Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons Pick – NFL Week 8

The Carolina Panthers look for better after a tough week against the New York Giants. That was a lifeless performance for the Panthers. They were KO’d against a mediocre Giants team on the road by a score of 25-3.

Things got so bad that Sam Darnold was benched for P.J. Walker. Walker made it back to the NFL after a promising showing in the NFL.

He was never a success in his first stint in the NFL with the Colts, but he did enough in the XFL to get attention.

This wasn’t a one-week struggle for Darnold. He has been off the rails since throwing 3 interceptions against the Eagles three games back.

Darnold passed for 177 yards with a touchdown and 3 interceptions. His issues carried over to the next week against the Vikings, and then it came to a breaking point versus the Giants.

Following a 3-0 start in 2021, the Panthers are falling hard after such a promising start. It’s been hard for Darnold to accept.

The storyline in September was that Darnold just needed a new team after rotting away on the Jets. He was playing well at the time and it appeared like the Jets were the clear problem.

The Jets were part of the problem, but it’s also evident from what we’ve seen from Darnold over the past few weeks that he probably isn’t a starting quarterback. Fine backup but that looks about all.

Atlanta is back home following a tight 30-28 in Miami against the Dolphins. It was a good win, though closer than it had to be after they allowed the Dolphins to sneak back in the game. A last-second Younghoe Koo field goal was required.

The Falcons may not be a contender, but we do know that they have a special tight end. Kyle Pitts is only a rookie, and looks like he is going to be the best tight end in the league for a long time. He’s a matchup nightmare for defenses.

They have Calvin Ridley stretching the field, so the secondary has to honor his presence, and then there’s an athletic freak in Pitts. Russell Gage is also a nice second-tier option for Matt Ryan. This offense isn’t a bad unit. Head below for our free Panthers vs. Falcons pick on October 31, 2021.

Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons Live Odds and Betting History:

The following odds are courtesy of BetUS:

Teams Spread Moneyline Total
Carolina Panthers +3 (-110) +144 Over 46.5 (-110)
Atlanta Falcons -3 (-110) -164 Under 46.5 (-110)
Team Data Carolina Panthers Atlanta Falcons
Overall Record 3-4-0 3-3-0
ATS Record 3-4-0 3-3-0
Away/Home Record 1-2 0-2
ATS Away/Home 1-2-0 0-2-0
Points Per Game 20.9 22.5
Points Against Per Game 20.9 29.3
Passing Yards Per Game 226.1 266.3
Rushing Yards Per Game 101.9 87.8

Panthers vs. Falcons Prediction:

The Panthers are going to give Sam Darnold the start in hopes that benching him did well. The idea is that benching him cleared his mind for this week.

He did the same thing with the Jets, though. Lost his confidence and then was never able to recover. Darnold has looked confused and frustrated.

Fortunately, he doesn’t have the toughest defense this week, but the Falcons have been terrible against the pass. They’ve allowed 250.5 yards per game through the air and 112.2 yards allowed against the run.

Both are acceptable efforts, but 29.3 points allowed is too much. The Falcons luck out and won’t see Christian McCaffrey on Sunday. He continues to nurse a bad hamstring.

Darnold would benefit greatly if he was in the lineup. They opened the season at 3-0 and McCaffrey played a big role in the Panthers starting fast. His absence has put a lot of stress on Darnold, and he’s failed to answer the call.


Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons Betting Trends:

Panthers

  • 0-4 ATS in their previous four games
  • 1-6 ATS in their previous seven games versus the Falcons
  • 1-5 ATS in their previous six games versus the Falcons on the road
  • 1-5 ATS in their previous six games versus the NFC
  • 2-9 overall in their previous 11 games versus the NFC South
  • UNDER is 8-2 in their previous ten games

Falcons

  • 3-8 overall in their previous 11 games
  • 1-4 overall in their previous five games at home
  • 5-1 ATS in their previous six games versus the Panthers
  • 10-3 ATS in their previous 13 games versus a team with a losing record
  • OVER is 4-1 in their previous five games

The Falcons do have a solid offense when everybody is on the field. With Kyle Pitts added to this team, the Falcons have mismatches on the field. If the defense focuses on Pitts, Calvin Ridley or Russell Gage are probably free.

Pitts has been so good that the Panthers’ secondary will have to throw plenty of resources at home. He’s going into Week 9 with 471 yards and 1 touchdown on 15.2 yards per reception.

Pitts has caught several big balls downfield, including this past week versus the Dolphins. He finished with 7 receptions and 163 yards in the win. I don’t see the Falcons’ offense going blemish free in this one, but probably enough to generate some separation from the Panthers.

Darnold is back to having no confidence, and that’s when he’s at his worst. We saw it in New York, and don’t see how that changes now. I like the Falcons in a 27-17 or 27-20 final at home in Atlanta.

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Panthers vs. Falcons Pick
ATLANTA FALCONS -3