4 reasons the Carolina Panthers will beat the Lions in Week 11
By Dean Jones
The Carolina Panthers can gain yards on the ground
Although the Carolina Panthers will be without the services of Christian McCaffrey this weekend and possibly beyond with a shoulder injury, they might still be able to gain some valuable yards on the ground. The Lions are among the NFL’s worst teams at stopping the run and this is something that offensive coordinator Joe Brady might be able to take advantage of.
Detroit is giving up an average of 141.6 rushing yards-per-game through their first nine games, which is ranked No. 30 in the NFL. They have been porous on the interior and providing Carolina’s offensive line can generate enough push, it should come with some much-improved numbers in this area.
Mike Davis might be regressing after a standout start to his time as the primary back, but this is a real opportunity for him to get back to something like his early-season form. The Panthers also have the option of using Trenton Cannon or undrafted rookie Rodney Smith should they wish, with both catching the eye for different reasons in their disappointing loss to the Buccaneers’ last time out.
Not having McCaffrey remains a huge blow and one that might last until the end of the campaign. However, given how much the Lions have struggled to contain opposing rushers throughout the season is reason enough to keep this as a significant part of their gameplan in the All-Pro’s absence.