The drama is put on hold in Minnesota this week as the Vikings host the Arizona Cardinals in what is a must win for Vikings head coach Brad Childress. It seems like every week there’s a new distraction for the Vikings, and they’ll be looking to put the Moss ordeal behind them with a win on Sunday.
The Vikings have been a better home team than road team this year, getting both of their wins on their home turf (vs. Lions and Cowboys) but they’ve still got a long way to go before they’re back to being a .500 team. At 2-5, a loss this week could very well mean the end of Brad Childress and would make it nearly impossible for them to make the playoffs. Luckily, they play the Cardinals who haven’t managed to muster any inspiration away from The University of Phoenix Stadium. Look for Minni to run the ball a ton this week against a Cardinals team that gives up over 149 ypg on the ground.
And Arizona’s problems don’t end there. The Cards are having major quarterback issues. There was talk in the offseason that the birds were interested in McNabb before he signed with Washington, but they decided to go with Derek Anderson for now with the intension of investing in Max Hall for the future. But Anderson’s been bad this year, and Hall’s been worse, especially on the road. In Arizona’s last 3 road games (all losses) Cards QB’s have combined for 45/94, 0 touchdowns and 6 interceptions. Ouch. They haven’t won on the road since week 1 against the Rams, while the Vikings have won their last 2 at home.
Arizona’s poor QB play is making life difficult for WR Larry Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald is without question one of the best receivers in the league, but if you can’t get him the ball then he can’t be a factor. The Cardinals running game isn’t looking good either, with RB Beanie Wells fighting the injury bug this year. He’ll play this week, but won’t be near 100% on Sunday.
Cardinals vs. Vikings Spread, Line and Betting Odds:
Arizona Cardinals +7.5
@ Minnesota Vikings -7.5
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Cardinals vs. Vikings Prediction for Week 9 Betting:
Game Total Prediction (Top Play): Both teams are having offensive problems. The Cards don’t have a good QB, while the Vikings don’t have a healthy one. Arizona haven’t scored more than 10 points in their last 3 away from home, while the Vikings are averaging 18 points per game, good for 26th ranked in the league. The loss of Randy Moss, even though he only lasted two weeks, will play its part. Things had opened up for Percy Harvin; we were reminded of his effectiveness in the slot versus the Jets. Harvin may not play this week after he twisted his ankle last Sunday. If the Vikings are going to win this desperation game, it’ll be because of defense and Adrian Peterson. The clock will tick and the points will be low.
Spread Prediction: Upon first glance you could say this one can go either way. 7.5 points is a lot to give a team that are playing the way the Vikings are this year. But the oddsmakers must really have no faith in the Cards on the road, and with good reason. Minni beat the Lions by 14 earlier in the year, and kept things close for most of the game in losses to the Pats, Jets, and Packers. This is a must win for Chilly, so I think they right the ship for one more week on Sunday.