NFC South rivals will take the national stage as part of a Monday Night Football doubleheader in Week 2. The New Orleans Saints and Carolina Panthers will meet in the opener of a Monday Night Football doubleheader in prime time. The division foes met twice last season, with the Panthers sweeping the series, and this is the first of two scheduled meetings in 2023. Carolina is 0-1 after a loss to Atlanta last week, with New Orleans opening the campaign on a positive note with a win over Tennessee. 

Kickoff is at 7:15 p.m. ET. The SportsLine consensus lists New Orleans as a three -point favorite, while the over/under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 39.5 in the latest Saints vs. Panthers odds. Before making any Panthers vs. Saints picks or NFL predictions, you need to see what SportsLine NFL expert Larry Hartstein has to say, considering his mastery of the Saints.

A former lead writer for Covers and The Linemakers, Hartstein combines a vast network of Vegas sources with an analytical approach he honed working for Pro Football Focus. Hartstein tied for 52nd place (out of 1,598 entries) in the 2022 Westgate Las Vegas SuperContest, going 53-34-3 ATS. Those selections formed the basis of his SportsLine NFL best bets article, which finished 36-25-1.

In addition, Hartstein has a keen sense of what to expect from the Saints and is 45-29 on his last 74 NFL picks involving New Orleans, returning a whopping $1,234. Anybody who has been following him is way up.

Now, Hartstein has locked in on Saints vs. Panthers from every angle and just locked in his picks and MNF predictions. You can visit SportsLine now to see his picks. Here are several NFL odds and trends for Panthers vs. Saints: 

  • Saints vs. Panthers spread: Saints -3
  • Saints vs. Panthers over/under: 39.5 points
  • Saints vs. Panthers money line: Saints -165, Panthers +140
  • New Orleans: Saints are 7-11 against the spread since the start of 2022
  • Carolina: Panthers are 9-9 against the spread since the start of 2022
  • Saints vs. Panthers picks: See picks at SportsLine
  • Saints vs. Panthers live stream: fubo (try for free)

Why the Saints can cover

New Orleans is a stout defensive team, and this is also a friendly matchup against a young Panthers offense. Carolina scored only 10 points last week and the generated fewer than 300 total yards in a loss to Atlanta. The Panthers averaged only 3.9 yards per play and 3.2 yards per pass attempt with three giveaways in the game. Carolina's offensive line allowed Bryce Young to be pressured 19 times. Carolina is also coming off a disappointing offensive season in 2022, with the Panthers ranking No. 28 or worse in total offense, first downs, passing yards, passing touchdowns, and third down efficiency a year ago.

The Saints gave up only 15 points and 285 total yards to the Titans a week ago and created havoc with three takeaways. New Orleans also has strong pedigree on defense, including top-five marks in total defense, passing defense, passing touchdowns allowed, completion rate, and sacks in 2022. The Saints also yielded only 20.3 points per game last season and opponents scored touchdowns on only 50% of trips to the red zone in that sample. See which team to pick here.

Why the Panthers can cover

The Panthers accumulated 154 rushing yards on 4.8 yards per carry in the opener, led by 72 from Miles Sanders, and Carolina also posted a top-10 mark in rushing yards (2,210) during the 2022 season. The Panthers were also above-average in rushing touchdowns (16) and yards per carry (4.6) last season, and Carolina's ball security was top-notch over a large sample. Carolina committed only 21 giveaways in 2022 and lost only eight fumbles, with the Panthers also converting red zone trips into touchdowns at a strong rate of 56.5%.

Sanders is a new addition to Carolina's mix on offense behind No. 1 overall pick Bryce Young, and the veteran racked up 1,269 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns for the Eagles last season. Sanders also maintains a career average of 5.0 yards per carry, and New Orleans finished just No. 24 in the NFL in rushing defense during the 2022 season. See which team to pick here.

How to make Saints vs. Panthers picks

Hartstein has analyzed this matchup from every angle and while we can tell you he's leaning Under the point total, he has discovered a critical X-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the spread. He's only sharing what it is, and which side to back, at SportsLine.

Who wins Panthers vs. Saints on Monday Night Football, and which critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Saints vs. Panthers spread hits hard, all from the expert who is 45-29 on picks involving New Orleans, and find out.