The 4-5 Arizona Cardinals are on the road this week, taking on the 8-1 Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome, with the Cards hoping to put an end to a five game losing streak.
The unfortunate part of that goal, is that they face the Falcons and Atlanta is coming off its first loss of the season. That won't make the Cardinals' job any easier, especially playing in the Georgia Dome.
The Cardinals are coming off a bye week, which should help in some small way, given the fact that players have had extra time to heal from the many bumps and bruises of the first nine weeks of the season.
Unfortunately, the Cardinals haven't fared too well in Atlanta. Arizona's last win in Georgia was back in 1993. Overall, the Cardinals are 5 & 9 on the road against the Falcons.
Expect John Skelton to start at quarterback again for the Cardinals, as Kevin Kolb isn't close to returning. Running back Beanie Wells, while back at practice this past week, isn't cleared to play until next week when the Cardinals host the St. Louis Rams in Glendale. The Cards will likely be without defensive end Calais Campbell as well; Campbell has been struggling with what appears to be an ankle injury for the past week.
Checking further into the statistical comparisons between the two teams isn't pretty either: When it comes to points scored, the Falcons have put up 247 points while the Cards have scored just 144. Defensively, the comparison is pretty close: the Cardinals have held opponents to 173 points while the Falcons have given up 174. So it's the point differential that's disturbing.
Atlanta is rushing for 92.7 yards per game while the Cardinals are further down the stat sheet, averaging just 76.2 yards per game on the ground. The Falcons average 292.6 passing yards per game while the Cards are averaging 219.2 per game. Advantage Falcons on just about every statistical category.
The last time these two teams met was on September 19, 2010 and the Falcons won that game 41 to 7 at the Georgia Dome.
When you look at this game, it's easy to see the Cardinals falling to four and six on the season.
My prediction: Falcons 34 – Cardinals 17