NFL Week 3 Match Ups: Arizona A Four-Point Favorite Over Oakland
September 21st, 2010-  By Bryan Cross

The Arizona Cardinals and the Oakland Raiders already have one thing in common in this young 2010 NFL Season, they both have beaten St.Louis.

Entering their week three match up, the Raiders got by the Rams last week, while the Cardinals were run out of the Georgia down in a blowout loss to the Atlanta Falcons a week after getting a win against the Rams. After two road games to start out the year however, the Cardinals play their home opener against the Raiders.

Not much went right for Arizona last week, in a 41-7 loss to the Falcons.  In that contest, it was over early, as Atlanta jumped all over Arizona both on the ground and through the air.  The only offense the Cardinals could muster came on the legs of a Tim Hightower 80-yard touchdown run.  Quarterback Derek Anderson was completely ineffective, and the Cardinals will have to go back to the drawing board on both sides of the ball if they are to have success this week.

For the Raiders, they got by the Rams 16-14 for their first win of the year after losing big to Tennessee to open the year.  It wasn’t all good news for Oakland however, as head coach Tom Cable pulled quarterback Jason Campbell in favor of Bruce Gradkowski, after Campbell was struggling..

Looking ahead at this one on offense for the Cardinals, any sort of production would be an improvement from last week.  The Cardinals are still clearly struggling at the quarterback position with Anderson, leaving Arizona fans wishing Kurt Warner would come out of retirement.  Arizona will have to come up with something to move the ball, and fortunately the Raiders have shown this season that they are capable of giving up yards.

Defensively for the Raiders, Anderson has shown no signs that he is capable of beating a defense on his own.  Look for Oakland to commit to the run and stop Hightower and Beanie Wells if he plays this week.

On the other side of the ball, the Raiders might have themselves a quarterback controversy after Campbell was pulled.  Campbell will likely start this game, but it appears that he is on a shorter string than many may have originally thought.  Raiders head coach, Tom Cable, is expected to make the final decision on the starter Wednesday afternoon.

Campbell has shown in his career in Washington that he is an efficient passer, but did struggle last week against the Rams, which is why Cable yanked him.  Good news for the Raiders was running back Darren McFadden.  McFadden rushed for 145 yards against St. Louis after a 95-yard performance against Tennessee, which means the Cardinals will likely get a nice dose of McFadden.

For the Cardinals on defense, there was not a whole lot that went right for them against Atlanta, so it might be back to the film sessions and drawing boars for head coach Ken Whisenhut.  The Cardinal defense allowed 41 points, as Atlanta looked like they could score at will.

Still, USA Online Sportsbooks and NFL Weekly Betting Lines have set the Cardinals as the home favorite, giving Oakland four points in the match up.  The over/under for the game has been set at 40 points.

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