We knew it was going to be a brutal stretch to open the season for the Cardinals and so far it has proved true as the Cardinals (1-2) travel to Carolina to take on the Panthers (1-2) at 4 p.m. to compete at :05 ET Sunday on FOX. The Panthers are a slight favorite.
The Cardinals — and their fans — had to circle the Carolina match as they viewed the schedule as a let-me-up game, which we know can often be irksome as a trap game.
The Cardinals should fire offensively and take advantage of Baker Mayfield’s inability to consistently include his top receivers on offense, but an upset shouldn’t surprise anyone.
The good news for the Panthers is that the Cardinals’ pass defenses allowed seven touchdowns this season — level on points for the second-tier league. But the thing is, their offense couldn’t get anything through the air as they have the second-lowest passing count this season, throwing just 550 yards.
While DJ Moore has the highest goal percentage among the Panthers’ receivers (22 percent), it resulted in just seven receptions for 88 yards and one score. That won’t make it as it has been a trend for Mayfield to not include his No. 1 receiver enough on offense.
The Panthers will be counting on McCaffrey to be the focus of offense as he averages 16.7 carries and 3.3 receptions per game.
It was an offense for the Cardinals, who will sorely miss the presence of DeAndre Hopkins while he serves his suspension.
https://theathletic.com/3624121/2022/10/01/cardinals-panthers-picks-bets-odds/?source=rss Cardinals at Panthers Spread, Odds, Picks: Questionable Expert Predictions for Christian McCaffrey’s Game of the Week 4