Sports

Panthers Can’t Hold On For Wins

The Carolina Panthers have blown yet another game in which they controlled the score until late in the fourth quarter. Playing on the road Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo, New York, the Panthers lead the Bills 23-17 with less than a minute to play after head coach Ron…

The Carolina Panthers have blown yet another game in which they controlled the score until late in the fourth quarter.

Playing on the road Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo, New York, the Panthers lead the Bills 23-17 with less than a minute to play after head coach Ron Rivera opted to go for a 39-yard field goal on fourth-and-one from the Bills’ 21-yard-line.

The Panthers would then kickoff for a touchback and allow rookie quarterback EJ Manuel to drive eighty yards and throw a game-winning touchdown with only two seconds left on the clock.

Rivera has now blown ten fourth quarter wins during his tenure as Panthers head coach – which is largely responsible for his 13-21 career record.

While it’s not fair to put all the blame on Rivera for this one game, the Panthers clearly have not been meeting their potential from last season up to this point.

Management is where this writer points the blame. What exactly is General Manager Dave Gettleman’s plan to utilize his current franchise quarterback, who has yet to be offered a contract extension. Gettleman seems to desire a pure pocket passer over the likes of “Superman” based on the emphasis on the passing game so far this season.

Another question to be asked is this: When are the Panthers going to add pieces to support Cam Newton? Every season it seems Carolina fans are looking for that second wide receiver to compliment Steve Smith. So far the best the Panthers have managed to acquire has been Brandon LaFell, Armanti Edwards, Ted Ginn, and Legedu Naanee. The offensive line has also been badly neglected – with only three linemen taken in the past three drafts (and only one selected higher than the sixth round).

The Panthers defense has shown tremendous improvement under Rivera and defensive coordinator Sean McDermott. In fact the defensive line has never looked better except when future Hall-of-Famer Julius Peppers was stalking quarterbacks at Bank of American stadium. Carolina’s linebackers are finally all healthy – with Luke Kuechly blossoming into a tackle machine at middle linebacker.

The Panthers surrendered only 12 points in Week One to a Seattle Seahawks squad which looked like the most complete team in the National Football League on Sunday night – but that, too, was a game Rivera’s squad should have won.

There is a lot of blame to go around in Carolina and sadly Rivera will be the one that must take it but, if the Panthers could just close out games, they might be able to salvage his job – and their 2013 record.

reece

Reece Funderburk is a fantasy sports blogger. Follow him on Twitter @TheSMBlitz.

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9 comments

Cleo September 16, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Stop trying to be a damn sports site – dance with the one that brung ya

Reply
TontoBubbaGoldstein September 16, 2013 at 11:17 pm

Sex, drugs, rock and roll and purveyance of “rumors and innuendo within state government.”?

Reply
Don September 16, 2013 at 5:31 pm

I support this guy, good stuff fits

Reply
Tom September 16, 2013 at 6:59 pm

The Panther coaching staff better be working on their resumes.

Reply
Jethro September 16, 2013 at 11:24 pm

Barak Obama, democrats and RINOS caused this.

Reply
The Colonel September 17, 2013 at 8:11 am

Are you by chance cousins with a guy named Big T?

Reply
Cleveland Steamer September 17, 2013 at 1:33 am

Will SC idol JC equal or better Johnson or Hardy? IMHO equal or lower. Hope I’m wrong

Reply
PantherFan September 17, 2013 at 11:22 am

Pocket passers are who win in the NFL game. Newton can run and his ability is a threat, but it is compromised by his deficiencies in passing. Too many of Sunday’s incomplete passes were simply overthrown by Newton.
PS: Both LaFell and Olsen can catch a pass.
PSS: Steve Smith has been so much fun to watch all these years.

Reply
kirby September 18, 2013 at 1:06 pm

who cares?

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