Out of a bazillion choices, here are the 8 things I didn't like the most about Carolina’s 27-3 loss to Tampa Bay, which tied the two NFC South teams at 4-2 atop the division (along with surprising Atlanta):
1) Can the Panthers not figure out how to get a punt off? Jason Baker has now had 3 blocked this season. The one that was blocked only 2 ½ minutes into the game and went for a Tampa Bay TD set the tone for this rout.
2) Jake Delhomme’s performance. He was 7-1 against the Bucs, but thudded to 7-2 Sunday, playing what was easily his worst game of the season. "Pretty much pathetic," Delhomme termed it, and for once Sunday, he was right on the money.
3) Carolina’s defense against Jeff Garcia. No doubt the Panthers would have rather faced pocket passer Brian Griese. Garcia tormented them like he has so many times during his career – extending plays and getting the Bucs down the field with regularity.
4) Mark Jones’ kick returns. You can’t tell me that, with all the possible returners out there, the Panthers can’t find anyone better than that.
5) Where was the oomph? You just didn't see much emotional pop from the Panthers today, and that's a problem.
6) Panthers’ butterfingers. All three of Delhomme’s interceptions were first touched by Panther receivers (Dante Rosario, Muhsin Muhammad and Steve Smith). Plus, Dwayne Jarrett was a non-factor on his few plays, and managed one embarrassing drop. And Smith, open for an easy 34-yard TD in the final minute (which was only important to fantasy leaguers), dropped that one, too.
7) Carolina’s run defense. The Panthers just wore down in the second half, as Warrick Dunn became the first back all season to run for more than 100 on Carolina.
8) John Fox’s halftime adjustments. Whatever they were, they didn’t do a bit of good.
6 months ago