The Arizona Cardinals (2-2) host the Carolina Panthers (1-2) in Week 5 NFL betting action and they face a rested team coming off a bye week.
They also face a team that has dominated them over the years, making the point spread a tough challenge for Arizona bettors.
Point spread: Cardinals opened as 3-point favorites; the total was 42.5. (Line updates and Matchup report)
Computer Prediction: 27.0-12.5 Panthers
Why the Panthers can cover the spread
The Panthers come into the desert after earning their first win, a 38-0 rout of the New York Giants to improve to 1-2 before their bye. With a week to rest for its trip across the country, Carolina will be better-prepared after seeing the Cards' struggles last week in Tampa Bay.
They are also 7-2 SU in nine recent clashes with Arizona and ride a 6-2 ATS streak in road games.
Why the Cardinals can cover the spread
Last week the Cardinals' offense struggled for three quarters without scoring a point. Then they turned the corner, found a way to pull it out, scored 10 points in the final 3:06, and won the game, 13-10, to end a nine-game road losing streak. Confidence may be brewing with this team.
The Panthers learned from their win over New York that by letting Cam Newton run the ball, they put themselves in a prime position to win. In three seasons, Carolina is 7-3 when Newton rushes nine times or more in a game, 7-18 with eight rushes or less, and 9-6 when he runs for at least 50 yards.
He and the Panthers run wild. Historically however, the Panthers play UNDER after a bye week (8-2 in past decade).
Carolina UNDER is 8-2 past 10 seasons after a bye
Arizona 2-7 SU past nine vs Panthers
Panthers 6-2 ATS past 8 road games