Carolina Panthers (17-2) at Baltimore Ravens (5-11)
NFL Football: Thursday, August 11, 2016 at 7:30 pm (M&T Bank Stadium)
The Line: Baltimore Ravens 0 -- Over/Under: 36.5 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Carolina Panthers begin their defense of the NFC crown in the preseason opener on the road against the Baltimore Ravens.
The Panthers head into the 2016-17 NFL season looking to get back to the big dance after losing 24-10 in the Super Bowl against the Denver Broncos and while they did lose Josh Norman to the Redskins they get their best receiving option back this season which is music to Cam Newton’s ears. The Cats are certainly a favourite in the NFC this season and will look to generate some early momentum with a road win against the Baltimore Ravens who are always a tough team to face off against and this year will be no different as they have a pretty well balanced roster led by Joe Flacco behind center. Veteran running back Jonathan Stewart will look to stake his claim as the team’s starting running back and Cam Newton will use the first bit of this one to get acclimated to the offense against a Ravens defense looking to get back into the league’s elite.
The Ravens made a splash in free agency by bringing in veteran safety Eric Weddle to anchor the secondary and be a leader in the room with Terrell Suggs and Steve Smith and with some uncertain pieces on the defensive side of the ball I think Weddle will make a nice addition to the AFC North dwellers. Baltimore is hoping to get a full season out of Breshad Perriman and he alongside Smith and Kamar Aiken make a nice receiving corps to go along with the duo of Javorius Allen and Justin Forsett on the ground. The Ravens are a team that should be back in the running for a playoff spot this season and while the Panthers are the better team overall I like the Ravens to get it here as they will look to start strong and get a nice outing from some returning pieces.