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Week 14 Arizona vs. San Francisco Preview

NFL Betting – Monday Night Football Preview

While the playoff picture got a little murkier in the AFC over the weekend, the Arizona Cardinals will try to make it much cleaner for sports betting fans in the NFC if they can get a win over the San Francisco 49ers on Monday night.

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The Cardinals, who represented the NFC in the Super Bowl in 2009, can clinch the NFC West with a win over the San Francisco 49ers on Monday Night Football.

While a playoff berth and a division rivalry would be enough of a back-story in most cases, there is another under-the-radar story heading into this contest. The Cardinals lost to the 49ers at home on the opening week of the season and it’s a loss that has hung around with them all season. In that contest, the Cardinals were without Steve Breaston and Anquan Boldin was hobbled with a hamstring injury, and the defense collapsed late in the game to give the 49ers the win. This is a game the Cardinals have had circled for a while and NFL betting fans should expect to see a very motivated effort from a team that wants to prove a point.

Arizona Cardinals @ San Francisco 49ers
Sportsbook Odds: Cardinals -3.5

This will be a tough matchup for the 49ers, whose secondary has been letting them down all season. While they’ve given up just 13 passing touchdowns this year, which is the third-fewest total in the NFL, that number is a little misleading. A better indication of the 49ers secondary is the fact that they have the 26th-ranked pass defense.

In the first meeting, they got off a little easy as Boldin was battling a hamstring injury, Breaston was out and the Cardinals had no threat of a rushing attack. This time around, Boldin is not only healthy, but he’s been on fire.

Since missing a game against the Chicago Bears, Bolding has averaged 84 yards receiving per game. He also has three touchdowns in the last four games after notching just one in the first seven games.

For the 49ers, they’ll have some new wrinkles too as the Alex Smith will be the starting quarterback in this contest and Michael Crabtree will be starting at wideout, which is something the 49ers didn’t have in the opening game of the year.

While both have played well, the key to the 49ers success will be Frank Gore. He has to run the ball well so that the 49ers can control the clock and keep their offense on the field and keep the Cardinals offense on the sidelines.

The bottom line is that the Cards are multifaceted while the 49ers are one-dimensional. On top of that, the Cardinals are focused on some revenge.

NFL Picks: Cardinals -3.5

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