Last Updated: 2019-08-15
There is probably no team in the NFL that is surrounded by more curiosity right now than the Arizona Cardinals. That’s because they took a big leap with both its head coaching hire and the selection of his favored quarterback with the #1 overall draft pick. We don’t necessarily know that Kliff Kingsbury is going to give us any real clues as to how this team is going to look in the regular season, but Kyler Murray is going to see some playing time on Thursday night against the Oakland Raiders. The game will kick off at 8 PM ET at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, AZ. And while ESPN is televising it, BetAnySports customers will have the opportunity to place wagers as the contest is in progress.
Kingsbury was head coach at Texas Tech, as well as an assistant elsewhere, and he had the opportunity to work with the likes of Patrick Mahomes and Baker Mayfield. Well before he got hired as a head coach in Arizona, he famously made the comment that Murray should unquestionably be the top pick of the draft, and that he would o it if he had the chance. Then a couple of interesting things happened. Kingsbury, who was fired by TexasTtech and then hired as an offensive coordinator at USC, suddenly got an offer to be the head man at the Cardinals. So he abruptly backed out of his job with the Trojans, took the job in Arizona, and then basically had to put his money where his mouth was, or more specifically, the organization must have felt it had to.
Murray is a great talent, but no one is really sure whether the Heisman Trophy winner is an NFL-level passer quite yet. But Kingsbury is absolutely certain that he will thrive in whatever version of the “Air Raid” he’ll be using this season.
They are consciously not going to show too much of their playbook in the pre-season, and Murray is perfectly comfortable having limited reps in “live” game action in the system, because he says he’s been running a version of this offense for a long time now. “It’s hard to prepare for what we will do when the season comes,” he says.
It’s difficult to determine how long Murray will be in the game, but it might be for a couple of possessions.
In the NFL preseason betting odds posted on this game, the Cardinals are the favorites at home:
Arizona Cardinals -2.5 (-105)
Oakland Raiders +2.5 (-105)
Over 39.5 points (-103)
Under 39.5 points (-107)
As you can see, you’re not laying the customary -110 in this game, because BetAnySports offers “reduced juice,” which is one of the best deals in the sportsbook industry, because it saves you money every time you play.
Oakland seemed to be a motivated side last week, especially on the defensive end, as they beat the Los Angeles Rams 14-3, holding a rather uninterested Rams squad to just 190 yards of total offense. If they are going to see something “vanilla,” they may not be challenged all that much this time around either.
But they may have something rather problematic for the Cardinals to deal with.
You see, Arizona give up 179 rushing yards last week in its win over the Chargers. What’s doubly distressing, as it relates to the current context, is that they gave up 85 yards to scrambling quarterbacks. Last week, Nathan Peterman had a 50-yard run for the Raiders, and it’s no secret that the much-maligned former Buffalo quarterback can get out there and scoot.
Say what you want about Peterman, but he’s been more than a serviceable pre-season quarterback, in fact winning the job on that basis with the Bills. Between him and Mike Glennon, coach Jon Gruden should have only veterans, experienced in pre-season, taking snaps. And of course, we have yet to mention Derek Carr, who will “play a little bit” according to Gruden. If you remember, in Carr’s rookie season, he won the starting position with a tremendous display in a pre-season finale against Seattle. These are the kinds of things that make us lean toward Oakland plus the points.
And before we let you go, there’s a quick note – Antonio Brown is looking for a Schutt Air Advantage helmet made after 2010, so it can conform to NFL safety standards.ou know, if anybody can help him out there. He had previously threatened to quit football if they wouldn’t let him where his old helmet, but his grievance against the league was denied. Just giving you folks a heads-up; he’s willing to trade a signed, practice-worn Raiders helmet if you have the goods and want to swap.
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