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The loss of Doug Martin for the Bucs is going to sting more than people realize. Even though he wasn’t playing too well so far this season, now the Bucs have zero running game, and all opposing defenses have to worry about is Vincent Jackson. Jackson has been great this season in part because of the threat that Martin brings on the ground. Now without him, I think the Panthers’ very underrated defense is going to have no problem stopping the pass.
The NFL odds for this one favor the road Panthers at -5 ½, and I don’t think that’s enough. Tampa’s defense has not been very good, even at home, and with Carolina starting to come on, it should be a long night. Even though I can’t see them blowing them out, I do see the Panthers getting the win by a touchdown.
Tampa is 1-5 ATS this season, and Carolina has won seven of the last 10 meetings against the Bucs overall. On top of that, Tampa is 1-4-1 ATS in their last six home games. Carolina is going to blitz Mike Glennon hard, and I see a good road win from Cam Newton and company.
My Pick: Panthers -5 ½
Another divisional matchup helps close out my NFL picks for this week, as the Giants head into Philly after winning their first game SU. Michael Vick looks like he will return as the starter this week after Nick Foles sustained a concussion in Week 7, and even with reports that Vick isn’t quite 100%, 80% of Vick is better than a lot of other QBs, including the current state of Eli Manning.
The Eagles have won eight of the last ten meetings between these two teams overall, and they have been very good at home SU. The Giants on the other hand have not been very good in the past two years on the road. New York is 1-7 ATS in their last eight road games, and they have lost their last five road games in a row SU. Philadelphia is 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games overall with the Giants, and even though the Eagles haven’t been great ATS at home, I think that may be one of the reasons they are undervalued here.
With Vick back under center, the Eagles are going to ramp up their offense once again, and it will help out not only their passing game, but their running game too. Teams have been selling out to stop LeSean McCoy over the last few games, and with Vick in there, I expect Shady to have another stellar performance, this time against a very soft Giants defense. While it may not be a blow out like some are suggesting, I do think the Eagles could win my six points in this one, making -5 ½ a good value. The only thing to worry about is Vick having to come out in the middle of the game, but I think Chip Kelly will play it safe against the Giants, who can’t stop anyone this season.
My Pick: Eagles -5 ½