NFL Thursday Night Predictions
Can Seahawks Catch NFC West Best Rams?
Seattle’s been quietly going about their businesses, playing solid football despite their second-place standing in the NFC West. Last week featured a field-goal loss to the Washington Redskins, who survived the raucous CenturyLink Field atmosphere to escape with the victory.
The Cardinals haven’t put together a winning or losing streak in 2017, alternating wins and losses throughout the schedule. A .500 record glosses over a mediocre Arizona team on the downswing, with two wins against the hapless 49ers, including last week’s victory in Santa Clara.
NFL Thusday Night Picks
- Game: Seattle Seahawks at Arizona Cardinals
- Pick: Seahawks Beat -6 Spread, Under 41.5
- NFL Odds Courtesy of Sports Interaction
Seahawks at Cardinals - Vital Trends
Legion Of Boom Echoes
There’s no denying that the Seattle Seahawks have been defined by their stalwart defense over the past half-decade. The Legion of Boom continues to doom opposing offenses, ranking fifth in the league at 18.6 PPG allowed. Free safety Earl Thomas will be missed, as witnessed by last week’s disappointing finish against Washington. The Seahawks still possess one of the finest defenses without Thomas, and the Cardinals won’t be fielding their best lineup. Seattle may limit Arizona to single digits tonight.
Carson Palmer’s Broken Arm
Carson Palmer needed to return to his 2015 form for Arizona to have a shot at making the playoffs. He was on the upswing before week seven, but the Los Angeles Rams broke his arm towards the end of the second quarter. Arizona would finish the game with zero points. A 26th-ranked offense will only get worse without Palmer for the rest of the season. Tough to see the Cardinals and backup pivot Drew Stanton putting up big numbers.
Seattle RBs Can’t Stay Healthy
A quick look at the injured list reveals Chris Carson and Tre Madden gone for the rest of the season, while Eddie Lacy needs to wait for his groin to heal. C.J. Prosise will be active despite an ankle issue, leaving Thomas Rawls as the main option. Rawls looked like Seattle’s running back of the future, until he broke his ankle late in his rookie season. He’ll get another chance to run with the proverbial ball in 2015, but Seattle’s ground game will remain limited unless Rawls regains his form.
Arizona Defense Offers Little Resistance
The Cardinals have allowed an average of 25.1 PPG, which ranks fifth-worst in the NFL. Arizona’s more proficient at halting gains on the ground compared to their pass defense, ranking 11th in rushing yards allowed and 24th in passing yards. However, they rank 22nd in terms of rushing TDs allowed and 21st in touchdown passes against. This translates into poor play in the red zone, which should allow Seattle enough space to continue their gradual offensive improvement.
Cardinals Divisional ATS Losing Streak
All four Arizona wins were against teams with two or less wins in the standings. Winning against San Francisco twice, beating the Colts in overtime and barely beating the Buccaneers doesn’t inspire confidence in the Cardinals. During their last six meetings with NFC West rivals, Arizona has a 0-6 record against the spread. Put simply, a team that can’t beat the spread against the 49ers is extremely unlikely to curb an ATS losing streak against the Seahawks.
NFL Thursday Night X-Factors
The Arizona Cardinals have a decent historical record against the Seahawks, with an 18-17-1 record against Seattle all-time. Over their last ten meetings, the Cardinals earned a decent 4-5-1 record against their division rivals, a difficult feat considering the overall excellence of Seattle during this era. However, Seattle has a 3-1-1 over their last five meetings in Arizona, dominating away game trends.
Thursday night football has witnessed a series of strange gridiron games, including an 80-point match between the 49ers and the Rams, along with last week’s head-scratching win by the Jets over the Buffalo Bills. Limited time to prepare and rest has hurt favorites far more than underdogs, with Thursday night dogs taking advantage of sloppy football.
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