The Falcons enter Week 5 on a short week after playing the Green Bay Packers on Monday Night Football. Thankfully, for Atlanta, it’s a home game against Carolina. If the Falcons have any chance of winning the NFC South, they have to pounce on their two games against the Panthers, who look to be the cellar dwellers of the division. Luckily, they are 7-1 against Carolina in their last eight contests. However, this is a new regime, and Cam Newton is not around. While many analysts have the Panthers going 3-13 or 4-12, they could surprise many under Matt Rhule.
Chase Irle’s Prediction
I’m not one that believes this game will be a pushover. Division contests are always challenging, and the Panthers might be right in the thick of things heading into Week 5, so the effort is going to be there. Carolina also has a lot of offensive firepower, and we don’t know how good Teddy Bridgewater can be. Toss Joe Brady into the mix — the mastermind behind LSU’s historic offense — and the Panthers could be a formidable team.
With that being said, there’s also the possibility Matt Rhule is in way over his head, and Teddy Bridgewater is nothing more than a game-manager. The Panthers defense shouldn’t scare anyone, especially the Falcons offense, so as long as Atlanta can re-focus on a short week, they should be able to take care of business.
Falcons 34, Panthers 23
Jake Gordon’s Prediction
Carolina is what they are at this point — a bottomfeeder. They have Joe Brady in the mix now, but other than Christian McCaffery, Curtis Samuel, and DJ Moore — they aren’t a threat offensively. Their defense is very young and is now short one, Luke Kuechly. I think Carolina is a bit better than most experts believe, but they’re getting swept by the Falcons (again).
Falcons 45, Panthers 10