Week 5: Bills vs. Cardinals
The Bills head to the desert to take on a much improved Cardinals team in Arizona. This will be a tough matchup for the Bills as they head to their second straight road game before the bye week. The Cardinals are licking their wounds after losing two straight games on the East coast and will welcome coming home and likely be fired up to turn things around this week.
Sunday, Oct. 5th
FACTS AND FIGURES
||Buffalo (4-0) vs. Arizona (2-2)
||University of Phoenix Stadium
||Bill Macatee and Steve Beuerlein
||Cardinals by 1
||Bills lead 5-3
||Bills Won 4
||Bills 38-14 in Buffalo (2004)
||Rush (25th); Pass (4th); overall (5th)
||Rush (t-14th); Pass (16th); overall (9th)
||Rush (20th); Pass (12th); overall (16th)
||Rush (17th); Pass (6th); overall (7th)
The Bills will be without two starters as Roscoe Parrish and Terrence McGee will miss the game. McGee has a sprained MCL suffered in last week's win over the Rams. Parrish is out another month after undergoing thumb surgery. Derek Fine remains sidelined with his thumb injury and may be back in a few weeks.
The Cardinals may be without star WR Anquan Boldin who suffered a devastating hit against the Jets last week. It was a scary scene but he flew home with the team and has total use of all extremities. He will be fine but may miss this week's game although there is still a chance he'll play. TE Jerame Tuman may return to practice this week after missing last week's game with a hamstring injury. Pass rushing DE Bertrand Berry is out with a groin injury and likely will not play this week. DL Gabe Wilson may be out as well with a knee injury. SS Adrian Wilson is suffering from a hamstring injury but may play this week.
Bills Daily Injury Page
LT Jason Peters vs. DE Travis LaBoy:
With Berry out, LaBoy is the main pass rusher, he has two sacks. Peters has been very inconsistent since ending his holdout and he has made several mistakes that haven't cost the team a game yet. If he makes some mistakes this week, the Bills will probably lose.
WR Lee Evans vs. CBs Eric Green and Rod Hood:
The corner situation in Arizona isn't the greatest. Evans will move around a lot and has an advantage over both these players. Look for Trent Edwards to look to him for a few big shots downfield.
CB Jabari Greer vs. WR Larry Fitzgerald:
Greer will line up against Fitzgerald who is one of the top receivers in the league. Green has played great in coverage and will need to play just as intensely against Fitzgerald.
CB Leodis McKelvin or Ashton Youboty vs. WR Steve Breaston or Anquan Boldin:
It is unclear who will replace McGee but it is likely to be Youboty in the base defense. In the nickel Youboty will move to the slot and McKelvin will go outside. Both will likely face Boldin if he plays or Breaston if he doesn't. This is an edge for the Cardinals no matter what the combination is so the Bills need to play close attention to this battle.
RB Marshawn Lynch vs. LB Karlos Dansby:
Lynch is still looking for his first 100 yard game. The fact he hasn't had one yet is the poor run blocking of the offensive line. Lynch appears close to breaking one or two, if he does this week then the Bills have a decent chance at victory. Dansby is the leading tackler for the Cardinals.
DE Aaron Schobel vs. LT Mike Gandy:
One battle almost lost in the shuffle will be Schobel going against his former teammate in Gandy. Schobel has only one sack this year and needs to up that total although he has had a lot of pressure on the quarterbacks so far this year. He should have an advantage over the Gandy as Bills fans know what he is (and isn't) capable of.
When The Bills Have The Ball: Look for the Bills to try and run the ball out of the spread formation which was successful last week. They were likely try to get control of the game on the ground. If that works it will open up deep lanes in the passing game. They should be able to have some success both on the ground and in the air.
When The Cardinals Have The Ball: The key to their offense is the passing game so look for them to attack the Bills defense early and often deep. QB Kurt Warner will definitely test the rookie McKelvin with McGee out. The Cardinals have a talented receiving corps even if Boldin doesn't play.
BILLS DAILY PREDICTION
The Bills would love to hit the bye at 5-0 and but this has the makings of a loss. Going into the heat of the desert (although they'll get a break since the dome will be closed) and a second straight road trip will be hard enough. Going out West is never easy and the Cardinals need to turn their season around after a promising first two weeks. I just think the way these games usually go, the home team that is a bit desperate and very talented has the edge:
Cardinals 27, Bills 23
Season Prediction Record: (4-0)
Season Record Against The Spread: (4-0)
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