Jaguars at home on Sunday?
Murray Getting All Weapons Involved
Wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins (ribs) will be a game-time decision after missing practice all week.
The Cardinals offense has been firing on all cylinders to kick off the 2021 season. Murray comes into Week 3 second in the NFL in passing yards (689), second in touchdown passes (seven) and fifth in passer rating (121.5). Not to mention his two touchdowns on the ground.
He’s also been successful in getting each of his weapons involved over the first two weeks, with all four of his top receiving options either having reached 90 receiving yards or scoring a touchdown thus far.
Moore was particularly impressive last week, compiling seven catches for 114 yards and a touchdown in just his second NFL game.
This week, the Cardinals get a strong matchup against a Jaguars defense that comes in with a 53.8 defense rating (per Pro Football Focus), the third-worst among all teams.
They also rank in the bottom five with a 48.3 coverage rating thus far, which bodes well for Murray and his receivers to continue their hot start to the season.
Per PFF’s WR/CB Matchup tool, top target Hopkins has a 94.3 matchup advantage against his primary defenders, the second-best individual matchup amongst all players in Week 3. Should Hopkins miss time, A.J. Green would slide into the No. 1 receiver role.
Lawrence To Have Breakout Week?
During his time in Jacksonville this season, No. 1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence has gotten his first taste of what it’s like to lead a losing football team. To say he’s struggled so far would be an understatement.
Over his first two starts, he’s averaged 225 yards per game, completed just 50% of his passes and has thrown five total interceptions. That said, he has thrown for four touchdowns, so there have been flashes of brilliance reminiscent of what we saw from him last year with Clemson.
He’ll have another tough task on Sunday against a Cardinals defense that currently ranks fifth among all teams with a -16.2% Total DVOA (per Football Outsiders) and a -10.3% Defense Pass DVOA, which is good for eighth-best in the league.
Running back James Robinson will also likely have trouble moving the ball against a defense with a -25.3% Rush DVOA, a top-10 mark thus far.
Yes, a -7.5 spread is sizeable considering the Cardinals are on the road, but the fact is that these Cardinals — whether Hopkins plays or not — are that much better than this version of the Jaguars.
While certainly more of a comfortable play if Hopkins suits up, Murray has established four other major weapons in Green, Moore, Christian Kirk and Chase Edmonds that are more than capable of handling the load.
Add in Murray’s rushing upside, particularly near the goal line, and you still have the ingredients for a comfortable win on the road.
On the other side, Lawrence has struggled in both starts so far, but particularly against a strong Broncos defense last week. The Cardinals are in the top 10 in most metrics this season so far on defense, so I expect those woes to continue Sunday.
Given the uncertainty around Hopkins, there’s a chance this line slips to -7 before kickoff. Even if it doesn’t, I think this game is still mis-priced at the current number.
While I don’t expect the line to move this high, I’d be comfortable taking it all the way up to -9.5.
Pick: Cardinals -7.5