This Week 1 NFL betting odds matchup will be watched with interest by former NFL MVP QB Kurt Warner. In a matchup of two of his former teams, both of which he led to a Super Bowl berth, it would be interesting to know which one he’s rooting for: the St Louis Rams (a team that won the Super Bowl) or the Arizona Cardinals (a team that lost).
Both of these teams have moved off since Warner’s retirement last winter and this will be the Warner bowl in name only as the two teams with debut new starting QBs.
For the Rams it’s a change to showcase the talent of #1 overall pick QB Sam Bradford. Bradford was banged up in the preseason and missed some action but when he was in the action he looked very sharp, tossing 2 TDs in his only preseason start.
For the Cardinals it’s a chance to see what journeyman and free agent signee Derek Anderson can do. Exiled from Cleveland in the offseason after a mediocre tenure as a sometimes starter, Anderson won the starting job in camp that many thought would go to Warner heir-apparent Matt Leinart. There is little doubt among NFL gambling analysts that Anderson is big step down from Warner and with the loss of starting WR Anquan Bolden in the offseason this team’s passing game will be severely diminished. But the team still has All Pro WR Larry Fitzgerald (1,092 yards, 13 TDs in ’09) and young RB Beanie Wells has looked impressive and should take some of the pressure off the passing game.
The strength of the Cards’ team this season will be the defense which has steadily gotten better every year under the tutelage of head coach Ken Wizenhunt.
Bradford will get more than he can handle from this blitz happy unit (43 sacks in ’09) and will likely be running for his life most of the game. The Cards’ strength is its running game led by RB Steven Jackson but that should be neutralized by a strong Arizona run defense.
Kickoff for this Sunday matchup is set for 4:20 Eastern Time and sbg global sportsbook opened with the Cardinals as a 4-point favorite with an over/under total at 39. Look for the Cards to win this game and cover the sports betting spread.