For the Baltimore Ravens, it has gotten to the point where any more losses are going to put them into emergency mode. So it is with a certain sense of urgency that they undertake to improve their record to 2-5 as they pay a visit to the Arizona Cardinals on Monday night, in a game that begins at 8:30 PM ET at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, AZ. BetAnySports customers get to play their skill against the NFL betting odds in real-time when they hook up with Live Betting Extra, which is available through the sportsbook interface.
Baltimore did not get off to a great start as they not only were beaten by the Denver Broncos in the season opener, with just 100 yards passing from Joe Flacco, but they lost premier pass rusher Terrell Suggs as well. He was one of those players who constituted the “heart and soul” of the defense, and his leadership is missed, although the defensive numbers are not all that horrible. The Ravens have still registered 18 sacks, and they remain a difficult team to run on (yielding just 3.6 yards per carry).
Really, it has been the offense that has sputtered, and injuries have had something to do with it. There is not a tremendous amount of depth at the wide receiver spot, for example, although Steve Smith is having a great farewell season (he’s retiring at year’s end).
In the reduced juice NFL betting odds posted on this game by the folks atBetAnySports, the Cardinals are the solid favorites:
Arizona Cardinals -9 (-102)
Baltimore Ravens +9 (-108)
Over 49 points -105
Under 49 points -105
Smith already has 510 yards receiving, and he has been dealing with some small broken bones in his back. Last week he was a game-time decision, but he took the field against the San Francisco 49ers and caught seven passes for 137 yards. He has truly had a rebirth since being discarded by the Carolina Panthers, and the Ravens have indicated that they will not deal him away to a contender during this final season.
What these guys need to do, frankly, is get off to a better start. BetAnySportspatrons may not realize this, but the Ravens have not scored a point on their opening drive in any of their first six games. In fact, they have averaged just eight yards per drive, with a total of three first downs. However, clearly they get warmed up eventually, because they have not been getting blown away by opponents. Look at the five losses – they have come by six, four, four, three and five points. Of course, the challenge here is that Arizona is a very capable offensive squad, ranking third in the NFL in both yards per drive and points per drive.
Last week, the Pittsburgh Steelers, even with their shaky quarterback situation, demonstrated that if you can slow down the Cards’ running game, you can make things more problematic for them. Baltimore has been almost impossible to run against on the left side. But they have shown a vulnerability to big plays in their secondary, and Carson Palmer (nine yards an attempt) has had 27 completions of twenty or more yards.
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