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Joe Ovies

Penalty controversy aside, Panthers legit

Posted November 19, 2013

1. Buried underneath all the hot sports takes regarding controversial endings inside Bank of America Stadium was another statement game from the Carolina Panthers. In back-to-back weeks this squad got the best of the San Francisco 49ers in a defensive slobber-knocker on the road and topped the New England Patriots with a clock-melting touchdown drive on Monday Night Football.

Are you not entertained?

Pundits have spent the majority of the season moving the goalposts and setting new objectives for the Panthers.

After they destroyed the New York Giants, everyone chalked it up to beating a bad team. After Carolina reeled off three wins in a row, the football Illuminati shrugged their shoulders and pointed at the combined record of the teams they conquered. Even after going to San Francisco and besting Jim Harbaugh, the talking points centered on the depleted 49ers offense and what was up with Colin Kaepernick.

The same is happening after a win over New England. Never mind that Carolina's defense kept Tom Brady and a fully healthy Patriots offense in check. Don't focus on Cam Newton's continued maturation process. It won't be viewed as a signature victory for Ron Rivera, who weeks ago was dealing with reports that the front office was vetting possible coaching replacements.

The win will be tainted in the eyes of many thanks to the way it ended. And that's probably best for the Carolina Panthers as they can continue carrying a chip on their shoulder.  

2. Newton wasn't perfect against New England, but he outweighed any forced throw or bad sack with his ability to keep plays alive. He scrambled on third down three times against the Patriots and converted a first down each time. Newton dropped jaws when, according to ESPN Stats & Information, he eluded defenders and covered 75.8 yards on the ground for a 14-yard gain.

Then came the game-winning drive. Newton worked out of the shotgun to complete short passes and scramble when necessary. His 25-yard touchdown pass to Ted Ginn Jr. capped off excellent clock management from the Panthers coaching staff, leaving the Patriots with 59 seconds left in the game.

3. Now, about the officials picking up the flag and ruling there was no penalty on the final play of the game: Let's just admit the Panthers got away with it.

The official explanation from the guys in stripes was that the pass was uncatchable. How could it have been when Rob Gronkowski was busy telling Luke Kuechly that he didn't want to slow dance with him at prom? While the ball was dubbed uncatchable because it was slightly underthrown and intercepted four yards in front of Gronkowski, that doesn't mean he couldn't have made a move for it had Kuechly not hugged him in the end zone. 

“I’m not trying to sit here and make an excuse that he held me at the end of the game," Gronkowski told the Boston Herald.

We see what you did there, Gronk. But nobody outside of Boston wants to hear it. 

Besides, the angst would be just as loud had the pass interference call stood. Fans and pundits would be screaming that players should be allowed to mix it up in the end zone and that officials shouldn't determine a critical moment in the game. 

That's why I'm perfectly cool with just saying the Carolina Panthers got a break last night. The Patriots should be rather familiar with those by now.

4. The Carolina Panthers had a scary moment in the third quarter when defensive end Charles Johnson left the game with an apparent MCL sprain when New England tackle Marcus Cannon swept his legs after a block. While there was no flag thrown on the play, many expect Cannon to be hit with a fine from the NFL. 

From that point on the Panthers struggled to establish a pass rush on Brady. 

According to NFL Network's Albert Breer, Cannon found Johnson after the game and apologized for the leg whip.

5. There were no such apologies from Panthers wide receiver Steve Smith, but he did have a special message for Aqib Talib after the game. 

20 Comments

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  • scousler Nov 20, 2013

    Karma sux - have we forgotten the big break the Pats got in the Super Bowl when one of the league's best kickers yolo-ed a kick-off out of bounds giving the Pats easy field position to kick the winning field goal?

    The refs made the right call - it was a pass thrown 8 yards short and Gronk could not have made the catch with no one there. Get over it Pat whiners - you got beat fair and square.

  • sckinton60 Nov 19, 2013

    So...Panthers get lucky against Pats with no interference call, Pats got lucky with illegal batting of a loose fumble called against Miami(15 yds, 1st down)...so Miami should win vs. Panthers on something altogether new the officials can come up with.

  • mac240 Nov 19, 2013

    View quoted thread



    I've always been a Panthers fan, but Rivera's job was on the line because of conservative play calling, he finally loosened up and now you see the results of all that talent.

