Jacksonville Jaguars (7-3 SU, 6-4 ATS) vs. Arizona Cardinals (4-6 SU, 2-7-1 ATS)
NFL Week 12
Date/Time: Sunday, November 26, 2017 at 4:25PM EST
Where: University of Phoenix Stadium, Glendale, Arizona
by Scott, Expert Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: JAC -4.5/ARI +4.5
Over/Under Total: 38
The Jacksonville Jaguars come to the desert on Sunday for a week 12 matchup with the Arizona Cardinals. This past Sunday, the Cardinals looked forward to getting back to .500 with a struggling Houston team standing in their way. They even took a lead into the final quarter before two Houston TD scores sealed the deal and sent the Cardinals to 4-6. Jacksonville, meanwhile, has started putting the wins together with their 4th straight win on Sunday with a 19-7 win over the Browns. Who can get it done this week in Glendale?
The Jaguars 19-7 win over the Browns on Sunday continues to show they can win in a variety of ways this season. Again, their defense was a big part of the equation on Sunday. The D started the season getting noticed for how strong their playmaking was. That has continued, but theyve also become extremely rigid in allowing yardage and points. In their last 4 games, they have yielded a scant 31 points total. And they can also get on the board, scoring their fifth touchdown of the season against the Browns. They have a plus-11 turnover ratio and they rush the passer with gusto.
With a Browns defense that played good defense on Sunday, the Jacksonville offense wasnt able to really shine. They got a good performance from Leonard Fournette, who ran for 111 yards. QB Blake Bortles had just 154 yards with a TD to tight end Marcedes Lewis. With Allen Robinson out of action and Allen Hurns missing the last game and still iffy, they are fairly thin in the receiver category with Marqise Lee their number-one receiver, a role where he leaves something to be desired. If looking for a potential stumbling-block for the Jags this season, they are very reliant on the defense and the offense isnt always very good. They have gotten a boost from a game-changing back in Fournette, buy aerially, they have taken a step backwards.
Through ten games, if there were a defense that you could choose as the best in the league, a nice case can be made for the Jacksonville D. More of that difference-making play was evident on Sunday, with Telvin Smith taking a fumble back for a TD and picking off a pass. AJ Bouye also had a pick and has been playing good at the corner with Jalen Ramsey on the other side. Safeties Barry Church and Tashaun Gipson have also been big on the season, making them the most-adept pass-defense at making plays and in terms of not allowing yardage this season. Up-front, Calais Campbell, Malik Jackson, Dante Fowler, Jr., Marcell Dareus, and Yannick Ngakoue have been tough and applying a good pass-rush. No team has allowed fewer points than this defense and they seem to bring this level of mayhem every week.
Arizona looked to take it to 5-5 on Sunday with a 21-17 lead in the final quarter against the Texans, but it wasnt meant to be, with the D evaporating late and the offense unable to keep pace. With Carson Palmer out and Drew Stanton recovering from a knee injury, it will again be Blaine Gabbert on Sunday at quarterback. Injuries have been costly with the Cardinals this season on both sides of the ball. But with them now three-deep on the depth chart at QB and the loss of David Johnson, they just arent very dangerous on offense. And while their defense had been playing better the last few weeks, Sunday saw another step back, giving up 31 to a Texans offense that hadnt seen much go right in weeks.
When watching the Cardinals offense over the last handful of weeks, the mind projects what would be the case if they were at full-power, in addition to how theyd be helping the other side of the ball. Gabbert did throw three touchdowns on 257 yards, but the two interceptions were bad. Adrian Peterson has now started five games for the Cardinals since being acquired by the Saints. Two games have been great, but three have been pretty miserable, including his last two. After not being heard from all season, Texas A&M rookie Ricky Seals-Jones sprung forth with two TD receptions on Sunday. Larry Fitzgerald has been a model of consistency this season and was good with 91 yards and a score last week.
Again, the defense looked to be improving prior to last weeks game. Getting run over by the likes of DOnta Foreman in a spot like that wasnt a good sign. Neither is seeing the biggest names on this side of the ball not having the best seasons, like Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu. Peterson had a pick on Sunday, but was also burned on a rare Tom Savage throwing highlight. In the middle, Karlos Dansby and Deone Buccanon have been playing well. S Budda Baker was very active and is showing signs of coming around in his rookie season. With how they finished the game last week, its hard to heap praises on this group and they hope to be better this week at home.
If looking to cast doubt on the true worth of the Jaguars, one could point to the fact that 6 of their 7 wins have come against Houston, the Chargers, Baltimore, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and Cleveland. Then again, the Cardinals fit well with that group of teams. Whatever the case, questioning the Jaguars has been a costly move at the betting windows this season. Even so, Arizona has shown some resolve this season and there are a lot of capable guys on the field playing for their careers in many respects. I see both sides of the ball playing well enough to keep this one respectable. Im taking the home dog this week.
Scott’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: Im betting on the Arizona Cardinals plus 4.5 points. – Bet this game for FREE by taking advantage of a 50% bonus up to $250 at one of the web’s oldest and most trusted betting sites: BOVADA