Sunday, October 23, 2011

Bests and worsts from Panthers' win over Washington

Going to extremes after Carolina improved to 2-5 overall with a 33-20 win over Washington (3-3) in Charlotte before a sellout crowd that really looked like a sellout crowd:

Best quarterback run: It’s tempting to go with Newton’s 16-yard touchdown, but that one was easy compared to the stunning 25-yarder he had to convert a third down in the first quarter. On that carry, Newton held the ball for 14 seconds total, doing a full spin and leaving three tacklers grasping for air before being forced out of bounds.

Best Panther sequence: Early in the third quarter, the Panthers had a three-play thing of beauty. It started with James Anderson’s fourth-down sack, continued with a 37-yard pass from Newton to LaFell and ended with Newton’s 16-yard TD run that provided the first touchdown of the game and opened the floodgates after Carolina led by a scant 9-6 margin at halftime.

Best half: The second, if you like offense. In the first half, we saw five field goals. In the second half, we saw five touchdowns.

Worst defense: Washington entered the game No.1 in the NFL on third-down conversions and fairly high in a number of other categories. But the ‘Skins got shredded by the Panthers and the very efficient Newton in the second half, as Carolina scored touchdowns on its first three possessions on drives of 80, 80 and 65 yards.

Best game for scalpers to make money: This one. Lots of demand for the Carolina-Washington contest, as evidenced by the number of regular folks holding their fingers in the air and trying hard to get tickets before the game began. Usually it’s the other way around, with fans holding extra tickets in their hands, trying to get rid of them.

Worst first-half trend: The Panthers were called for nine penalties for 70 yards in the first half, as they time and again hurt themselves – especially on the defensive side of the ball.

Best ownership contrast: I saw both of these teams’ owners in the pregame. The Panthers’ Jerry Richardson was working the crowd from his golf cart – when I saw him he was chatting with a young boy. The Redskins’ Daniel Snyder, meanwhile, had a phalanx of security guards as he rolled quickly through the pressbox in the pregame.

Worst rule: It’s been said before, but it’s worth saying again. Moving the NFL kickoffs to the 35 was a terrible idea. Olindo Mare and Washington’s Graham Gano simply took turns booting the ball through the end zone on almost every kickoff. The play was once again taken completely out of the game.

Best weather: A sunny October afternoon, with highs in the low 70s. Can’t beat that.

Best gesture: After Newton’s TD run, he gave the ball to a small boy in the stands.

Worst prediction: I can’t predict the Panthers lately to save my life. I picked them to beat Atlanta last week and lose to Washington this week. To quote Britney Spears, “Oops, I did it again.” My 2011 overall preseason prediction for the Panthers – 6-10 – I feel a little more confident about.

Best line, Part I: After a 15-yard penalty on the Panthers’ Captain Munnerlyn, Fox analyst Tim Ryan joked that Munnerlyn might be busted to private.

Best line, Part II: The Panthers’ offensive line, despite giving up four sacks, often gave Newton beautiful protection and blocked well for the run as the Panthers put up a season high in points.

Best field-goal precision: Mare actually had to kick one field goal three times after two straight Panther penalties but still made it from 45 yards (it was originally from 30). He ended up 4-for-4 on the afternoon.

Best receiver: Steve Smith was dominant once again, catching 143 yards worth of passes and spinning the ball after every one.

Best two-play defensive sequence by one guy: Carolina defensive end Antwan Applewhite had a pass deflection and then a sack in which he caused a lost fumble by John Beck on consecutive first-quarter plays.

Best stat: After causing only five turnovers in their first six games, the Panthers’ defense forced three Sunday and the offense didn’t have any.

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

2-5 awesome record

Panther Dan said...

Anon 4:38....this is a rebuilding year against a rough schedule. The offense is solid, the D is starting to come together....now go away, troll. Are you a forlorn Skins fan? Too bad. The Cats are on the rise, while the Skins are fading.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Panther Dan. This is a rebuilding year, with frankly a mediocre to bad defense. We probably should be 4-5 after our next two games. Sadly, we might look back at close losses to Chicago and New Orleans as the difference between a draft pick around 10-12 and being on the fringe of playoff contention. I know that sounds crazy, but it is pretty much the truth.

Michael Bacon said...

I want to see the team play well in November and December. I had no illusions about making the playoffs this year, but if the Panthers finish strong, it bodes well for next year when they can hopefully field something other than a spare parts defense.

jeremy1980cv said...

11-5, regardless of the probablility it's possible

Anonymous said...

Well let's see.
Scott said WIN, and they lose.
Scott said LOSE, and they win.
If Scott was a head coach his job would be in question... but then again I've questioned wth Scott's job was for the past decade.

Anonymous said...

Baby steps. Getting better each game should be the mantra each game. We need some beef on D-line and to STOP THE STUPID PENALTIES! 7-9 this year and 11-5 next year is my prediction.

Anonymous said...