  • Leave it to Beaver Reruns Nov 19, 2013

    Someone listened to the DP Show this morning. Nice thievery of the slow dance reference, Ovies. Not at all surprised coming from you. Raekwon says hello shark biter.

    I also love how Joe and all his twitter friends retweet each other's stuff all day long. It's cute.

  • Road-wearier Nov 19, 2013

    If this had been reversed, ie the Panther on offense and the Pats on defense, there would not be one 'expert' saying this was a bad call. But since it went against The Golden Anointed One Brady, it's a bad call.

  • mac240 Nov 19, 2013

    In Foxborough the Pats get the call, in other words oh well!

  • ncstateforever Nov 19, 2013

    The Panthers are for real. You can bet no one wants to go down to Charlotte and play them.

  • dookiepukie Nov 19, 2013

    The Panthers ARE legit. I attribute it to a very good defense, and receivers who can finally catch a pass. Cam has been good and will continue to get better as he gains experience.

  • StunGunn Nov 19, 2013

    It' a shame that that flag/no flag is what's getting all the attention. What Panthers fans (should) realize is that they ARE for real. Early in the season, they lost to bad teams; later, they beat bad teams. Now, they're beating good teams.

    Cam is maturing and developing, the D is stout, and Shula is calling some good plays for the offense. The Panthers are playing TEAM ball, and they're playing well. Rivera's seat, once hotter than the surface of the sun, has cooled considerably, and deservedly so. I hope they handle wins with the same determination they handled losses, and keep up their effort.

  • Big Mike Nov 19, 2013

    When the Panthers were at their ususal worst the last few years..everybody wanted to hang Rivera and blame Newton..now that they are winning, why do people still continue to put the coach and team down? 7-3 and you're complaining? Real fans stick with them no matter what. Which are you? Pretend fans should be banned..

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
ROC 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
ROC
DUR
 
2:30pm Friday
STONYBROOK
NCSTATE
 
7:05pm Friday
SYR
DUR
 
6:35pm Saturday
SYR
DUR
 
5:05pm Sunday
SYR
DUR
 
Final
HOU 4
BAL 1
Final
KAN 1
NYY 5
Final
MIA 1
PIT 5
Final
WAS 2
CHC 3
Final
CWS 9
TOR 10
Final
COL 1
CIN 2
Final
PHI 4
NYM 5
Final
SEA 7
TAM 6
Final
TEX 4
CLE 3
9th
BOS 1
MIN 2
 
Final
SFG 6
MIL 3
Final
ARI 4
STL 6
7th
DET 1
OAK 0
 
7th
SDP 0
ANA 0
 
6th
ATL 0
LOS 8
 
12:10pm Today
TEX
CLE
 
12:35pm Today
COL
CIN
 
12:35pm Today
MIA
PIT
 
12:37pm Today
CWS
TOR
 
1:05pm Today
KAN
NYY
 
1:10pm Today
BOS
MIN
 
1:10pm Today
PHI
NYM
 
1:10pm Today
SEA
TAM
 
1:40pm Today
SFG
MIL
 
3:35pm Today
DET
OAK
 
4:35pm Today
HOU
BAL
 
8:05pm Tonight
WAS
CHC
 
8:15pm Tonight
ARI
STL
 
10:05pm Tonight
SDP
ANA
 
10:10pm Tonight
ATL
LOS
 
1:05pm Thursday
CWS
BAL
 
4:35pm Thursday
CWS
BAL
 
8:05pm Thursday
BOS
TEX
 
10:05pm Thursday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Thursday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Thursday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Thursday
PIT
SDP
 
10:15pm Thursday
ATL
SFG
 
4:05pm Friday
KAN
CHC
 
7:05pm Friday
COL
PHI
 
7:05pm Friday
TAM
BAL
 
7:10pm Friday
MIA
NYM
 
7:10pm Friday
WAS
CIN
 
8:05pm Friday
BOS
TEX
 
8:10pm Friday
ARI
MIL
 
8:10pm Friday
CWS
HOU
 
8:10pm Friday
TOR
MIN
 
8:15pm Friday
LOS
STL
 
10:05pm Friday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Friday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Friday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Friday
PIT
SDP
 
