Panthers vs Seahawks Odds, Picks, and Predictions Week 3: Seahawks Injuries Foil Winning Plans

It's not the best game on the board, but this week's Carolina vs. Seattle game has the makings to be a close contest. Andy Dalton gets the start under center for the Panthers and our NFL betting picks expect the Panthers to stay inside the number.

Last Updated: Sep 24, 2023 9:44 AM ET Read Time: 4 min

The news of Bryce Young sitting out the Carolina Panthers’ Week 3 road game against the Seattle Seahawks might have taken the headlines but Andy Dalton isn’t a downgrade and this Seattle team might be the most injured roster heading into the weekend.

With 11 starters either DNP or limited on Thursday’s practice, should bettors be baking the Red Rifle as a decent Week 3 NFL odds underdog Sunday at Lumen Field?

I break down the NFL odds and give you my free Week 3 NFL picks for Panthers vs. Seahawks.

Panthers vs Seahawks odds

Panthers vs Seahawks predictions

The Seattle Seahawks had some resistance at -6 earlier in the week with Bryce Young the assumed starter so this spread sat at Seattle -5.5 for the majority of the early week. However, after Andy Dalton was named the starter, bettors rushed out to back the Seahawks pushing this line to as long as -6.5. 

I liked Carolina at +6 early in the week but the move to Dalton has me liking the Panthers even more as the change is a lateral move at worst for this Carolina offense. Young has been one of the slowest quarterbacks in time to throw and that extra time hasn’t helped as he has the fourth-worst completion percentage at 59.2% with a negative CPOE. 

With Dalton, this offense is getting a quick decision-maker who had a positive CPOE last season and the same passer rating as Trevor Lawrence. The Panthers will still likely lean on the running game and Miles Sanders to get a TD at +190 is a great +EV play, but this is also a bad Seattle defense (27th in EPA/play) that is smashed with injuries. 

The Seahawks had 11 starters limited or DNP at practice on Thursday including three-quarters of the secondary. Only rookie Devon Witherspoon was a full participant Thursday. Making it worse, two backups (safety and corner) are also questionable heading into the week.

Dalton might be able to move the ball on Sunday.

I also have some issues with the Seattle offense. The Panthers got linebackers Brian Burns and Justin Houston back at practice which could be trouble for a Seattle O-line that has three starters very questionable Sunday. Add in RT Abraham Luas on the IR and Geno Smith is going to have to play perfect for a second straight week to cover this game. 

With DK Metcalf also a DNP at practice Thursday with a rib injury, I’m still happy to play the Panthers at the new number of +5.5. I’d take Dalton and the Panthers at +6, but these potential injuries could drive this spread even shorter as it heads to no-man’s land at +5.

My best bet: Panthers +5.5 (-108 at Pinnacle)
Picks made at time of writing may not reflect live odds.

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Panthers vs Seahawks same-game parlay

Panthers +5.5

Miles Sanders anytime TD

Miles Sanders 100+ total yards

Andy Dalton will move this offense but the Red Rifle is not at a stage of his career to be leaned on to throw for 250-plus yards. This means the skill players around him need to be better than they've been through the first two weeks and help him out.

Enter Mile Sanders. The former Eagle has been getting the bulk of the work over Chuba Hubbard including carries in or near the goalline. This is a bad Seattle defense that is missing a ton of bodies and if the Panthers go about planning for this game the smart way, they make Sanders the focal point of the offense. 

This limits any sort of Dalton mistakes and it helps keep the ball out of Geno Smith's hands.

Look for Sanders to find the end zone and rack up a century worth of yards. 

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Panthers vs Seahawks spread and Over/Under analysis

Bryce Young vs. a healthy Seattle team was looking like a CAR +6 line. The Dalton move made it 6.5 which I don’t agree with as Dalton isn’t a downgrade from what I’ve seen from Young through two weeks — his numbers last week were thanks to nearly 200 yards of garbage time in the fourth quarter. However, with all the injuries to the Seahawks, this line has moved to 5.5 and is trending even shorter. 

If Seattle loses three starters on the O-line, DK Metcalf, and half of its secondary, the +5.5s will be long gone.

Carolina makes for a great 6-point teaser this week all the way to +4.5 but I’m not counting out a very competitive game Sunday. Seattle was embarrassed in Week 1 totaling minus-2 yards of offense in the second half and won a shootout last week despite giving up 418 yards and being outgained per play by 0.6 yards. A little veteran motivation could help this Carolina offense that hasn’t looked great with Young for two weeks in a neutral game script.

The total sat at 42.5 on the look-ahead then hit as low as 41 at Pinnale this week before moving back up to 42. The injuries to the Seattle defense surely favor this Over but the offensive injuries including Metcalf and the O-line don’t help it. 

Weather-wise, there is a 35% chance of rain so bettors should be paying attention to forecast heading into the weekend.

Both teams have been average at pace of play but Seattle is looking like a very good Over team with its porous defense that can’t protect a lead and an offense that can move the ball quickly if need be with a solid 3-WR set. 

Looking at usage, the Panthers have been giving Sanders the bulk of the work but Chuba Hubbard is good for 25 snaps and saw five targets last week. As for receivers, Jonathan Mingo is the only 20% target-share player while Adam Thielen and Sanders rank next at 17% apiece. Hayden Hurst sits fourth in target share at 16%.

Kenneth Walker is dominating snaps for Seattle and getting touches on 48% of his snaps played. As for the pass catchers, if Metalf is a no-go or limited, Tyler Lockett could be a target monster after getting 10 last week. Jaxson Smith-Njigba would be the No.2 while Jake Bobo would slide into the 3-WR rotation. 

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Panthers vs Seahawks game info

Location: Lumen Field, Seattle, WA
Date: Sunday, September 24, 2023
Kickoff: 4:05 p.m. ET
Opening odds: Panthers +5.5, 45.5

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