I talked with some friends before the Las Vegas lines came out on Sunday on what the lines for the Cardinals was going to be this season, I had it at 8.5.
You see, there is a school of thought that I have presented before that people just naturally deflect, since you know analytics are just numbers, that the Cardinals and more specifically Bruce Arians is due for a collapse in his effectiveness as a coach in games decided by seven points or less, Arians is 14-3 in his coaching career.
The idea that things are going to even out for the Cardinals, and more specifically Arians, makes sense, as games decided by seven points or less make up 46% of games played over the last 20 seasons according to Marasoft.com.
What doesn’t make sense, at least to me, and really that’s all that matters in my brain, is the idea that there will be a huge swing next year.
Arians went 9-1 with the Colts in games decided by seven points or less, and with the Cardinals went 5-2. The razor thin line of the NFL expects those numbers to start to creep back to .500, and sure that can happen over time, but in Arians first two seasons as a coach, through 28 games coached, he played in 17 games decided by seven or fewer points, or nearly 61%.
All of that to say this, the Cardinals came out in Las Vegas on Sunday with an over/under on the season at 7.5.
That number seems low to me, but the teams grouped in with them is what makes it so odd: The Rams, Redskins, Texans and Giants are all at 7.5 wins on the season. Sure I get the idea that the Cardinals are in the NFC Death, and that things in those seven point games will eventually even out, but 7.5?!?!
What say you BirdGang?