Week 12: Carolina Panthers At Philadelphia Eagles

Carolina Panthers v New Orleans Saints
Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys
Winner Cam Newton has struggled throughout much of his second season, but he remains a supremely talented player. However, holding onto the ball has become an issue for Newton and it’s probably one of the key reasons behind his problems. Newton has thrown 10 interceptions and he has also fumbled the ball nine times.
Nick Foles has looked completely ineffective in relief of injured Mike Vick. Foles wants to stand in the pocket, find an open receiver and step in and throw the ball hard. The Eagles’ offensive line won’t allow him to play like that. They couldn’t protect Vick and they can’t protect Foles. He lacks accuracy and confidence. That’s not a winning combination.
The Panthers want to set the tone with their ground game. Jonathan Stewart, DeAngelo Williams and Newton are supposed to give the Panthers a formidable ground attack, but they have been ordinary this season. Wide receiver Steve Smith is a warrior who will battle for everything thrown his way. Greg Olsen is a solid tight end who can go downfield and stretch the defense.
Winner Offensive line issues have plagued the Eagles all season. While they have often played out in big hits on Vick and Foles, they haven’t opened big holes for the LeSean McCoy in the running game. McCoy suffered a concussion in Week 11 and he may not be able to play. Wide receivers DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin are solid threats who can go downfield and make plays.
The Panthers had the Bucs on the ropes in Week 11, but they allowed a late TD pass and 2-point conversion that allowed them to send the game into overtime. Head coach Ron Rivera admitted his defense got fatigued in the game. Rookie Luke Kuechly leads the team with 97 tackles. Defensive end Charles Johnson has 8.5 sacks and is difficult to block.
Winner The Eagles have done a decent job on defense, ranking 12th overall in yards allowed. Middle linebacker DeMeco Ryans has a team-leading 77 tackles and he is almost always in the right position. The Eagles are not getting enough from defensive ends Jason Babin and Trent Cole, who have combined for 6.0 sacks.
Special Teams
Winner The Panthers have struggled badly in all aspects of special teams. Captain Munnerlyn has plenty of speed, but he is a substandard punt returner. He is averaging 5.1 yards per return this season. Justin Medlock has attempted 10 field goals this year and has made 7 of them.
The Eagles have had difficulty covering kickoffs and punts. They are allowing 13.5 yards per punt return and 27.0 yards per kickoff return. Alex Henery has been one of the few positives for the Eagles, having been successful on 17-of-18 FG attempts.

We'll Just Call it a Tie

Carolina Panthers v New Orleans Saints Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys

This is one of the saddest Monday night games in recent memory. Andy Reid has no chance of turning this situation around and he will almost certainly be gone by the end of the season. Ron Rivera will find himself in the line of fire as knee-jerk owner Jerry Richardson will blame him for the Panthers’ poor season.


  1. PHILADELPHIA, PA - OCTOBER 23: Sam Bradford #8 of the Minnesota Vikings throws a pass in the first quarter against Brandon Graham #55 of the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on October 23, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Vikings 21-10. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) GREENBAY, WI - OCTOBER 20: Running back Jordan Howard #24 of the Chicago Bears is tackled by nose tackle Kenny Clark #97 and cornerback Demetri Goodson #39 of the Green Bay Packers in the second quarter at Lambeau Field on October 20, 2016 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
    Week 8 Tale Of The Tape: Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears

    The Vikings and Bears square off in a battle of NFC North divisional rivals.

  2. PHILADELPHIA, PA - OCTOBER 23: Quarterback Carson Wentz #11 of the Philadelphia Eagles avoids Everson Griffen #97 of the Minnesota Vikings as he runs for a first down during the second quarter of a game at Lincoln Financial Field on October 23, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 16: Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys looks to pass against the Green Bay Packers during the third quarter at Lambeau Field on October 16, 2016 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Dallas Cowboys defeated the Green Bay Packers 30-16.  (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
    Week 8 Tale Of The Tape: Philadelphia Eagles at Dallas Cowboys

    Two of the top rookie QBs face off in Big D.

  3. GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 23:  Running back David Johnson #31 of the Arizona Cardinals rushes the football during the NFL game against the Seattle Seahawks at the University of Phoenix Stadium on October 23, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals and Seahawks tied 6-6.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) NEW ORLEANS, LA - OCTOBER 16: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers scrambles out of the pocked during the first half of a game against the New Orleans Saints at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on October 16, 2016 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)
    Week 8 Tale Of The Tape: Arizona Cardinals at Carolina Panthers

    The Cardinals are still trying to catch the Seahawks atop the NFC West, they now take on the embattled Panthers.

See All Tales of the Tape

More From CBS Pittsburgh

Bringing You The Best in Sports Talk Radio
New Podcast Network
Learn How

Listen Live