Custom Search




banner2

banner3

banner3

banner2

 


Why I Like The Panthers

February 4, 2016

The Carolina Panthers are making their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history. Those who remember the first appearance back in 2003 remember that the Panthers were big underdogs against the mighty New England Patriots. Falling to the Pats on a last-minute field goal almost seemed like a moral victory.

Things are a little different this time around. Carolina is the “mighty” favorite and it would be disappointing to fall this time. But I do not think the Panthers will fall.

My regular readers may have sensed that I have been waiting for Carolina’s bubble to burst, even though I am a fan of the team and how it was built. The playoff run that has the Panthers at 17-1 this season has convinced me that this is a great team. A great team that finished the regular season first in the NFL in scoring with 31.2 points per game. The defense had plenty to do with that. Quarterback Cam Newton is the MVP front-runner who enjoys a consistent running attack led by himself and Jonathan Stewart who has the NFL’s longest active streak of games with at least 50 rushing yards. And Newton is behind a Panthers offensive line that is arguably the best in the NFL as a unit.

I like the Panthers because I do not see the Broncos rallying if they fall behind early. We saw the Panthers race to huge leads against the Seattle Seahawks and Arizona Cardinals this postseason, and I feel those teams are better than the Denver Broncos. At least offensively because Denver comes to the Super Bowl with a mediocre offense that ranked 19th in the NFL. I bring up the Panthers’ wins over the Cardinals and Seahawks because they were impressive and it showed that even two offenses led by MVP-candidate QBs couldn’t complete a comeback. The Broncos, on the other hand, don’t have that sort of productivity at quarterback. I know he is already a legend. But Peyton Manning threw an interception on five percent of his pass attempts. Moreover, Manning completed just 35% of his passes of at least 20 yards with more picks than TDs (five to four) and a 64.0 QB Rating. Without a real vertical passing attack and facing the league’s best defense vs. short stuff and throws over the middle, it is hard imagining Denver coming back from a double-digit deficit.

I like the Panthers because they force turnovers and rarely turn the ball over themselves. Whether it’s Josh Norman, Kurt Coleman, or Luke Kuechly, the Panthers pass defense is loaded with playmakers.

I already mentioned that Manning is the most interception-prone quarterback in the NFL. He will be taking on the defense that led the league with 24 picks, was second in net yards per pass attempt allowed, sixth in scoring, and gave up just 21 touchdowns through the air.

Cam Newton & Peyton Manning

I like the Panthers because of their run defense. Denver will attempt to move the ball on the ground in an effort to keep Newton and company off the field. They will struggle moving the ball this way as Carolina has not given up 80 rushing yards in their past four games. The Panthers run defense allowed just 3.9 yards per rush during the regular season.

I like the Panthers because they are making a habit of producing explosive plays on offense. Carolina’s wide receivers have been criticized often, but the numbers point out that they’ve been considerably better than expected. Newton knows how to use these players to their strengths and his line gives them enough time to get open. And they are all good after the catch. The explosiveness of the Panthers offense stems from the speed of their receivers, Cam’s greatness, and tight end Greg Olsen’s ability to beat whoever the opponents attempt to defend him with. The Panthers are great at setting up the vertical passing game with their rushing attack.

I like the Panthers because of Cam Newton. I usually favor teams that have the best player on the field. And Newton will be the best player on the field. He is the one with the best chance to make game-changing plays. The man will be the MVP for this very reason. He has always had talent. Now there is a sense of intelligence to go with his talent. Newton has 35 passing touchdowns and has only thrown one interception since Week 10. And he also has 10 rushing touchdowns this season. Newton has outstanding third down skills to keep the chains moving and he is clutch as Carolina has given its fans four-game winning drives this season.

I do not think the Panthers will need a game-winning drive this Sunday. But it is nice knowing Newton is fully capable of doing so if needed.

And that is why I like Carolina to capture its first Super Bowl.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


ARCHIVES:

How This Super Bowl Team Was Built

Panthers Held On For Dear Life

NFL Playoffs Continue

NFL Wildcard Playoff Matchups

Panthers Did What?

Bowling For (fill in the blank)

Rose Still Outside Looking In

College Football Playoff Pairings

Be Careful What You Ask For

Cam Getting Some MVP Play

NFL Thoughts

Who Would Have Thunk It?

Relentless Royals

Another Week, Another Win

Panthers Gain Credibility

Pitfalls For USC

Panthers Got Defensive

Panthers Are Rolling

Panthers Win Again

Panthers Win Ugly

Can Panthers Three-Peat?

