A big NFC West showdown takes place during the latter slate of games during Week 5’s Sunday NFL action. It hasn’t been the start either Arizona or San Francisco were looking for in 2018, and though both teams likely realize the post-season is already a pipe dream, there’s still a lot of pride on the line whenever it comes to a divisional showdown.
In this one, Arizona and their new rookie quarterback will take to the road, desperately seeking their first victory of the season. They’ve been close, and had good stretches last week against Seattle – but their youth and inexperience has cost them.
With the 49ers, they endured a tough break losing their main QB in Jimmy Garoppolo, and have now turned to C.J. Beathard. As you’d expect, San Francisco is currently working through some difficult offensive troubles – but could potentially see lowly Arizona as an antidote.
Despite a low level of importance to this contest, we’ve still isolated a pretty heavy edge on this match-up. Keep reading below the odds for a full game breakdown and official betting selection for Cards/Niners in Week 5 action.
Cardinals vs. 49ers Betting Odds:
Arizona Cardinals +3.5 (-120)
@ San Francisco 49ers -3.5 (+100)
Over 40 (-110)
Under 40 (-110)
Cardinals vs. 49ers Pick:
It’s been a tough start for the Niners – especially after they year began amid such optimism. Going from Jimmy G to Beathard is hard enough for an offense that was supposed to be exciting, but additional issues have continued to plague San Francisco. Last week their offensive line became badly depleted as the group lost three starters – all of whom are considered questionable for this contest. Those are big-time losses and it surely doesn’t give their coaches enough time to groom and prep the back-ups for what Arizona can throw at C.J. Beathard.
The Cards can pressure the opposing QB, and expect them to do this at will come Sunday afternoon. Chandler Jones and Markus Golden form an imposing duo on the defensive line and should generate some pressure and force Beathard into some ill-advised turnovers. Arizona has a steady defensive unit and should be able to give Josh Rosen a chance to win this game on the road. Patrick Peterson will certainly blanket the Niners’ top-guns, and the San Francisco run-game remains highly questionable.
On the other side of the ball, expect Josh Rosen to become more comfortable with his role in his second-start in the NFL. He looked pretty good on deep throws, but still made some mistakes. This week will be much easier though, as the Niners will have to be without their top defensive player in Richard Sherman. This means Christian Kirk and Larry Fitzgerald are both in line for big games from the receiver position.
Look for the Cards to also be able to assert their will through the ground game, and move the chains on that front as well. David Johnson hasn’t had a great start to his 2018 campaign, but with the Niners’ shoddy linebacker play, I’d expect Johnson to find a lot of holes both from the line of scrimmage and as a receiver from the backfield. The talented back has a lot more to give, and look for him to really help his rookie QB out here in Week 5.
Entering this contest, the Cards seemingly have the better team and are much better and healthier at key positions. Arizona is an unfortunate 0-4, but they aren’t absolutely awful either. Look for the Cards to be able to exploit San Francisco’s injuries and turn in a stout defensive performance. Arizona surprises here on the road.
PICK = Cardinals +3.5 (-120)