What started out as a wild first quarter that gave Washington hope and confidence, didn't last. Carolina would end up running, or passing rather, away to a 48-16 victory.
Washington quickly countered two Carolina touchdowns early in the first quarter. The first on a play where Cousins took advantage of a mismatch between Colin Jones and Desean Jackson. Jones was torched on the play, and there isn't any safety in the world that is running D-Jax when he is streaking like that. The second was on a 99-yard kickoff return by Andre Roberts to the house for six. But that would be it for the Redskins on a day where they would turn the ball over five times, Cousins was sacked five times, and intercepted once by Kurt Coleman.
The Panthers defense was relentless, holding Washington to 14 yards on 12 attempts rushing for the day, also a franchise record. The defense forced five turnovers, four of those were fumbles. Addison, Benwikere, Kuechly, and Norman all added a forced fumble to their stat sheets for the season. Addison and Benwikere's were both strip-sacks in the backfield on Cousins. Thomas Davis also had a forced fumble, but it was recovered by Washington.
The big story of the day, however, was Cam Newton dishing touchdowns to receivers and game balls to kids at will. Cam hit five different receivers for touchdowns on Sunday's showing. Tying a previous franchise record with former Panthers quarterback Steve Beuerlein for most passing touchdowns in a game, while also breaking another for the most before halftime with four. Funchess, Olsen, Ginn, Stewart, and Tolbert were the beneficiaries on the scoring drives for the day.
The records for Cam weren't done yet, as he is now the franchise leader in all-purpose yards (19,622), breaking Jake Delhomme's 19,518. 2,953 of Newton's yards have come on the ground, versus 260 on the ground for Delhomme. For those wondering, Jake's records came over a span of 7 years where as Cam has played five, putting Cam on pace to pass those numbers through the air too.
Devin Funchess continues to improve and made the most of his first career start. Securing four of eight targets, Cam went to Funchess multiple times early to get a rhythm before eventually connecting with him again deep where Fun-Fun went over top of his defender and made a beautiful hands catch. Funchess's touchdown came on a short out route near the goal line.
Greg Olsen had a record breaking day as well. Now the all-time leader in receiving yards (3,925) for a tight end in franchise history. He needed 32 receiving yards to break Wesley Walls previous record (3,902) and recorded 54 on the day on three catches. He needs six more receptions to break Wesley Walls' franchise receptions record (324) as well. Walls played with the Panthers six seasons, Olsen has played with the Panthers for five. Not dogging people folks, just for perspective purposes.
The Panthers head to Arlington, Texas next Thursday for the teams first Thanksgiving prime time game in franchise history to take on the Cowboys. Facing former Panther Greg Hardy and a healthy Romo, we could be looking at another test on the road.
By Tripp Morgan
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