The 2-1 Carolina Panthers defeated the now 2-1 Cincinnati Bengals Sunday 31-21. The Panthers recorded a great team win heading into their bye week, and redeemed themselves following a disappointing defensive performance that lead to a loss last week.
While quarterback Cam Newton and running back Christian McCaffrey both had impressive days on offense, there was one new name that especially stood out on defense. That name is linebacker Efe Obada.
If you’re like me, you have never heard Efe Obada’s name until yesterday. That’s because yesterday was Obada’s first NFL start. Despite that, number 94 looked like a veteran and went on the field with the intention to make a name for himself.
Despite only playing in 29% of the team snaps, Obada recorded one sack for a loss of ten yards and caught one interception during the game. He also tackled QB Andy Dalton as he was throwing, forcing what at first look appeared to be a fumble. The fumble was then reversed and called an incomplete pass, but Obada was left applying pressure and recording a QB hit. In the locker room, 94’s performance impressed his teammates and coach so much that he was awarded one of the game balls.
The Panthers lost a nail-biter to their division rival Atlanta Falcons Sunday in their typical cardiac cat fashion.
With the game on the line at 24-31 and 5 seconds on the clock, quarterback Cam Newton launched a 30-yard bomb into the end zone to his new, speedy wide receiver DJ Moore. Unfortunately, under pressure and in the face of two defenders, Moore was unable to reel the catch in for a chance at overtime.
The offense overall did what they were supposed to, by putting 24 points on the board. However, the Panthers struggled for four quarters in an unexpected phase: Defense.
For the second week in a row, the Cleveland Browns put up a great fight but came away empty, largely due to problems with the kicking game. After settling for a tie in week one vs the Pittsburgh Steelers, they tried to get that first win in two years down in New Orleans.
Placekicker Zane Gonzalez really struggled, missing two extra points and a field goal to the left, then missed a chance to tie things up with a field goal attempt that went way right.
The offense, while not spectacular, did enough to win but you can’t leave eight points off the board when you are facing a great opponent. Even the defense recovering fumbles by wide receivers Michael Thomas and Ted Ginn Jr. wasn’t enough to keep the Browns ahead on the scoreboard. They’ve won the turnover battle the last two weeks, but the offense has only come away with 10 points as a result.
Quarterback Tyrod Taylor played an adequate game, and while fans were clamoring to give rookie Baker Mayfield a shot, Taylor managed an amazing deep pass to rookie wide receiver Antonio Callaway for a 47-yard touchdown that could give them the lead, if they had managed to get the extra point. All for naught…
The Chargers fell to the Saints in a disappointing 36-7 loss on Saturday, in the third week of the preseason. After scrimmaging and practicing together in the final week of training camp, the Saints dominated the Chargers for three quarters.
While this game was less than exciting for Chargers fans to watch, there were still some positive takeaways from this game.
Any team that goes up against the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl immediately gains a ton of fans. The Atlanta Falcons are one such team. After leading for most of Super Bowl LI back in 2017, the Falcons lost in gut-wrenching fashion – at least most of us were wrenched.
But last season they seemed to suffer from some sort of Super Bowl Hangover. Will 2018 be the season they bounce back?
I recently met a huge Falcons fan on twitter, so I asked Angela Spencer // @AngieSpencer28 five questions and got her thoughts regarding the upcoming season…
Anyone who is a Carolina Panther’s fan has more than likely heard by now that wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin had some harsh criticism for quarterback Cam Newton and the Panthers as a whole on Saturday.
Benjamin, who publicly spoke out for the first time since his trade, commented to The Athletic that “had he been put with an accurate quarterback, like [Aaron] Rodgers or Eli Manning” or a quarterback with “knowledge”, he would have been in a better position for success as a wide receiver. Not only were his comments seemingly out of left field for his former teammate and friend, but there are many reasons why these statements are simply not true.
Tampa Bay Buccanneers quarterback Jameis Winston was hoping that his past actions would somehow get lost in mini-camp news, but that was not the case. On Thursday, ESPN Insider Adam Schefter tweeted this:
NFL is planning to suspend Buccaneers’ QB Jameis Winston the first three games of the season for violating the personal conduct policy, league sources tell ESPN.
ESPN’s Tallahassee host Jeff Cameron initially reported Winston was bracing to be suspended – and he will be.
What an interesting week it has been for Panther players and fans.
First, there was news that linebacker Shaq Thompson is getting sued for a 2016 car accident he was involved in. Then, there was panic surrounding the news that quarterback Cam Newton got in another car accident and somehow collided with a dump truck (Thankfully, he is fine).
But perhaps the most devastating news of all, came two days ago: that LB Thomas Davis will serve a 4 game suspension for violating the NFL’s policy performance-enhancing substances.
It didn’t take long when the news broke for Davis to post a heartfelt and apologetic video on Twitter addressing Panther fans and the situation. In light of this recent news, I wanted to take an opportunity to reflect on the amazing player that Davis has always been, on and off the field for Charlotte and surrounding communities.