Carolina Panthers suffered their first loss of the year against the Dallas Cowboys 36-28 in a game that wasn’t as close as the score would appear.
The defense, which has been superb throughout the first three games of the year, was gashed constantly by Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas offense. Coming into the game, the Panthers were allowing just 45 rushing yards per game. Dallas easily surpassed that figure, rushing for 245 yards on the ground after the Panthers had previously only allowed a total of 135 yards in the first three games of the season.
Once again, the third quarter seems to be where the Panthers struggled the most. Sam Darnold threw two interceptions in the quarter, and the Cowboys scored 20 points after trailing at the half 14-13. One of the key takeaways from this game is the Panthers offensive line. Darnold was hit 11 times and sacked five times. Although it sounds like the Panthers were terrible in this game, that wasn’t the case, and this team has a lot to learn from heading into next week’s matchup with the Philadelphia Eagles. As Sam Darnold put it, “You can either put your head down and sulk, or you can watch the tape, get better from it, and continue to practice hard and practice well this whole next week getting ready for Philly. We’ve got a bunch of guys in the locker room who are going to do that.”
If there is some positive news from yesterday’s game, it must be receiver DJ Moore who had eight catches for 113 yards and two scores. The receiver has been on a tear lately, with over 100 yards receiving in his last two games. Sam Darnold and DJ Moore appear to have developed some great chemistry early in the season, and that can only bode well for the team as the year progresses.
While it was the first loss of the year, the team will learn from this setback and focus on improving what went wrong to right the ship next week when they host the Philadelphia Eagles at home at Bank of America Stadium.