“Carolina On My Mind”

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Jacksonville Jaguars

As the season was beginning to start, the Carolina Panthers entered as an average team at best. In my opinion, they’ve always gone as far as Cam Newton takes them. 2015 seems so long ago because that was the year where he seemed to take that next step as a quarterback and put it altogether to help lead the Panthers to their best record in franchise history at 15-1, the top seed in the NFC and Cam was named league MVP. Since then, he’s been average at best and to his defense, he’s also been injured. If you follow me closely, I’ve never been the biggest fan of teams starting their star players in preseason games. Cam played in one and injured his foot. It could be a Lisfranc injury which would sideline him for the rest of the year. Since he’s been sidelined, the Panthers have turned to Kyle Allen as their starting quarterback. In the four games he’s played in, he’s a perfect 4-0 so far. How’ve the Panthers been able to be successful even without their face of the franchise?

First, health is a major key in a team’s success. Being healthy can make all the difference. Cam wasn’t himself and you could tell with the lack of velocity in his passes. Kyle comes in and he’s been able to run this Norv Turner coached offense. You must be able stay up on your feet to get the ball out your hands and Kyle’s done just that. It also helps when your running back has also been on a tear this year. Christian McCaffrey has been putting together a great season and has been the Panthers best offensive player. He impacts the running game of course and if you take away his running lanes, he’s able to beat you in the passing game. Versatility is a major key in the game today and nobody has displayed that more than Run CMC this year. If you’re a wide receiver on this team, you should be happy that you have a quarterback that can get you the ball and if you have to extend your route running, you can do and not worry about the quarterback being sacked or turning the ball over. That’s a huge positive.

The defense has bounced back nicely as it should considering Ron Rivera is a defensive minded coach. Their front seven had themselves quite the day yesterday in London against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Seven sacks of Jameis Winston. The secondary has even played better and that’s because the front seven is winning the battle up front at the line of scrimmage. That makes all the difference. Whenever Cam is healthy, I’d keep him on the bench. I’ve always been a big believer in remaining with the hand that’s hot and right now, that’s Kyle Allen. Bringing Cam back could disrupt chemistry as a team.

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