Normally, I use my last blog of a game day to either write about 5 things I did or didn't like, depending on whether the Carolina Panthers lost or won.
Since this game was such a mixed bag, however, I'll do a mixed bag, too.
Things I liked:
1) Cam Newton looked like an NFL quarterback on his one drive and got the Panthers into the end zone with his first TD pass of the preseason.
2) Ron Rivera removed the tiny bit of suspense that was left postgame, announcing Newton as the starter for the regular-season opener.
3) Derek Anderson has apparently surpassed Jimmy Clausen as the No.2 QB, which makes a lot of sense given how they each performed Thursday.
4) Jeff Otah was back on the field at right tackle and obviously helped solidify the Panthers' starting line.
Things I didn't like:
1) Armanti Edwards had his hands on five balls that he didn't catch. Yes, five. Four hit the ground. One was tipped and intercepted. I'm not saying he should have caught all five -- the defense was very good on a couple -- but he should have caught several of them. Rivera says Edwards keeps trying to catch the ball with his body instead of his hands.
2) The Panthers' first-team defense again looked soft in the middle and couldn't get off the field on third down. It only played one series and allowed an 80-yard TD drive.
3) Clausen's pass rating of 33.2. He didn't have much help, but hey, Anderson was playing with backups, too. Anderson should be the No.2 -- he proved that Thursday.
3 days ago