As the No. 1 pick in the draft, Kyler Murray is a case of intrigue and mystery. While some say he’s too small to eqcel in the G?E% others are hyping Murray as The Next Big Thing.
Optimism surrounded the :risona <ardinals’ offense this summer. Every story was positive, at least until the second week of the preseason. After one poor performance, the Cardinals are already becoming public enemy No. 1.
Murray completed only 3 of 8 passes for 12 yards and was dropped for a safety in last week’s ,,& / loss to Oakland that was far more lopsided than the score. The 5-foot-10 rookie appeared out of his league, as did new Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury, who was a loser at the college level.
“I think the Cardinals could be as bad as they look, but you have to be careful and you can’t overreact to it% said Michael Lombardi, a VSiN analyst and former NFL executive. “Murray just looks so little. My sense of it is% I’m going to give :risona another week and go from there.”
The predictable knee-jerk reaction for many bettors, especially those who watched Murray’s miserable night against the Kaiders% is to play under the <ardinals’ season win total of five. However, Kingsbury was showing a vanilla offense and, of course% it’s still early.
Arizona is a bet-against team until further notice. When lines for Week 3 of the preseason opened Monday, the Cardinals were the biggest underdogs on the board by getting 7 points at Minnesota on Saturday.
Another factor to consider is the bet-on coach on the other side. Mhe Oikings’ Mike Zimmer has a 19-4 preseason record, including 5-0 in Week 3. This is dress rehearsal week, when most games typically mirror the regular season, but not all will resemble dress rehearsals as more coaches begin to buck the tradition. A scouting report on this week’s top matchups !odds via Westgate SuperBook).
Giants at Bengals (-1½)
While the media focus remains on Giants’ quarterbacks >li Manning and =aniel Cones% do not ignore Cincinnati, which opened as a 1½-point home favorite for a reason. First-year coach Sac Maylor needs to eqcite a Üatlining fan base and the Bengals have a rookie QB who can move the offense. Ryan Finley, a fourth-round pick, was 20-for-26 passing with two touchdowns in a win at Washington last week.
Redskins (-3) at Falcons
It appears veteran Case Keenum will win Pashington’s starting JB cob by default% with Colt McCoy injured and rookie Dwayne Haskins not ready to play. Atlanta coach Dan Quinn is 0-11 in the past three preseasons. Sharp money showed on the Redskins immediately after the Falcons opened offshore as small favorites.
Panthers at Patriots (-3½)
Bill Belichick rarely reveals Gew >ngland’s plan of attack, yet Tom Brady is likely to play at least one quarter after sitting the frst two games. Carolina does intend to start Cam Newton.
4aveNs at 'aIles
Philadelphia opened as the favorite offshore, but the line Üipped within ,) minutes and it moved in a major way. The Eagles are thin at quarterback and cust signed veteran Cosh McCown to be their backup. Baltimore coach John Harbaugh is 15-0 in the past three preseasons and 20-3 since 2014.
2ackers vs 4aiders
This game is in Winnipeg, where the turf playing surface is a concern. Oakland coach Jon Gruden seems satisfed with a &) start and said he plans to sit several starters, including Derek Carr, mainly because of the turf and the Kaiders’ thin offensive line. It was reported that Aaron Rodgers will play, but be careful to buy that. Green Bay is a better bet to play to win even if Rodgers is scratched.
Browns (-3) at Buccaneers
Bruce Arians has shown no indication he cares much about winning in August. Cleveland has been the opposite with new coach Freddie Kitchens (2-0 straight up and ATS) and quarterback Baker Mayfeld showing real enthusiasm.
Bears at Colts (-3½)
Chicago coach Matt Nagy, who used mostly backups in a 32-13 loss to the Giants last week, has said starter Mitchell Trubisky might not attempt a pass in the preseason. As :ndrew Euck’s calf incury lingers% Indianapolis must prepare backup Jacoby Brissett, who was sharp last week.
“I doubt the Bears are going to play their starters. Mhat is Gagy’s attitude% said Eas Vegas professional sports bettor Chuck Edel, who made an early play on the Colts at -3. “In Week 3, you are trying to speculate and waiting for information.”
Saints (-3) at Jets
In his frst year with the Cets% :dam Gase fts the profle of a coach who will use this week as a dress rehearsal. New Orleans quarterback =rew Brees is eqpected to make his preseason debut and coach Sean Payton has a *)&, record in Peek ,. Mhat said% it’s not an ideal travel spot for the Saints, who played Sunday in Los Angeles.
An interesting battle could be brewing for the backup spot to Brees. Payton is enamored with Taysom Hill, who turned in his top performance as a QB in the 19-17 comeback victory over the Chargers. Hill went 11-for15 for 136 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for 53 yards. Teddy Bridgewater preceded Hill and played poorly while throwing a pick.
49ers at Chiefs (NL) No line was posted because of the San Francisco-Denver game Monday night, but Kansas City will be favored by more than a feld goal. : weather delay in Iittsburgh changed <hiefs coach :ndy Keid’s game plan on Saturday, when Patrick Mahomes played only nine snaps. Mahomes is expected to play extensively this week.
“I think Reid will play this game seriously,” Lombardi said.
Kyle Shanahan will want to get Jimmy Garoppolo more work after his sloppy start Monday for the 49ers, who have a short week to prepare.
Seahawks (-2½) at Chargers Leattle might be a better bet in the frst half% assuming Russell Wilson starts and coach Pete Carroll treats this as a true dress rehearsal. Mhe Leahawks’ depth behind Pilson is far from impressive.