NFC Top Three Matchups- Week 4 Handicapping Report
With just three weeks in the books for the 2012 NFL regular season, parity has struck in the NFC with the Atlanta Falcons and the surprising Arizona Cardinals the only undefeated teams in the conference and the New Orleans Saints the only team at 0-3. The following is a handicapping guide for the top three division matchups in the NFC for this Sunday’s games with lines provided by UcaBet.
Sunday, Sept. 30
Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons (-6) Total Line: 50
A demoralized Cam Newton walked off the field last Thursday night in Carolina’s 36-7 drubbing as a 2.5-point home favorite at the hands of the Giants. It will be interesting to see how the second-year quarterback responds in almost a must-win for his 1-2 Panthers.
Atlanta has risen to the top of the NFC South with a 3-0 start both straight-up and against the spread. Matt Ryan has the Falcons’ offense firing on all cylinders and their defense looked sharp in holding San Diego to just three points in this past Sunday’s win.
The Panthers are 1-6 both SU and ATS in their last seven games against the Falcons and the total has gone OVER in four of the last seven games. Atlanta won both games last season by the combined score of 62-40 to easily cover the spread in each. The total was split at 1-1.
Minnesota Vikings vs. Detroit Lions (-6) Total Line: OFF
Minnesota is another surprise team at 2-1 SU (1-2 ATS) after stunning San Francisco 24-13 as a 6.5-point home underdog this past Sunday. The total has stayed UNDER in its last two games. Christian Ponder is starting to come around at quarterback and the return of Adrian Peterson has revitalized the Vikings’ running game.
Miscommunication on a fourth down snap in overtime led to a crushing 44-41 loss to Tennessee that dropped the Lions to 1-2 SU and 0-3 ATS. The total has gone 2-0-1 in their three games. Of greater concern is the health and playing status of quarterback Matthew Stafford, who left Sunday’s game against the Titans with an injured leg. His status for this game is day-to-day.
The Vikings are 16-4 SU in their last 20 games against the Lions but they are winless in the last three meetings. The total has stayed UNDER in six of the last eight games overall and in four of the last five meetings in Detroit.
New York Giants vs. Philadelphia Eagles (-1) Total Line: 45.5
While it has not always looked pretty, the Giants are off to a 2-1 SU (1-2 ATS) start as Eli Manning keeps finding way to come up with a few big plays when his team has needed them the most. The total has stayed UNDER in two of their three games.
Philadelphia finally ran out of magic bullets against Arizona in a 27-6 loss as a four-point favorite on the road. This team has turned the ball over 12 times in its first three games and has continually shot itself in the foot at the worst possible times. Despite all this, the Eagles are 2-1 SU (0-3 ATS) in their first three games. The total has stayed UNDER in two of their three games.
New York is just 1-7 SU and ATS in the last eight meetings and the total has stayed UNDER in eight of the last 12 games. The Giants won 29-16 on the road last season as 7.5-point road underdogs but lost 17-10 at home later in the year as 5.5-point favorites. The total stayed UNDER in both of those games.
DJ is a freelance writer that concentrates on his true passion in life; the world of sports. He produces a number of articles each week for BangTheBook.com as well as a select group of other websites that specialize in providing the most up-to-date information for the sports gaming industry. His goal is to write insightful articles on a wide variety of sporting topics that can provide an edge to today's sophisticated online player.