The cat skins the bird... Carolina 21, Eagles 17

The cat skins the bird... Carolina 21, Eagles 17

Eagles

The cat skins the bird... Carolina 21, Eagles 17

Thought we had this cat in the bag at the 3-quarter mark…then I felt how we were sorta wearing down as the 4th quarter progressed. I can’t really explain that feeling— even when we were up 17-0, there was a sense that somehow the Panthers were going to make a late game of it. Also, team stats wise, both teams were basically performing at the same level of production.

Cam Newton tossed a 1-yard touchdown pass to Greg Olsen with 1:22 left and the Carolina Panthers overcame a 17-point deficit in the fourth quarter to beat the Philadelphia Eagles 21-17 on Sunday.

The Eagles offense came right back, but Wes Horton sacked Carson Wentz, forcing a fumble on fourth down from the Panthers 14 to seal the victory.

After Carolina took the lead, the Eagles started at their 30. A 48-yard pass interference penalty on James Bradberry against Alshon Jeffery put the ball at the Carolina 22. Eric Reid appeared to intercept Wentz’s overthrown pass but the play was overturned on a video review. Wentz threw incomplete to Jeffery in the end zone on third-and-2 and was stripped on the next play.

Down 17-0, the Panthers started their rally when Curtis Samuel ran in from the 14 on a reverse— but Graham Gano missed the extra point.

Newton then got hot and quickly drove the Panthers 87 yards, tossing an 18-yard pass to Devin Funchess. He connected with Jarius Wright on the 2-point conversion to get Carolina within a field goal with 4:08 left.

The Panthers forced a three-and-out and got the ball at their 31 with 2:17 remaining.

Newton threw three straight incomplete passes, but took a hit on fourth down and still completed a 35-yard catch-and-run pass to Torrey Smith to reach the Philadelphia 34. A 22-yard pass to Christian McCaffrey gave Carolina first down at the 4. Newton ran it to the 1, setting up third down. He threw it to Olsen wide open in the back of the end zone.

Newton finished 25 of 39 for 269 yards and ran for 49 yards.

Wentz’s 11-yard TD pass to Jeffery gave Philadelphia a 7-0 lead in the second quarter. Ertz had catches of 15 and 22 yards on the drive and Jeffery hauled in a 20-yard pass before the score.

Wentz tossed a 1-yard TD to Dallas Goedert to make it 17-0 in the third quarter, finishing off a 17-play, 94-yard drive that chewed up 9:22 on the clock.

I should have been confident of a W at that point, but I had that funny feeling. I think it was a realization that we were in an automatic comfort zone and then we got real conservative. Yeah, that’s it—it was too early to let the foot off the gas pedal.

Result: skinned alive.

INJURIES: Panthers: DE Mario Addison twice left the game with a back injury and didn’t return after going out in the fourth quarter.
Eagles: RB Darren Sproles (hamstring), CB Sidney Jones (hamstring), DT Haloti Ngata (calf) and S Corey Graham (hamstring) were among the key players out of the lineup.

I will get you some stats and some more reaction in the next update…
*   *   *   *   *   *

Matchup
1st Downs 19 21
Passing 1st downs 13 14
Rushing 1st downs 6 6
1st downs from penalties 0 1
3rd down efficiency 5-11 3-12
4th down efficiency 1-1 3-4
Total Plays 58 65
Total Yards 371 342
Total Drives 9 9
Yards per Play 6.4 5.3
Passing 250 284
Comp-Att 25-39 30-37
Yards per pass 6.1 6.9
Interceptions thrown 0 0
Sacks-Yards Lost 2-19 4-26
Rushing 121 58
Rushing Attempts 17 24
Yards per rush 7.1 2.4
Red Zone (Made-Att) 3-3 2-4
Penalties 5-78 4-35
Turnovers 0 1
Fumbles lost 0 1
Interceptions thrown 0 0
Defensive / Special Teams TDs 0                        0
Possession          24:43                35:17

Game Leaders

Passing Yards

CAR
C. Newton25-39, 269 YDS, 2 TD
PHI
C. Wentz30-37, 310 YDS, 2 TD

Rushing Yards

CAR
C. Newton7 CAR, 49 YDS
PHI
W. Smallwood9 CAR, 32 YDS

Receiving Yards

CAR
D. Funchess6 REC, 62 YDS, 1 TD
PHI

Z. Ertz9 REC, 138 YDS

Of course the mainstream media is in panic mode. The Eagles are now 2 games behind the Redskins in the Loss column in the NFC East. I think there is plenty of opportunity left for the Eagles to put a nice run together, and then take care of business against their divisional opponents. But yes, it’s looking like this upcoming game in London is a “must win”…
Today the Inquirer is asking this question:

Who knows where the Eagles’ season goes from here?

Who’s at fault for the Eagles’ loss? Frankly, it doesn’t matter. Scoreless after three quarters, the Panthers rallied for three touchdowns in as many drives, as the Eagles blew their 17-point lead. The Birds sit, now, on the edge of playoff irrelevance with a trip overseas on the horizon. They’ll play the Jaguars on Sunday, another team with high expectations in August that also has a 3-4 record through seven weeks. “We’re gonna find out what we’re made of,” Carson Wentz said after the game. “It’s make-or-break time, almost, so to speak.” Among the many personnel and coaching questions that surround this team, one stands out in its own category, writes columnist David Murphy. “How will they respond?” Read More

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