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Sunday Night Football Betting Week 7 – Are Eagles or Panthers Legit?

Posted by Matthew Forrester on 10/25/2015 3:54:03 PM

There’s no doubt that the NFC is a wide open derby, and the Sunday Night Football betting matchup between the Philadelphia Eagles and Carolina Panthers could very decide who we trust long term in this wayward conference.

The teams that hold the current mantle of playoff hopeful include a defensively reluctant Green Bay Packers squad as well as the Arizona Cardinals and Atlanta Falcons, who both seem to have two, eerie losses that may say more about each team than their four wins. The Vikings are lurking and Seattle is always going to be in the conversation until mathematics eliminates them from the conversation.

So where do undefeated Carolina and Philadelphia fit in to the picture? It’s truly hard to say. The Eagles have ripped off a 3-1 SU and ATS streak that seems to have built some momentum under the ironclad regime of Chip Kelly. Sometimes complicated offensive systems take some time to sink in with even the most experienced players. I think that’s what we might be seeing with Philly in recent weeks, and why they may be a good take in Sunday Night Football betting.

The Eagles have racked up impressive wins in the last two weeks over the Giants and Saints, but haven’t decimated the offensive stat sheet in the way we think. They’ve been putting up 353.8 yards per game (14th) on the season and have averaged just 331.0 over the last two weeks. Overall, they’re the 10th highest scoring team in the league.

Defensively, they employ the same “bend don’t break” mentality that the Packers use, allowing a ton of yards but limiting opponents to just 18.3 points per game which ranks 7th in the league. But it’s hard to tell if Philly’s defensive success is a byproduct of their hard work, or if their opponents just laid eggs against them by chance.

That’s why this is the perfect litmus test for Chip Kelly’s Eagles. This Sunday Night Football betting matchup will reveal whether or not you can trust this team long term as an NFC contender.

Philadelphia Eagles (3-3) vs. Carolina Panthers (5-0)

Sunday, October 25th --- Bank of America Stadium --- 8:30pm ESTSunday Night Football Betting Line: Carolina -3 (46.0)

Carolina is as tough as football teams come. This club earns everything it gets, partly because their personnel isn’t the best, but also because Carolina bleeds the same blood as Cam Newton. There’s nothing but fight with this team, which is why they’ve been one of the most surprising undefeated teams to come along in a while. But are they worth your money in Sunday Night Football betting?

This team gains just 334.2 yards per game, which ranks them 28th in the NFL. And they score a mind numbing 27.0 points per game, which ranks 6th. Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how good or bad you are at churning up the field. All that matters at the end of the day is your ability to put up points.

We saw it last week when Carolina upset Seattle with Cam Newton leading four 80-yard drives that chewed up one of the most talented defenses in the league. And they did it in the most Carolina-Panthers-way you could - with a stout running game, sharp throws to underneath receivers and some scrambles from one of the best dual threats in the game. Carolina isn’t pretty but they simply find a way.

Make no mistake – these Carolina Panthers love playing ugly football and that’s why you should be banking on them as Sunday Night Football betting favorites.

The Panthers are absolutely brilliant at making opponents play the type of football that they don’t wan to. Philadelphia wants to play fluid football, and you simply can’t generate that type of rhythm when Cam and Stewart are keeping your offence on the sidelines for prolonged periods of time. And the Panthers’ defence are great at disrupting the pocket, making life more difficult for Sam Bradford than it’s been against New York or New Orleans.

There’s a significant chance that Philadelphia has been boiling towards this point on a slower simmer than we’d expect, but I’d rather bank on the team that’s known who they’ve been for many, many seasons. Expect Carolina to make this a gross affair while they bring the Eagles down to their level and edge out a win over one of the most overhyped teams in the NFL.

Carolina is a team you need to start paying attention to. The oddsmakers already have, as you can tell by this line.

Sunday Night Football Betting Pick – Carolina -3 (UNDER

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