The New Orleans Saints are scheduled to face the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday Night Football to open play in Week 7 of the 2022 NFL season.
The line opened last week with the Cardinals a 2-point choice. The number now ranges from 1.5-2.5 points at DraftKings, FanDuel, BetMGM, and PointsBet for this NFC inter-division battle of scuffling teams.
Let’s take a look at the latest Saints vs. Cardinals odds on Thursday Night Football as well as our prediction.
TNF Odds: Point Spread, Moneyline, Total
Here are Thursday Night Football odds from around the sports betting marketplace.
NFL · Thu (10/20) @ 8:15pm ET
|State Farm Stadium, Glendale, Arizona|
Saints-Cardinals Desperate for a Win on TNF
Both teams enter their first prime-time game of the season with 2-4 records and are desperate for a win, yet are only one game out of first place in their divisions. Hope remains.
The Saints have been busy attempting to weather myriad injury issues that have affected their passing game.
QB Jameis Winston (back/ankle) hasn’t played since starting the first three games (four TD throws and five INTs), yielding to veteran Andy Dalton. On Tuesday, head coach Dennis Allen reported that Winston’s status is up in the air for Thursday.
In the meantime, Dalton, who is also fighting back issues, is expected to make his fourth straight start. And with all those aches and pains, surely there will be a Taysom Hill sighting after he rushed for 102 yards as a QB two weeks ago in a 39-32 win over Seattle.
Ominously, Dalton made six starts in relief for Chicago last year and had his worst game of the season vs. Arizona, pitching four INTs. That’s two more than the Cardinals have in 2022.
Regardless of who’s throwing for New Orleans, the receiving corps will remain depleted. Although leading WR rookie Chris Olave will return after sitting out last week’s 30-26 home loss to Cincinnati in concussion protocol, WR Jarvis Landry (ankle) will sit out a third straight game.
And from the “what else is new?” department, Michael Thomas (toe) will be idle for a fourth straight outing. Over the past three seasons, he’s missed 28 of the Saints’ 38 games.
On top of that, TE Adam Trautman suffered a high ankle sprain last Sunday that has rendered him out.
And what has to rankle Saints backers just as much is the fact New Orleans is only 2-4 against the spread. New Orleans hasn’t had an ATS mark below .500 since 2014, the longest such stretch in the league.
Arizona and QB Kyler Murray, meanwhile, got good news — and bad news — with regard to its receiving corps.
First the good news: Star WR DeAndre Hopkins finally returns after serving a six-game PED suspension. Now the bad: Last week, Marquis Brown, the team’s leading receiver who was tied for third in the NFL with eight catches of 20-plus yards, suffered a foot injury in a 19-9 loss to Seattle. He might not be back this season. Arizona then promptly acquired Carolina QB Robbie Anderson (13 catches on 27 targets), who was kicked off the Panthers sideline by his coach last week after a messy public spat. That doesn’t seem to be an even swap.
But perhaps equally important is that the Cardinals will also be missing leading rusher James Conner (ribs). Without him last week, Murray was the team’s leading ground gainer with 100 yards on 10 carries. But that attack didn’t score a touchdown against a Seattle defense that ranks 30th in the league.
It’s also particularly puzzling that although the Cardinals lead the league with six drives of 15 plays or more (including three against the defending Super Bowl champion Rams), all those marches resulted in only one touchdown.
Bet TNF at BetMGM: Use promo code TODAY for a $1,000 Risk-Free Bet
Saints vs. Cardinals TNF Prediction
Another key missing component for the Cardinals that’s somewhat overlooked is that PK Matt Prater (hip, questionable) might sit out again. He was 6-for-6 on FGs and 4-for-4 on PATs before being sidelined. His replacement, Manny Amendola, has been far from perfect. He missed an extra-point try and a crucial 34-yard attempt for KC in Week 3 before getting fired and two weeks later, he botched a PAT try and last-minute 43-yard FG for the Cardinals in a 20-17 home loss to unbeaten Philadelphia.
What also gives the Saints an edge is that over the past two weeks with a struggling air game, they have emphasized the run, gaining more than 225 ground yards vs. Seattle and Cincinnati. All other league teams have totaled six such games.
This seems like another chance for Saints RB Alvan Kamara to have a big day. He’s averaged 101 yards in the past two weeks.
And finally, with the good chance that Hill will operate in the shotgun now and then, the Cardinals probably had to spend what little prep time they had to ready for what he brings to the ground game.
Prediction: Saints 21, Cardinals 12