Carolina Panthers vs Buffalo Bills -NFL Pick for August 9th

by Rick Rockwell
on August 8, 2018
7

Minute Read

On Thursday, the Carolina Panthers travel to Western New York, to take on the Buffalo Bills in Week 1 of the NFL preseason. Both teams will look to open up the preseason with a victory and walk away from the action without any serious injuries. Kickoff inside New Era Field is at 7 PM ET.

Panthers vs Bills Live Odds and Betting History

Betting Data History Carolina Panthers Buffalo Bills
Current S/U record 0-0 0-0
S/U in 2017 11-6 9-8
Current ATS record N/A N/A
2017 ATS 10-6-1 9-6-2
2017 ATS Home 4-3-1 5-2-1
2017 ATS Away 6-3  4-4-1
2017 O/U 10-7 8-9
2017 O/U Home 5-3 5-3
2017 O/U Away 5-4 3-6

Carolina Panthers vs Buffalo Bills Preseason Week 1 Game Preview

The Carolina Panthers and Buffalo Bills are connected in a lot of ways, which makes this game a reunion of sorts. Last year, former Panthers GM Brandon Beane and former Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott left Carolina during the 2017 offseason to take over the GM and Head Coaching vacancies with the Bills. Along the way, they brought over several Panthers players via free agency and trades. None of these Carolina transactions were bigger than the trade for wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin who had some very harsh words for his former Carolina team earlier this week. Benjamin called out the team and Cam Newton in his comments to the media. This definitely added some bulletin board material for the Panthers and some overall excitement to the preseason game.

These two teams have played against each other 7 times and the Bills hold the advantage with a 5-2 record. Last year, they faced off in Week 2 of the regular season and Carolina came out with the hard fought 9-3 victory.

The Panthers come into the preseason looking to establish some new faces on the offense and to see what they have as far as depth behind Cam Newton, along the o-line, and who will step up as the #2 cornerback.

The Buffalo Bills will use this game to evaluate their QB competition, unveil rookie Josh Allen, and to see what the exciting rookie linebacker Tremaine Edmunds can do in his first NFL action.

The spread opened with the Bills favored by 1 point. Since then, it has moved to -2.5 points for Buffalo. The Over/Under opened at 34 points and remains unchanged at most sportsbooks.

Free NFL Panthers vs Bills Pick and Game Prediction: Over 34 points

Like most preseason games, there are a lot of unknowns on and off the field. For sports bettors, NFL preseason games can be difficult to correctly pick. One thing we do know is that Week 1 of the preseason generally means that starters don’t play more than 2 series, if at all. In the case of Carolina, I believe that means Cam Newton won’t play more than a series, if that. The Panthers need to evaluate who will step up and earn the back-up QB spot and they already know what Cam can do.

Additionally, Carolina has troubles along the o-line that they need to figure out before Cam gets on the field in live action and plays any length of time.

For the Bills, they’re trying to figure out who their starting quarterback will be out of McCarron, Peterman and Allen. McCarron and Peterman are expected to get the early looks. So, I wouldn’t expect Allen to get any playing time until the mid-to-late 3rd quarter. There have been some whispers that both Peterman and McCarron could get looks with the first team on Thursday night.

The Bills also have a new offensive scheme that they want to work on this week and the rest of the preseason. But, it’s the defensive unit that will probably draw the most eyes on Thursday night as they’re loaded with talent especially with the additions via free agency and the draft. Buffalo’s defensive unit has the potential of being a Top 10 defense this year. That lofty goal starts with a strong performance on Thursday night.

When looking at the betting data, it’s hard to see a clear-cut advantage between these two teams for this preseason game.

The Bills have gone 2-6 SU over the last two preseasons, while the Panthers have gone 4-4 SU during that same span. Neither team has fared well on Thursday nights. Over their last 5 Thursday games apiece, the Panthers and Bills have both gone 1-4 ATS.

In 2017, the Panthers went 6-3 ATS on the road and have gone 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games overall. The Bills went 5-2-1 ATS at home last season and are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 overall games.

However, despite the seemingly even matchup against the spread, the Over/Under does provide us with an intriguing opportunity. In Buffalo’s last 21 games on turf, the Over has gone 16-5. For the Panthers, the Over is 6-2 in their last 8 games. Furthermore, the Over was 5-4 during Carolina road games and 5-3 during Buffalo home games.

I’m going with Over 34 total points in this game. In the 7 head-to-head matchups between these two teams, they combine to average 34.72 points per game. The Over has also gone 4-3 in their head-to-head games. Although it’s going to be close, I like the Over for this game. I’m thinking the score will be something along the lines of 20-17 in favor of the Bills.

Panthers vs Bills Betting Recap

  • Oddsmaker: BetOnline
  • Money lines: Panthers (+125) and Bills (-145)
  • Spread: Bills -2.5 points (-117)
  • Over/Under: 34 total points
  • Prediction: Bills 20 – Panthers 17
Picks: Over 34
-116

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