2007 Season NFL Football Past Picks
September 23, 2007
Carolina at Atlanta
Sunday 09/23 04:15 PM Eastern
5 units on Atlanta +4.5 (-110) (risk 5 to return 5) RESULT: LOSS
When Michael Vick was suspended during the offseason, everyone expected the Falcons to crash and burn. In their first two games they have done just that, scoring 10 points total. Joey Harrington has been bad and now most people have written off the Falcons. We think this is a great opportunity to back them, however. We see good reason for this game to be very different than their first two. While the first two games were ont he road, this game is in Atlanta. Harrington has been known to get rattled easily on the road when he was at Miami and Detroit. He has been sacked 13 times in the first two games, making it hard to get the offense going. But, Carolina has recorded just one sack all season. Without the pressure, he is capable of a good game. If Harrington continues to struggle though, we would not be surprised to see Chris Redman inserted at some point, as he is Petrino's boy from Louisville and knows this system inside and out. The first two losses for the Falcons were against two good defenses on the road. Jacksonville had the league's top defense at home last season and Minnesota was #1 against the run. The two teams are ranked #2 and #3 in the league in scoring defense thus far in 2007 (behind Pittsburgh). Carolina, meanwhile, is ranked 24th. The public is all over the Panthers in this game as Atlanta seems very down and out. The public is wrong much more often than not. Carolina was just 1-3 ATS last season laying points on the road and under John Fox, they are 10-21 ATS laying 3.5 to 9.5 points. We look for a different Atlanta team here and an outright win or close game for the cover.