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New York Jets fans will have to wait at least another week before they see Aaron Rodgers. Carolina Panther fans, on the other hand, won’t have to do the same as No. 1 overall pick and franchise quarterback Bryce Young will see his first NFL action Saturday afternoon.
The Jets had their first kickoff last week in the Hall of Fame game against the Cleveland Browns, a 21-16 loss. New York was a -2 favorite before kickoff against the Browns and now finds itself as the underdog a week later in uptown Charlotte.
These teams had all week to get familiar with each other in joint practices, which reportedly went far smoother for the Panthers than it did for the Jets. All that matters now is who executes better when practices turn to real game action.
Zach Wilson and Tim Boyle will play under center for the Jets after the team waived an injured Chris Streveler earlier this week. The Panthers will start out with Alabama’s Bryce Young before cycling through a combination of veteran Andy Dalton, 2022 third-round pick Matt Corral, and former Jaguar Jake Luton.
Corral should play most snaps, which will be very exciting to watch for. The Ole Miss product was a dynamic prospect who made serious strides in his senior collegiate season that led him to Day 2 draft capital. However, a preseason Lisfranc injury sidelined his rookie year, and a trade-up for Young ended Corral’s chances in Carolina before he got a real shot.
With a proven veteran in Dalton established as the backup Corral is battling for a QB3 role. He’s also putting on an audition for QB-needy teams that liked him as a prospect. Preseason betting is all about finding incentives, and Corral certainly has his.
Wilson has a similar incentive, but there’s an important difference. He’s not good. He and Boyle could combine for average preseason quarterback play. The Panthers’ defense should surprise a lot of people this year, but its depth likely will be seriously tested. That’s especially true along the defensive line.
Here’s what you should know ahead of the game.
Robert Saleh has a 5-0-1 record among his six preseason games — the Hall of Fame game technically doesn’t count as a preseason fixture. Frank Reich himself boasts an 8-6 record, going 2-3 in Week 1 games. All of those games came from his tenure with the Indianapolis Colts, however, making Carolina a new starting point.
The Panthers boast three solid quarterbacks who should play steady minutes in the game. The question, however, is whether Jake Luton can hold off Tim Boyle in the inverse of what happened to the Jets last week as Streveler gifted the game away. There’s an even bigger question of whether the rest of Carolina’s roster can hold up.
Getting the Jets for more than a field goal is a nice line, even after last week’s debacle. It’s still going to be a close one, but the Panthers’ quarterback room reeks of inexperience. Young is a rookie, Corral played only a pair of preseason games last year and Luton has played in just four preseason games in his career. All are learning a new offensive scheme.
Sure, Dalton has plenty of experience. But for that very reason, you shouldn’t expect to see a lot of him out there.
Comparatively, Wilson and Boyle have played in 18 preseason games combined and will evenly split the game. The Jets boast the deeper defense and while the Panthers exploited New York’s weak offensive line this week in practice, it should be a tougher test this time around.
The line sits at 37 on most books, although you can get down to 36.5 on BetRivers and up to 37.5 on BetMGM. The over, especially if you get a free half-point signed up with BetRivers, is the pick here.
Saleh’s Jets have averaged just over 24 points per game in the preseason and muddled their way to 16 points last week after a million second-half miscues by a quarterback who is no longer on the roster.
The Panthers can get down the field thanks to its quarterback room, and its wide receivers won’t look as bad in the preseason as they may in the regular season. Second-round pick Jonathan Mingo, dynamic talent Laviska Shenault, and 2021 second-round pick Terrace Marshall should see enough snaps to make an impact.
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What: Eagles vs Ravens
When: 7 p.m. EST on Saturday, August 12
Where: NFL Network
Michael Sicoli has been writing about fantasy football and betting within the NFL space since 2020. He works as a writer and content creator with ClubFantasyFFL and runs an NFL defensive (IDP) newsletter with The IDP Guys. A graduate from Quinnipiac University, Michael is a long-time NFL fan with a love for soccer and the NBA.More info on Michael Sicoli
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