College Football Preview

Just What The NFL Needed

UNC Delaying Tactics

Some Refreshing News

Deflate-Gate Revisited

The Smoltz Story

Ty Lawson Needs A Wake Up Call

Florida State Police Blotter

World Cup Win For US Women

Hornets Select Kaminsky

Goodell/Brady Have Their Meeting

LeBron & The Cavs Fall Short

ESPN Taking Heat

NBA Finals

Edwards Back In Winners Circle

NFL To Change Football Rules

Deflate-Gate Hits Pats Hard

NFL Draft News

What’s Up With Deflate-Gate

What? Tebow Again

Get Used To Spieth

Duke Claims Title

The Familiar Four

NCAA Tournament Continues

March Madness

Tark The Shark

Duke Is Gearing Up For March Madness

I Don’t Get It

Yankee Hypocrisy

Honoring Dean Smith

Common Sense

Get Your Mind On The Game

NFL Championship Sunday

Panthers Eliminated

Panthers Move On

Panthers Playoff Bound

Sid’s 2014 Bowl Predictions

Kobe vs. Michael

Where Did That Come From?

Goodell Takes A Hit

Fragile Cavs

RG III Needs To Look In The Mirror

Heels AD Still Has Williams’ Back

Bumgarner Saves The Giants

Optimism Abounds With The Hornets

An Unlikely World Series

Winston Off Field Turmoil Continues

Panthers Rebound

October Baseball

Panthers Facing New Questions

Reality With Rice

Panthers Win, Panthers Win 

Carolina Panthers Preview

College Football Preview

When Will Manziel Show Some Poise?

A Tragic Racing Moment

NCAA Football Talk

Got Off Easy

ACC Football Preseason Poll Is Out

LeBron Changes Image

LeBron Still Undecided

Game Effort By USA

The Decision II

Spurs Claim Dynasty Tag

Sour Grapes

Heat Make NBA Finals Again

Cavs Win Lottery (Again)

Nasalgate

Panthers And The Draft

Not So Sterling

NBA Playoff Action

Phelps Diving Back Into It

Shabazzzzzzzz

Final Four Fodder

NCAA Hoop Madness

March Madness, 2014 Style

One and Done

Heels Heating Up

Setting The Record Straight

Martin And Incognito

Bobcats Appear To Be Moving Forward (This Time)

A Super Letdown

Super Bowl Preview

Broncos and Seahawks Reach Super Bowl

Panthers Were Not Ready

Seminoles End SEC Streak

2013 In Review

Sid’s Bowl Picks

Mack Brown Resigns

BCS Gets It Right

Did You See The Classic?

ACC Hoop Preview

NFL Coaching Hot Seats

Panthers Are The Talk Of The NFL

Ravens Not Flying So High These Days

A Jeff Gordon Sighting

World Series Preview

Craziness Within College Football

Dissension In Tar Heel Land

SEC Football Rules

Nickname Controversy

Panthers And Rivera Lose Another Close One

NASCAR Steps Up

NFL, 2013 Style

Panthers Are Cam’s Team

Heels Sticking With Hairston

NCAA Hypocrisy

Does NASCAR Need Young Talent?

Crash & Burn?

PHIL-thy Good

An All Star Night

Charlotte Signs Jefferson

NBA Free Agency And Charlotte

LeBron vs. Michael

Major Problem For Tiger

Police Blotter Hits Tar Heel Hoop Program

NBA Finals Are Set

Irish Eyes Are Not Smiling

NBA Final Four

Tiger May Be Having His Best Season Ever

NBA Playoff Action

No Draft Buzz With The Panthers

NBA Playoff Preview

Tiger Should Have Been DQed

Baseball Is Back

Final Four Fodder

Sweet 16 Madness

March Madness

He’s Back

Kelly’s A Hero

Who Said Girls Can’t Race?

Danica Is On The Pole

King James

Flacco & The Ravens Hang On


 

 


Banner-Sample-1.jpg   Banner-Sample-2.jpg

PO Box 1721 | Hickory, NC 28603 | 828.322.1036 | Office Hours: Mon. - Fri. 9am - 5pm | focusnews@centurylink.net

Home • Reviews: MoviesAdam Long • Editorials: FocusHave Chainsaw Will TravelSid On SportsBobbi GSara MawyerPeople PicturesPlaces/PeopleExtra Events Listing
Out Of Focus • News: Local NewsNational NewsHoroscopes • Info/Links: Staff/ContributorsList Of AdvertisersOnline AdvertisingOnline ClassifiedsContact UsFocus BLOGStoreLinks

© 1978 - 2016 Tucker Productions, Inc.