The Arizona Cardinals travel to New Orleans to face the Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans as week 2 of the 2018 NFL preseason continues on Friday, August 17, 2018.
Arizona missed the playoff bus last season after posting an 8-8 record which was only good for third place in the NFC West. On the other hand, the Saints had a good 11-5 season and made it to the playoffs. They defeated the Carolina Panthers in their first playoff game but were eliminated by the Minnesota Vikings in the divisional round.
David Johnson Is Back
The Cardinals emerged victorious in week 1 as they produced a 24-17 victory over the San Diego Chargers. Rookie quarterback Chad Kanoff led Arizona in passing yards with 66 on 3-5 passing with one touchdown. Kanoff stole the show from fellow rookie and 10th overall pick Josh Rosen who took the most reps by any Arizona quarterback but did not record a touchdown in a total of 41 passing yards.
Aside from Kanoff and Rosen, former Chicago Bears starting quarterback Mike Glennon and starter Sam Bradford also saw action for the Cardinals. Glennon was the third quarterback to at least take two reps as the veteran went 2-7 for only 11 yards with one interception. Bradford saw action but threw just one pass before being taken out. Bradford is expected to take more reps on Friday although he isn’t expected to get enough minutes.
The Cardinals were happy to see star running back David Johnson return to action and not miss a single beat. After missing all but 43 snaps last season, Johnson rushed for 14 yards in each of his two carries in the game. Johnson and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald are likely going to play on Friday but are not expected to get decent minutes for Arizona.
Philadelphia’s defense posted three sacks as a team while Kamu Grugier-Hill led the Eagles with six sacks and Rasul Douglas coming up with one interception.
Arizona Cardinals vs New Orleans Saints 8/17/18
Odds: Cardinals +160, Saints -180
Odds from Betonline.ag as of 8/16/18
The Saints have won six out of the last 10 head to head meetings between these two teams including two of the last three.
New Orleans has great depth in the quarterback position that even if Drew Brees doesn’t play in this contest, Tom Savage will be good enough to do the job, being a former starter. To add to that, Taysom Hill was also outstanding in Week 1. Not only did Hill contribute on special teams versus the Jaguars last week, he also posted 72 passing yards and 52 rushing yards.
Make no mistake, Arizona has a very talented quarterback in Sam Bradford. But given his injury history, it won’t be a surprise if he leaves this game after leading his offense to just one drive. Remember that Bradford was only permitted to throw one pass last week before being replaced by rookie Josh Rosen from UCLA.
Rosen, the 10th overall pick of the 2018 NFL Draft, was underwhelming in his NFL debut. The 21 year old completed only 6 out of 13 passes for 41 yards with no touchdown. Fellow rookie quarterback Chad Kanoff outplayed Rosen by going 3-5 for 66 yards and one touchdown. Although Bradford is expected to get more reps this time around, we still don’t think he will be getting enough to help Arizona win.
The Saints’ quarterback depth plus their running backs’ ability to finish in the red zone should be the difference in this contest. Arizona is still also adjusting to a new philosophy while New Orleans already knows what it has and can do.
We’re picking the New Orleans Saints to beat the Arizona Cardinals on 8/17/18.