Week 13: Carolina Panthers At Kansas City Chiefs
- QuarterbackCam Newton finally was able to pull out a victory when the Panthers defeated the Eagles 30-22 in their Week 12 Monday Night game. Newton was able to find the holes in the Philadelphia defense by completing 18-of-28 passes for 306 yards. However, Newton has lacked consistency and accuracy through much of the season.Brady Quinn is now the quarterback du jour for the Chiefs. He may or may not be any better than Matt Cassel. That tells you that the Chiefs have a major lack of talent at the quarterback position. While Quinn does not have a decent supporting cast, he seems to lack accuracy and decisiveness.
- OffenseThe Panthers need their ground game to fire on all cylinders. Their first option is to let Newton run the ball himself and he has gained 446 rushing yards and he has 6 touchdowns. DeAngelo Williams has not had a good season to this point (292 yards through 11 games) but he does have breakaway potential. Steve Smith may have lost a step but he can still make big plays in the passing game.Jamaal Charles can break off big runs. He is probably the Chiefs best offensive player. Charles has rushed for 928 yards and he is averaging 4.3 yards per carry. Dwayne Bowe can make impressive catches down the field, but he lacks consistency. Tony Moeaki is a hard working tight end who will fight hard for extra yards after making the catch.
- DefenseThe Panthers are physical but they tend to make mistakes. They rank 17th in overall defense and 11th against the pass. The Carolina defense revolves around rookie linebacker Luke Kuechly, who leads the team with 105 stops. He also has 5 passes defensed. Defensive end Charles Johnson can be a monster on the pass rush. He has 8.5 sacks and 6 forced fumbles this year.The Chiefs rank 16th in overall defense and 10th against the pass. That tells you how badly the Kansas City offense has played this season since the defense has been decent. Linebacker Derrick Johnson is one of the best tacklers on the team and he has 92 stops this season. Outside linebacker Justin Houston is a force as a pass rusher with 9.0 sacks this season.
- Special TeamsThe Panthers have had issues with special teams play all season. Carolina has been unable to make anything happen on punt returns this year. The Panthers got rid of Justin Medlock at the placekicker spot and Graham Gano made his only FG attempt vs. Philadelphia, but he missed an extra point. Brad Nortman has been below average (42.4) as a punter.The Chiefs have been ordinary on special teams and they were expecting quite a bit this year since Javier Arenas is one of the most explosive returners in the league. It has not worked out that way. Placekicker Ryan Succop has made 23-of-26 FG attempts this year.
Both teams are desperate for wins and it would seem that the Chiefs have a good chance to get their second win in this game since they are at home. However, the Panthers have a huge advantage at the quarterback position. The Chiefs will not be able to contain Newton and it looks like another long day for Romeo Crennel.