Seattle Seahawks (10-4) at Arizona Cardinals (11-3)
A lot is made about the Seahawks’ homefield advantage in the NFC West, but the Cardinals have had a tough homefield advantage in recent years as well, going 29-11 ATS as home underdogs or favorites of less than 3 since 2007. This season alone they are 7-0 straight up and 6-1 ATS at home. Despite that, the public is all over the Seahawks. I love fading the public whenever it makes sense and it makes some sense here.
The reason I say some sense is because I can’t be confident in Ryan Lindley. On the season, the Cardinals rank 11th in rate of moving the chains differential, moving them at a 70.30% rate, as opposed to 68.60% for their opponents, a differential of 1.70%. Meanwhile, the Seahawks rank 5th, moving the chains at a 75.29% rate, as opposed to 70.31% for their opponents, a differential of 4.98%. That suggests this line at 9 points is way too high. However, they move the chains at just a 67.18% rate in games where they don’t have Carson Palmer active, primarily playing Drew Stanton in those games. That still suggests this line is too high, but while Drew Stanton was a decent and functional backup, Ryan Lindley has never resembled that.
All of his action prior to this year was in 2012, when he completed 52.0% of his passes for an average of 4.40 YPA, 0 touchdowns, and 7 interceptions, as the former 6th round pick showed a stunning lack of accuracy. It’s possible that he’ll be better in Bruce Arians system and he’s done a great job of getting the best out of guys, but he didn’t look good at all in limited action against the Rams, completing 4 of 10 for 30 yards. This line is probably still too high, especially given how dominant the Cardinals have been there, but I can’t be confident. The Seahawks are also in a good spot as teams are 95-64 ATS as 6+ point favorites before being 6+ point favorites since 2010. They don’t have any upcoming distractions on the horizon with only a home game against St. Louis left on their schedule. I’m going with the Cardinals, but, again, I’m not confident.
Seattle Seahawks 16 Arizona Cardinals 9
Pick against the spread: Arizona +9