The Carolina Panthers finally lost today thanks to a strong defensive showing from the Atlanta Falcons, who stifled a late rally and shut down Cam Newton to win 20-13.
Newton, the likely MVP candidate, completed just 17 of 30 passes for 142 yards and no touchdowns. He rushed for 46 yards and a touchdown, but that was the best offense the Panthers got. Atlanta’s defense just wouldn’t give Carolina an inch.
And it was also a rare bad showing for the Panthers’ defense, as there was simply no way to contain Falcons star receiver Julio Jones. The former Alabama star had nine catches for 178 yards, including a 70 yard touchdown catch.
Atlanta took a 20-17 lead late in the fourth quarter and just when it looked like Carolina would rally to tie the game, just one play after Newton found Corey Brown for a 19-yard gain, Newton was stripped of the ball by rookie Vic Beasley and Adrian Clayborn recovered the ball.
Long story short, with shoddy defense and an inability to overcome playing in the Georgia Dome, Carolina beat itself today as it fell to 14-1.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports