Week 6 Aftermath

The Panthers got Pro Bowl running back Stephen Davis back on Sunday and he looked pretty good in rushing for 66 yards on 15 carries. The Panthers had to abandon the running game in the second half after falling behind 23-0 and Davis was mostly a spectator for the final 20 minutes.<br><br>

INSIDE SLANT
Panthers Pro Bowl defensive end Mike Rucker underwent tests on Sunday night at Carolinas Medical Center that determined nothing is wrong with his heart.

Rucker was removed from Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles in the first quarter because of an accelerated heartbeat.

Coach John Fox said he anticipates Rucker will play Sunday against San Diego.

However, according to Fox, physicians don't have any theories as to what caused Rucker's heart to begin to race at an unusually high rate during each of the last two games.

"No, they really don't know the cause," Fox said. "There's no structural problem. The tests they ran, there's no internal problems."

Fox said he's seen this happen with players before and often times it can be handled with medication. "Sometimes it can be medications they take, sometimes it can be heat, sometimes it can be altitude," Fox said. "There's a lot of different reason."

NOTES, QUOTES
The Panthers got Pro Bowl running back Stephen Davis back on Sunday and he looked pretty good in rushing for 66 yards on 15 carries. The Panthers had to abandon the running game in the second half after falling behind 23-0 and Davis was mostly a spectator for the final 20 minutes.

Still, coach John Fox was pleased with Davis' effort on Sunday.

"We've missed him," Fox said. "He came in there today and he slammed it up in there pretty good, I thought. He was a much-needed spark for us. He's a good addition for us."

Davis missed Carolina's previous three games with a knee injury.

--Panthers cornerback Ricky Manning Jr. gave up a 53-yard pass to Terrell Owens on the Eagles second possession of the game which led to Philadelphia's first touchdown and a 10-0 Eagles lead.

Manning gave up one other short pass to Owens after that, but then settled down.

Manning came up with an interception of Donovan McNabb in the fourth quarter. Manning also intercepted McNabb three times in last year's NFC title game.

"Terrell is one of the best receivers in the league," Manning said. "This was like going up against a Marvin Harrison. You know that Owens is going to make a difference here in Philly and they paid him good money to do that."

When asked if Owens talked trash on the field, Manning replied, "He did not say anything in this game. I am pretty sure he talks in other games but he did not say anything to us."

After the game, Owens admitted he didn't have to do too much talking on the field.

However, he seemed to take a little jab at Manning's play when he added, "You know I am going to be faced with a bigger challenge than that in a few weeks."

--After questioning himself for not going for a 64-yard field goal last week against the Denver Broncos, Panthers coach surprisingly passed up a 51-yard field goal attempt in the fourth quarter with Carolina trailing 23-0. Instead of attempting the field, Fox elected to punt. Fox said he didn't like any of his options on fourth-and-22.

--The Panthers didn't waste any time putting rookie Jamall Broussard back on kickoffs and punt returns. Broussard, an undrafted rookie from San Jose State, was just signed off the Cincinnati Bengals practice squad on Thursday. He did nothing spectacular on Sunday, but at least he didn't fumble the ball.

--Panthers wide receiver Muhsin Muhammad recorded his 500th career pass reception on Sunday. Muhammad entered the game with 499 career catches and reached the milestone on Carolina's first possession when he fought off a defensive holding call by Eagles corner Lito Shepard and hauled in a 10-yard from Jake Delhomme to move the chains on third down.

--DT Brenston Buckner and the rest of the Panthers defense held RB Brian Westbrook in check up until the final two minutes when he raced 42 yards for a touchdown. Up until then, the Eagles had just 39 yards rushing as a team.

--RB Stephen Davis played for the first time since Week 1 and ran hard, bursting through holes in the line. Davis had 66 yards on 15 carries, but the Panthers had to abandon the running game in the second half.

--FB Brad Hoover showed he still has running back skills on Sunday, running 11 times for 63 yards. Hoover could see more carries down the stretch in short-yardage situations as the Panthers try to control the ball.

--WR Muhsin Muhammad had six catches for 48 yards and a touchdown, but that came when the game was already out of hand.

--LB Mark Fields has now missed the last 11 quarters with back pain. Fields has not even made the trip on the airplane the last two weeks.

--QB Jake Delhomme threw four interceptions in his worst game as a Panther. It wasn't all his fault as Delhomme didn't get much protection from his offensive line.

--CB Ricky Manning did a decent job on Terrell Owens after giving up a 53-yard reception in the first quarter. Manning only allowed one other reception in the game and picked off Donovan McNabb once.

--G Tutan Reyes left the game in the second quarter with an ankle injury and was replaced by Rich Tylski. Reyes missed the latter part of training camp with a high ankle sprain and appears to have re-aggravated during the game.


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