Download the App Image

NFL Week 9 Picks: 3 Best Bets for Seahawks vs Cardinals

NFL Week 9 Picks: 3 Best Bets for Seahawks vs Cardinals article feature image
Credit:

Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images. Pictured: Kyler Murray.


For the latest NFL odds, click here.


NFL Odds & Picks

 

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Seahawks +2 and ML
Under 49
Cardinals -1.5

Pick
Seahawks +2 and ML
Best Book
Time
4:05 p.m. ET

Brandon Anderson: This pick can hardly come as a surprise at this point. We’ve been hanging on Seattle Island for weeks now, and I’ve already pushed you to back the Seahawks in this spot on The Lookahead and The Hot Read. The line is slowly moving toward a pick’em, but there’s still value on Seattle.

The Seahawks are flat out better than the Cardinals at just about everything. Geno Smith continues to play like an elite quarterback while Kyler Murray’s metrics are troublesome at best, mostly just scrambling and creating out of nothing.

Seattle’s offense has a tough run attack, a pair of big-time receiving threats and an improving line — now the defense has caught up and might be playing even better.

The Seahawks have won three straight games by double digits. Two of those games came against the Giants and Chargers, playoff teams right now, and the third was against these Cardinals.

Arizona scored only three points on offense in that game, turning it over six times with six sacks. Seattle has the league’s No. 1 defense over the past three weeks. From Week 4 forward, the Seahawks rank top-six in DVOA on both offense and defense.

Seattle’s offense didn’t even play that well in the first Arizona matchup, and the Seahawks still won with ease. They should score more easily this game, especially considering how vulnerable the Cards are to explosive pass plays. The presence of DeAndre Hopkins this time around improves Arizona’s chances, but not by enough.

The Cardinals rank 31st in play success rate as an offense. In other words, they dig consistent holes on early downs, then rely on Murray to magically extend drives on late downs. Seattle’s defense ranks third in DVOA on first downs, and the offense ranks third in play success rate.

The Seahawks do what Arizona doesn’t — they use superior coaching to make things easier on players. We back Kliff Kingsbury as an underdog, but fade him as a favorite. Kingsbury is 9-15 ATS (38%) as a favorite, including 1-4 in the division. Pete Carroll, on the other hand, is 45-28-3 ATS (62%) as an underdog, 18-10 in the division (64%). Geno is profitable as a dog as well at 17-10-2 ATS (63%).

Arizona is at home, but that hasn’t helped much lately. The Cards have won one of their last nine home games in the rivalry, going 2-6-1 ATS and failing to cover by 9.2 PPG over that stretch.

I can’t figure out why Arizona is favored here, or why a team playing great football on both sides of the ball is an underdog against an opponent it just beat soundly less than a month ago.

I’m not sure Seattle will be an underdog when this one kicks off. I’ll happily head back to Seahawks Island for a cover and a moneyline bet at any plus number.


» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Under 49 (playable to 48)
Best Book
Time
4:05 p.m. ET

John LanFranca: It’s time to start giving the Seahawks defense the respect they deserve for the incredible improvements they have made. Over the last three weeks, Seattle’s defense has been the top-ranked DVOA unit. Coincidentally, during that same three-week period, the Cardinals offense is ranked 31st according to the same metric.

When these teams met just a few weeks ago, Kyler Murray was pressured on 34% of his dropbacks. When pressured this season, Murray has only bested Zach Wilson in passer rating.

As for the Seahawks offense, Kenneth Walker has been explosive but inefficient. Over 25% of Walker’s carries have failed to gain yardage (per Sharp Football), ranking 44th out of 46 qualifying backs.

The Cardinals defense will thrive if they limit the Seahawks’ ground game on early downs, as Arizona is the fifth-best defense in football (according to DVOA) in third-down situations when the offense has to convert three or more yards. I am once again expecting a lower scoring divisional battle on Sunday afternoon.


» Return to the table of contents «


Pick
Cardinals -1.5
Best Book
Time
4:05 p.m. ET

Stuckey: My overall philosophy when betting the NFL is similar to investing in the stock market. Identify the peak and bottom. Easier said than done.

I think this is the peak of the Seahawks market. They were just 2.5-point dogs at home (with home-field advantage to boot) against these same Cardinals. Arizona also took some sharp money but ended up losing in an ugly game where both teams averaged right around 4.5 yards per play.

So, yes, Seattle does get a slight upgrade and it did beat the Chargers and Giants. But Arizona also exceeded expectations last week at Minnesota in a dead-even game that the Cards lost on a muffed punt.

More importantly, they have since gotten DeAndre Hopkins back. Over the course of his career, Arizona has averaged a stunning 10 more points per game with him in the lineup vs. without. Kyler Murray is just a different QB with him on the outside.

In summary, I see too much value in Arizona to pass up. Seattle has gone from potential worst team in the league to legit contender? Its wins came against the Cards without Hopkins, the Lions without Amon-Ra St. Brown/D’Andre Swift, the Chargers without half their team, the Giants who were in a brutal spot and the Broncos in the home opener, which was a bit lucky, to say the least.

Is Seattle better than expected? Obviously, and I’ve upgrade them accordingly, but I think the market has gone too far with the love. Arizona’s defense can contain the Seattle run game, which has been the driving force in Geno Smith’s successful offensive outputs.

I’m buying low on Kliff Kingsbury as much as I hate it.


» Return to the table of contents «


How would you rate this article?