NEWwbztv-small wbz-am-small 985-small mytv38web2

Patriots

Patriots Blog: Taking A Look At The Carolina Panthers

By Levan Reid, WBZ-TV Sports
View Comments
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton celebrates after throwing a touchdown to wide receiver Steve Smith. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton celebrates after throwing a touchdown to wide receiver Steve Smith. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

WBZ-TV's Levan Reid Levan Reid
Levan Reid is a veteran sports reporter who has joined the W...
Read More
Patriots Central
Buy Patriots Tickets
Sun Sep.21
Home vs Oakland Raiders
findticketsbtn Patriots Blog: Taking A Look At The Carolina Panthers
Mon Sep.29
Away vs Kansas City Chiefs
findticketsbtn Patriots Blog: Taking A Look At The Carolina Panthers
Sun Oct.5
Home vs Cincinnati Bengals
findticketsbtn Patriots Blog: Taking A Look At The Carolina Panthers
Sun Oct.12
Away vs Buffalo Bills
findticketsbtn Patriots Blog: Taking A Look At The Carolina Panthers
 
Shop for Patriots Gear
NFL Scoreboard
NFL Standings
Team STATS
Team Schedule
Team Roster
Team Injuries

Sports Fan Insider

Keep up with your favorite teams and athletes with daily updates.
Sign Up
Football

 

BOSTON (CBS) – All of a sudden the Patriots’ Monday night game against the Carolina Panthers next week doesn’t look so easy.

Everybody thought the Panthers were winning games but weren’t doing so against the talented teams of the NFL. Well, on Sunday, they beat the San Francisco 49ers, in San Fran, holding them to just 151 yards of total offense.

I guess we can now say these Carolina Panthers are indeed “for real.”

Defensively, the Panthers will send a three-headed monster at the Patriots. On the ends they bring the heat with Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy, who both recorded more than 10 sacks last season and are on pace to do it again (Johnson has 8.5 sacks and Hardy has six through nine games). They are the best bookends in the NFL, and are both young and hungry.

Esiason On Toucher & Rich: Panthers Defense Presents ‘Tremendous Challenge’ For Brady, Patriots

In the middle of that defense is Boston College alum Luke Kuechly, who was last year’s defensive rookie of the year. People are already saying he’s the best middle linebacker in the game, and come Monday, everyone that got to see him do his thing at BC will get to see how fast and all-over-the-field he is at the NFL level.

Kuechly leads the Panthers with 75 tackles and also has three interceptions this season. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Kuechly leads the Panthers with 75 tackles and also has three interceptions this season. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

As for the Carolina offense, they may be ranked 29th in the NFL in passing offense but there is one big weapon the Patriots will have to worry about.

New England has faced a quarterback like Cam Newton (who can beat you through the air or on the ground) before, but his connection with Steve Smith is a special one. A 13-year veteran, Smith has been doing this for a long time and he’s been doing it at a high level.  Newton has targeted him 76 times this season, resulting in 42 receptions for 450 yards and three touchdowns. Up to this point, Smith is going to be the best slot receiver the Pats will have faced this season.

READ: Brady On Patriots All Access

Kyle Arrington usually gets the receiver in the slot but Smith is so good, he may require Aqib Talib-type coverage.  Let’s just hope Talib is ready to play.

Follow Levan Reid on Twitter @LevanReid.

MORE PATRIOTS COVERAGE FROM CBS BOSTON

View Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 2,033 other followers