Final Carolina Panthers game by game predictions for 2021 season

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Sam Darnold /
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Carolina Panthers
(Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports) Dalvin Cook /

87. Prediction. 13. 60. 17

Carolina Panthers vs. Minnesota Vikings – Week 6

The Minnesota Vikings and Carolina Panthers are both going to be fringe contenders making the implications of this game bigger than many may have thought at first glance.

It should be a battle between two very well-coached teams and will ultimately be decided by which defense comes out on top.

Sam Darnold and Kirk Cousins are evenly matched and this game is going to the Panthers simply based on the fact they are the home team.

In truth, this contest might just come down to health and whether Darnold or Cousins can break a big play first. The former USC star should have some positive momentum by this point, but he’ll need to be wary of a stout Minnesota defensive front that has a healthy Danielle Hunter leading their pass rush.

This is a pivotal game for Carolina who despite a hot start is going to face superior rosters in the coming weeks.  Beating teams like the Vikings and Philadelphia Eagles early will determine whether or not their season is a success.

The back end of the schedule is too tough for Carolina to overcome a slow start. Beating the Vikings is perhaps the most important game of the season for a Panthers’ team that is going to have a lot of 50-50 matchups they need to pull this one out.

Prediction: Carolina Panthers 17 Minnesota Vikings 13 (5-1)