Originally posted on The Pass Rush  |  Last updated 9/18/12


We escaped Monday Night with a win thanks to our Monday Night teaser special with the Broncos (+10) & Over 44. My initial gut feeling was to be all over the Falcons (-3), but there was lots of chatter of a Peyton Manning outright win, so I figured, there’s no way Peyton will lose by double digits on Monday Night, right? Well, he almost did, but we got the cover with our teaser thanks to an attempted 4th quarter comeback. We nailed our Sunday and Monday night picks to continue the momentum into week 3. We are now just three days away from a Thursday Night game between the Carolina Panthers and New York Giants.

NEW YORK GIANTS @ CAROLINA PANTHERS (+1.5)

Week 2 Recap

Both the Giants and the Panthers got their first win of the season last week. Eli Manning fueled a 2nd half comeback as he threw for over 500 yards and won 41-34. The Giants were down 24-13 at the half and I was delighted with my Bucs (+7.5) pick. The Giants were then down 27-16 going into the 4th until Eli Manning went HAM on the Buccaneers defense posting 25 points in the 4th quarter to win 41-34. And I still got the cover by 1/2 point.

The Panthers took care of business at home against the Saints as I predicted. The final score 35-27. The Panthers put up 463 yards of offense, but also allowed 486 yards to the Saints. Drew Brees’ early pick-six was the difference in that one. The Panthers also put up over 200 passing yards and 200 rushing yards. Cam Newton was extremely efficient 14/20, 253 yards, 12.7 YPA, 1 passing TD, 1 rushing TD, 0 INT, 71 rushing yards, 129.2 QB rating.

Thursday Night Factor

The theme I think you see play out on Thursday night games is the home team covering the spread about two-thirds of the time. We saw that this past Thursday when the Packers took on the Bears. The visiting team is at such a huge disadvantage to go on the road with just three days of rest. That’s likely why you saw the Bears offense sputter as Cutler threw for a mere 126 yards and tossed 4 INTs to the Green Bay defense. If that game was played on Sunday rather than Thursday, I think you would see a much better performance from both teams.

In 2011, the home team on Thursday Night was 6-2 straight up. The Raiders beat the Chargers in week 10 and the Cowboys beat the Bucs in week 15 (no surprise there). Notable upsets from last year on Thursday Night include the Colts beating the Texans in week 16 and the Seahawks destroying the Eagles in week 13. It was the same story in 2010. In 2010, the home team on Thursday Night was 6-2 straight up. The only two teams that won on the road in 2010 on Thursday Night was the Bears over the Dolphins and Colts over the Titans.

Betting Trends

Where is the early money going? It’s flowing on the Giants. 64% like the Giants and 63% like the over. I think it’s a mistake to go with the Giants on the road. I’m going with the Panthers in this one.

Vegas was even thinking of making the Panthers the favorite in this one! As I’ve also been preaching, do not bet against home dogs. This past week the home dogs were 5-1 ATS and are now 8-3 ATS on the season.

Analysis

I already like the Panthers due to the Thursday Night at home factor (home teams are 12-4 on Thursday night in the last 2 years) and the home-dog factor (home dogs are 8-3 ATS this year). The Giants defense has also been exposed in the first two weeks. They’ve given up 29 PPG (ranked 25th) and 370 YPG (ranked 19th). The Panthers have some defensive issues as well, no doubt about that, but the Giants defense has been a huge concern. Now they have to go on the road with a short week and try to shut down Cam Newton at home — a tall task if you ask me.

The injury bug is also after the Giants. RB Ahmad Bradshaw is questionable with a neck injury. I doubt that he plays on Thursday. OT David Diehl injured his MCL and is not expected to play Thursday. WR Domenik Hixon had a concussion last week and is not expected to play Thursday night. LB Keith Rivers was out this past week with a hamstring injury, but may return this week. Backup DT Marvin Austin may sit this one out with a back injury as well.

I’m expecting a heavy dose of the Panthers running attack which will keep the defense honest and allow Cam Newton to work his magic at home. The Giants offense can keep up with anyone though. As Eli Manning showed you last week, you can never count him out. I don’t want to bet too heavy against the Giants since I would take the Giants on a neutral field, but I just can’t ignore the home-dog factor on a Thursday Night. This is worth a small play on the Panthers for me and another game that Vegas scores big on with the public riding the road favorite only to be let down again.

Quick thoughts on the over/under. The over/under is set at a high 51.5. Two explosive offenses with suspect defenses are squaring off which should lead to a lot of scoring. If this was on Sunday, I would like the over, but on a Thursday Night, I would stay away. You saw two lethargic offenses last Thursday and a with quick look at past Thursday Night results from 2010 and 2011, the majority of those games and low scoring. Both teams went over in week 2 after going under in week 1. The over is 6-0 in the Giants last 6 as 0.5-3.0 favorites. The over is 7-0 after the Panthers give up 350+ total yards in the previous game. The over is 4-0 in the Panthers last four following a win. These silly trends favor the over. You may want to tease the Panthers to +8.5 and take the over 44.5 as some extra insurance on the Panthers knowing that the Panthers defense will keep the Giants in this one.

Prediction: Panthers 31 – Giants 28

Pick Against the Spread: Panthers +1.5 (Confidence: 6/10)

Teaser Pick: Panthers (+8.5) & Over 44.5 (Confidence: 7/10)

GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Geno Smith 'intent' on beating out Ryan Fitzpatrick

Greg Jennings: Ryan Tannehill has had his hands tied by coaches

Josh McDaniels 'happy' with Pats but wants to be a head coach again

WATCH: Jim Harbaugh in cleats throws out first pitch at Cubs game

Why Rickie Fowler will win the PGA Championship

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Warren Sapp bitten on arm by shark

Baker considering removing Papelbon from closer role?

Greg Hardy struggling to find work, reportedly even in CFL

Jets players told not to discuss Ryan Fitzpatrick situation

Brock Lesnar won't be punished by WWE for UFC drug test

Report: Cowboys to be fined up to $250K for suspended players

Report: Ravens WR Mike Wallace failed conditioning test

WATCH: Kobe Bryant drives Ferrari around Italian racetrack

Terrelle Pryor shouts out Ohio State after ban ends

Justin Timberlake advocates for Memphis to join Big 12

Poll: Las Vegas residents don’t support public funds for NFL stadium

Conor McGregor talks trash to Nate Diaz on ‘Conan’

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Real Madrid can’t train at Norwegian school because of the kids

Newspaper uses Michael Jordan ‘crying face’ as image

Equipment manager Blake Griffin punched no longer works for Clippers

Report: Nicks signing one-year deal with Saints

Reds 'picking up the pace' on Jay Bruce trade talks

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker