The last time the Patriots and Panthers played was in 2013. It was a very entertaining game that came down to the final seconds when Rob Gronkowski appeared to be interfered with in the end zone by linebacker Luke Kuechly as the Patriots were going for the win. Referee Clete Blakeman’s crew threw a flag, but it was then picked up and the Panthers won the game, 24-20.
The game came up this week when Kuechly admitted on a conference call he may have gotten away with one on the play. When told of what he said, Tom Brady wished they could replay the ending, as he was very upset with the way it ended.
Sunday’s game will feature a number of different players on both teams, but it does feature the No. 1 ranked Patriots offense against the No. 1 ranked Carolina defense. Certainly this needs to be taken with a grain of salt since it’s only been three games, but this is likely where the game will be decided — can the Carolina defense can stop the Patriots offense because the Panthers offense comes into the game ranked 29th in the league and likely won’t be able to win a shootout-type game.
Here’s what you need to know:
Who: Carolina Panthers vs. New England Patriots
When: Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017
Where: Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Mass.
Time: 1 p.m. Eastern
Live Stream: Watch HD Live Stream Free Here
Line: Patriots -9
Why the Panthers can cover the spread
Carolina is 5-2 ATS in its last seven Week 4 games, and going 4-0 ATS in the past four meetings versus New England is impressive. The challenge for the Panthers will be trying to limit the Patriots offensively, something they are certainly capable of doing considering they have a strong defense.
While the New Orleans Saints routed them 34-13 last week, they are a much better team than that and have held New England to 20 points or less in the previous three.
Why the Patriots can cover the spread
The Patriots have seen quarterback Tom Brady play at a high level to start the season, and that is promising because some thought he would begin to decline by now. Brady leads the NFL in passing yards (1,092) and touchdowns (eight) despite being 40 years of age. Last week, he rallied his team to a victory against Houston in the final minute, proving he still has what it takes to beat a good defense in crunch time.
As long as the five-time Super Bowl champion keeps performing like this, New England will be a favorite for the Vince Lombardi Trophy no matter how the defense plays.
Even though the Patriots did not cover last week, they are still 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games as favorites. They have also won eight straight (7-1 ATS) early afternoon games. That combo makes New England very difficult to avoid in this spot, either straight up or ATS.
Carolina’s injuries are piling up and remain a serious concern for the team right now, so back the Pats to win big and cover at online sports betting sites.
NFL betting trends
The Panthers are 4-0 ATS in their last four games against the Patriots.
The Patriots are 8-0 SU and 7-1 ATS in their last eight games in the early afternoon.
The Panthers are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games in Week 4.