Jonathan Stewart just scored from 2 yards out for Carolina, giving the Panthers a 30-10 lead early in the third quarter. While Stewart got the TD -- and did a nice dance with DeAngelo Williams afterward -- Steve Smith set it up. Smith caught a 54-yard pass in traffic to get the ball inside the 10 for Carolina.
The Panthers' offense has now scored on five of its six possessions. On the sixth, the clock ran out to end the first half.
Julius Peppers wrecked New Orleans' first drive of the second half right before Carolina's first third-quarter possession, sacking Drew Brees on a 3rd-and-10. I like the way the Panthers are blitzing so much today, making Brees make some more hurried decisions.
One surprise: the Panthers let Smith return the punt that followed Peppers' sack. We're not sure why -- Mark Jones looks OK on the sideline -- but that's a risk Carolina generally likes to stay away from. I don't think they should do that anymore -- just send someone else out there and let him do only fair catches.
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