Joe Ovies

Panthers reminded flaws can be exposed

Posted December 10, 2013

1. The Carolina Panthers became NFL darlings during their winning streak, but their flaws never went away. The right side of the offensive line was patchwork. The play-calling was efficient, but Carolina was by no means slinging it around as if they were running the Air Raid. The weakness of the secondary was masked by one of the league's best pass rushes.

New Orleans exposed those flaws on Sunday night. 

The Panthers couldn't go into the Superdome thinking they'd win by kicking field goals. Carolina couldn't afford to let quarterback Drew Brees, on his home turf, have time to methodically takedown their defensive backs. 

Head coach Ron Rivera called the 31-13 defeat humbling during Monday's media availability, adding "maybe we got a little full of ourselves and thought we were capable of just showing up."

Let's chalk that up to coach-speak. While it's easy to see why Rivera would use the loss to fight complacency in the locker room, Sunday night's drubbing didn't happen because the Panthers decided to waltz into New Orleans. They ran into a combination plenty of teams have a hard time bringing down -- Brees, Payton and the home field advantage provided by the Superdome. 

2. There are certain teams that are unstoppable beasts on their home turf. The Panthers got a taste of that in New Orleans, but the Saints experienced a similar phenomenon in Seattle the week before. Yet the Seahawks looked mortal the following week visiting San Francisco.

That's why playoff positioning is key in the NFC and why the Seahawks will enter the post season as overwhelming favorites to reach the Super Bowl. How could they not when Russell Wilson hasn't lost a game in Seattle?

As it currently stands, the Panthers are facing a difficult task of playing on the road in the post season. Carolina proved it could top another playoff contender with a win over San Francisco, but can they step up and knock off New Orleans or Seattle? As we've already seen in previous matchups, the margin for error against those elite teams at home is razor thin.

3. Show of hands from those who had the Carolina Panthers at 9-4 in the middle of December.

Anyone? Thought so. 

Look, the sky isn't falling in Charlotte. The Panthers have done a great job managing their weaknesses and focusing on their strengths. Throughout their winning streak, the defense continued to put pressure on quarterbacks and keep games tight. Ron Rivera continued to take what he dubbed "calculated risks" in short yardage situations thanks to bulldozers like Mike Tolbert and Cam Newton didn't insist upon himself. And it's acceptable to admit the Panthers got a couple breaks along the way.

You do you, Panthers. It's worked out pretty well this season.

2 Comments

Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all
  • StunGunn Dec 10, 2013

    View quoted thread


    Agree, Toddler. Brees had his way all night long. As good as the Panthers' D is, they aren't good at defending the pass. I hope they can bounce back and win the last three games of the season.

  • Toddler10-21 Dec 10, 2013

    What was exposed was that the panthers didn't put any pressure on Brees!!!

TV
  • Premier League: West Ham vs. Arsenal

    Tomorrow at 12:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA Tour: Hero World Challenge

    Tomorrow at 2:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • PGA Tour: Hero World Challenge

