Carolina's Loss Could be Blessing in Disguise

Carolina's Loss Could be Blessing in Disguise

Okay, so  it finally happened. After weeks of squeakers and blown leads, only to pull things out at the end, the magic ran out in Atlanta Sunday. It's not all that surprising that the Falcons were the team to do it when you think about it. Dan Quinn, Atlanta's first-year head coach, is a Pete Carroll disciple as he was the Defensive Coordinator for the Seattle Seahawks for years before taking on the head gig in Georgia.

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C3 Up, Three Down: Panthers over Falcons

C3 Up, Three Down: Panthers over Falcons

C3 Up, Three Down is a series that identifies three key areas the Panthers succeeded and three areas they failed in their most recent contest.  This week's C3 Up, Three Down weeds through the good and bad of Carolina's win over the Atlanta Falcons.

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Star Shines at Right Time

Star Shines at Right Time

Star Lotulelei shined bright in Carolina’s win over the Atlanta Falcons. Collecting two sacks, a QB hit, and three hurries, Star had the best game of his career, according to ProFootballFocus.com.  The metrics site graded Star at +4.1 overall against Atlanta.  The only two games he’s even come close this type of production this season were Chicago (+2.5) and Seattle (+2.4) Sunday’s explosion came after 15 long weeks of average play, underscored by lingering injury. Neither he nor Coach Ron Rivera indicated that Star’s diminishing production was due to injury, but looking at the snap count, the ankle he rolled against the Philadelphia Eagles wasn’t an easy injury for the big fellow. 

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Carolina Panthers Learning to Win at the Right Time

Carolina Panthers Learning to Win at the Right Time

Winning, it’s something the Carolina Panthers rediscovered at just the right time.

The Panthers continued their winning streak and secured a playoff spot by beating the Atlanta Falcons Sunday, 34-3. The Panthers were dominant from the opening kickoff. The offense moved the ball, and although Carolina didn’t capitalize on every red-zone appearance, they put up points. The defense came to play as well. Laying big hits early, Carolina swarmed Matt Ryan all afternoon, and for the first time this season, the defense scored. Then they scored again. Reminiscent of the beat-down delivered in New Orleans four weeks ago, Carolina finished out a four-game win streak that landed them with a home playoff game.  Although winning has come easy as of late, it was something that evaded the Panthers for ten weeks, leaving many of us to think this playoff berth was near impossible.

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Halftime Analysis: Panthers jazzed up and go into half with the lead

Halftime Analysis: Panthers jazzed up and go into half with the lead

It seemed the one o'clock games crept by as we waited to see Carolina go into Atlanta and fight for a playoff spot.  Anxious.  Excited. What would the Panthers do?  Well, the Panthers came out hot.  Cam led the offense two long consecutive drives, the first ending in a field-goal and the second with a touchdown pass to Ed Dickson.   As the Panthers offense worked efficiently, the Panthers defense knocked the Falcons on their heads.  

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C3 Gameday Tailgate and Open Mic

Grab the mic Panther fans and let the nation know!  Open Mic is an open discussion thread. Just drop a comment in the comments section below.  Respond to other fans, and as always #KeepPounding.

It's game day and the Panthers are going deep into the Dirty South to face the Atlanta Falcons.  It's time to turn up Panther Nation.  Use the comments section as an open game day discussion thread, and be sure to upload your tailgating pictures in the comments.  Want to share on Twitter, just hashtag #C3. 

On the Line: Panthers at Falcons

On the Line: Panthers at Falcons

C3 On the Line series bets the Carolina Panthers line and discusses the stakes of the game in the context of the Panthers season. CarolinaCatChronicles.com On the Line is not betting advice, but a means for football discussion. 

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Choosing Sides: Panthers vs. Falcons Matchups by Position

Choosing Sides: Panthers vs. Falcons Matchups by Position

It has finally come down to one game for all the marbles for we Carolina Panthers fans. Playoffs or bust!

Certainly, a lot of material will be produced before this game, and by a lot of people. Opinions, analysis, and even armchair psychology will enter the picture, so I'll save that stuff for late in the week. Right now, I would just like to take a look at the positions on the respective rosters and put them through the "eyeball test" to see who has an advantage and where:

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Panthers' Last Gasp? Game Recap of Loss to Atlanta Falcons

Panthers' Last Gasp? Game Recap of Loss to Atlanta Falcons

They told us Carolina was going to regress, and while this is a little bigger step back than even they expected, this is just the way it had to be. Clearly, they were right. Carolina has taken a step back, and it just so happened to be off a cliff. I’m still not convinced it had to be this bad, but I’ve been told over and over it had to be this way. It is what it is, I guess. The Panthers can’t win. Today’s punch to the gut only makes that reality that much harder to swallow.

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