In a battle between two teams desperately looking for a win, the Carolina Panthers and the Philadelphia Eagles are set to clash this Monday night at Lincoln Financial Field. Kickoff for this NFC Conference matchup is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. (ET) and the game will be broadcast nationally on ESPN.
This weekly betting preview is part of a season-long series where I break down every Eagles game and offer a free NFL pick using Doc’s Sports Unit Betting System. When it comes to formulating a successful betting strategy you need every edge you can get. Focusing your handicapping efforts on a specific team is one of the ways to try and gain that advantage.
Pointspread: Philadelphia -2
Total Line: 43.5
Game Overview: Carolina
Things have gone from bad to worse in Carolina after another blown fourth-quarter lead led to a 27-21 overtime loss to Tampa Bay last Sunday as a one-point home underdog. The Panthers have now lost seven of their last eight games straight up to fall to 2-8 SU on the year. They have been slightly better against the spread at 4-6, and the total has gone “over” in three of their last four games.
Cam Newton entered his second season in the NFL with high expectations after being named last season’s Rookie of the Year. However, the harsh reality of playing quarterback in this league has set in with Newton completing just 57 percent of his passes for 2,395 yards and nine touchdowns while getting intercepted 10 times. He actually leads the team in rushing with 394 yards, which is never a good sign. The result is an offense that is ranked 22nd in the league in total yards per game and 27th in scoring with an average of 18.4 points a game. The real problem with this team is it has forgotten how to win games. Six of Carolina’s games have been decided by seven or less points, and they have lost every one of them.
Game Overview: Philadelphia
Philadelphia has officially earned the title of “most disappointing team in the NFL” with its latest debacle against Washington. A 31-6 loss as a 3.5-point road underdog to the Redskins last Sunday extended the team’s current losing streak to six games and begs the question has this team quit on its head coach Andy Reid. Once tagged as one of the favorites to win the NFC, the lowly Birds have now sunk to 3-7 SU and a painfully expensive 1-8-1 ATS. The total has stayed “under” in five of their last eight games.
To flip the switch and add injury to insult, the Eagles will still be without Michael Vick on Monday night as he continues to show the affects of a Week 10 concussion, and now you can add running back LeSean McCoy to that list with a concussion of his own. This means that quarterback Nick Foles will be making his second career start after proving that he is not quite ready for prime time in last Sunday’s debut. Following closely in the footsteps of Vick, the rookie turned the ball over twice and was sacked four times. Much of the blame should go to an offensive line that is responsible as anyone for Philadelphia’s collapse this year. The defense continues to prove that it is filled with a bunch of overpaid and underachieving players, especially in the secondary. This whole team appears to be going out of its way to get Reid fired and could very easily go winless down the stretch with him still at the helm.
Game Betting Trends
The Panthers are 6-2 ATS in their last eight road games and 5-1 ATS in their last six games against a team with a losing record. The total has stayed under in eight of their last 11 road games against a team with a losing record at home.
The Eagles are 5-16-1 ATS in their last 22 games following a SU loss and 0-6-1 ATS in their last seven games against the NFC. The total has stayed under in five of their last six games after giving up more than 30 points in their previous outing.
Head-to-head, Philadelphia is 4-1 both SU and ATS in the last five meetings and the total has gone over in four of the last six games. These two teams last met in 2009 with the Eagles winning 38-10 as one-point road favorite.
I have been wrong at every turn with this team this season, but in my defense they have been next to impossible to figure out. The one thing that I have figured out for this game is that it will not take a whole lot of points to win it. Given the current form of each team’s offense and its inability to put points on the board, I am going with 3 Units on the under utilizing Doc’s Unit Betting System as long as the total remains around 43 points. The lines for this game have been OFFhttp://www.docsports.com/unitsystem.html on most books all week due to Vick not being officially ruled out, so be sure to keep an eye on them as we get closer to Monday night.
Take Carolina vs. Philadelphia UNDER 43.5 for 3 Units
Year-to-Date Record: -24 Units (-$2670)