We have a Week 18 NFC South showdown to close us out the regular season on Sunday as the Carolina Panthers hit the road to face the New Orleans Saints. The game will kick off at 1 p.m. ET and will air on Fox.
Carolina (6-10) was officially eliminated from playoff contention with its loss to the Bucs last week and its disjointed season will come to an end this afternoon. Major questions loom over the franchise heading into the offseason, particularly the futures of interim head coach Steve Wilks and quarterback Sam Darnold.
New Orleans (7-9) was also eliminated from postseason contention last week and questions loom over whether or not Dennis Allen will be a one-and-done head coach. Quarterback Andy Dalton will once again get the start at quarterback in the season finale.
Here, we’ll take a look at our picks for best bets for the Panthers-Saints in Week 18 of the NFL season.
All odds come courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
Panthers vs. Saints odds
Spread: Saints -3.5
Point total: 42
Moneyline: Saints -175, Panthers +150
Our picks, best bets
Pick against the spread: Panthers +3.5
Carolina has played hard down the stretch and were in a position to possibly take control of the NFC South as late as last week. The players have responded well to interim head coach Steve Wilks and there’s an active movement in the locker room to have him return as the full-time head man next season. Despite potentially ruining their draft positioning, I’ll predict the Panthers give one last strong effort and end the season on a positive note by outright winning in New Orleans.
Over/under: Under 42
New Orleans is 6-10 in O/U’s this season but will most likely put its best foot forward on offense when closing out the season in the Superdome. 42 is a manageable bar to clear for both squads, so take the over.
Player prop: Chris Olave over 64.5 receiving yards (-115)
Olave has a tough matchup on paper against the Panthers, but this team just got decimated by the pass in Week 17. Injuries have mounted up, and it should give way to a solid outing for Olave. He caught four of his five targets for 42 yards last week against the Philadelphia Eagles' defense, and should be able to improve in the season finale.