Panthers vs. Falcons Halftime Observations

The Carolina Panthers scored the first points of the game on a Graham Gano field goal. The Atlanta Falcons responded with two field goals of their own to take a 6-3 lead at halftime. Here are some observations that I took away from the first half.

  • The Panthers offensive line and Cam Newton needed a game against the Atlanta Falcons defense, which had a league worst 11 sacks entering Week 11. After a sack on the first play (which was negated by a roughing the passer penalty), Newton has felt little pressure in the pocket.
  • The offense has looked better than they have in recent weeks against a weak Falcons’ defense. The red-zone problems still continue to remain after the Panthers had a 17-play drive that only ended in a field goal.
  • Cam Newton continues to struggle, particularly with his accuracy and turnovers. Newton now has an interception in each of his past seven games. The interception was a forced through but bounced off the receivers’ hands and wasn’t entirely Newton’s fault.
  • The defense on the other hand has looked nearly perfect through the first 30 minutes of this game. Matt Ryan has been held to only 122 yards passing and the Falcons running backs have been held to only 25 total rushing yards. If the offense can’t get going in the second half, the defense will need to continue this performance in the final two quarters to keep this game close.
  • In all three of the Panthers win this season, they have been the team to score first. This certainly bodes well for their chances in the second half to pull out the win. They are down three but they will get the ball to start the second half.
  • NFC South Update: Cincinnati 13, New Orleans 3. If Saints lose, winner of this game will be the division leader in the NFC South.

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