Carolina Panthers vs New England Patriots
Thursday, August 22nd – 7:30PM ET – Gillette Stadium
Betting Line: -3
Christmas came early for the Patriots. The defending Super Bowl champs got a gift from the commish in the name of Josh Gordon. Gordon, who has been in and out of the league more times than Brett Favre contemplated retirement, has been reinstated by the NFL.
This couldn’t come at a better time for the Patriots, who have lost multiple receivers this offseason.
Gordon will be eligible to play Week 1 of the regular season.
Also returning to New England will be Julian Edelman, who passed his physical this Monday after several weeks of camp with a thumb injury.
The injuries haven’t stopped the Patriots from winning both of their preseason games. The Pats are 2-0 with road wins at Detroit and Tennessee.
New England dominated the Lions in their preseason opened 31-3. Defense and quality quarterback play were the keys to victory for the Pats.
Through two games, Jarrett Stidham has passed for 372 yards and two touchdowns. He’s completed 65% of his passes and has committed 0 turnovers.
The Patriots are also running the ball for 128 yards per game.
Rookie receiver Jakobi Meyers has caught 12 passes for 151 yards and 2 touchdowns.
Bill Belichick has always excelled at getting the most out of his players. Even when the starpower has lacked, New England has found ways to produce. It will be no different against the streaky Panthers.
After beating the Chicago Bears 23-13 in Week 1, the Panthers scored just 14 points to Buffalo’s 27 the following week.
Week 1 saw kicker Joey Slye make all three field goals, including a 55-yarder. Slye was goof from 54 and 40 yards out in Week 2.
Taylor Heinicke completed 8 of 12 passes for 78 yards and a TD against Buffalo. Will Grier and Kyle Allen were not as successful. Grier went 11-of-19 with 75 yards and an interception. Allen completed just four of his 11 attempts for 32 yards.
Jermaine Carter and Jordan Kunaszyk picked up seven tackles a piece while Lorenzo Doss picked off a pass. There were no other real outliers in Carolina’s game versus Buffalo.
Ron Rivera called the Patriots the gold standard in the NFL. The reason why will be on full display this week.
Take the Patriots to win by at least three points on Thursday night.