NFL Odds Suggest Tight Battle in Monday's Chargers vs. Cardinals

Steven Suarez

Wednesday, September 3, 2014 7:29 PM UTC

Wednesday, Sep. 3, 2014 7:29 PM UTC

The first edition of Monday Night Football is here, with the Cardinals and Chargers both searching for a victory to kick things off in Week 1. Will it be Philip Rivers and San Diego or Carson Palmer and Arizona that secures the win?

As you can see below, both teams were solid bets last season. Arizona surpassed expectation, primarily because of a top-tier defense that really stepped it up, especially at home.

The Chargers, meanwhile, found most of their success through their offense, led by Rivers, Ryan Mathews and some talented receiving options.

The NFL odds for Week 1 have been out for a while now, and there's been little movement in this game. Arizona opened as a 3.5-point favorite, and that's a line that can still be found at this very moment. Some sportsbooks also have an even spread of three points.

If you're inclined to gravitate towards the total, the O/U can be locked down at 45 for now.

Arizona in 2013-14 Regular Season: 10-6 SU, 11-5 ATS, +3.4 margin of victory

San Diego in 2013-14 Regular Season: 9-7 SU, 9-6-1 ATS, +3.0 margin of victory

Carson Palmer wasn't anything special last season, but he was serviceable in leading the offense and that's all the Cardinals really needed.

This coming year, he'll have the very talented Andre Ellington in the backfield taking the pressure off, with Larry Fitzgerald and Michael Floyd, an excellent duo, atop the wide receiver depth chart. Both should have productive years. As we mentioned, though, it was Arizona's defense that stood out most, with Patrick Peterson and then-rookie Tyrann Mathieu really playing well in the secondary.

The Chargers return Philip Rivers, with Ryan Mathews and Danny Woodhead set to be involved a lot in the offense as well. Donald Brown was also signed to bolster an already strong group of backs. As far as targets in the passing game, Rivers is in a great position, as he can turn to Keenan Allen, Malcom Floyd, Antonio Gates and Ladarius Green.

This Week 1 encounter between San Diego and Arizona isn't an easy one to break down. Where do you think the best value lies in this NFL betting spot?

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