We've reached day 8 of December already, where does this time go? So I guess you know the drill by now, that means day 8 of our advent calendar. Like most of these low numbers, the players that have worn them are few and far between, and within the ones that have there is precious little to write about. David Carr is the most notable former Panther to don the 8 jersey, but considering I've covered Cam Newton and Jimmy Clausen already I'll pass on the quarterbacks for a little bit.
Instead we'll have another round of 'On This Day'. If you read my earlier pieces you'll know the last one covered the coincidence of meeting a fellow NFL South team on the 6th and handing them a defeat. Once again today we will be handing a defeat to a different NFC South side but this time I will have a slightly different focus.
December 8th 2008
Anyone remember where they were that day? Probably not, it was a Monday and who likes Monday's right? Especially one's where the Panthers haven't won the day before. On this particular Monday the Panthers were set to host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in front of a national audience on Monday Night Football. The game was set to be a thriller with both teams tied atop the division with 9-3 records. and looking to take sole control. The Panthers were hoping for the opportunity to avenge to hefty defeat the Bucs handed them earlier in the year.
With the anticipation came the crowd, and therein lies my focus for today. A remarkable 74,113 people crammed in that day to watch the game, a then record attendance. The record stood until the brilliant Monday night win over the Patriots in 2013, and that was after the stadiums capacity had been increased.
It seems 74,113 people picked the right day to go and watch their team play football. Then Panthers, quite literally, stomped all over the Bucs. 'Double Trouble' combined for 301 yards and 4 touchdowns, DeAngelo Williams 186 yards, Stewart 115 yard and two scores each. It was the second time in the season both had gone over 100 yards in the same game. Tampa were the ninth ranked run defense heading into the game but were completely overhauled by our power formation running game. Steve Smith caught a 38 yard pass from Delhomme in the only score through the air.
Tampa weren't bad on offense themselves, with Antonio Bryant having a career day with 200 receiving yards from nine targets and two scores. But it wasn't enough as Julius Peppers smashed through the Bucs O-Line to add 1.5 sacks to his tally, giving him 12.5 on the year.
The win moved the Panthers to sole control of the South (Not much has changed huh?)and had the record crowd dreaming again. So were any of you guys at that game that you remember? Or even just at the Patriots game five year later? If so, get in touch and share your memories of what it was like to be involved in the record capacity at the Bank of America Stadium.