It’s only the preseason, but football fans are desperate for the NFL to be back in their lives. No more replays of last year’s games, no more reading training camp reports. There is football to be watched, regardless if wins and losses mean nothing at this point. Houston Texans vs Carolina Panthers Live
The Panthers open the preseason on Wednesday against the Houston Texans. While the starters will see limited action, it’s still a good opportunity to see Panthers football. We can’t really complain about that, can we? Texans vs Panthers Live
We can expect most of the starters to see at least a series or two of action, with the backups handling things the rest of the way. Look for the rookies to get a lot of playing time, notably running back Christian McCaffrey, as the coaches continue to evaluate how they best fit in the game plan. Houston Texans vs Carolina Panthers Live
Here’s all the info you need to keep up with the action as it unfolds.
When: Wednesday, August 9 at 7:30 p.m. ET
Where: Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, NC)
TV: Panthers TV; Mick Mixon, Mike Rucker | NFL Network (live coverage)
In this year’s draft, the Texans traded their 2017 first-round pick (No. 25) and 2018 first-rounder to Cleveland to move up to No. 12. Houston did that because it feared the team picking at 13th, the Cardinals, were going to take Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson, the two-time Heisman Trophy finalist and reigning national champion. The Texans took Watson as they had a need at quarterback after dealing last year’s starter, free-agent bust Brock Osweiler, to Cleveland.
O’Brien has been signing Watson’s praises thus far in training camp, and he could beat out Tom Savage for the starting job. Thus both guys could play longer than expected Wednesday because it’s a close competition. Watson is one of the early NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year betting favourites. The initial depth chart issued by the Texans has Watson at No. 2.
Houston already has suffered one major injury in camp as starting receiver Will Fuller broke his collarbone and will miss 2-3 months. The No. 21 overall pick in the 2016 draft caught 47 passes for 635 yards and two scores as a rookie and was a good punt returner.
It’s the first professional game for Carolina rookie Christian McCaffrey, the 2015 Heisman runner-up when he set the NCAA single-season record for all-purpose yardage. The Panthers will line up McCaffrey all over the field: at running back, receiver even a Wildcat quarterback. Plus he can return kicks. McCaffrey is another Offensive Rookie of the Year candidate.
There’s no quarterback battle on this team as 2015 NFL MVP Cam Newton is the starter, but it’s not clear if he can play Wednesday. After he threw for the first four days of training camp, the Panthers shut down Newton when he had soreness in his surgically repaired right shoulder. So if Newton plays vs. Houston, it might be to simply hand off. The Panthers have also been missing second-round pick Curtis Samuel for all but one practice in camp because of a hamstring injury.
*Note: You cannot watch regular season games live with this option. You have to wait until after the games are over before you can stream them. You can find more information here.
NFL Network will air condensed replays of every preseason game throughout the week. To see when the Panthers’ game will be replayed, you can check NFL Network’s preseason schedule for more information.
Roaring Riot Watch Parties
If you’re unable to watch the game via live tv or streaming, or if you prefer to watch in the company of fellow Panthers fans, check out the Roaring Riot to see if there is a watch party in your area. Membership is not required to get in the door, but if you’re interested in purchasing a membership you can find all the information you need here.
The Panthers will wear all white uniforms for this game.
If you’re into that sort of thing, you can find info on NFL game odds by clicking here.