Saints-Panthers MNF Betting Preview: Is Who Dat Getting Too Much Respect?

Saints-Panthers MNF Betting Preview: Is Who Dat Getting Too Much Respect? article feature image

USA Today Sports. Pictured: Drew Brees, Cam Newton

Betting odds: New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers

  • Spread: Saints -6
  • Over/Under: 49.5
  • Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: ESPN

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

Betting market: This game is a great pros vs. joes example.

The Saints — one of the best teams in the league — are getting more than 60% of bets. The money, however, is heavily on the Panthers with almost 60% as of writing (see live data here).

There’s also been a reverse line move triggered on the Panthers, helping them move from +6.5 to +6 despite the lack of public support.

The under has received big money with almost 75% of dollars, dropping the total from 54 to 49.5 since opening. Mark Gallant

Trends to know: Elite teams tend to be overvalued late in the season. Since 2003, teams that have won 80% or more of their games, like the Saints, have gone 114-146-3 (44%) against the spread in December or later, per our Bet Labs data.John Ewing

Those teams struggle even more when they’re elite at scoring.

Since 2003, teams that have won at least 80% of games and are averaging at least 30 points per game are 33-55-1 (37.5%) ATS in December or later, including 8-16 ATS in prime time and 10-25-1 ATS on the road.Evan Abrams

The Saints’ last four games have gone under the total, with their defense holding opponents to 12.8 points per game. The last time they had at least four consecutive games go under was in 2013 when they did it in six straight games. Abrams

Did you know? The Panthers are in a very unique spot. They’re just the third team since 2003 to lose at least five consecutive games straight-up and ATS in December or later with a points per game margin of less than -1 (Carolina’s is -0.6).

The other teams were the 2015 Falcons and the 2010 Titans, both of which failed to make the playoffs and lost their next game SU. Abrams

Biggest mismatch: Drew Brees vs. Panthers’ secondary

The Saints have largely shredded any and every pass defense they’ve faced thanks to a career-best season from Brees. The Saints’ franchise quarterback is averaging career-high marks in completion rate (75.7%), adjusted yards per attempt (9.4) and Total QBR (84.5).

He’s thrown for multiple touchdowns in four of his past five games against the Panthers, who boast the 29th-ranked defense in Football Outsiders’ pass DVOA and have allowed at least 20 points in all but two games this season.

Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Saints WR Michael Thomas, Panthers CB James Bradberry

Brees and the Saints boast the week’s largest combined net yards per pass attempt rate. Ian Hartitz

Which team is healthier? Saints

The Saints will once again be without left tackle Terron Armstead (shoulder), but they’re otherwise healthy. The Panthers are also fairly healthy — only defensive tackle Kawann Short (calf, doubtful) and kicker Graham Gano (knee, out) are sidelined. Hartitz

DFS edge: Michael Thomas has still averaged 9.0 targets per game over the past six weeks despite Brees’ passing volume being down. Thomas is one of three receivers who is seeing more than 30% of his team’s market share of targets since Week 9.

Panthers cornerback James Bradberry is expected to shadow Thomas — good news for Thomas as Bradberry is Pro Football Focus’ 60th-ranked cornerback in coverage grades.

Bradberry has been charged with a team-high 737 receiving yards and five passing touchdowns allowed this season. Justin Bailey

Bet to watch: Panthers +6

Carolina has been one of the worst teams in the league over the last month or so. Sure, the Panthers have lost five straight games, but I mean, who hasn’t? (Oh … a lot of teams.)

Anyway, the market has stretched to the point that the Panthers are almost a touchdown dog at home in an outdoor game against a divisional opponent that plays in a dome. Love it.

New Orleans has had an incredible season, but after losing to Dallas, the Saints needed a rally in the fourth just to beat the Bucs last week. The Saints’ current form is much worse than the public perception would lead you to believe, and I think this number is simply too high in a back-to-back travel situation against a desperate Panthers team. Ken Barkley

Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

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