Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Arizona Cardinals Week 3 Betting Preview, Odds, and Prediction
Date: Sunday, September 26, 2021
Game Time: 1:00 PM ET
Location: TIAA Bank Field, Jacksonville, FL
TV Network: FOX
Jacksonville Jaguars (0-2-0 SU, 0-2-0 ATS)
Arizona Cardinals (2-0-0 SU, 1-1-0 ATS)
After all the hype and buzz surrounding 2021 No.1 draft pick Trevor Lawrence, his NFL career is off to a discouraging start in Jacksonville as the Jaguars slip to a 0-2 record. By contrast, the Arizona Cardinals are unbeaten after two laps around the NFL, with former No. 1 draft pick Kyler Murray impressively leading the charge. So much so that his odds to win the MVP were slashed this week.
Given the contrasting fortunes, books opened with the Cardinals as the touchdown road faves across the board. However, since markets opened, the line has ticked up to 7.5-points with several shops already. The total is 52 points after opening on 51.5 points with most market operators.
Jacksonville Jaguars Odds & Overview
Urban Meyer's and Trevor Lawrence's NFL debut fell short of expectations as the Jaguars succumbed to a 37-21 loss to the Houston Texans in Week 1. The Texans were supposed to be the worst team in the league. The offseason drama with Deshaun Watson overshadowed the organization and led many, including bookmakers, to discount the Texans from the 2021 NFL season. Tyrod Taylor wasn't supposed to spoil Lawrence's coming-out party.
The Jaguars closed as the 3.5-point home chalk only to lose by a considerable margin. This wasn't supposed to happen, of course. But it did. Most recently, the Jaguars succumbed to a 23-13 loss to the Denver Broncos in their season home-opener. And, once again, Lawrence was outduelled by a journeyman quarterback and a team that few expected would be competitive before the season started.
The book is not closed on the Meyer-Lawrence partnership, but it's going to come under more scrutiny in the coming weeks. The Arizona Cardinals will be of particular interest as they're the first legitimate contenders the Jaguars will face this season.
Arizona Cardinals Odds & Overview
The Arizona Cardinals are off to a flying start in 2021, reeling off back-to-back wins over the Tennessee Titans and Minnesota Vikings. The Cardinals beat the Titans resoundingly in Week 1 to defy the NFL odds. Arizona closed as the 3-point road underdogs only to crush the point spread behind a 38-13 win.
Kyler Murray had a monster game against the Titans. He went 21-of-32 for 289 yards, four passing touchdowns, and one interception. He also rushed for a score to cap his day with five touchdowns. Chandler Jones led the defense with five sacks, as the Cardinals held the Titans to merely 13 points and rendered Derrick Henry a moot point.
It was important for the Cardinals to continue the momentum into Week 2, and they didn't disappoint as they emerged winners yet again. But, in some ways, Week 2's 34-33 win over the Minnesota Vikings was more meaningful. Firstly, it was a nail-biter. The Cardinals faced adversity, and they had to battle against a Vikings side desperate to get into the win column. Secondly, it's these kinds of character-building wins that underline a team's merit.
Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Arizona Cardinals Odds
|Jaguars||+290||+7 (+100)||Over 52 (-105)|
|Cardinals||-333||-7 (-110)||Under 52 (-105)|
Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Arizona Cardinals Betting Predictions
Not every single team starting the season 2-0 is a legitimate contender. Luck, a light schedule, and other factors can benefit a team in the beginning before reality catches up. The Cardinals don't come across as one of those fluke teams, however. The kind that will eventually come crashing down to earth as the going gets tough.
Kyler Murray has been on fire, the offense is young, exciting, fast, and electric, and the defense isn't too shabby either. They're playing confident football and riding the momentum of a two-game winning streak into Week 3. Unfortunately, the Jaguars aren't a match for the Cardinals. So far, Meyer's installment has looked no better than his predecessor's, which finished with a 1-15-0 mark and the No.1 pick. Lawrence has had his moments, but they haven't been sustainable for four quarters. And yet, the rookie quarterback believes the team is close to winning. So he's said to the media in his post-game press conferences. Be that as it may, it's unlikely that it's as close as this Sunday.
NFL Picks: Cardinals -7 (-110)