10:15pm Friday
ATL
SFG
 
2:10pm Saturday
TOR
MIN
 
3:05pm Saturday
COL
PHI
 
4:05pm Saturday
TAM
BAL
 
4:10pm Saturday
ARI
MIL
 
4:10pm Saturday
CWS
HOU
 
4:10pm Saturday
MIA
NYM
 
4:10pm Saturday
WAS
CIN
 
7:15pm Saturday
BOS
TEX
 
7:15pm Saturday
KAN
CHC
 
7:15pm Saturday
LOS
STL
 
10:05pm Saturday
ATL
SFG
 
10:05pm Saturday
DET
ANA
 
10:05pm Saturday
NYY
OAK
 
10:10pm Saturday
CLE
SEA
 
10:10pm Saturday
PIT
SDP
 
1:10pm Sunday
MIA
NYM
 
1:10pm Sunday
WAS
CIN
 
1:35pm Sunday
COL
PHI
 
1:35pm Sunday
TAM
BAL
 
2:10pm Sunday
ARI
MIL
 
2:10pm Sunday
CWS
HOU
 
2:10pm Sunday
TOR
MIN
 
2:15pm Sunday
LOS
STL
 
2:20pm Sunday
KAN
CHC
 
3:05pm Sunday
BOS
TEX
 
4:05pm Sunday
ATL
SFG
 
4:05pm Sunday
NYY
OAK
 
4:10pm Sunday
CLE
SEA
 
8:05pm Sunday
DET
ANA
 
9:10pm Sunday
PIT
SDP
 
Final
ATL 88
CLE 118
9:00pm Tonight
HOU
GSW
 
8:30pm Thursday
CLE
ATL
 
9:00pm Friday
GSW
HOU
 
8:30pm Saturday
ATL
CLE
 
9:00pm Sunday
HOU
GSW
 
Final
NYR 7
TAM 3
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
CHI
 
8:00pm Friday
TAM
NYR
 
8:00pm Saturday
CHI
ANA
 
12:00pm Friday
AUBURN
CHARLESTON
 
1:00pm Friday
CALIFORNIA
CCAROLINA
 
1:00pm Friday
COLUMBIA
ECAROLINA
 
1:00pm Friday
ORALROBRTS
ARKANSAS
 
1:00pm Friday
OREGON
IOWA
 
1:00pm Friday
SFLORIDA
FAU
 
1:00pm Friday
WRIGHTST
NOTREDAME
 
2:00pm Friday
MICHIGAN
BRADLEY
 
2:30pm Friday
STONYBROOK
NCSTATE
 
2:30pm Friday
TEXAS
OREGONST
 
3:00pm Friday
INDIANA
RADFORD
 
3:30pm Friday
ULLAFAYETE
RICE
 
4:00pm Friday
LEHIGH
LSU
 
6:00pm Friday
CANISIUS
SWMISSOURI
 
6:00pm Friday
CLEMSON
ARIZONAST
 
6:00pm Friday
MERCER
FLORIDAST
 
6:00pm Friday
MOREHEADST
LOUISVILLE
 
6:00pm Friday
VIRGINIA
USC
 
7:00pm Friday
FIU
MIAFLA
 
7:00pm Friday
FLAAM
FLORIDA
 
7:00pm Friday
MARYLAND
MISS
 
7:00pm Friday
SACREDHART
TCU
 
7:00pm Friday
STJOHNS
OKLAHOMAST
 
7:00pm Friday
TSOUTHERN
TEXASAM
 
7:00pm Friday
VCU
DALLASBAPT
 
8:00pm Friday
HSTNBAPT
HOUSTON
 
8:00pm Friday
LIPSCOMB
VANDERBILT
 
8:00pm Friday
OHIO
ILLINOIS
 
8:00pm Friday
TULANE
NWILMINGTN
 
10:00pm Friday
PEPPERDINE
FULLERTON
 
10:00pm Friday
SANDIEGOST
CSANTABAR
 
11:00pm Friday
CSBAKER
UCLA
 
Final
ROC 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
ROC
DUR
 
7:05pm Friday
SYR
DUR
 
6:35pm Saturday
SYR
DUR
 
5:05pm Sunday
SYR
DUR