Minshew Looks to Keep Colts’ Offense Afloat vs Panthers

Colts vs Panthers H2H Preview: Indy Opens as Slight Road Favorite

At long last, the Carolina Panthers are in the win column. Can they build on that momentum? A matchup with the Indianapolis Colts awaits in Week 9.

Indianapolis is a 2-point favorite (-120) and -140 on the moneyline, while Carolina is +2 (+100) on the spread and +120 to win outright. The projected total, meanwhile, has climbed from 42.5 to 44 (-110 Over, -110 Under).

Let’s break down both teams and assess the odds in our Colts vs Panthers H2H preview.

Colts logo Indianapolis Colts vs Carolina Panthers Panthers logo

Location: Bank of America Stadium; Charlotte, N.C.
Streaming: CBS

Colts vs Panthers Betting Trends

The Indianapolis Colts are 4-4 against the spread this season, including 2-1 on the road. The total has gone Over in six of Indianapolis’ eight games, including six of the previous seven on the road. Meanwhile, the Carolina Panthers are 1-5-1 ATS. The 16.7% cover rate is the worst in the NFL. The total has gone Under in six of the Panthers’ last eight home games. That’s important to remember when assessing the odds in our Colts vs Panthers H2H preview.

Panthers Remain in NFL Basement

Winless no more, the Carolina Panthers edged the Houston Texans 15-13 in Week 8 on a last-second, 23-yard field goal by Eddy Pineiro. A 3.5-point underdog, the Panthers also became the last team in the NFL to beat the spread this season.

Bryce Young outplayed fellow rookie C.J. Stroud, completing 22 of 31 passes for 235 yards and a touchdown, a 1-yarder to Tommy Tremble to open the scoring.

Despite that, the Panthers are 1-6. They’d need to go no worse than 7-3 over their final 10 games to surpass their projected win total of 7.5, which seems incredibly unlikely. At this point, there’s a better chance the Panthers will challenge for the NFL’s worst record.

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It’s no surprise then that oddsmakers have Carolina as a +2500 longshot to make the playoffs, per NFL odds this week. Their NFC South odds are even longer at +6500.

Young has taken his lumps as a rookie, with only seven touchdown passes in six games. He’s already been sacked 22 times, seventh-most in the NFL. As such, the former No. 1 overall pick has gone from +400 (second on the board behind Falcons running back Bijan Robinson, +300) to +5000 for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. The Panthers have been among the league’s least-productive offenses under his watch, ranking 25th in scoring at 18.1 points per game.

There’s no turnaround in store for Carolina, at least not this season. The Panthers will keep dealing with growing pains while turning their attention to 2024. Remember when analyzing the odds in our Colts vs Panthers H2H preview.

Down But Not Out

The Indianapolis Colts have begun to fade after an optimistic start, dropping their third straight in a 38-27 loss to the New Orleans Saints in Week 8. A 2-point underdog, Indianapolis squandered a 17-7 first-half lead and never recovered. It marked the second time in three weeks they failed to cover the spread.

Despite losing rookie first-rounder Anthony Richardson to a season-ending shoulder injury, Indianapolis (3-5) remains productive offensively. They’ve scored at least 20 points every game and are averaging 25.6 for the season, sixth-most in the NFL. Gardner Minshew has had a big hand in that success, passing for 300-plus yards in two of the last three weeks.

The Colts are still a bit of a longshot — oddsmakers have priced them +450 to make the playoffs but +2200 to win the AFC South — but clearly, things are headed in the right direction. They still might have enough talent to surpass their projected win total of 6.5, a meager total on the heels of a 4-12-1 season. It’s a credit to Shane Steichen, a +3300 candidate for NFL Coach of the Year.

With Jonathan Taylor returning following a lengthy contract holdout, the Colts now have a dynamic one-two rushing attack that includes Zack Moss. Moss, who’s run for 589 yards on 125 carries (4.7 yards per carry), is second in the NFL in rushing behind San Francisco’s Christian McCaffrey. Moss is also tied for the league lead in 20-yard runs, with six.

Handicapping the Game

The Carolina Panthers’ standings are hard to ignore. Although they’re at home, the Panthers haven’t shown they can move the ball with any consistency. That should change against the Colts, who have allowed 114 points in the last three weeks. But are they capable of keeping pace offensively? Minshew is proving he belongs.

Indianapolis has the deserving edge, but bettors might also be wise to consider the total. Frankly, 44 points feel a bit low, considering the Colts’ offensive resurgence.

For NFL scores today, betting odds, analysis, and more, visit Point Spreads Sports Magazine.

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