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September 30, 2012

Halftime blog: Falcons 17, Panthers 14

ATLANTA

Matt Ryan threw a pair of touchdown passes to Roddy White to put the Falcons up 17-14 at halftime against the Panthers Sunday at the Georgia Dome.

Ryan completed 13 of 20 passes for 144 yards with the two scores, and one interception.

The Panthers' defense, which had given up 80-yard touchdown drives on the opening series of their first three games, came to play Sunday.

The Panthers forced a three-and-out on the Falcons' opening possession, and later turned back Atlanta after the Falcons had driven to the half-yard line. Safety Haruki Nakamura thwarted that scoring threat by intercepting Matt Ryan at the goal line.

Meanwhile, the Panthers stayed patient with their running game, getting good mileage out of the zone read package. Cam Newton had a 32-yard run on an option keeper to set up the Panthers' first touchdown – a 17-yard catch by Greg Olsen that put the Panthers up 7-0.

DeAngelo Williams' 13-yard touchdown run had given the Panthers a 14-10 lead with 8:50 left in the first half.

Nakamura was involved in seemingly every big play in the first half – good and bad.

He gave up both touchdown catches White, including a 49-yarder on which Nakamura got turned around and allowed White to make an easy grab in the end zone.

Later in the second quarter, Nakamura had a nice pass breakup in the end zone on a pass intended for Julio Jones.

But on the Falcons' final drive of the first half, Nakamura was late breaking on a throw to Jones, who had gotten behind linebacker Jon Beason.

Newton was 9-of-13 for 90 yards and was the Panthers' leading rusher with 40 yards on three carries.

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on September 30, 2012 at 02:32 PM | Permalink

Comments

Defense came to play? Boy, Rivera had them ready for the second half....

Posted by: David | Sep 30, 2012 2:55:29 PM

Nakamura is a joke, he gave this game away for us. He sucked in Baltimore and never deserved to start there. He sucks even worse here. The Guy down right sucks.. he is slow, short and stupid. Rivera needs to wake up, get pissed on the side line like ATL's coach. Also Sean McDermott needs to be let go. he sucked in Philly.. sucks here too.. We suck

Posted by: WillyLumpLump | Sep 30, 2012 5:59:34 PM

4th and one to win game! You rely on a defense that has failed you in 7 out of 8 - 1/2's!!!! (So the defense plays satisfactory in 1st half of game?) Please tell Rivera his defense is not the 85 Bears and there is a reason he was an assistant coach and not a head coach for so long!!! Amateur decision with result that is deserved at expense of fans... Wake up!!!

Posted by: Ross Portaro | Sep 30, 2012 7:07:56 PM

Man what a can of worms!!

Posted by: hotspur | Sep 30, 2012 7:14:21 PM

Man what a can of worms!!

Posted by: hotspur | Sep 30, 2012 7:14:21 PM

I feel so badly for Charles Johnson. To play so well only to lose bacause your quarterback does not have the capacity to learn. Cam just keeps getting worse and worse. I got the first down but I forgot the ball.

Posted by: Hartman | Sep 30, 2012 10:57:43 PM

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