There are two more NFL playoff games slated for this Sunday. The Carolina Panthers Host the Seattle Seahawks, which will be followed up by The Denver Broncos hosting the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Panthers were 15-1 this year, the best record by far in the NFL, and they were undefeated at home winning all 8 games, yet they are just a 2 point favorite against the 10-6 Seahawks.
The over/ under is 44 points. According to the ESPN Football Power Index, Carolina has a 58.7% chance of winning this game. I guess the stage is the reason for the slight point spread. The Panthers have to prove they can beat the Seahawks on the playoff stage. Carolina is -120 with the money line, and Seattle is +110. Last year in this round of the playoffs, the Seahawks beat the Panthers as they went on to reach their 2nd straight NFC Championship game. This year, the Panthers beat the Hawks in October, at Seattle, and now they have the chance to prove that victory was no fluke. Seattle had won their previous 9 home games before that loss.
Seattle is entering the game with a squeak win against Minnesota last week 10-9. Carolina had the bye, and an extra week of rest that goes with it. Carolina hasn’t been to the NFC title game since a loss at Seattle in the 2005 season. Despite Carolina’s impressive home streak, Seattle has an impressive road streak, having won six straight on the road, including last week’s win against the Vikes. This will be a close game, but I do not see Seattle becoming the fourth team to reach the Super Bowl 3 years in a row. Carolina will win again, and cover the 2 point spread.