Sunday, September 14, 2008

5 things I liked and 2 I didn't about Panthers' big win over Bears

Five things I liked about the Panthers’ 20-17 win over Chicago, which pushed the team to 2-0:

1. Rookie running back Jonathan Stewart, who had his breakout game. Against a Bears defense that totally stuffed the Panthers in the first half – only two first downs for Carolina in the first half! – Stewart was The Man in the second. He scored the first two TDs of his NFL career.

2. Carolina’s stout defense. The Panthers’ defense was superb, especially in the second half. One of Chicago’s TDs was off a punt block; the other came on a very short field after a Jake Delhomme interception. Otherwise, the defense did what it needed to do, including stopping the Bears twice in the final four minutes when Chicago only needed a field goal to tie and send it into overtime. The fourth-down stop on Chicago's last possession at midfield was particularly impressive, as the Bears had a second-and-1 on that series and never gained another yard.

3. Jake Delhomme’s spunk. Delhomme was nearly decapitated by a hit (that wasn’t penalized) from Chicago linebacker Lance Briggs on a scramble. But Delhomme came back right after that to lead the Panthers to two straight TD drives. And he came off the field – which finally got the fans into the game -- after the Briggs hit while pounding his heart and screaming. The guy is feisty, give him credit.

4. John Fox’s halftime adjustments. The Panthers were terrible offensively in the first half and were getting penalized about every third play. Fox got them to clean it up in the second half, and the offense opened it up a little (mostly on first and second downs). And it worked.

5. The crowd. It was loud – mostly in the second half – and it was large. There were very few empty seats. They got rewarded by a Panther team that has traditionally been very mediocre under Fox at home, winning a big one.

Two things I didn’t like:

1. I picked Carolina to win, 20-16, in The Charlotte Observer Sunday morning, and it was 20-17. Close just isn’t good enough!

2. The “Shades of Dan Henning” on third down for Carolina, over and over again. The Panthers ran the ball too often on third down and with very little success.


Anonymous said...

Well Scott, that Henning-like play "might" have worked had they used Stewart, Hoover, or Williams instead of Nick Goings on that goal line stand by the Bears.. Still, the stupid running plays on 3rd and long need to end, they will cost us a game at some point... despite all the adversity, Panthers win another huge game AT HOME finally ... GOOO CARDIAC CATS!!!

jomast said...

Actually I thought using Goings was smarter than most people realize... the big play aginst the chargers (the TD pass to Rosario) had Goings come for pass protection..... since the bears no doubt watched the game film and noticed this, seeing Goings in the game added to the probability of a pass, at least in the minds of the Bears D. Furthermore, by running the 3rd and forever draw play, later in the game they could use that for play-action. That being said, the Henning-like 3rd and long draw plays make me want to puke! I think this game really showed how much Smitty is missed!

Jason said...

I'll tell you what I didn't like:

Veterans like Hoover, King and Goings making mental errors like rookies during this game. With Goings, he's made no positive contributions this preseason or in the first two games and it might be time to part ways.

Corbin said...

I really do not understand the Observer staff. Listed under 2 things I did not like was the score?????

How about the false start penalties? Report the fact, not your ego...sorry the score was not what you predicted...get over it you are a journalist not a bookie.

daryl said...


I agree with you 100%