Will the San Francisco 49ers Avoid Trap Game in 15 vs. Arizona Cardinals?

Dan Favale
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
Will the San Francisco 49ers Avoid Trap Game in 15 vs. Arizona Cardinals?

After seeing their odds to win Super Bowl 58 take a hit during the middle of the NFL 2023 regular season schedule, the San Francisco 49ers are back at the top of their game. But can they avoid a Week 15 trap game against the Arizona Cardinals

Opening kickoff for this one is scheduled for Sunday, December 17, at 4:05 p.m. eastern standard time, on the field at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. The latest NFL online betting odds currently have the Niners billed as heavy favorites even though they’re on the road: 

Miami Dolphins (-7.5)-110-110New York Jets (+3)

Please remember to double-check these online NFL betting odds until you actually submit your wager. Our Cardinals vs. 49ers betting odds are accurate entering Tuesday, December 5. That gives the best NFL online betting sites plenty of time to make adjustments leading into opening kick-off on December 17. 

And since we’re delivering these NFL Week 15 picks so far in advance, we’ll be looking at the Cardinals vs. Niners point spread betting lines alone. The over/under and moneyline odds will drop later. For now, we’ll lay out the case for each team and deliver our final prediction.

Giving San Francisco heavy-favorite status makes sense on the surface. They enter Week 14 on a four-game winning streak and just beat the reigning NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles in decisive fashion during Week 13. 

Still, Arizona will be working off a bye when they host the Niners. The Cardinals have also been a little friskier since Kyler Murray returned under center. Is it possible they could pull off an upset and slow a San Francisco team that’s been on an absolute tear? Let’s find out.

The Case for Betting on the San Francisco 49ers in Week 15 

Remember when the 49ers were slogging through a three-game losing streak in October? Of course you do. That was the stretch that made everyone question just about everything about them.

Fast forward to now, and San Francisco has one four straight games—including three over playoff contenders like the Jacksonville Jaguars, Seattle Seahawks and, most critically, the Eagles. 

The win over Philadelphia, in particular, seemed pretty telltale. The 49ers went into the City of Brotherly Love and dismantled the Eagles 42-19. Few will be surprised by their defensive performance. San Francisco limits opposing offenses as well as anyone. In fact, Week 13 was just the second time all season that they didn’t force a turnover.

Yet, while the defense is a known (and elite) commodity, the offense has been more topsy-turvy. The 49ers rank third in points per game, but the passing attack under quarterback Brock Purdy has at times been inconsistent. That might be a thing of the past now. 

San Francisco has averaged over 287 passing yards through their past six games. Against the Eagles, they racked up over 300 passing yards. And this says nothing of an elite rushing attack anchored by superstar running back Christian McCaffrey. This team has reached the point in which they will be favored in every game they play. Taking down the out-of-contention Cardinals should be no big deal.

San Francisco 49ers To cover the point spread against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 15

The Case for Betting on the Arizona Cardinals in Week 15

Arizona’s record and season averages won’t reflect it, but they have some juice to how they play. The return of quarterback Kyle Murray has injected the offense with more big-play potential, and the Cardinals just went into Pittsburgh during Week 13 and stole a victory from the Steelers. 

Furthermore, Arizona has managed to keep recent games close. They lost five points to the Houston Texans in Week 11 and remained within 10 points of both the Seattle Seahawks and Baltimore Ravens in Weeks 7, and 8, respectively.

Going up against the Niners poses a different test altogether. San Francisco is setting the world on fire right now. But the Cardinals have started to clean up some of their defensive deficiencies on third down and in the red zone.

Playing on their home field also serves them well. The Cardinals have only suffered one blowout loss at home on the year. They’re also better equipped to survive scoring fests with Murray under center. Their QB1 is averaging over 32 passing attempts per game since returning from his ACL injury. Volume isn’t everything, but in this case, Murray significantly diversifies Arizona’s offensive attack. That will at the very least force San Francisco into some tougher decisions on defense.

Arizona Cardinals To cover the point spread against the New York Jets in Week 15

Official Cardinals vs. 49ers Week 15 Prediction

Predicting the outcome of this game is a little simpler given how well the Niners are currently playing. They have looked like the best team in the league on both ends of the field for roughly a month. Leaving Arizona with another win shouldn’t be a problem.

But can the 49ers cover the spread? We’re betting “yes” again.

San Francisco’s past four victories have come by an average of 21.5 points. That is utterly ridiculous. Especially when you consider who they beat, and that they played three of these four on the road.

Going into Glendale and winning by eight-plus points feels like a given. Trap games this late into the season are always on the table. But the offense has finally rounded into an elite form. Brock Purdy has put us at ease in the process. Over the Niners’ past four games, he has thrown 11 touchdowns to just one interception. A date with the Cardinals’ shaky passing defense, which doesn’t force many turnovers, should help Purdy inflate his recent numbers even more.

OSB Prediction: San Francisco 49ers, -8 (-110)

San Francisco 49ers To cover the point spread against the Arizona Cardinals in Week 15

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can find one that works for all of your 2023 NFL betting:

Meet the author

Dan Favale

Dan Favale leverages over 12 years of sports journalism expertise in his role as New York staff writer. He provides in-depth analysis across the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, tennis, NASCAR, college basketball, and sports betting. Dan co-hosts the popular Hardwood Knocks NBA podc...

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