Saints at Panthers: Game preview, odds, prediction

The Carolina Panthers will host the New Orleans Saints on Thursday Night Football in Week 11. Here is a game preview, the betting odds, and a prediction.

Thursday Night Football this week will be in Charlotte, as the New Orleans Saints (4-5) will take on the Carolina Panthers (3-6) at Bank of America Stadium. Kickoff will be at 8:25 p.m. ET. NBC, the NFL Network and Twitter will all be carrying the game.

New Orleans is coming off another gut punch at home in Week 10. The Saints lost on a blocked extra point that was returned for two points by the Denver Broncos. New Orleans will want a win in Charlotte to get to .500 at 5-5 and be one game back of the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC South.

Carolina lost a miserable game at home on Sunday to the Kansas City Chiefs. The Panthers blew a 17-0 lead, losing 20-17. Thursday Night Football is a must-win game for the Panthers if they want to maintain any semi-realistic hopes of getting into the NFC Playoffs.

Odds

Point Spread: Carolina -3.5
Moneylines: Carolina -175, New Orleans +155
Over/Under: 52

According to OddsShark.com, the Panthers will be laying 3.5 points at home to the Saints. The moneylines for this game are Carolina -175 and New Orleans +155. This game’s over/under comes in at a combined 52 points.

Here are the trends to know with the Saints: 1. In their last six games, the Saints are 5-1 against the spread and 4-2 straight up. 2. They are 5-0 against the spread in their last five road games. 3. New Orleans is 4-2 straight up in its last six games away from home. 4. The Saints have gone under in five of their last seven road games.

Here are the trends to know with the Panthers: 1. Carolina is 1-5-1 against the spread in its last seven games. 2. The Panthers are 2-5 straight up in its last seven games, but 17-8 straight up in their last 25. 3. They are 8-3 against the spread in their last 11 home games. 4. Carolina is 15-3 straight up in its last 18 home games.

This will be a tight game between two NFC South rivals. Strangely, the high-octane Saints offense tends to go under a lot on the road recently. Carolina doesn’t have a dynamic offense and since this is a Thursday night game, probably go with the under in this matchup.

Both teams will get into the end zone a couple of times. The vertical passing game and the kicking game is where the game’s winner will emerge. Neither secondary is even mediocre. However, Saints quarterback Drew Brees throws a more accurate football than Panthers quarterback Cam Newton.

Brees is more likely to have a 50+ yard touchdown pass than Newton. Though he had a PAT blocked on Sunday afternoon, Saints kicker Wil Lutz has been more reliable than Carolina’s Graham Gano.

Carolina has a chance to win this game at home if the Panthers linebackers get Carolina at least +2 in turnover differential. That being said, New Orleans has more ways to win this game, even on the road in Charlotte. The Saints beats Carolina in Charlotte by a field goal, as the Panthers fall to 3-7 on the year.

Pick: Saints 24, Panthers 21

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