Worst prediction: Scott Fowler saying the Skins would beat the Panthers 24-20

Worst accountability: Scott Fowler not mentioning he was totally wrong picking the Skins to win.

Worst Panthers coverage: The Charlotte Observer. national media outlets routinely use sources like the Gaston Gazette and fan sites before quoting the Observer. Not to tough to figure out why

Best collection of circus clowns: The Chalotte Observers Sports writers.

Best bet: Scott will pick the Panthers to win their next
game.

Anonymous said...

Head into the bye at 4-5, go 2-1 on the three game road trip and head into the Atlanta game here in December at 7-6? Quite possible, even with a shoddy injured defense.

Looking WAY ahead...next year, Cam and crew play at Denver against Tebow and crew. That has Sunday or Monday night written ALL over it.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I meant 6-6....the Killians Irish Red is to blame! :-)

Anonymous said...

Rebuilding? 1-4 preseason and 2-5 season. Union still going light on Newton. This will end very soon now.

http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/blog/shutdown_corner/post/Falcons-rip-Suh-for-taunting-Matt-Ryan-after-thi?urn=nfl-wp10203

Anonymous said...

Fan of Neither says;

Agree it was dissapointing when Hightower suddenly pretended to be hurt & leave the game to assure the Skins loss. Sure sign of union involvement. Lucky for CP. Hightower has never been hurt in his life & taken 10 times worse out of bounds late hits in the past.

Faking injury already been addressed by the league front office weeks ago but they are reviewing.

Anonymous said...

Now I know why the Panthers have lost such close games.....The last 4 minutes of the game, the Panthers played 2 horrible offensive drives. Had we been playing a stronger team, we would have lost. A games is 60 minutes not 55-56 minutes.

Anonymous said...

"2-5 awesome record".......Please just go away troll. You obviously don't know football and haven't watched this team. I'm surprised you didn't make a comment including the words "stolen laptop" too.

Anonymous said...

3-5 at the bye and midway would go far with this team. Second half of the season always changes dramatically with the attitude of teams with high expectations and then getting pushed out of the playoff picture. If we step on the Vikes neck next week, get healthy over the bye, we can be in a good position for the second half of the season. This is going to be fun.

Anonymous said...

Here is a WORST you missed...

Charlotte has the worst fans in the NFL!!!! just because your second cousin's (twice removed) friend's nephew's friend, lived in DC for 3 months back in 1975, doesn't mean you need to wear your stupid Redskin's jersey to the stadium, and root against team of the city in which you have lived for the past 30 years. Pathetic.....WORST fans in the NFL! GLAD the panthers won! Playing there today was like playing on the road....so all you idiots who wore your stupid Redskins jerseys, TAKE THAT!

Anonymous said...

Frankly, if a PSL owner sells his tickets to an opposing team fan, tickets should be revoked for six games after one warning and for the season after two warnings, extend it into the next season if needed. This should be pretty easy to police with scanning at the gate if the ticket holder is wearing opposing team garb-(usually do). If you're a PSL owner, take responsibility for your tickets and who's hands they end up in. 12th man does make a difference.

Anonymous said...

You could see this win coming. Panthers have been slowly gaining momentum and this win culminates that process. Go Panthers, beat the Vikes.

Anonymous said...

Great - Now we are TWO games out of the running for a #1 pick and the chance at a REAL NFL qb, Andrew Luck -

Ridiculous to be glad for this win

Anonymous said...

The 2-5 Carolina Ps officially given the NFL Clown Award after half ass routine easy plays any Pop Warner player could make, followed by over-reaction stupid clown act peacock struts or doing chicken dances... What a laugh.

Nationally all 5-12 year old Pop Warner players instructed NEVER to strut dance or act stupid when making simple routine plays and that showboating is only for adults. Pop Warner kids required to be professional.


ps CPs should immediately contact Ric Flair WWE Showboat School for lessons at a million a pop on how to do it the right way.

Anonymous said...

"Great - Now we are TWO games out the running for a #1 pick and the chance at a REAL NFL qb, Andrew Luck"............as opposed to a PLASTIC one?

Anonymous said...

Would much rather be 2-5 with Cam under center than anybody else we have on the bench. At least there is hope for the future of this team with his play making ability than with Clausen or any other dolt we've put back there or could have drafted. We've hit a homerun with this guy and need to build around him. There is no denying Cam has brought this offense to life.

Anonymous said...

Was there Saturday but usually sell my tix, sometimes to out of town fans. In response to revoking my tix, if Panther fans would ante up and pay a market price for tix, I would have no problem selling them to you. Am I supposed to take a bath on tickets so a Panther fan can go? Doesn't make any sense at all.

Go Panthers, great game by the offense!

Anonymous said...

And unlike the Jacksonville game, there were actually people in the stands to witness this win. Good thing it didn't drizzle or anything...

rxmex said...

I also had no illusions about making the playoffs this year, but if the Panthers finish strong, it bodes well for next year when they can hopefully field something other than a spare parts defense.