Panthers Buccaneers Betting – Carolina Emerges In Battle Of Young South Teams
Online betting players should expect big things from Carolina and Tampa Bay in the future, but they’re currently well behind Atlanta and New Orleans, the other teams in the NFC South as the Panthers head to Florida this week. Given the youth of each team, there are going to be a few mistakes, but Carolina has been good to wagering players all season and that will continue on Sunday.
What: NFL Betting
When: Sunday, December 4th, 1:00 PM ET
Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa Bay, FL
Pick: Carolina Panthers +3
Why Bet On Carolina Panthers (3-8 SU, 6-5 ATS)
The Panthers had a tough time keeping Indianapolis winless in a 27-19 victory on the road, and this game shouldn’t have been close. Cam Newton was 20-of-27 for 208 yards, while running for 53 yards for a score, while Jonathan Stewart (70 yards) and DeAngelo Williams (69 yards, two scores) led a ground game that put up 201 yards. Their productivity when rushing the ball allowed the Panthers to hold onto the ball for over 36 minutes, but Carolina should have run away with this game and you can blame that on a defense that is poor, to say the least. Even though they managed to stopped the Colts on eight of nine third-down opportunities, Carolina still allowed 323 yards against an Indy offense that has been terrible all season. If it wasn’t for a pair of interceptions by Curtis Painter, we would probably be talking about a demoralizing loss for the Panthers, who won’t move up in the NFC South until they improve their 26th-ranked defense.
Linebacker Omar Gaither (knee) didn’t play this week and will have to be watched when it comes to the injury report, while tight end Greg Olson (ankle) was fine despite getting hurt in the pregame warm-ups. The Panthers obviously have no NFL betting chance of making the playoffs, so everything they do is for next season, and their first mission has to be on the defensive side of the ball. Tampa Bay’s offense is struggling, and the Panthers need a solid defensive effort.
Why Bet On Tampa Bay Buccaneers (4-7 SU, 4-7 ATS)
Tampa Bay’s disappointing season continued in a 23-17 loss in Tennessee, and to say the game was sloppy was an understatement: the Bucs had five of the game’s nine turnovers, including four fumbles and two of those came from LaGarrette Blount, who ran for 103 yards. Josh Freeman was 18-of-33 for 199 yards, a touchdown and a pick, and he had a pair of fumbles, losing one of them for the Bucs, who were outscored 13-0 in the fourth quarter. Tampa Bay also made Chris Johnson look like the player that Tennessee signed to a monster deal after a holdout, as the previously-slumping Johnson ran for 190 yards against the Bucs on a cold and rainy day. Tampa Bay also gave up a kickoff return for a score, which is one of many issues that they had on the day as their season is essentially over. It wasn’t a pretty game and it hasn’t been a pretty season for the Bucs, who many expected to push for a playoff spot.
The major injury worry for the Bucs coming out of this game is defensive lineman Brian Price (ankle), who was carted to the locker room and didn’t return for Tampa Bay, who can now play relaxed against a fellow South team that has no chance of being a factor in the division. There are too many questions to ask about the Bucs right now and there should be more at the end of the season, but you have to wonder where it all went wrong for Tampa Bay and especially Freeman, who was highly touted after a solid rookie campaign. But this should have been expected coming from the second-youngest team in the NFL, so don’t jump off the Tampa Bay bandwagon just yet (Carolina is the youngest team in the league, ironically).
How It Will Play Out
The Bucs open up as an early 3-point favorite at home against the Panthers, who are 3-2 SU and 2-3 ATS in their last five trips to Tampa Bay, with four games going over the posted total. These two NFC South teams have yet to meet this season as they’ll face off again on Week 16 on Boxing Day in Charlotte.
All signs are pointing towards a high-scoring game as the Bucs are five spots worse than the Panthers when it comes to defensive rankings. Tampa Bay struggles to stop the run, obviously, and Carolina runs the ball extremely well, while the Panthers have to stop Blount and even Freeman on the ground. The difference may come through the air, and Carolina defends that much better than Tampa Bay. Also, who would you trust under center, Newton or Freeman? We’re taking the rookie and Carolina’s pass defense as Carolina covers the sports betting spread on the road.
Panthers Buccaneers Betting Pick: Carolina Panthers