Carolina has found the scoreboard first at Giants Stadium, taking a 3-0 lead on a 38-yard field goal by John Kasay late in the first quarter.
The first quarter was basically consumed by one long drive apiece by each team. The Giants went first, moving the ball with a succession of short passes down to Carolina's 20. But then, following a long third-down conversion play, the Giants' Mario Manningham fumbled the ball after a reception just inside the 20. The Panthers' Jon Beason caused it and James Anderson recovered it.
Then came Carolina's turn. The Panthers ground out a 61-yard, 15-play drive. The big play was a 27-yard strike to Muhsin Muhammad from Matt Moore, and Moore also made a couple of key third-down conversions (one on a scramble). However, Carolina faltered right around the Giants' 20, which led to Kasay's field goal.