Carolina Panthers at New England Patriots - Week 4

With Brandon Cooks finally having his first breakout game as a Patriot last week, Carolina will have to do anything possible to keep New England off-balance. (One has to wonder why this is a 1 p.m. game.) And, as we all have heard, and nearly saw last week, defense wins football games. The Panthers are off to a 2-0 start because the Carolina defense has given up only a field goal in each game - a 23-3 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on September 10 and a 9-3 victory over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday. The series is all tied up 3-3.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. - Cam Newton on Sunday became the first quarterback in National Football League history to rush for 50 touchdowns. Two years ago, Newton passed for 315 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-22 victory over the Saints. Newton was 17-for-26 for 167 yards with no touchdowns and three interceptions in a 34-13 loss to New Orleans last week. After an interception and a quick score, the game gets out of hand as the Panthers defense wears out. It did not work out.

For the second straight Sunday, the defending champion Patriots are at home and are double-digit favorites (as documented by SportsBook Review).

This is a vulnerable Patriots defense. Carolina, with Christian McCaffrey, can exploit those match ups the same way the Chiefs did with Kareem Hunt. So, while the Carolina defense makes for a worthy adversary for Brady on Sunday, Brady presents a much bigger challenge to the Carolina defense. He also rushed for 636 yards, with 10 touchdowns via his legs.

Cam Newton is now tanking teams that drafted him, so it seems fool-hardy to continue to start Cam while his team, and his body are in tatters. Carolina will also be without starting corner Daryl Worley on Sunday as he is out with a shoulder injury. I know in the preseason I picked Brady to have a down season and he started out with a bad performance against the Chiefs. His nine receptions and 101 receiving yards in a breakout performance against the Saints illustrated just how unsafe the versatile playmaker can be as a pass catcher. "Just improvements like pass rush is getting better, obviously the rookies are getting better each week, I can see it".

That set the stage for the Panthers, who drove to the New England 30 before Gano's winning kick. Their defense has surrendered 36 points per game and no fix is in sight. Both guys practiced, but are still not 100 percent. Cam has not played well, and everyone knows this offense is only as good as Cam is.

It's the second week in a row that Tom Brady has won the AFC Offensive Player of the Week.

Jourdan: I think that this is a vulnerable Patriots team. It's a lot easier for a fan to stomach losing a game 45-21 than it is to lose one 24-0, even though the margin is exactly the same. The Patriots defense is in shambles and seems to match up poorly with Carolina's strengths. He threw for five touchdowns against Houston, including the victor (and a subsequent 2-point conversion) with 23 seconds left. I smell a monster upset here. "He just doesn't have that one singular guy that he's had in the past". He's kind of a running back to receiver, but they can get him the ball in a lot of different ways.

  • Jo Lloyd