8:20 p.m. ET: Carolina Panthers at Houston Texans 9-23-21 Smackdown!

The Panthers (2-0 SU, 2-0 ATS) have been impressive through two games, taking care of the Jets 19-14 as 3.5-point home favorites in the opener and then upsetting the Saints 26-7 last week as 3-point home dogs. Meanwhile, the Texans (1-1 SU, 2-0 ATS) have also covered both of their games thus far, upsetting the Jags 37-21 as 3.5-point home dogs and then losing to the Browns 31-21 last week but covering as 13.5-point road dogs. This line opened with Carolina listed as a 7-point road favorite. A combination of early sharp money and steady public support has pushed Carolina up from -7 to -8. Before Tyrod Taylor got hurt, the early line was Carolina -3.5. With rookie Davis Mills starting, the opener was adjusted to -7.

If you missed the early number on the Panthers, the Texans could be worth a look as a buy-low value play. The public is all over Carolina, which gives Houston contrarian value in a heavily bet primetime game, plus an inflated line at 8. Dogs are 21-11 ATS (66 percent) this season. Primetime dogs are 4-2 ATS this season and 32-21 (60 percent) since 2020. Alex Kemp, the lead official, has historically favored home teams (27-20, 58 percent ATS).

If you like the Panthers, consider them in a teaser. You could tease Carolina down from -8 to -2, which goes through a pair of key numbers in 7 and 3. Going through multiple key numbers is the wiseguy approach to teasers.

The total opened at 44 and despite the public taking the over, the line has fallen to 43. This reverse line movement signals some smart under money. One interesting trend we’ve seen this season: primetime overs are a perfect 6-0. 

(VSIN.Com)

ALERT: WR Brandin Cooks has Been Traded to Texans

Brandin Cooks may or may not be great, but QB Deshaun Watson should be able to get him the ball!  Our view: Our AI power rankings  have Houston as just an average  NFL team, and the Rams in the top 10. This trade will not change that balance of power.