The Carolina Panthers (2-6, 0-3 Away) travel to face the Cincinnati Bengals (4-4, 2-1 Home) at Paycor Stadium on Sunday. The Bengals are seven-point favorites, and the total is 42.5. Carolina is coming off a tight 37-34 loss against the Atlanta Falcons at Mercedes-Benz Stadium last Sunday.
P.J. Walker threw for 317 yards with a touchdown and an interception. D’Onta Foreman ran 26 times for 118 yards and three touchdowns. DJ Moore was targeted 11 times, catching six passes for 152 yards and a touchdown.
Cincinnati lost 32-13 to the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium on Monday. Joe Burrow was 25 of 35 for 232 yards, two touchdowns, and an interception. Joe Mixon carried eight times for 27 yards and added seven catches for 32 yards. Tee Higgins scored once. He caught three receptions for 49 yards.
The teams are meeting in the regular season for the first time since September 2018, a 31-21 win for the Panthers.
TALE OF THE TAPE
The Panthers are averaging 19.8 points per game for the season, 22nd in the NFL, and they are facing a Bengals defense that has surrendered 20.5 PPG (13th). Meanwhile, Cincinnati has scored 23.3 points a game this season, 13th in the league, and Carolina is allowing 23.3 PPG (21st).
The Panthers rank 26th in the league in passing yards per game (204.4) and 19th in rushing (110.5), while the Bengals are 12th in passing yards allowed per game (221.4) and 21st against the run (125.6).Cincinnati has been one of the league’s top passing teams, averaging 294.0 passing yards per game (4th), while ranking 30th in rushing yards (81.0).
The Panthers are allowing 241.5 passing yards (19th) and 126.6 rushing yards per game (23rd).Carolina is averaging 2.4 trips to the red zone a game this season, zeroth lowest in the NFL, finding the end zone 47% of the time (28th).
The Panthers may struggle to improve on those numbers against one of the league’s best red zone defenses, as the Bengals have allowed opponents to score on only 48% of red zone trips (5th). Cincinnati ranks as the one of the lowest volume red zone offenses in the league, moving inside the 20-yard-line only 2.9 times per game (29th) and scoring a touchdown on 65% of those possessions (7th).
Through five games, Baker Mayfield has thrown for four touchdowns (4 INT) and 192.4 yards per game to lead Carolina in passing. Christian McCaffrey leads the team in rushing with an average of 65.5 yards a game over six games.
He’s also contributed to the passing attack with 46.2 receiving yards a game. He has two touchdowns on the ground. DJ Moore is the Panthers’ leading receiver with 53.1 yards a game and three TDs.
He is averaging 4.1 receptions on 8.1 targets per game. Joe Burrow has 17 passing touchdowns (6 INT) with 291.1 yards per game through eight games to lead Cincinnati. In three home games this season, he has thrown for seven TDs (4 INT) and an average of 368.7 yards.
Joe Mixon has been the home team’s leading performer on the ground, averaging 54.0 yards a game through eight games. He has three total touchdowns, two rushing and one receiving. Ja’Marr Chase has been a key target in the Bengals’ aerial attack. He has six touchdowns and an 86.4 yard per game average through seven appearances. Ja’Marr Chase is averaging 10.6 targets per game (6.7 receptions).
HOME AND AWAY
Carolina is looking for a first road win this season in three games.
SportsTips’ NFL Pick:
Cincinnati Bengals (-350)
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*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of BetMGM.