The Panthers head to Houston for Thursday Night Football, seeking to improve their record to 3-0. As they are looking for that, their opponents will be trotting a rookie QB out there. Surprisingly, the Texans have looked pretty good through their first two games. It could always be better, but boy, it could be a lot worse for them too.
Sam Darnold is fitting like a glove with his new team, the acquisition looking genius for Carolina right now. He has found instant chemistry with all of his receivers, while a healthy Christian McCaffrey is reminding folks he is still a top-tier player. It also helps that Darnold played in NY with Robby Anderson, who he has back on the right track this season.
Davis Mills looked pretty bearish in his Houston debut last game, so it will be interesting to see how he does as the starter. He’s been taking all the QB1 reps in practice, with Jeff Driskel coming up from the practice squad to serve as his backup. Mills, as a third-round pick, is lucky to get the chance to come in so early. If not, it may have come after the team was well out of contention in the later weeks.
ODDS AND LINES:
The spread for the game favors visiting Carolina -8. The over/under is set at 43 points. The Texans moneyline is +320, while the Carolina moneyline is -400.
Panthers Seeking 3-0 Start
First, they took down the Jets in a surprisingly close game. And in week 2, the Panthers made sure that the Saints would have no chance. They held them to just seven points and made an endless number of big plays. This is the makings of a team with playoff aspirations, one that Matt Rhule can already be so proud of.
They have slowly turned themselves into a solid football team all the way around. At the receiver position, DJ Moore is getting great performances from his teammates. And so, when everybody is as locked in as these guys are, they are very tough to beat.
The Panthers will have a good chance to win and improve to 3-0 against a pretty weak Houston defense.
Texans Seeking Home Upset
Being an eight-point underdog at home is never a good thing. Especially not for confidence purposes. But nothing can get Davis Mills down as he prepares for his first start. Tyrod Taylor had been playing very well through the first six quarters of the year, but injuries are part of the game, sadly. So, it’s Mills’ time.
The biggest issue so far has been with the Texans run game. Mark Ingram, Phillip Lindsay, and David Johnson haven’t been able to take off yet. Ingram is handling the bulk of the carries, with both of the others getting touches. But, it has stalled.
They are also down multiple receivers this week, so a lot of the onus will fall to Brandin Cooks. Let’s see if he’s ready for it.
Panthers Get It Done
Make sure to place all chips on Carolina. They won’t lose this one.
FREE PLAY: CAR -8
OVER/UNDER: OVER 43 POINTS
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