Friday, September 12, 2014

NFL Predictions 2014 Week 2: Lions Vs. Panthers

Detroit Lions Vs. Carolina Panthers: DET +3 (-125) (Bovada)

Market Watch

Last week the LVH had the Panthers as -2.5 point favorites. It re-opened at -3, but it got promptly bet down to -2.5 after the nation got a look at the Lions in prime-time. Today, some shops are offering Detroit +3 with some extra juice, so make sure you line shop if you want the best number.

71% of bets are on Detroit, which is no surprise after they looked so good in a prime-time game.

Bottom Line

The funny thing about this match-up is that neither of these teams were expected to be that good this year. That still might turn out to be the case, but they looked really impressive to start the year.

The Panthers open at home and get Cam Newton back, but I don't think that's gonna be enough to win. Who does Cam have to throw to? The Lions secondary is terrible, but everything the Panthers do well on offense stems from a strong ground attack. That just so happens to be what the Lions D is structured to stop. They also know how to rush the passer with the best of them. Will Cam be rusty? Is he able to lead a comeback in the 4th quarter? There are lots of questions on that side of the ball.

Things are even more problematic for the Carolina D. They got a lot of praise for going into Tampa Bay and shutting them down, but the Lions don't have a scrub at QB. They also have to figure out a way to cover Megatron. Yeaaa ... that's not happening. Can they stop Tate with single coverage? Unlikely. The best chance they have is to win the line of scrimmage, but the Detroit OL has steadily improved over the last 12 months. I also like the prospect of a Lions comeback through the air if it comes down to that with 5 minutes to go.

NFL Pick: DET +3.

Read more: Week 2 picks