GOTW Falcons Panthers.
We will return in the playoffs seeded as the NFL playoffs are 1-6. Jon and Chris are the prohibitive favorites to grab the number one seeds. However myself and Dustin Beard are looking to steal a one seed if the tandem fails this week. Tristan and Ian are also heavy contenders for a first round bye. So much to track, so much to be determined let’s do this!
This game can really go either way, but I will be taking the Falcons solely because this is a must win game for them. Carolina might not rest their starters in an attempt to win the division, but in all likelihood I would assume the Panthers will start resting their starters around the second half. I’ll take the Falcons in a 23-17 win.
New Picker Jordan Foote (@Thebestfootefwd)
Analysis for CAR vs. ATL: This is a big game for both teams. Atlanta has a playoff berth at stake as a loss and a Seahawks win would result in the Falcons watching the playoffs from home. Carolina still has plenty to play for as well and can end up anywhere from the 2 seed, all the way down to the first wild card slot this postseason. Expect Cam Newton to bring his A-Game and Carolina to escape with a win on the road against an Atlanta team that simply lacks the enthusiasm and motor it had last year.
The Falcons and Panthers are squaring off for the second time in a huge make or break game for Atlanta. Though the Falcons haven’t been able to find they’re rhythm throughout the season, they have so many weapons on offense they are a threat week in, and week out. The Panthers are thriving by moving the ball down the field through their special QB Cam Newton, and his fun new toy Christian McCaffery. Over the past 8 weeks the Panthers are one of the hottest teams in football, winning 7 of their last 8, while the Falcons are 6-6 in their last 12. The key for the Panthers to escape with a victory is shutting down the Falcons elite WRs, and getting pressure on Matt Ryan. The Falcons have lost the last 3 games that Matt Ryan has gone down more than 2 times. That’s a scary stat when you factor in the Panthers have the third most sacks in all of football. It’s going to be a battle of prolific offenses, that will all boil down to which team has the stronger day in the trenches. The Falcons are playing for a playoff spot, and you know the Panthers are going to do whatever they can to avoid a third meeting. I’ll take the red hot Panthers in a thrilling matchup that will come down to a last second FG, 27-24!
This game is big. It’s big for the Falcons because they almost certainly are in a win and you’re in situation regarding the playoffs. The Panthers would love a win to increase their seed in the playoffs. But the better team in my opinion, the Atlanta Falcons, they are better by virtue of an experienced group defensively and with Matt Ryan leading a still dangerously solid Falcons Offense, I see them pulling this game out in a heavily tight battle over their division rival Panthers, 24-21.
Week 17 , Carolina @ Atlanta
With Greg Olsen back the Panthers Offense is once again straight fire. Cam Newton will use Olsen as a safety blanket early and often against a Falcons D that gave up 116 yards and a TD 2 weeks ago to Tampa Bays TEs. Something of note on the defensive side for Carolina is the fact that they have forced 17 turnovers since week 8. I can definetly see them adding a few more to that stat column this weekend. The Atlanta Falcons, on the other hand, will have Deion Jones lurking, waiting to snare his 4th INT this season. The only way Matt Ryan can keep up with the Panthers is to air it out and hopefully minimize mistakes. This game should b an absolute shootout, however the Falcons offense comes up short.
Panthers 41 , Falcons 37
Panthers Falcons, finally a game with real meaning. The Falcons seemingly don’t know they have a top 5 receiver on their team. The constant mismanagement of Julio Jones is somewhat amusing to me. Just throw him the ball, Taylor Gabriel is a system wide out. This isn’t Kyle Shanahans offense anymore. The Falcons need to run the ball more to, as my good friend Chris Chastain has mentioned multiple times. This team needs to be run first to win this game. On the other hand, the Panthers are my favorite team in the NFC or AFC wild card spots right now. Ultimately the Falcons keep up in big games but I think Carolina wins. 27-24.
This should be a great match-up between the Carolina Panthers and the Falcons. But in the end I expect the Falcons to win this game. Devonta Freeman needs around 20 carries. 11 carries is not enough for them to win this game against that Panthers defensive front. Julio will do his thing if Matt Ryan will get him the football. The most important piece with this offense is Sanu and Gabriel. Haven’t been impressed with either this season. I see Freeman getting 20-25 touches which is why I’m predicting the Falcons to win this game 27-20