Carolina Panthers vs. New Orleans Saints Betting Predictions

Panthers at Saints NFL
Carolina Panthers vs. New Orleans Saints Betting Predictions

The New Orleans Saints should finally be healthy and fully-loaded coming out of this bye week as they host the Carolina Panthers. The Panthers have looked very good under Matt Rhule in his first year and their 3-3 record isn’t something to take lightly in the NFC South. However, it’s hard to see how Carolina can match up with New Orleans score for score this week, especially in the Superdome.

Carolina Panthers vs. New Orleans Saints Betting Odds

What is perhaps the most surprising thing about Carolina’s recent hot streak is the Panthers have done it without their best player. Christian McCaffrey hasn’t played in the last four weeks and the Panthers won three straight before Chicago snapped their win streak last week. Teddy Bridgewater is completing about 71 percent of his passes, though he has thrown only six touchdown passes to just five interceptions. The difference, though, has been the defense, which hasn’t allowed more than 23 points in the last four weeks. That will certainly be tested this week, but Carolina ranks second in the league with just seven passing touchdowns allowed through six games. It’s an underrated defense that has led the way for the Panthers and taken pressure off Bridgewater and the offense to run up the points.

Michael Thomas should return to the lineup for New Orleans this week, dramatically altering the Saints’ passing attack. With his top receiver back on the field, Drew Brees should look more like the quarterback we expected him to be, something we’ve seen flashes of this season. However, this game might be another chance for Alvin Kamara to show off his running skills as the Panthers have allowed the fifth most rushing touchdowns this season. The Saints’ defense hasn’t been the overwhelming force many expected it to be this year, but New Orleans does rank eighth in yards allowed and has been stout against the run. Where the Saints have struggled is allowing passing touchdowns, but the Panthers have struggled at time consistently putting the ball in the air.

Anytime the Saints are involved in a game, the NFL betting sites in New Jersey love to inflate the points total on their boards. This week, however, the over/under is at a far more reasonable 51 points, which I think is going to be far closer to the actual total. However, where I see the discrepancy is the over/under on the Saints total being 30 points, which I think is high for this particular matchup. The Panthers’ defense has been strong the past four weeks, and New Orleans has barely eclipsed 30 points most of the season. I don’t think New Orleans can hit that mark this week, so I’ll take under 30 points for the Saints at -108 odds.

Saints to win Prediction

New Orleans is 7.5-point favorites at home, which was a bit surprising to me considering how close many of the Saints’ games have been this season. Carolina’s defense is one of the better ones New Orleans has faced this year and though I expect the Saints to win, I don’t know if it’ll be by more than a touchdown. There isn’t much value in reducing the spread for New Orleans or picking the Panthers with the points. Therefore, I’m going to double down on how close this game will be and take New Orleans to win by six points or fewer for +340 odds at the New Jersey online sports betting sites

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Josh Walfish is an award-winning journalist who has been covering college and professional sports in the United States. He holds a journalism degree from Northwestern University and his work has appeared in the Miami Herald, Chicago Sun-Times and Providence Journal. He most recently chronicled the UMass hockey teams rise to prominence over the last two years for the local newspaper

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