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September 25, 2007

For a minute, offense looked like '03

        Perhaps the most important aspect of Carolina’s win at Atlanta Sunday — other than the victory itself — was the way the Panthers’ finished.

        In the final three minutes, the offense looked liked the group that rode powerful Stephen Davis to the Super Bowl back in 2003. The coaches want the team to be able to finish off opponents by pounding them on the ground, and that’s what happened; Carolina banged out three first downs on that final drive before taking a knee.

        In the process, the zone blocking scheme new offensive coordinator Jeff Davidson has installed worked and running back DeShaun Foster took full advantage.

       Foster carried for 12, 1 and 13 yards, taking it to the two-minute warning. Backup DeAngelo Williams gained a yard while giving him a breather, and then Foster was back, bursting up the middle for 11 more. By then, Atlanta’s timeouts were gone, and quarterback David Carr took a knee twice to run out the clock.

    “To be able to get those first downs and those yards rushing against a nine-man box (nine of 11 defenders near the line of scrimmage and expecting the run), that’s huge for us,” said guard Mike Wahle.

    “What you see is what the potential is. It’s just a question of being able to do it play-in, play-out and week-in, week-out.”

— Stan Olson

Posted by Observer Sports on September 25, 2007 at 01:07 PM | Permalink


Well of course when you're playing against a winless team who's one of the worst in the NFL, your offense line creates holes that makes them look like they've been taking steroids.


Posted by: Will | Sep 25, 2007 2:28:18 PM

The Falcons may be bad, but their D so far this year has looked pretty decent only allowing 2 TDs all year before Sunday. What Scares me is the way our D played that has to be the biggest concern right now.

Posted by: Billy | Sep 25, 2007 3:19:09 PM

Good observation. We were lucky that the game turned thanks to DeAngelo Hall. Not to take anything away from our guys, I think we were better in the second half, but your point is a good one. De-Fo ran really, really, well late in the game. He needs to drop the early spin move, though, he got stuffed a couple time trying to spin before he hit the line. Probably works better in the open field, but not 2 yards deep in the backfield.

Posted by: Ben | Sep 25, 2007 3:25:00 PM

Our defense sucks, it's soft right now, they have to gel better before we are the force they used to be. it's a soup sandwhich right now, when we play or get stomped by the Colts you will see. we beat just barely who we supposed to beat, we loose bad to people we are supposed to loose to. it's upsetting we have weapons but no one wants to use them. Mr. Hall gave us that game we should be 1-2 now and that's how they should play. if they aren't sorry for the performance this year they should be. then maybe they will get back to the thundercats they used to be.

Posted by: panta4life | Sep 25, 2007 6:50:47 PM

Great points from all the commenters above. Our running game is just fine when we're winning in the fourth quarter. Too bad we won't be ahead in the fourth against good teams. I hate to say it, but this is just not a very good team right now.

Posted by: swiznami | Sep 25, 2007 7:58:56 PM

The defense is the side of the ball that needs to step it up. Peppers has been NONEXISTENT (as he's been prone to do throughout his career, though usually not for this long.) Foster continued a trend on Sunday: when he gets 100 yards on the ground, we've NEVER lost. Hell, when he's gotten 15 carries, we've won 20 out of 22 times (that's 91% for those of you not accomplished in math.) Pound the rock, and Jake will continue to make good decisions when given the chance to throw the ball (1.6 career TD:INT ratio, 8.0 this year!!! EIGHT to ONE!--compare that to David Carr's .9 rate, barely more than half of Delhomme's.)

Posted by: Michael Procton | Sep 25, 2007 8:35:51 PM

All you Panther haters, take a hike already. This is a new coaching staff with new players and new things (the use of Peppers) brewing on defense. It may as well be the 2002 season all over again. Give these guys (the Panthers) a break already and give credit where credit is due. As far as the defens goes though, something does need to be done about Peppers lack of production. I say bench him for most of the game, using McClover and Grigsby in rotation in his stead. If he doesn't change his attitude in a couple of weeks, than ship him out for some productive talent... preferably a good LT.

Posted by: SYRPIS | Sep 25, 2007 8:37:25 PM

Hey Procton, I would like to point out that in the 2005 season Peppers didn't have a sack until the sixth game of the season against the Lions. Peppers has usually always been a little sluggish when the season starts(last season was an exception). Once he gets fired up its a different story though.

Posted by: stating the obvious | Sep 26, 2007 8:11:12 AM

Any win against the falcons is a good win.Remember when they fans use to say they own us? Not anymore... Thanks John Fox

Posted by: johnson | Sep 26, 2007 1:20:22 PM

I didn't see the game as I'm in Tampa. If that's the case (going back to 2003), the Bucs wouldn't want to see that style of O. Davis and the Cats pummeled the Bucs.

The caveat now is, the zone blocking scheme and relying on cutbacks by the RBs. If the Bucs D acts as it should, they'll shut it down (everybody takes their gap). This new D is incredibly fast - I think faster than the vaunted D of the late 90s (we need DL help to be as good as then, though).

I think to beat the Bucs, you have to take them head on to minimize their speed. If not, it'll be a long day.

It'll be fun to watch, as Cats/Bucs always are. May the best team win.

Posted by: Mr.T | Sep 26, 2007 3:22:25 PM

Once he GETS FIRED UP??? He's a PROFESSIONAL ATHLETE! This is the NFL!!! His whole objective in life is to get fired up! Once he gets to game seven, he'll try??? That's not how it should work, and I, for one, will NEVER settle for that. Sorry if you believe that's good enough.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Sep 26, 2007 10:41:40 PM

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