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Falcons-Panthers Betting Preview: Will Carolina Cover Without Cam?

Dec 23, 2018 12:25 AM EST

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey (22).

Betting odds: Atlanta Falcons at Carolina Panthers

  • Spread: Falcons -3
  • Over/Under: 44
  • Time: 1 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: FOX

>> All odds as of Friday afternoon. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NFL odds and track your bets

Betting market: This line is much different than what was expected last week. Westgate’s lookahead line had Carolina at -6, but the line re-opened at Carolina -3 after their loss on Monday Night Football.

Once Cam Newton was ruled out, the Falcons moved to -2.5 and have since moved to -3 at behind 63% of the early money (check out the live odds here).

The over/under has also dropped quite a bit with Taylor Heinicke under center. The initial line with Newton set to play was between 47 and 48, but that has moved to 44. — Mark Gallant

Trends to Know: The Falcons had an offensive outburst in an easy 40-14 win over the Cardinals at home in Week 15. Bettors shouldn’t bank on another strong performance from Atlanta, though.

According to our Bet Labs data, teams that won their previous game at home by 21 points or more have gone 194-247-15 (44%) against the spread. — John Ewing

Over their past two games, the Falcons have found some of the running game that was missing all season, with 322 yards on the ground.

The Falcons are averaging 90.7 yards per game on the ground in 2018, 31st in the NFL, and has been the case of late, as the Falcons are 24th in rushing over the last five seasons.

Under Matt Ryan, the Falcons are 15-23-2 ATS (39.5%), after Atlanta rushes for at least 100 yards in consecutive games and since 2011, the Falcons are 6-18-2 ATS (25%) in this spot. — Evan Abrams

Playoff picture: The Panthers aren’t eliminated from the playoffs … yet. According to our sims, they have a 0.9% of making it. Here’s the exact scenario that needs to happen:

  • Panthers win out
  • Vikings lose out (against Lions and Bears)
  • Eagles lose to Texans in Week 16
  • Eagles beat Redskins in Week 17

So, yeah, likely not going to happen, but dreamers can dream. Scott T. Miller

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