Streaking Cardinals In Must Win Situation Against Titans
The Arizona Cardinals have come out of nowhere recently to win five of their last six games, and have an 8-5 record with a shot at making the playoffs. They are currently third in the tough NFC West, but because they end the season against two division rivals, their playoff hopes are still very much alive. Their task this weekend is to beat the 5-8 Tennessee Titans, a team that has lost four of their last five and have a backup quarterback under center.
Arizona Cardinals @ Tennessee Titans
LP Field – Nashville, TN
Odds: Arizona -3
What To Watch For From The Arizona Cardinals
Although they beat the St. Louis Rams by 20 last weekend, and the Indianapolis Colts by 29 two weeks prior, the Cardinals enter this game as the sports book favorite by just three points. The reason the Cardinals were able to win those games by large margins is the improved play of Carson Palmer in recent weeks. Palmer has eclipsed 300 passing yards in three of his last five games, and once even threw for 419 yards and two touchdowns. The offense has really looked better in recent weeks and Palmer is the one who deserves most of the credit. Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd are the two players who have benefitted the most from Palmer’s recent surge as the two receivers have combined for over 120 receptions and 1,600 yards.
What To Watch For From The Tennessee Titans
As I already mentioned, the Titans are currently on their backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, who has thrown a total of four interceptions in his last two games. Fitzpatrick played well immediately following Jake Locker’s injury, but the previous two weeks he’s looked like a different quarterback, and that’s not a good sign considering the Cardinals have one of the best secondaries in the NFL. Their defense is solid all around as well, but their secondary, led by Patrick Peterson, will give Fitzpatrick plenty of trouble come Sunday afternoon. Running back Chris Johnson has had flashes of his old self this season, but he has just one 100-yard rushing game of the season, and the two reasons why is a decreased level of play, but a limited amount of touches as well as the veteran has received 20 carries or more in a game just four times this season.
In every major facet of the game the Cardinals outshine the Titans which is why I’m surprised to see them favored by just three points. While the passing attack has made the Cardinals a legitimate playoff threat, rookie running back Andre Ellington is averaging 5.8 yards per carry in limited playing time this season, and makes their offense a complete unit. Not only will the Cardinals win this weekend, but they will have a legitimate shot at pulling a couple of upsets to end the season as well.
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