On Friday night, the Carolina Panthers play in the Meadowlands against the host New York Giants, with both teams coming off opening-game defeats in the preseason. Here’s a look at odds, props, and predictions for this NFL Preseason Week 2 encounter.
Carolina’s loss last week was far more miserable, absorbing a 27-0 home whacking by the New York Jets. By an odd twist, the last previous shutout by anyone in the preseason occurred in Week 3 last year when the Panthers beat Buffalo, 21-0.
Meanwhile, the Giants had a better showing last week in a 21-16 loss in Detroit, falling in the final two minutes when the Lions scored the go-ahead touchdown. It was the only offensive TD New York allowed in the game.
NFL Preseason Week 2 Odds: Panthers vs. Giant Spread, Total Moneyline
The Giants are listed as 3- to 3.5-point favorites the day before the game on the top US sports betting apps. The Over/Under total sits between 38.5 and 39.5. As for the money line, Carolina can be had for +140 (Caesars), while New York is -159 at BetRivers.
How Much Will Bryce Young Play Against the Giants?
The Panthers almost have to give quarterback Bryce Young, the first overall pick in the 2023 draft out of Alabama, more reps before the season opens. That’s especially true after his performance last week, when his three “drives” generated 16 net yards, as he went 4-for-6 for 21 yards and was sacked once.
It should be interesting to see if he airs it out more. He was 4-for-4 throwing short to the right side of the field. He was 0-for-2 to the left, including one deep attempt. It didn’t help that his offensive line was ineffective, getting widely skewered in online commentary.
Don’t look for Carolina’s veteran backup, Andy Dalton, to play much if at all. He suffered a back injury in drills Monday. That leaves third-teamer Matt Corral, who wasn’t much better than Young last week — if at all. He averaged 3.9 yards on his 26 pass plays, which included four sacks.
Carolina’s fourth-string QB is Jake Luton. He didn’t play last week.
In the backfield, offseason free-agent acquisition Miles Sanders, a former Philadelphia standout, is dealing with a groin injury. So he’ll for sure sit out. So will WR Terrance Marshall Jr., a second-round draft choice out of LSU in 2021. He’s dealing with back injury.
Even their kicker is hurt. Eddy Pineiro has a groin injury and isn’t expected to play.
Who Will Play QB for the Giants vs. the Panthers
Typically, if a top-flight veteran, such as a quarterback or running back, is going to participate in a preseason game it most likely would be in Week 2 as opposed to next week’s exhibition. But reports indicate that won’t be the case for the Giants’ top offensive playmakers this week.
Although coach Brian Daboll has said he wouldn’t decide whether starters would participate or not until late in the week, reports indicate that QB Daniel Jones, the man with the new $160 million contract, won’t be playing. Veteran backup Tyrod Taylor isn’t expected to get a lot of action, either, according to news from Giants-ville.
Thus, third-team QB Tommy DeVito figures to get the vast majority of the snaps. He’s a rookie from Illinois who had pedestrian numbers his senior year, with 15 TD throws and four INTs. Last week he averaged 6.5 yards on 24 passes but was sacked five times. Sheesh!
Standout RB Saquon Barkley (1,312 rushing yards last year), fresh off his contract squabble, also will be held out.
Next on NYG’s depth chart at running back are veteran Matt Breida and rookie fifth-round pick out of Oklahoma Eric Gray. But they teamed for 10 yards on six carries against Detroit, a team rebuilding its defense after allowing the most yards in the league last year.
Panthers vs. Giants Props
Here are samplings of Panthers vs. Giants props from various sportsbooks:
Winning Margin (DraftKings)
- Panthers by 1-6 points +450
- Giants by 1-6 points +360
- Panthers by 7-12 points +600
- Giants by 7-12 points +400
- Panthers by 13-18 points +1100
- Giants by 13-18 points +600
- Panthers by 19-24 points +2200
- Giants by 19-24 points +1100
- Panthers by 25-30 points +3500
- Giants by 25-30 points +2200
- Panthers by 31-36 points +6500
- Giants by 31-36 points +3500
- Panthers by 37-42 points +10000
- Giants by 37-42 points +7500
- Panthers by 43-plus points +11000
- Giants by 43-plus points +9000
Winning Margin (FanDuel)
- Panthers 1-13 points +195
- Panthers 14+ points +650
- Giants 1-13 points +155
- Giants 14+ points +290
Game Combo: Moneyline and Total (BetRivers)
- Giants and Over 38.5 +200
- Giants and Under 38.5 +210
- Panthers and Over 38.5 +310
- Panthers and Over +320
Game Combo: Point Spread and Total (BetRivers)
- Giants -3.5 and Over 38.5 +275
- Giants -3.5 and Under 38.5 +255
- Panthers +3.5 and Over 38.5 +240
- Panthers +3.5 and Over +245
Panthers vs. Giants Prediction
First-year Carolina coach Frank Reich surely went all out this week to help make Young more comfortable with the game plan. After all, as offensive coordinator for Philadelphia in 2017, Reich was the quarterback whisperer who helped turn a young Carson Wentz into an MVP candidate before he got hurt (Of course, Reich didn’t have quite the same success with an older Wentz two seasons ago as head coach in Indianapolis).
Young likely will be a step up from what the Giants will have under center. Young’s maturity level already has been praised by the Carolina staff.
Although the Panthers’ offensive line is shaky, the Giants are a little thin along the defensive line because of injuries.
Carolina has a tad more motivation to win after such a rotten opening act.
Prediction: Panthers 16, Giants 14
Are Wins and Losses Important in Preseason?
No. At least not according to last year’s results.
Only one of the six teams that went undefeated in the preseason in 2022 wound up qualifying for the playoffs. That was Baltimore as a wild card. Two of the unbeaten summer teams wound up with the worst records in the league — Chicago (3-14) and Houston (3-13-1).
Conversely, five of the six teams that lost all their exhibition outings did make the postseason, including three that won divisions (Jacksonville, Tampa Bay, Minnesota). The only one of the bunch that sat out the playoffs was Washington.
An extreme example of a team not benefiting from an unbeaten preseason occurred in 2008, when Detroit went 4-0 but followed up with a 0-16 mark in the regular season.
Panthers, Giants Season Outlooks
The Giants, who are guided by Daboll, the reigning NFL Coach of the Year, are coming off a wild-card season and a first-round playoff upset loss at Minnesota. They appear to have a far better team than Carolina. They also happen to be playing in a far tougher division that includes defending conference champion Philadelphia and Dallas in the NFC East.
On the oddsboards, New York is listed as a +850 choice (DraftKings) to win the division and stand at +6600 (BetMGM) to win the Super Bowl.
Carolina is at +400 to win the NFC South (BetRivers, Bet365), but is an elevated +8000 to win the Super Bowl (BetMGM). Only New Orleans is forecast to have a winning season (9.5 win expectancy) out of the South. Those odds could well shorten if Young can quickly evolve into a solid QB.
The Giants and Panthers, who have an easier schedule, both have season win totals of 7.5 in the 17-game season.
How to Watch Panthers vs. Giants
Friday, Aug. 18: Carolina vs. NY Giants, 7 p.m., EDT
Site: East Rutherford, NJ
On the Air: NFL Network