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Week 13: Bills vs. Panthers Preview Carolina Panthers
"The Draft Bowl" will take place on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium. The Bills and the Panthers will battle for draft positioning. Right now the Bills pick 4th and the Panthers 3rd. The loser will help their cause in April's draft. The Bills are coming off their worst showing in a terrible year losing 35-0 to the 49ers during primetime. The Panthers have not won since opening day and are coming off a tough loss at the hands of the New Orleans Saints. The Panthers have played some close games but are ranked dead last overall on both offense and defense.

Facts and Figures
Matchup: Carolina (1-11) at Buffalo (1-10)
Date: Sunday December 9th
Place: Ralph Wilson Stadium
Time: 1:00pm
Television: FOX
Announcers: Curt Menefee and Ray Bentley
Spread: Buffalo by 3 1/2
Series: Bills Lead 2-0
Last Meeting: Buffalo 30-14 in Carolina in 1998
Panthers Offense: Rush (31st); Pass (26th); overall (31st)
Panthers Defense: Rush (31st); Pass (27th); overall (31st)
Bills Offense: Rush (25th); Pass (13th); overall (15th)
Bills Defense: Rush (30th); Pass (7th); overall (21st)

Injury Update

The Bills are fairly healthy but suffered a few minor injuries against the Niners. John Fina and Jay Riemersma suffered concussions but should play. Raion Hill suffered a knee contusion. Raion Hill is also banged up but should play along with Travares Tillman who has a rib injury. Shawn Price was lost for the rest of the year in the middle of the week with an ACL injury.

The Panthers were missing WR Mushin Muhammed with an injury last week. It looks like he will play this week. TE Wesley Walls may not go, he has a sprained ankle.

For complete injury news throughout the week and the Official NFL Injury Report go to our Injury Page.

Key Matchups

WR Eric Moulds vs. CB Doug Evans: Evans has 8 interceptions this year, that's three more than the whole Bills team. Moulds is the key to the offense and Evans will be lined up against him. This will be the biggest matchup of the game.

LT John Fina or Jonas Jennings vs. RE Michael Rucker: Rucker leads the team in sacks with 7.5 and Fina is banged up yet again. This could be the biggest advantage for Carolina.

RG Corey Hulsey or Jerry Ostroski vs. DT Brentson Buckner: Buckner is second in sacks for the Panthers. The maligned, banged up line will need to stop Buckner after Rucker.

RB Travis Henry vs. LB Lester Towns: Towns is tied for the Panthers lead in tackles. He will be the guy that the Bills will have to watch if they plan to get a successful running game going.

QB Alex Van Pelt vs. FS Deon Grant: Grant is second in tackles and interceptions roaming the defensive secondary for Carolina. Van Pelt better watch out for him if he wants to avoid the interceptions he had last week.

Game Plan

When The Bills Have The Ball: This week look for the Bills to run, run, and try to run some more. To win the game they must get a ground game going and this is the week to do it as the Panthers are ranked dead last in run defense. That should open up some passing lanes for Alex Van Pelt against the 27th ranked pass defense.

When The Panthers Have The Ball: The Panthers offense is terrible as they are ranked last in running the football and they don't do much better in the passing game. Look for Chris Weinke to try and use a rhythmic passing game to beat the battered Bills defense.

Bills Daily Prediction

This may be the last chance for the Bills to get a victory this year. Since it will hurt them in the draft position and a loss won't be that bad, we figure they'll find a way to win: Bills 13, Panthers 9

Season Prediction Record: (6-5)
Season Record Against The Spread: (6-5)

Complete Statistical Matchup
Game Analysis and Review - Coming Sunday Night!
Positional Breakdown and Grades - Coming Sunday Night!

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