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Why you should take the Cardinals against the spread on TNF

Thursday Night Football brings a huge game in the NFC West, as the winner takes over first place.

Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray (1) throws a pass against the Buffalo Bills during the second half at State Farm Stadium. Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

The Arizona Cardinals head into Seattle on Thursday night to defend their tenuous NFC West lead. Both the Seahawks and Cardinals set at 6-3, but Ariona beat Seattle in Week 7 and have a 2-0 record in the division. To make things even tighter, the Rams are also 6-3, but 1-1 in the division while the Seahawks are 1-2 in the division. The Cardinals and Rams will meet twice still, while this will be the last matchup in the regular season between the Seahawks and Cardinals, making it an extremely important game for both teams.

The Seahawks are road favorites in this game, as they are favored by 3-points. The total is set at 57.5 at DraftKings Sportsbook.

ATS Pick: Cardinals

Seattle started out so hot, that the aura of their incredible play early on has followed them into their poor recent play, at least for me. At first thought, betting Seattle in a big game at home felt like the right move, but I’ve changed my tune. This Seahawks team isn’t good right now. They’ve lost three of their last four, with a win against the severely depleted 49ers as the only high point. And their five game winning streak to start the season came against weak opponents while also being closer than they should have been.

The Cardinals haven’t been much better in terms of signature wins, while losses to the Lions and Panthers show they have plenty of holes in their game as well. Beating the Bills on a Hail Mary and the Seahawks in an extremely close game show they can win the tough games, but also that they those games were very much up for grabs.

And that’s what this game is, up for grabs. With home-field advantage not being a real factor this season, taking a road underdog has been a good call, as they are 53-41 this season. The Cardinals are also 5-1 ATS in their last six games against Seattle and 9-2-2 in their last 13 road games ATS.

The matchup itself is close, but the Cardinals have the advantage defensively, as they rank 13th against the pass and 11th against the run in Football Outsider’s DVOA while the Seahawks rank 26th against the pass and ninth against the run. Seattle has a slightly better adjusted sack rate at 6.3 percent to 5.7 percent for the Cardinals, but Seattle’s offensive line is the worst in the league in adjusted sack rate allowed.

In the end, this is about the points, as the Cardinals at 3-point underdogs are more appealing than Seattle as 3-point favorites in a game that should once again come down to the final minutes of play.

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