Breaking down this game for the purpose of NFL betting boils which quarterback can find room to maneuver against these two amazing defenses. Colin Kaepernick burst on to the scene last season, storming his way to the Super Bowl and nearly pulling off a Super Bowl victory. People are quick to point to him as one of the best, young quarterbacks in the game but he’s also had a lot of help along the way. He has one of the finest coaches in the NFL, plays behind the best offensive line and is also part of a star-studded team.
They were both drafted in the same year, with Cam going first overall in 2011 while the little-known Kaepernick was drafted 36th overall in the second round. Newton has since amassed 40 games of experience which almost doubles Kaepernick’s 21 games as a starter. They are the faces of their teams, and both are incredible, physical specimens who possess prototypical size for the position while also boasting every possible skill you would want. They can kill you with their arms as well as their legs.
Ask any fan who they’d rather build a franchise around and most would say Kaepernick without blinking. It’s actually a fun debate to start. Do you want to know my favorite part about Cam Newton? He’s a year and a half younger than Kaepernick. And he has twice as many games under his belt. Cam seems older than he is simply because he’s been around for three solid seasons. Kaepernick is still a fresh face, and while his age isn’t exactly a detriment to his career at this point, it’s definitely worth pointing out. The debate between which one is better comes to a head this Sunday with the Niners standing as -6.5 home favorites in NFL betting. And make no mistake – this could very well be an NFC Championship preview.
Kaepernick has a world of potential and that’s plain to see anytime he takes a snap. He commands the huddle, throws a great ball and has unusual speed and agility given his 6-foot-4 frame. Of course, he’s been blessed to play for this particular Niners squad. After a two game slump where they suffered blowout losses against Seattle and Indianapolis, the Niners have roared back in to their championship form and are a blistering 5-0 SU and ATS in their last 5 games. They’ve been averaging a +22.6 point differential over that span as well.
The Niners are a sturdy boulder of confidence in NFL betting circles, but the Panthers are just as dangerous when they’re playing at full tilt. After a rough 1-3 SU start to the season, the Panthers are playing the best football we’ve ever seen them play. And NFL betting enthusiasts are flocking to their side of the line in this game.
When you watch the Panthers, you see a team that bleeds the heart and emotion of their fearless captain, Cam Newton. Coming off a 34-10 victory where they spanked Atlanta, Newton completed 62.2 percent of his passes for 249 passing yards, while picking up 2 touchdowns and surrendering two picks. The interceptions aside, that’s what you expect from a guy like Cam. He has taken the time to study his craft and is undoubtedly one of the best quarterbacks in the league. Carolina is a reflection of Cam Newton through and through – they’re tough, ferocious and unwavering. Simply put, Newton is imposing his will on this team and the whole roster is responding.
How they react against the league’s best overall defense will test their resolve completely. Playing in San Francisco is no easy feat. The Niners are 18-7-1 ATS in their last 26 home games, which is as bankable as home records get in NFL betting. Both defenses will have their hands full containing both quarterbacks, and I expect this to be a fist fight. Carolina has one of the best front-sevens in the league, and their secondary is an insatiable murder of crows ready to rip interceptions out of the skies. Kaepernick will be up against a brick wall on Sunday.
I’m not suggesting that this will be an easy game for Newton, but he has the chance here to make his mark. Cam has been taking more and more chances on the ground to keep defenses guessing. Over the last four wins, he has rushed 34 times. In the four games prior to that, he only rushed 20 times. That’s opened up everything on offense. As good as San Francisco’s defense is, they’re going to have trouble containing Newton for four full quarters.
Experience is a big deciding factor in NFL betting, and Newton has thrived in spite of the odds. He has weathered plenty of bad games in his NFL career and he knows how to have a short term memory while moving forward. I don’t’ know if Kaepernick has the same mental ability because we’ve never really seen him endure that many hardships so far. Facing Carolina will either bring out the best or the worst in Kaepernick.
I love San Francisco this season, but I think that the general public is sleeping on this Carolina team. They have finally hit their stride and are blasting opponents in to another dimension. The Panthers won’t be able to break away from the Niners for another blowout victory, but they can damn well keep this game tight. You can bet on San Francisco if you choose to. They’re a great team and a great bet against a soft line. But the smart money is on Cam Newton and Carolina proving that they belong in the NFC Championship discussion.
NFL Betting Picks – Carolina +6.5 (UNDER)