Carolina Panthers (1-0; 1-0 ATS; 1-0 O/U) vs. Tennessee Titans (0-1; 0-1 ATS: 0-1 O/U)
NFL Preseason: Saturday, August 19, 2017 at 3:00pm EST
Line: Tennessee -3
The Carolina Panthers will head to Tennessee to take on the Titans in week two preseason action Saturday afternoon from Nissan Stadium. The Panthers recorded a 24-17 win over the Texans in their preseason opener, and the Titans were defeated 7-3 by the Jets last week. The Panthers recorded a 27-10 win over the Titans in the latest regular season meeting in the 2015 season.
McCaffrey Shines in First NFL Action
The Carolina Panthers opened their preseason schedule with a solid 24-17 home win over the Texans. Joe Webb led the way offensively, completing 7 of 14 passes for 128 yards with two touchdowns and one interception. Derek Anderson went 4 for 5 for 76 yards and a TD in his limited action, and the Panthers backup QB should see more action in this matchup. Rookie running back Christian McCaffrey had a very promising NFL debut, collecting 33 rushing yards off seven carries, good for 4.7 yards per carry. The former Stanford Cardinal was taken eighth overall in this year’s NFL draft and he will see a good amount of playing time this season along with veteran running back Jonathan Stewart. Cam Newton did not suit up last week as the Panthers want to ensure he is fully recovered from his off season shoulder surgery. It is doubtful Newton will suit up for this contest as well. Kelvin Benjamin made two catches for 40 yards last week, and Devin Funchess saw limited action. The Panthers defense had a good showing last week, combining for five sacks.
The Panthers scored an average of 23.1 points per game last season, ranking them 15th in the NFL. Carolina’s defense had a rough season last year, allowing an average of 25.1 points per game, placing them 26th overall.
Titans Offense Sputters in Loss to Jets
The Tennessee Titans could not get their offense going in a 7-3 loss to the Jets in their preseason opener. Marcus Mariota played one drive and completed two passes for 15 yards. The 23-year old quarterback broke his leg late last season and had made a full recovery. He had a terrific 2016 season, accumulating 3426 passing yards with a 26:9 TD to INT ratio. Titans third string quarterback Alex Tanney struggled in the loss, completing only 11 of his 27 pass attempts for 132 years with no touchdowns and one interception. Backup quarterback Matt Cassel did not suit up, however, he should see some action in this contest. Tennessee did have success on the ground, rushing for 136 yards with Akeem Judd collecting 53 yards on five carries. DeMarco Murray is dealing with a hamstring injury and it is unclear if he will suit up in this one. Murray had a tremendous 2016 season, ranking third in the NFL with 1287 rushing yards to go with nine touchdowns. Titans backup running back Derrick Henry tallied 29 rushing yards off eight carries in the loss last week.
Last season, the Titans scored an average of 23.8 points per game, ranking them 14th overall. The Tennessee defense was in the middle of the pack last year, conceding an average of 23.6 points per game, placing them 16th in the NFL.
The Carolina Panthers are:
- 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games on grass.
- road team is 4-1 ATS in the last 5 meetings between the Panthers and Titans.
The Tennessee Titans are:
- 7-21-2 ATS in their last 30 home games.
- 0-5 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games.
I am taking the Panthers in this contest. Christian McCaffrey was outstanding in his NFL debut last week and the Panthers feature great depth at running back with Jonathan Stewart and Fozzy Whitaker. Furthermore, Derek Anderson is a solid backup quarterback and third stringer Joe Webb tossed two touchdowns last week. The Titans only managed three points last week and Carolina possesses solid defensive depth. Last season the Panthers notched a 26-16 win in Tennessee in their second preseason game, so I am confident taking them in this one.
Pick: Carolina Panthers
The Panthers offense looked solid last week and they feature a ton of depth at quarterback and running back. I expect the Panthers to have another strong showing offensively, and the over is 17-8 in their last 25 road games. The Titans will likely give their starters more playing time in front of the home crowd, so they should score some points, and the over is 11-4-1 in their last 16 games on grass.