Carolina Panthers vs New England Patriots Preview, Odds and Pick

In Week 4, the New England Patriots will play their second consecutive game in Foxborough as they host the Carolina Panthers. The Patriots are coming off a thrilling victory over the Houston Texans, while the Panthers look to rebound after getting beat up by divisional foe the New Orleans Saints.  Kickoff inside Gillette Stadium is at 1 P.M. ET.

Preview and Betting Lines: Carolina Panthers vs New England Patriots

Carolina (2-1) was a huge disappointment last week as they lost at home to the New Orleans Saints 34-13. Cam Newton had a terrible game and star wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin left in the first quarter with an injury. He will most likely not play this week at New England. Even if he can suit up, he won’t be effective.

The Patriots (2-1) scored a touchdown with less than a minute left in the game to defeat the Houston Texans 36-33 in an exciting back and forth game. Tom Brady got the ball with only a few minutes left in the game and was able to throw a long touchdown pass for the win. The Patriots are rightfully a big favorite in this one as Carolina is ineffective on offense and suffering from key injuries.

The spread opened with the Patriots favored by 9 points and it has remained unchanged. The Over/Under opened at 47.5 points and has gone up to 49 total points.

NFL Vegas Spread Pick and Prediction: New England Patriots -9 points

Carolina features one of the league’s best defenses even after giving up 34 points to the Saints last week. They only allow 13 points per game and 269 total yards per game. Additionally, the Panthers defense is holding opponents to 89 rushing yards per game and 179 passing yards per game. You can expect the Patriots to surpass those numbers this week as they will have the ball for most of the game.

With Carolina’s Cam Newton looking less than 100%, due to offseason surgery, and injuries to Cam’s top targets Greg Olsen and Kelvin Benjamin, look for the Patriots to force plenty of 3-and-outs. They will load the box to stop the run and force Cam to throw to unproven receivers. This will give more possessions to the Patriots offense and Tom Brady, which will lead to the victory in TOP and the game.

I can see the Patriots blowing out Carolina in this one despite a strong effort by the Panthers defense. Since Carolina won’t be able to score many points, their defense will be on the field most of the game and tire out in the second half. Brady will pick them apart and eventually open up a huge lead. As long as the Patriots o-line can hold up against the pressure, which they should, then New England will cruise in the second half to a big win.

The only chance for Carolina to cover the 9 points is if they can somehow run the ball on the Patriots who are giving up 130 yards per game on the ground. And, if they can get McCaffery 10+ targets when he’s being covered by a linebacker or safety. Unfortunately for the Panthers, I see Bill Belichick scheming to contain McCaffery and eliminating the run game altogether.

Carolina is 4-8-1 ATS in their last 13 road games and 2-6 ATS when playing on Turf. The Patriots are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games, 5-2 ATS in their last 7 home games, 7-3 ATS in their last 10 non-conference games, and 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games during the month of October.

By time it’s all said and done, I expect Brady to eclipse 300 passing yards and 3 touchdowns. Look for a big game from Rob Gronkowski and Danny Amendola to do a lot of the dirty work underneath. The Patriots won’t run the ball much, which isn’t a surprise since they’re only averaging 100 yards per game as a team. However, they will do just enough on the ground to move the chains and keep Carolina from dropping too many defenders into coverage. Look for a score of 30-13 with Patriots pulling away in the second half.

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