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October 07, 2012

Seahawks 16, Panthers 12

 By Ron Green Jr.


   So much for turning things around.

   The Panthers' disappointing season took another negative turn Sunday with a 16-12 loss to Seattle today at Bank of America Stadium.

   With its offense ineffective for all but one fourth-quarter drive, the Panthers fell to 1-4 and likely out of any postseason possibilities as they enter their bye week.

   Seattle effectively shut down the Panthers offense, limiting them to 190 total yards while frustrating quarterback Cam Newton.

   Newton completed 12 of 29 passes for 141 yards. It was the fewest yards gained in Ron Rivera's time as head coach.

   "I've got to play better. That's what it all comes down to," Newton said.

   The Panthers were one yard away from possibly changing the outcome.

   Having driven from their 20-yard line in their best offensive possession of the game, the Panthers faced fourth and goal from the Seattle 1-yard line with less than four minutes remaining. Electing to go for the go-ahead touchdown rather than a field goal, the Panthers couldn't convert.

   On fourth down, Newton rolled to his right, waiting for a receiver to come open. Tight end Ben Hartsock wound up open in the end zone but Newton threw the ball short into the dirt, killing the threat.

   The play was designed to give Newton a run/pass option with tight end Greg Olsen the primary target.

  I didn't see nothing so I decided to look back and Ben Hartsock was wide open," Newton said. "I just failed to throw it to him, give him an accurate throw so that comes on me."

  The Panthers' last chance ended when Newton lost a fumble with 41 seconds remaining, trying to lead a last-minute drive.

  The Panthers found a spark with their defense when cornerback Captain Munnerlyn intercepted a Russell Wilson pass and returned it 33 yards for a touchdown to put the Panthers ahead 10-6 early in the third quarter.

   It was one of three turnovers the Seahawks made in the third quarter but the only one which the Panthers could convert into a score.

   Wilson, the former N.C. State star, had 19 completions in 25 attempts for 221 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions.

   The Panthers didn't have 100 yards in total offense until more than midway through the third quarter as the Seahawks frustrated them with their swarming defense.

   Seattle regained the lead after Carolina tailback DeAngelo Williams lost a fumble at the Panthers' 27-yard line. Facing third and eight, Wilson found Golden Tate for a 13-yard touchdown to put Seattle ahead 13-10 with 35 seconds remaining in the third quarter.

   Another tailback fumble -- this one by Jonathan Stewart that he recovered -- cost the Panthers a first down, leading to a punt. The Seahawks then converted it into a 44-yard Steven Hauschka field goal and a 16-10 lead with 10:27 remaining.  

   The Seahawks led 6-3 at halftime.

   It was a flat performance by the Panthers' offense, which couldn't solve the Seattle defense, which is ranked third in the NFL.    

   Three of the Panthers first four possessions were three-and-outs while the other managed two first downs but didn't move deep into Seahawks' territory. It didn't help that the Panthers were stuck with poor field position, their average starting position on five first-half drives being their own 13-yard line.

   Playing without three starters -- middle linebacker Jon Beason, cornerback Chris Gamble and offensive guard Geoff Hangartner -- the Panthers couldn't generate any momentum in the first half, surrendering a handful of long third-down conversions to Seattle.

   The Seahawks took a 3-0 lead on a 22-yard Hauschka field goal with 10:29 left in the first quarter. Haustchka stretched the lead to 6-0 with a 36-yard field goal in the second quarter, capping a 12-play Seattle possession.

   The Panthers finally found a bit of offensive rhythm late in the first half, relying on Cam Newton's scrambling ability -- and the help of a roughing the passer penalty on Seattle -- to set up a 32-yard Justin Medlock field goal with two seconds remaining in the half.

 Wilson completed 12 of 13 passes for 123 yards while Newton struggled, completing just three of 15 passes for 40 yards. The Panthers managed just 93 total yards in the first half while Seattle gained 174 yards.

Posted by Observer Sports on October 7, 2012 at 08:04 PM | Permalink


Cam may not be a franchise QB, after all. He certainly hasn't shown any ability to elevate this team down the stretch in a tight game. He looks reluctant to have the game on his shoulders. And believe me, these words are hard for me to type.

Posted by: Original Panther Dan | Oct 7, 2012 8:23:19 PM

I agree, but I am afraid that Hurney has put no team around him. 11 years, 3 winning records.

Posted by: Steven | Oct 7, 2012 8:24:59 PM

3 seasons in which you had a superbowl loss a conference championship loss and a playoff appearance scattered between seasons where delhomme missed almost the entire year (2007), smith and our 1st through 19th string running backs missed the year and nick goings had a helluva season to go 7-9 (2004) and 2 8-8 seasons?! When we were healthy we WON and when we were hurt, we were 7-9 or 8-8. that's better than most franchises could say.

look around the league and look at hurney's tenure w/l column and add the context that he came into a rebuilding franchise, built it, and is now completing another rebuild as his guys aged out.

Cam had a bad day on the worst day possible. Saying that he might not be a franchise QB after all is a bit emotional to say the least. Greg Maddux had games he couldn't find the plate too. Dude was horrible today. But he was pretty effing awesome last week. He hasn't been the problem until today. But today was no doubt on him. he'll tell you that too. That's why he IS the guy that you say he isn't.

Posted by: charlottean | Oct 7, 2012 9:19:41 PM

Baddd coaching!!! The entire offensive line & coaches sucks!! Hats off to the defense!! U did your job today... Cam I'm very disappointed in you.. I bought your jersey this season,very disappointed!!

Posted by: octavia | Oct 7, 2012 9:24:16 PM

DeAngelo baby whats wrong.I'm used to you picking up yards!!!

Posted by: octavia | Oct 7, 2012 9:25:49 PM

Blame Chud for horrible play calling again. Shotgun and Read option the entire game. WTF? Run the fkn ball. Tire out the opponent's D-Line, then that will open up the pass game. Cam is not an elite quarterback. Take the pressure off his running azz by running between the tackles with our running backs.

Posted by: PanthersFan | Oct 7, 2012 9:26:47 PM

give credit to seattle too, they have a helluva D right now. i don't know that our defense played that great, but they made some big plays especially davis, keuchly, and munnerlyn obviously.

the ENTIRE game came down to cam not being able to throw darts at a board. he had a bad game. it happened, it's over, i'm sure he'll be fine against dallas in 2 weeks. hate that he has to carry it into a bye week because he'll go overboard and be throwing his arm out working on things.

with him as inaccurate as he was, there was no reason for us to be passing that much. horrible coaching.

Posted by: charlottean | Oct 7, 2012 9:44:32 PM

4th and 1 to goal. Line up with a Power I and hit it!

Posted by: Sports don | Oct 7, 2012 10:01:08 PM

^^^ maybe not.....that play call actually worked but wasn't executed. but 1st - 3rd downs were horrible. predictable....or rather completely predicted.

clock management at the end was weak. use of timeouts, etc. we were in FG range at the 34 on a 3rd and long and had a deep pass play lined up instead of a quick hitter or *gasp* a draw play.

a lotta people criticized john fox and continue to do so. but that man was and is a helluva coach. we would have won today with fox. no doubt in my mind. even with newton looking like zambrano off his meds out there.

Posted by: charlottean | Oct 7, 2012 10:07:00 PM

Go wolfpack guess the ACC QB got the best of the SEC QB

Posted by: fantasyfreak | Oct 8, 2012 7:53:23 PM

Panthers are done right now they are 9-28 over they last 3 seasons parties on Sundays are fun though

Posted by: fantasyfreak | Oct 8, 2012 7:58:40 PM

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