Carolina Panthers (2-1 SU, 1-2-0 PS, 1-2-0 O/U) vs New England Patriots (2-1 SU, 1-2-0 PS, 3-0-0 O/U)
When: 1:00 PM EDT, Sunday, October 1, 2017
Where: Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts
Lines: New England -8.5
Sunday afternoon NFL action and the NFC South will square off with the AFC East as the Carolina Panthers rumble with the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. The Panthers are off a bad 34-13 home loss to the New Orleans Saints, while the Patriots survived a scare from Houston at home in a 36-33 win. These teams last met back in 2013 and the Panthers won at home by a score of 24-20.
Panthers Have Issues On Offense And It Starts With Newton
The Carolina Panthers really showed in the preseason that their offense has some issues and it has spilled over to the regular season. They scored 23 points in their opener against San Francisco, but it wasn’t easy and they had just 287 yards in the contest. The next week they put up just nine points at home against the Bills and then last week it was just 13 points in a 34-13 home loss to the Saints. That one has to be really troubling as the Saints were torched in their first two games of the year. Cam Newton just hasn’t looked the same as he did back in 2015 and he is the key to their offense. Last week against the Saints, he hit 17 of 26 passes for 167 yards with no TDs and three INTs. Through three games now, he has thrown for just 566 yards with two TDs and four INTs, while posting a QBR of 69.7, which is 29th in the league. They really need to get him going or this team will continue to struggle the rest of the year, especially when they face teams with good offenses. Despite their offensive struggles, the Panthers are still at 2-1 on the year and that is because of their defense. Still, their first two games were against offensively challenged San Francisco and Buffalo and if the offense doesn’t sustain drives, then that defense will tire as the season goes on.
The Panthers have been very good on offense so far this year as they come in ranked 29th in the league in total offense (276.7 ypg), 30th in passing (168.3 ypg), 13th in rushing (108.3 ypg) and 29th in scoring at 15.0 ppg. On defense, they have been very good so far as they come in ranked 1st in total yards allowed (251.7 ypg), 3rd against the pass (162.0 ypg) and 15th vs the run (89.7 ypg), while allowing just 13.3 ppg, which is 2nd in the league.
Is Brady The Greatest Of All-Time
Many feel that Tom Brady is the greatest QB of all time and he showed this past Sunday why he has been given that moniker. The Patriots were in a shootout with the Houston Texans and Houston took a 33-29 lead with just 2:24 left in the game, but Brady then marched his team right down the field and he hit Brandin Cooks with just 23 seconds left for the 36-33 win. Brady is amazing and it was the 52nd 4th quarter comeback of his career. The TD to Cooks was his 5th of the game and it was the 6th time in his career that he threw for six TDs in a game. He also had 378 yards passing in the win and it was the 78th time in his career that he threw for at least 300 yards in a game. He just continues to pile up the numbers and is now on pace to throw for 5824 yards this year with 43 TDs and no INTs. At his age, this is truly amazing. Cooks had a big game in the win as he caught five passes for 131 yards and two TDs in the win. The Pats have needed all the offense they can get as their defense has really struggled, after leading the league in points allowed last year. Against the Texans, they allowed 417 yards, including 292 through the air and that has to be troubling as the Texans do not have a very good offense. They did pick off a couple of passes, but still, this defense has not looked anything like last year’s group. The Patriots will look for their best defensive showing of the year against the offensively challenged Panthers in this one.
New England enters this contest ranked 1st in the league in total offense (440.7 ypg), 1st in passing (340.0 ypg), 16th in rushing (100.7 ypg) and 2nd in scoring at 33.0 ppg. On defense, they have been very poor so far as they come in ranked 32nd in total yards allowed (461.0 ypg), 32nd against the pass (330.7 ypg) and 26th vs the run (130.3 ypg), while allowing just 31.7 ppg, which is 32nd in the league.
- 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11 games after allowing more than 350 total yards in their previous game
- 0-6 ATS in their last six games on fieldturf
New England is:
- 8-0 ATS off a SU win when taking on a non-division team that is off a SU loss
- 40-16-3 ATS in their last 59 games in October
The Patriots were picked by some to go 16-0 this year, but that was taken care of in game one when they fell to the Kansas City Chiefs. Naw they have won their last two games in a row and while their offense has looked great, they have had their issues on defense so far. Still, the good news is that they will be playing a Carolina team that has no offense at all and that could very well lead to an easy win by New England. I look for their offense to continue to do its thing in this one, while the defense more resembles that of last year. The Patriots are 0-4 ATS their last four in this series, but they are also 8-0 ATS as home favorites of more than four in the 2nd of BB home games. Take New England to win by at least two TDs.
Pick: Patriots -8.5
The Carolina Panthers have no offense at all and they will look to get that offense going against a Patriots team that has really struggled on that side of the ball this year. The Pats had the top scoring defense in the league last year and they will get things turned around and I feel that it starts in this one against the offensively challenged Panthers. The Carolina defense has been the best in the league so far and they will really look to that defense to slow down the scorching Brady in this one. It won’t be easy and they will give up their points, but I just don’t see the Carolina offense getting enough points for this game to go Over the total. I look for a 27-13 New England win.