Carolina Panthers vs.  Atlanta Falcons sit/start tips for Thursday night football

Carolina Panthers vs. Atlanta Falcons sit/start tips for Thursday night football

I’m going to go against the grain and say tonight’s game will be fun to watch. Think about it. Featured Last Thursday Jalen hurts, A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, Dallas Goedert, Miles Sander and Dameon Pierce. Otherwise for brandin cookswe would have had at least seven fantastic resources in play to kick off week 9.

We’re taking a break tonight.

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Atlanta and Carolina are as condensed as offenses come in. Between the two teams, there are six players registered in more than 50% of the Yahoo leagues. So we can enjoy the night without too much pressure on our season teams on a Thursday. Will I add a few more daily fantasy lists for more action, though? You bet.

But first, let’s dig into the contest to see what we can expect.

Panthers looking to play spoiler in NFC South rematch

There is something to be said for building your strengths. And Cordarelle PattersonReturning to the roster bolsters an already strong ground game for Atlanta:

The Falcons are 15th in yards per drive despite being 30th in passing rate over expectation (PROE). They are fifth in expected added points (EPA) per rush.

We know what is coming. The opposing defenses know what to expect, and it doesn’t matter.

Atlanta’s rushing offense is fifth in third conversions at 65.6%. They have more rushing touchdowns than Tom Brady has corresponding scores. Arthur Smith probably took a look at Joe MixonWeek 9 Box Score and I was looking forward to planning the game for tonight, even on a short week. However, his defense could put a wrench in the Falcons’ plans to stay in contention for the NFC South.

Eleven days ago, it looked like the Panthers had found something on offense:

But PJ Walker was still playing with fire in the passing game, and that caught up with him in Week 9.

There’s no doubt that Walker can throw it. In his first three starts, he placed in the top 12 in hit rate and EPA per attempt on throws of 20 yards or more. However, it was scattered everywhere else.

On short throws (less than ten aerial meters), it is as effective as Russell Wilson (27th among all starters). Kenny Pickett threw more catchable balls in the middle of the field. Carolina needs an ability like Walker’s to generate explosive plays in this post-McCaffrey offense. But consistency down and streak is equally critical as the team keeps tabs on 2023.

Atlanta’s defense should be a welcome reprieve for Walker. they pressured Justin Herbert on nine of his 45 retirements on Sunday and are still bottom 12 in terms of pass rush success rate. The Falcons are 31st in yards per drive and have allowed teams to run the third most plays in their red zone.

I have more confidence in Walker’s supporting cast (more on them below), so I expect the Panthers to fight more this week regardless.

Points of Interest in TNF

Who runs the Falcons backfield?

I assumed that the team facilitating Patterson’s action after its passage on IR. Tyler Allgeier and Caleb Huntley had been helpful as both rookies acclimated to the professional level. Either way, I expected Patterson’s return to eliminate one of the other backfield options.

I was wrong.

Atlanta Falcons shares return action for fantasy. (Photo by Chris Allen/Yahoo Sports)

Awesome: We have a four-man committee in our hands.

Patterson is the most valuable because he had the most touches in high leverage situations (third down, red zone, short distance). However, Allgeier saw a similar number of tries on first downs and was the only back with runs under two minutes. Huntley finished second in the red zone races.

And, of course, Mariota plays the joker – if he doesn’t decide to throw it 15 yards down the field.

I want to see who is breaking up with this RB cast. I have some thoughts on a possible departure for tonight, but the short week and the soft defensive game could lead to a direct approach. Hopefully we’ll have fewer options to decide whether to move forward, but Atlanta could keep us guessing for at least a week.

Carolina’s hasty attack

eat sausages Onta Foreman put another point in the ‘ball carriers can return from an Achilles injury’ column. He’s ninth in yards after contact since Week 7. However, with Chuba Hubbardit is potential yieldI looked at the split workload the last time the two played together.

D'Onta Foreman/Chuba Hubbard throws in.  (Photo by nflreadr)

D’Onta Foreman/Chuba Hubbard throws in. (Photo by nflreadr)

Remember, Hubbard was injured midway through the second half, skewing Foreman’s Week 7 touchdown count. So based on the small sample, we have a potential two-man committee. Hubbard got the bulk of the high leverage attempts. However, Foreman showed why he could serve as the team’s RB1 in Hubbard’s absence.

My main interest in the Panthers is how they decide to allocate hits. I’m not putting Hubbard on any team I put him on tonight. But any changes to their previous cast would be an encouraging sign for Week 11 and beyond.

But don’t bench these guys

As I said above, we only have a few options on each team to work with tonight. We shouldn’t have to dig too deep with four teams goodbye, but this season has been a roller coaster – anything is possible. So, I have two players who deserve consideration for one-season deep leagues or daily fantasy in tonight’s contest.

Caleb Huntley

Yes I know. I’m defending the UDFA rather than the fifth-round rookie. It’s blasphemous, but bear with me.

I wondered why Huntley would stay in the mix when Patterson returned. Huntley didn’t run a route in weeks 5-8 and had the fewest shots on Sunday. At first glance, it didn’t look like it added much, but its peripherals were encouraging:

Caleb Huntley/Tyler Allgeier advanced statistics.  (Photo by Chris Allen)

Caleb Huntley/Tyler Allgeier advanced statistics. (Photo by Chris Allen)

Huntley dominated his counterpart at every level. Allgeier’s only claim to fame is that he scored a touchdown, while Huntley lost a fumble. Otherwise, we’d have even more confusion in the Atlanta backfield.

Allgeier leading the team in rushing yards should keep him a fan favorite for tonight. However, Huntley was still effective on the majority of his runs in the split backfield; he just couldn’t find the end zone. Rostering Huntley would give you access to the Falcons’ rushing offense and work as a solid leverage option against popular plays for tonight’s game.

Marshall Jr Terrace

Participation in the Terrace Marshall route was 53.7% before Robbie Anderson and Christian McCaffrey left the team. Since then, he has run on 95.8%, 94.7% and 96.9% of the team’s dropbacks. His target share climbed each week to the point where he tied Moore in appearance on Sunday. Marshall has currently been leading the team in red zone targets since Week 7. I would expect more production from the ground game, but Marshall has a direct path to fantasy production in TNF.

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