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Buffalo Bills vs. Arizona Cardinals Betting Odds

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:
Oct/04/2008
Buffalo Bills

Do the Buffalo Bills stay undefeated or do the Arizona Cardinals look to rebound from an embarrassing outing on the road against the New York Jets last weekend?

The Buffalo Bills vs. Arizona Cardinals betting odds opened at either Arizona -1 or -1 ½ and the line has been hovering between a pick and -1 ½. There is actually a middling opportunity here should Arizona win by 1 point. BetUS.com was offering the Bills at +1 ½ while Sports Interaction had this game at a pick. Bet both sides at two different books and hope that the Cardinals win by one point so you can win both your bets. How clever is that? The odds of this happening are not very good though.

Off to their best start in 16 years, the surprising Bills look to keep their perfect record intact when they visit a Cardinals team hoping to avoid a third straight loss.

"We still don't feel like we're anywhere near our potential," quarterback Trent Edwards said. "We're going in the right direction. But we still have a lot left to give. So I don't know how good we can be."

Seeking their first playoff appearance since 1999 in an AFC East that for the first time in a while seems wide open, the Bills are 4-0 for the sixth time in franchise history. Only the 1975 club failed to reach the playoffs while the 1980 and 1991 teams began a franchise-best 5-0 en route to the postseason.

Clearly, Buffalo has been helped by a favorable early schedule with its four opponents - Seattle, Jacksonville, Oakland and St. Louis - a combined 4-11 this season. Each team was dealing with either a key injury or an unsettled coaching situation when facing the Bills.

Perhaps the biggest factor in Buffalo's start has been Edwards' play in his first full season as a starter. The second-year pro has the NFL's third-best passer rating in the fourth quarter (136.6), trailing only Brett Favre of the New York Jets and San Diego's Philip Rivers. Edwards has helped Buffalo score 45 points in the final quarter this season after it scored 64 fourth-quarter points in all of 2007.

Improving their defense also was imperative for the Bills to return to the playoffs, and through four games that unit has been far better than last season. Buffalo leads the league in third-down conversion percentage (19.2) and is limiting opponents to 15.8 points per game - a six-point decrease from 2007.

That unit may have to compensate for the absence of starting cornerback Terrence McGee on Sunday after he suffered a knee injury against St. Louis.

"Terrence has been playing at such a high level," Bills coach Dick Jauron said. "We'd love to have him obviously and we need to have him, if not this week then as soon as possible."

The Cardinals will be happy to return home after losing games to Washington and the Jets on an East Coast trip that cost them a chance to start 3-1 for the first time since moving to Arizona following the 1987 season.

Sunday's 56-35 loss to New York was particularly disappointing for the Cardinals and quarterback Kurt Warner, who threw three interceptions and lost three fumbles. Warner, though, didn't get much protection as he was sacked five times.

"It's a team sport so it's the team's fault," coach Ken Whisenhunt said. "Obviously we did not protect Kurt well enough. But there is enough blame to go around for everybody."

Arizona's defense also needs to shoulder much of the blame after Favre burned it for six touchdowns.

"We gave him five of those six touchdowns," safety Antrel Rolle said. "It's nothing we didn't work on in practice. I need to communicate better. We need to be on the same page. There were a few times we weren't on the same page and it cost us."

The Bills have won four straight against the Cardinals, averaging 32.8 points.

These games, however, date back to 1986 and the last time these two teams played each other was in October 2004. The Bills were a -4 ½ home favorite when they dismantled the Cardinals 38-14.

This will be Buffalo's second straight game on the road out west. They have won two road games already.

Gambling911.com does believe the line on this game is accurate.

The Bills are 13-4-1 ATS in their last 18 games following a ATS win. The Cardinals are 10-4 ATS in their last 14 games following a S.U. loss.

This game can go either way. Even though Buffalo has dominated this team head-to-head, there are simply not enough of those matchups to make a true determination here, and certainly not anything recent. The idea that the Arizona line is probably under a half point or more where it should be presents an enticing opportunity but this Bills team is really looking impressive early on whereas Arizona is the same ‘ol, same ‘ol.

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Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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