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NFL Preseason Week 3 Pick New England Patriots vs. Carolina Panthers - 8/22/14

Carolina Panthers (12-4) at New England Patriots (12-4)

NFL Football: Friday, August 22, 2014 at 7:30 pm (Gillette Stadium)

The Line: New England Patriots -- Over/Under: See the Latest Odds

TV: Local

The Carolina Panthers and New England Patriots will square off in the week three of the preseason Friday at Gillette Stadium.

The Carolina Panthers are 1-1 in the preseason with their most recent victory coming against the Kansas City Chiefs, 28-16. It was the first action for Cam Newton, who completed four of nine passes for 65 yards. The Carolina Panthers decided to focus heavily on their running game in the matchup, as they threw the ball only 20 times compared to 32 rushes. Fozzy Whittaker led the panthers with 71 rushing yards and a touchdown. Overall, the Panthers finished with 279 yards and were a perfect 4-4 in the red zone. Defensively, the Panthers allowed 330 yards and forced a turnover. Antoine Cason and Melvin White led the Panthers with six tackles, while Star Lotulelei was one of three Carolina players to pick up a sack.

NFL Preseason Week 3 Pick New England Patriots vs. Carolina Panthers - 8/22/14

USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots also improved to 1-1 in the preseason by beating the Philadelphia Eagles, 42-35. Tom Brady saw his first action, completing eight of 10 passes for 81 yards, a touchdown and an interception that was returned for a touchdown. Along with Ryan Mallett and Jimmy Garoppolo, the Patriots carved the Eagles defense to pieces, throwing for 226 yards and four touchdowns. Running back Jonas Gray also had a nice performance, cranking out 98 yards on only 12 carries. Overall, the New England Patriots finished the game with 476 yards and scored 21 points in the third quarter. Defensively, The Patriots allowed 413 yards and forced four turnovers. Steve Beauharnais led the Pats with nine tackles, while Rob Ninkovich picked up the team’s only sack.

While the starters for both teams should see a great deal of playing time, at the end of the day this is still a preseason game. Getting five or more points is insane to me. So, I'm backing the Carolina Panthers to cover the spread. 

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Carolina Panthers +5.5

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