Panthers vs. Giants Odds, NFL Picks, Predictions: Short Spread Too Steep For Injury-Depleted Giants
Mike Comer/Getty Images. Pictured: Sam Darnold.
- Injuries continue to pile up for the Giants -- especially on the offensive side of the ball.
- That's why our analyst has no problem laying the points with the Panthers despite a drop-off in play from Sam Darnold.
- Find his take on the Panthers vs. Giants odds and matchup below, complete with his spread pick.
|Time||1 p.m. ET|
The Panthers find themselves in the middle of a three-game losing streak after a 3-0 start to the season. Carolina is still trying to find offensive balance in the absence of the NFL’s best all-around running back, Christian McCaffrey.
The Panthers face a Giants team that carries a 1-5 record, second-worst in the NFL. New York has been decimated on both sides of the ball by injuries, including Saquon Barkley, their own All-Pro running back. With one of the most brutal upcoming schedules in the league, the Giants return to the Meadowlands desperate for a win.
Which team will get back on track heading into Week 8?
Click the arrow to expand injury reports
Panthers vs. Giants Injury Report
- WR Terrace Marshall Jr. (concussion): Out
- WR Alex Erickson (concussion): Questionable
- FB Giovanni Ricci (concussion): Out
- OT Cameron Erving (neck): Questionable
- LB Shaq Thompson (foot): Out
- RB Saquon Barkley (ankle): Out
- WR Kenny Golladay (knee): Out
- WR Kadarius Toney (ankle): Out
- WR Sterling Shepard (hamstring): Questionable
- WR John Ross (hamstring): Questionable
- WR Darius Slayton (hamstring): Questionable
- TE Evan Engram (calf): Questionable
- DL Danny Shelton (pectoral): Doubtful
Panthers vs. Giants Matchup
|Panthers Offense||DVOA Rank||Giants Defense|
|Panthers Defense||DVOA Rank||Giants Offense|
|Football Outsiders’ DVOA measures efficiency by comparing a team’s success on every play to the league average based on situation and opponent.|
Panthers Defense Has Matchup Advantage
Despite losing three consecutive games, the Panthers have been competitive in all three contests. Carolina lost 36-28 on the road at Dallas, despite 379 yards of total offense. The Panthers led the entire game against Philadelphia until the final 2:38, then went on to lose an overtime battle to a good Minnesota team.
The Panthers will bring into this game the most reliable unit on either team: their defensive front seven. Carolina ranks sixth with 2.7 sacks per game, serving as the foundation for the eighth-most efficient offense, per Football Outsiders. They should feast off a Giants offensive line that ranks second-worst in the NFL, only ahead of Houston.
After an injury to first-round pick Jaycee Horn, the Panthers traded for Jacksonville cornerback C.J. Henderson and All-Pro Stephon Gilmore, who may be active for Sunday’s game. This would provide a huge boost to a Carolina secondary that rates among the league’s best and faces a decimated Giants receiving corps.
On offense, quarterback Sam Darnold has come back down to earth after a scalding hot start. He has only two touchdowns with four interceptions over the past two games, after notching 10 touchdowns and just three interceptions over the first three games.
Wide receivers D.J. Moore and Robby Anderson should feast off a struggling Giants secondary, with below-average play from leading James Bradberry. The 28-year-old cornerback ranks just 41st at the position this season, per PFF.
Even with McCaffrey out, backup running back Chuba Hubbard has tallied 199 yards and six receptions over the past two games.
Giants Face Giant Injury Problem
The injuries have really piled up for the Giants. They enter this game without their lead running back and two of their top wide receivers. The calf injury to Evan Engram just rounds out an extensive injury report.
Head coach Joe Judge said Sterling Shepard had a setback with his hamstring injury, leaving an “illustrious” list of healthy wideouts for Sunday.
John Ross, Dante Pettis, Collin Johnson – one reclamation project and two waiver claims – may be the top 3 WR on Sunday (pending Slayton's return to the field). And that's with Evan Engram possibly out as his calf issue caused him to miss practice again yesterday https://t.co/EjQgSnteP2
— Sigmund Bloom (@SigmundBloom) October 22, 2021
The Giants are struggling on both sides of the ball, especially on offense. Quarterback Daniel Jones ranks 18th in fantasy points per game and has thrown just four touchdowns, including none in the last two games.
Jones will have minimal time behind that poor offensive line. His six total turnovers are likely to increase against the pressure of the Carolina pass rush, combined with strong secondary play.
New York’s best chance is to limit turnovers and rely on a big rushing game from Jones. Carolina has allowed three rushing touchdowns to opposing quarterbacks, tied for most in the league.
The Giants defense has struggled the past three weeks since the season-ending injury to linebacker Blake Martinez. Serving as New York’s inside linebacker, Martinez was the team’s leading tackler before the injury.
NFL Picks: Panthers vs. Giants
This line is low because of Carolina’s recent losing streak, but the Panthers still have more talent on both sides of the ball. With all the Giants’ injuries, the Panthers’ loss of Christian McCaffrey is minimized.
Darnold has struggled but still has an elite receiver in Moore and an explosive field-stretcher in Anderson. The Giants need a turnover-free game, and I don’t see it happening. It never is comfortable laying points with Darnold on the road, but if Gilmore plays, I would have no problem laying at least one more point.
Pick: Panthers -3 | Bet to: Panthers -4
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