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Carolina at Seattle

    Sunday at 8:20 pm on WRAL-TV

Top 25
Fri, Dec 2
17
4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET12:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST
Preview
8
6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 北京时间7:00 MST9:00 EST
Preview
4
Sat, Dec 3
9:00 PT10:00 MT11:00 CT12:00 ET5:00 GMT1:00 北京时间10:00 MST12:00 EST
Preview
19
10
9:30 PT10:30 MT11:30 CT12:30 ET5:30 GMT1:30 北京时间10:30 MST12:30 EST
Preview
9
12:30 PT1:30 MT2:30 CT3:30 ET8:30 GMT4:30 北京时间1:30 MST3:30 EST
Preview
16
1
1:00 PT2:00 MT3:00 CT4:00 ET9:00 GMT5:00 北京时间2:00 MST4:00 EST
Preview
15
6
5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST
Preview
7
3
5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 北京时间6:00 MST8:00 EST
Preview
23
Men's College Basketball
4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET12:00 GMT8:00 北京时间5:00 MST7:00 EST
Preview
13
NFL Scoreboard
Thursday, Dec. 1
Dallas17Final
Minnesota15
Sunday, Dec. 4
Kansas City 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Atlanta 
Miami 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Baltimore 
San Francisco 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Chicago 
Philadelphia 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Cincinnati 
Houston 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Green Bay 
Denver 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
Jacksonville 
Los Angeles 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
New England 
Detroit 10:00 PT11:00 MT12:00 CT1:00 ET18:00 GMT2:00 北京时间11:00 MST1:00 EST12:00 CT22:00 UAE13:00 ETNaN:�
Preview
New Orleans 
Buffalo 1:05 PT2:05 MT3:05 CT4:05 ET21:05 GMT5:05 北京时间2:05 MST4:05 EST3:05 CT1:05 UAE (+1)16:05 ETNaN:�
Preview
Oakland 
Washington 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
Arizona 
NY Giants 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
Pittsburgh 
Tampa Bay 1:25 PT2:25 MT3:25 CT4:25 ET21:25 GMT5:25 北京时间2:25 MST4:25 EST3:25 CT1:25 UAE (+1)16:25 ETNaN:�
Preview
San Diego 
Carolina 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET1:30 GMT9:30 北京时间6:30 MST8:30 EST7:30 CT5:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ETNaN:�
Preview
Seattle 
Monday, Dec. 5
Indianapolis 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET1:30 GMT9:30 北京时间6:30 MST8:30 EST7:30 CT5:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ETNaN:�
Preview
NY Jets 
NBA Scoreboard
Orlando 4:00 PT5:00 MT6:00 CT7:00 ET0:00 GMT8:00 5:00 MST7:00 EST4:00 UAE (+1)01:0019:00 ET6:00 CTNaN:�
Preview
Philadelphia 
Sacramento 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 MST7:30 EST4:30 UAE (+1)01:3019:30 ET6:30 CTNaN:�
Preview
Boston 
Minnesota 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 MST7:30 EST4:30 UAE (+1)01:3019:30 ET6:30 CTNaN:�
Preview
New York 
LA Lakers 4:30 PT5:30 MT6:30 CT7:30 ET0:30 GMT8:30 5:30 MST7:30 EST4:30 UAE (+1)01:3019:30 ET6:30 CTNaN:�
Preview
Toronto 
Detroit 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 MST8:00 EST5:00 UAE (+1)02:0020:00 ET7:00 CTNaN:�
Preview
Atlanta 
LA Clippers 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 MST8:00 EST5:00 UAE (+1)02:0020:00 ET7:00 CTNaN:�
Preview
New Orleans 
Cleveland 5:00 PT6:00 MT7:00 CT8:00 ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 MST8:00 EST5:00 UAE (+1)02:0020:00 ET7:00 CTNaN:�
Preview
Chicago 
Washington 5:30 PT6:30 MT7:30 CT8:30 ET1:30 GMT9:30 6:30 MST8:30 EST5:30 UAE (+1)02:3020:30 ET7:30 CTNaN:�
Preview
San Antonio 
Houston 7:30 PT8:30 MT9:30 CT10:30 ET3:30 GMT11:30 8:30 MST10:30 EST7:30 UAE (+1)04:3022:30 ET9:30 CTNaN:�
Preview
Denver 
NHL Scoreboard
Minnesota 6:00 PT7:00 MT8:00 CT9:00 ET2:00 GMT10:00 北京时间7:00 MST9:00 EST6:00 UAE (+1)21:00 ETNaN:� BRT
Preview
Calgary 
Montreal 7:30 PT8:30 MT9:30 CT10:30 ET3:30 GMT11:30 北京时间8:30 MST10:30 EST7:30 UAE (+1)22:30 ETNaN:� BRT
Preview
San Jose 
Minor League Baseball
International League
El Paso 4:05 PT5:05 MT6:05 CT7:05 ET12:05 GMT
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre