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National Football League
Atlanta at Carolina
When: 1:00 PM ET, Sunday, November 17, 2019
Where: Bank of America Stadium, Charlotte, North Carolina

The Carolina Panthers’ playoff hopes grow slimmer with each loss, so they desperately need to protect their home turf Sunday against the division rival Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons have won the past three meetings with Carolina, and they come into the first of two clashes this season riding high after their best performance of the season.

Atlanta put together an impressive 26-9 win at New Orleans last week to snap a six-game skid. The Falcons’ defense continued its steady improvement over the past few games, and the rushing attack had its best game of the season, to help overcome a lackluster showing from the passing game. The Panthers were unable to gain ground on the Saints in the NFC South race, as they lost 24-16 at Green Bay. Carolina has dropped two of its last three since a four-game winning streak to slip two games behind New Orleans.

TV: 1 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: Carolina -4.5. O/U: 49.

ABOUT THE FALCONS (2-7): Last week notwithstanding, Atlanta still boasts one of the most prolific passing attacks in the league, though that has something to do with how much the Falcons have played from behind this season. Matt Ryan needs 254 passing yards to surpass Warren Moon (49,325) and move into the top-10 in NFL history, and he has a history of putting up big numbers against the Panthers. Atlanta’s downfall has been its minus-12 turnover margin, as the Falcons have forced a league-worst four turnovers in nine games.

ABOUT THE PANTHERS (5-4): The team is Kyle Allen’s, at least for the rest of this season, with Cam Newton officially on injured reserve, and the second-year quarterback passed for a career-high 307 yards last week. He has one of the NFL’s most dangerous weapons at his disposal in Christian McCaffrey, who has 989 yards to lead the league’s seventh-ranked rushing attack. The Panthers’ weaknesses is defending the run, and they’ve been hurt badly on the ground in their past three games, allowing an average of 172 rushing yards during that stretch.


1. McCaffrey has scored a rushing touchdown in seven consecutive games and is tied for the league lead with 11 rushing scores.

2. Ryan has averaged 318.1 passing yards with 15 touchdowns and three interceptions in his past seven games against the Panthers.

3. Atlanta K Younghoe Koo made all six of his kicks — four field goals and two extra points — in his Falcons' debut last week.

PREDICTION: Panthers 27, Falcons 24

Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W‑L Strk PF PA Home Away Grass Turf OT Div Conf
Atlanta 2-7 W1 21.2 28.8 1-3 1-4 1-4 0-0 - - 2-4
Carolina 5-4 L1 25.0 25.3 2-2 3-2 3-4 1-0 - - 2-4
Last Meeting
Atlanta Carolina
Date Away Home Tot Rus Pas Tot Rus Pas
12/23/18 ATL 24 CAR 10 427 194 233 436 141 295
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Atlanta M. Ryan 57.7 239 3 0
Carolina T. Heinicke 62.3 274 1 3
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Atlanta B. Hill 8 115 14.4 0
Carolina C. McCaffrey 21 101 4.8 0
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Atlanta C. Ridley 3 90 30.0 1
Carolina C. McCaffrey 12 77 6.4 0
Touchdowns Player TD
Atlanta J. Jones 1
Carolina I. Thomas 1
Passing Player COMP % YDS TD INT
Atlanta M. Ryan 69.4 2352 17 9
Carolina K. Allen 61.5 1598 10 5
Rushing Player CAR YDS AVG TD
Atlanta D. Freeman 107 371 3.5 0
Carolina C. McCaffrey 185 989 5.3 11
Receiving Player REC YDS AVG TD
Atlanta J. Jones 53 791 14.9 4
Carolina D. Moore 54 684 12.7 1
Touchdowns Player TD
Atlanta A. Hooper 6
Carolina C. McCaffrey 14