Arizona Cardinals at Oakland Raiders (+3.5)*
As noted earlier, the Cardinals came up with a game-sealing interception against the Redskins that quickly put out any potential fires that would have surely burned in Arizona had Washington completed the comeback. While the Cardinals controlled the scoreboard for much of the game, the return of Carson Palmer under center did not result in the blowout everyone had predicted.
In a similar fashion, the Raiders avoided their ‘expected disaster,’ hanging with the Chargers until the final two minutes of the game, before ultimately losing to a better team. San Diego is not only far superior to the Raiders, but also a cut above the visiting Cardinals.
Quietly, Derek Carr is putting up an impressive rookie season, already eclipsing 1,000 passing yards in just five games. His 0-5 record speaks volumes to his team’s struggles, but, on an offense where the quarterback position is not a weakness, it seems likely that the Raiders have a few wins up their sleeves in the coming weeks.
Furthermore, the Raiders have allowed the second fewest amount of sacks all season (four). The best way to derail the success of a rookie quarterback – any quarterback, really – is to apply pressure. Which team ranks third-worst in defensive sacks with only six all year? You guessed it: the Arizona Cardinals.
Oakland finally breaks through with their first win of the season, by a field goal, and beats the spread.
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