The Carolina Panthers found a new and creative way to lose against the Chicago Bears during week eight and many feel as though it is the same old story. As a huge Panthers fan, I must admit I felt that way at first as well. Now that I have had a bit of time to think things over, I can see plenty of reasons to feel good about our performance. A loss is a loss, but at least we are doing some really good things in the process. Here are five major positives to take from the loss to Chicago:
Are you kidding me? Johnson and Hardy had five sacks between them and we continued to make strides along the defensive line. Although the run defense still had its moments, the pass rush was sick. Greg Hardy looked like the player we all have hoped for since he was drafted and Johnson also had a couple of forced fumbles. With Frank Alexander beginning to make waves, the Panthers might just be onto something here.
Luke Kuechly in the middle
For those that were concerned that Kuechly was a bad pick, you can relax. Kuechly is in on virtually every tackle, fills the gaps beautifully and simply has a nonstop motor. With Beason or without, the guy is a difference maker and will be for years to come.
Moving the football again
The offense looked much better during the Chicago game and particularly through the air. Cam Newton threw for over 300 yards and the Panthers ran the ball decently as well. The big difference I saw was in time of possession. We were totally dominant in this area and got huge third down conversions all day long. It is a shame we did not convert our red zone opportunities.
Norman competes as hard as anyone I have ever seen and I think he will be a solid corner in due time. Although he has struggled with some of the bigger receivers, he will learn better technique and tricks of the trade if he continues to work hard. If Captain Munnerlyn can compete with the big guys, then Norman surely can.
We have found our field goal kicker
Justin Medlock has been insanely effective this season. I expect that he will be a solid kicker for many years to come and our decision to get rid of Mare is making more sense with every passing week. I sure wish Rivera would have given him a shot at the end of the half, but hindsight is 20/20.
Source--Yahoo Sports Stats Page
*Southern is a huge Carolina Panthers fan that is convinced that he will see a Super Bowl Trophy in Charlotte within five years.
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