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TOO EARLY, CAROLINA NOT READY TO THROW IN THE TOWEL
NORTH CAROLINA (BASN)-–The Carolina Panthers (1-2) are struggling.
I know it’s too early in the season to throw in the towel.
Besides, second-year quarterback Cam Newton already has the towel draped over his head after his three interception performance against the defending Super Bowl Champs the New York Giants Thursday night at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, which the Panthers were blown out 36 to 7 in front of their hometown fans.
After an impressive win (35-27) against the New Orleans Saints a week before, where Newton threw for 353 yards and rushed for a career high 71 yards, the Carolina fans were expecting a little more from the Panther’s offense, especially with the ever so-dangerous Steve Smith and the improved Brandon Lafell at wide receiver along with Deangelo Williams in the back field.
But despite gaining 327 total yards, they could only muster up one touchdown against the Giants stingy defense.
The Giants, on the other hand, toasted the Panthers defense even without RB Ahmad Bradshaw and WR Hakeem Nicks in the starting line-up.
And with very little pass rush from the Panthers defensive linemen, New York’s Eli Manning patiently picked a part the Panther’s secondary by completing 27 of 35 passes for 288 yards and one touchdown. Carolina also gave up 125 yards rushing to an unknown Andre Brown, who made his prime time debut.
With high expectation to begin the season along with a Super Bowl prediction made by center Ryan Kalil, whose full page ad, was published in the Charlotte Observer on July 25, the Panthers find themselves in a difficult position.
“Every team says it every year, whether it’s publicly or not,” Kalil said. “They say they’re going to win the Super Bowl.
“We’ve said it in the past in meeting rooms and behind closed doors. This year’s different. There’s a sense of urgency, a winning attitude that I haven’t seen before. And it’s in the way we prepare. It’s in the way we approach each work day, and I think fans will see it in the way that we play.”
But with a difficult schedule ahead of them, the Carolina Panthers must definitely play with a certain sense urgency now or they could end up with a (1-5) record, especially with their next four games against the high-flying (3-0) Atlanta Falcons, the new improved Seattle Seahawks, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Big Bad Bears of Chicago, before they face the Washington Redskins and RGIII.
If the Panthers don’t find the desire to win, head coach Ron Rivera’s job could be on the chopping block.
“I hope it sits in the pit of our stomachs the whole week,” Panthers head coach Ron Rivera said. “I don’t like this feeling. I think it’s a lousy feeling, and I hope everybody in that locker room feels the same way.”