DENVER (4-8) at CAROLINA (4-8)
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET, CBS
OPENING LINE – Panthers by 3 1/2
RECORD VS. SPREAD – Broncos 7-5; Panthers 7-5
SERIES RECORD – Broncos lead series 5-1
LAST MEETING – Broncos beat Panthers 21-20 on Sept. 8, 2016 in Denver
LAST WEEK – Broncos lost to Chiefs 22-16; Panthers had bye, lost 28-27 to Vikings on Nov. 29.
AP PRO32 RANKING – Broncos No. 24; Panthers No. 22
BRONCOS OFFENSE – OVERALL (25), RUSH (12), PASS (26).
BRONCOS DEFENSE – OVERALL (14), RUSH (26), PASS (8).
PANTHERS OFFENSE – OVERALL (20), RUSH (20), PASS (15).
PANTHERS DEFENSE – OVERALL (20), RUSH (15), PASS (19).
STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES — The Broncos have lost four of their last five games. … With another loss, the Broncos will post a fourth consecutive losing season for the first time since the franchise’s futile early years in the 1960s and early ’70s. They’d also become the first Super Bowl champ to miss the playoffs five consecutive seasons following their championship. … Broncos QB Drew Lock’s 13 interceptions lead the AFC and are two shy of Carson Wentz’s league-leading 15. Over his two seasons in the NFL, Lock now has thrown 16 touchdown passes and 16 interceptions while starting 14 games and missing 14 due to injury or COVID-19 exposure. … Broncos RB Melvin Gordon ran for a season-high 131 yards last week. That pushed his season total to 685 yards and made him the only NFL player other than Todd Gurley to top 600 yards rushing each of the last six seasons. … Denver WRs Jerry Jeudy (38) and KJ Hamler (27) are the only pair of rookie teammates with 25 or more catches in 2020. … TE Noah Fant is the first tight end in Broncos history to top 40 receptions in each of his first two NFL seasons. … Broncos DE Shelby Harris batted down two passes by Patrick Mahomes last week in his return from a monthlong absence due to a COVID-19 infection. … The Panthers have lost six of their last seven games. … Eight Carolina players were placed on the COVID-19/reserve list earlier this week, including WRs D.J. Moore and Curtis Samuel. … QB Teddy Bridgewater needs 181 pass yards for a second-career 3,000-yard season. … Bridgewater threw for 269 yards and a touchdown in his only previous career start vs. the Broncos in 2015. … The Panthers were hoping to get RB Christian McCaffrey back from a shoulder injury, but he was added to the injury report with a thigh issue and his status is uncertain. McCaffrey has 374 scrimmage yards and six TDs in the three games he’s played this season. He has 11 touchdowns in his last seven games at home. … WR Robby Anderson had four catches for 94 yards and a TD catch in Week 12 and is one of two receivers with at least four catches in every game this season. Buffalo’s Stefon Diggs is the other. … Anderson needs 88 yards receiving for first career 1,000-yard season. … Panthers DE Brian Burns has three sacks in te last four games. … Panthers S Jeremy Chinn has twice been NFC Defensive Rookie of the Month. He had two fumble returns for touchdowns in the loss to the Vikings. He leads all rookies with 86 tackles. … Fantasy tip: Broncos WR Tim Patrick had a career-high two TD catches last week and has three TD receptions in his last three road games.