Carolina Panthers 17 – Atlanta Falcons 31
Jonathan Kirschner notes that Michael Turner > Cam Newton, for now: Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers can’t seem to catch a break. They marched into Week 6 ready to pick up just their second victory of the season, but were stopped dead in their tracks by the Atlanta Falcons defense and Michael Turner. While Newton racked up a nice amount of yards (237 passing, 50 rushing), he seemed to be trigger happy, throwing for 3 interceptions. Newton is going to be an amazing quarterback in the future, but he hasn’t figured out exactly what his role on the offense is. Getting labeled as a franchise quarterback in your rookie year is no easy task to take (just ask Vince Young), but he is having an impressive season. The impact player of the game was on the other side of the field as Michael Turner ran for over 120 yards and found the end-zone 3 times.
Rhett Davis is likewise impressed with Turner: Yet another close defeat for the Panthers. I’m convinced that next year the Panthers will be somewhat of a threat, but this year it just isn’t happening. Cam Newton still had an over 200 yard game and a run-in touchdown, but the Panther defense just couldn’t contain the fierce Michael Turner who ran for 139 yards and 2 TDs.
And Daniels only cares about his wallet: Cam Newton finally didn’t cover a spread. It had to end sometime. Atlanta’s going to be good at home this year, which isn’t a big surprise, but boy I can’t wait to bet against them on the road.
My Take: The Panthers have the worst run defense in football, so everyone needs to calm down with the Michael Turner stuff – he’s having a bad year. The Falcons are still a team that wins when they don’t make mistakes and their opponent does, so the Cam Newton interceptions are no real shock. More to the point though, this division is fairly ridiculous already and as the Panthers get better? The Saints have a case as the second best team in the NFC, while the Buccs match their record and the Falcons had the best record in the NFC last year. With Cam on the Panthers, all they really need now is a run defense (doable in the draft and free agency) and then this is suddenly yet another really good team. For now my pick is the Saints for the division with Tampa competing for a wildcard, but this should be tight for years to come.
Tags: Atlanta Falcons, Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers, NFL