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Carolina vs. New Orleans NFL Preview: Week 4 Free Pick

Carolina Panthers vs New Orleans Saints NFL Week 4 NFL Gambling & Free Predictions

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Week 4: Panthers vs Saints Preview

Date: Sunday, October 3, 2010
Venue: Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LA
Broadcast: FOX
Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Betting Lines from Betus.com
Money Line: OFF
Spread: Saints -14
Over/Under: 44.5
Bet now @ BetUs.com!

Carolina Panthers (0-3)

The Panthers had a few supporters when the season started who thought their powerhouse rushing attack could help them sneak up in the NFC North. But most bettors and pundits expected them to flop. DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart could only do so much if the Panthers couldn’t pass the ball, stop the run or rush the passer.

The pessimists were right. 2010 couldn’t be going worse for the Panthers so far. Matt Moore at least looked like a competent quarterback down the stretch last season but was a train wreck when he debuted this year. He lasted a game and a half before getting benched for Jimmy Clausen. The rookie out of Notre Dame hasn’t fared much better thus far, completing 47.9 per cent of his passes and failing to throw a touchdown.

Since opposing defenses don’t have to respect Carolina’s passing game at all, they’re keying on Williams and Stewart. The Panthers are averaging 98.3 rushing yards per game; that’s not a horrific number but it’s a far cry from the NFC-best 156.1 yards per game they averaged last season.

The Panthers’ “D” hasn’t been horrible, ranking 14th overall, but the Giants, Buccaneers and Panthers aren’t exactly a who’s who of elite offenses and they all did enough to beat Carolina. The Saints on the road will be a much tougher test this week.

New Orleans Saints (2-1)

The defending world champion New Orleans Saints haven’t been picture-perfect in their quest for a repeat so far this season but they haven’t had a break on the schedule yet. First was their home opener against the Minnesota Vikings; then was a tough road battle in San Francisco. Last week, the Saints should’ve beaten the Falcons in overtime but Garrett Hartley missed a chip-shot field goal.

Still, even though the Saints could easily be 3-0, there are some potential cracks in the armor. The passing game remains stellar with Drew Brees at the helm and the Saints are doing a great job forcing turnovers as always on defense. But the Saints rank 30th in run defense and are dead last in rushing offense. Reggie Bush is out with a broken leg and Pierre Thomas hasn’t moved the chains very well.

The pick:

In theory, Carolina’s rushing attack could give the Saints problems this week, but Jimmy Clausen’s struggles should keep the Panthers from moving the ball. A rookie quarterback in a loud building facing a secondary that loves to ballhawk should result in multiple turnovers. Carolina could fall behind early and will have no choice but to abandon the run.

The Panthers are also really struggling to pressure the quarterback with Julius Peppers gone, tallying just two sacks in three games. With time to throw, Brees should have a big day as the Saints romp.

Atlanta at New Orleans Gambling Trends:

The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Carolina’s last 6 games when playing New Orleans
The total has gone UNDER in 8 of Carolina’s last 10 games
Carolina is 7-2 SU in its last 9 games when playing New Orleans
New Orleans is 5-1 SU in its last 6 games
Carolina is 7-1 SU in its last 8 games when playing on the road against New Orleans
The total has gone UNDER in 5 of New Orleans’s last 6 games when playing Carolina
New Orleans is 13-4 SU in its last 17 games at home
The total has gone OVER in 17 of New Orleans’s last 25 games at home

Panthers vs Saints prediction: Saints 33, Panthers 14

Money Line: OFF
Spread: Saints -14
Over/Under: OVER 44.5

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