NFL Season Week 1: Saints at Cardinals

Cardinals OffenseComing into the 2015 NFL Regular Season and Opening day on Sunday the 13th of September 2015 we have the Saints of New Orleans playing at the Cardinals of Arizona with the game played at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona with kick-off scheduled for 4:10 PM ET and seen on Fox TV.

The opening gambling odds at SBG for those that Bet on NFL have the Cardinals of Arizona favored at – 2 ½ and -135 on ML with Over/under at 47, while the Saints are the underdogs at +2 ½ and +115 on the ML. The Saints finished their 2014 season with a losing record for the 2nd time in the last 3 seasons, and they are seeking to improve in this 2015 season. Then the Cardinals will have QB Palmer returning after a knee injury last season, and the fans are wondering who will outduel who between Saints QB Brees and Cardinals QB Palmer?

If you’re a fan of the Saints of New Orleans, you know your team struggled last season, and their defense was worse. They ranked 31st in overall defense, and ranked last against the run, which accounted for the 7 wins and 9 loss seasons.

Their defensive roster was reduced as the cut their top pass rusher J. Galette, and also in this offseason they did not improve their defensive front seven, but they did add B. Browner in their secondary which won’t change much defensively. However, if their rookie LB’s in H. Kikaha and S. Anthony can shine, and then the Saints defense could be average once again on defense this season. On offense the Saints believe they cans still out play the Cardinals as QB Brees in 2014 passed for 33 TD’s and 4.955 yards with a completion rate of 69.4 %, and New Orleans led the NFL with an average of 412 yards per game on offense and were ranked 9th with 25.2 points per game on average. The Saints may struggle with their run offense against Arizona who has strong run defense this season, but their passing game should thrive, as the Cardinals lack in the pass rush, and in 2014 were ranked 28th for sacks on QB.

If you’re a fan of the Cardinals of Arizona, you know your team was the surprise of the 2014 NFL Season as they after 11 weeks were with 9 wins and 1 loss, but then injuries to their 2 QB’s Palmer and Stanton caused the team to lose 4 of their ultimate 6 games and ended the season with 11 wins and 5 losses.

The Cardinals starting QB returns which should be a big boost to the Arizona offense, after he releases some rust, like this preseason to date he completed a measly 15 of 33 passes for 165 yards in total with 1 TD and 1 intercept. But for his 1st game of the regular season he is glad to be starting against the struggling Saints defense. The offense of the Cardinals is built around the big pass, as in 2014 they has some 60 pass plays with each for at least 20 yards, and that ranked 6th in the conference. On their running game they are missing All-Pro guard M. Iupati, but their RB A. Ellington who is a dual threat as in 2014 he had 47 receptions for 398 yards, and he should do well playing against the New Orleans defense in this game.

The Cardinals are still strong with their run defense that was ranked 6th in the conference last season, but they are concerned with the loss in their secondary of A. Cromartie who is now with the Jets of New York. Then playing on their home field the Cardinals were very successful in 2014, with 9 wins and 1 loss at home, and that 1 loss in 2014 was to the Seahawks of Seattle the NFC Champions.

The prediction is that the defense of Arizona is strong enough to slow down the Saints offense, while the Cardinals with QB Palmer are able offensive to cover the spread and beat the Saints on their home field.