On Sunday, the Carolina Panthers (5-4) and Atlanta Falcons (2-7) will meet for the first time this season.
For the first time this season, the Carolina Panthers and Atlanta Falcons will collide in an NFC South matchup this weekend. The Week 11 showdown pits two division rivals, who are on opposite ends of the spectrum in 2019. Atlanta, who has won just two games all year, is in the running for a top-five draft pick, while Carolina is fighting to keep its playoff hopes alive. Atlanta is coming off a huge 26-9 upset at New Orleans last Sunday, while the Panthers fell inches short of knocking off the Packers at Lambeau Field. Without further ado, here are Old North Banter’s staff predictions for this Sunday’s contest.
Zack Smith (@zackrusmith): Panthers 31, Falcons 20
The real question for Sunday is this: which Falcons team is going to show up? They finally got their first road win of the season in dominating fashion last week in New Orleans–but it wasn’t the first time they played a solid game away from Atlanta. They lost by a combined total of just four points in Indianapolis and Arizona. With that being said, I think that Atlanta is going to fall back to reality in Charlotte, meaning that they are a bad football team. The Panthers are going to control this game and cruise to a victory, setting up a huge game in New Orleans in Week 12.
Richard Adkins (@RichardJAdkins): Panthers 28, Falcons 24
The Panthers are 5-4, but 5-2 in their last 7 games, with losses against the 8-1 San Francisco 49ers team and 8-2 Green Bay Packers. The Falcons are currently 2-7 and coming off a big win against the Saints last week where they seemed to have figured out their defense. Atlanta held the red-hot Saints to just nine points last week. Despite the records, Sunday’s matchup should be a prime divisional showdown. Expect MVP candidate Christian McCaffrey to show up big-time and be the reason why the Panthers claw themselves to a tight 28-24 victory over their division rivals.
Luke Tucker (@luketucker19_): Panthers 27, Falcons 24
On paper, this should be an easy win for Carolina. Atlanta has won just two games all year, and has one of the worst defenses in football. However, if you happened to see Atlanta’s game last week, you saw how good this Falcons team can be. It wasn’t shocking to see the Atlanta offense play well–they generally do–but it was a huge surprise to see their defense dominate the way they did. If the Falcon defense comes out playing like they did last week, the Panthers could be in trouble. For the Panthers sake, let’s hope it was a fluke. Look for McCaffrey and Kyle Allen to have big days as Carolina wins a close one to advance to 2-1 in the NFC South.