The 12th man will be extra loud Sunday night, as Cam Newton and the Panthers visit the Seahawks in primetime. Seattle is favored by as many as eight points at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com, despite Carolina sweeping the season series last year.
As Panthers fans know too well, this is not last year. It hasn’t been a fun year for the defending NFC Champions, as the 4-7 Panthers were all but eliminated from playoff contention last week. Carolina is 1-4 on the road this season, and has struggled on both sides of the ball.
This matchup points towards Seattle in multiple ways. With Carolina eliminated and Seattle chasing a first-round bye, this game means much more for Seattle. The Seahawks are better at home, better in primetime, and better in the later stages of the season. The Seahawks are 5-0 at home this season, but only 2-2-1 against the spread.
Injuries have decimated the Panthers, and it’s one of the reasons for their downfall. Multiple starting linemen are out for the season, and Luke Kuechly’s absence has caused a major hole in the defense.
Seattle also have offensive line struggles, and the battle at the line will be critical in Sunday night’s contest. On the defensive side, the Panthers will be without sack leader Mario Addison, and the Seahawks will get Michael Bennett back for the first time in five games.
Bennett is a monster. I’m taking Seattle and that home-field advantage.
Heavy’s Pick: Panthers 19 Seahawks 31. Seattle -6. Over on the Point Total. (44)