Carolina Panthers vs. Cleveland Browns game recap: Everything we know

·2 min read

The Carolina Panthers almost got off to a mind-blowing start to this 2022 regular season. Almost.

Here’s everything we know about Sunday’s crazy season opener against the Cleveland Browns.

Final score: Browns 26, Panthers 24

AP Photo/Brian Westerholt

Keys to the game

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  • Quarterback Baker Mayfield and the offense stalled throughout much of the afternoon. The former Browns star simply wasn’t consistent, and often out of sorts, as he completed 16 of his 27 throws for 235 yards, one touchdown and an interception. He also fumbled (but luckily recovered) on four different snaps.

  • Running back Christian McCaffrey, as a result of the shaky offense, never got going. Carolina’s star offensive weapon saw just 10 carries (33 yards, touchdown) and four receptions (24 yards).

  • The Panthers defense wasn’t consistent either. Browns running back Nick Chubb had the unit at his mercy, rushing for 141 yards on 22 takes. His stablemate Kareem Hunt, additionally, found the end zone on two separate occasions.

It was over when . . .

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Somehow, the lethargic Panthers got themselves back in this game after trailing 20-7 to start the fourth quarter. And somehow, they grabbed a one-point lead off a 34-yard field goal from kicker Eddy Piñeiro with 1:17 left.

But it was Cleveland’s kicker, aided by a questionable roughing call on Carolina defensive end Brian Burns to start the Browns’ game-winning drive, that won the afternoon. Rookie Cade York boomed through a 58-yard try to with just eight seconds left to give his team the 26-24 victory.

Players of the game

AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman

  • WR Robbie Anderson: five receptions, 102 receiving yards, touchdown

  • S Xavier Woods: 10 tackles, two passes defensed

  • WR DJ Moore: three receptions, 47 receiving yards, seven rushing yards

What's next?

AP Photo/Brian Westerholt

Head coach Matt Rhule will head the 0-1 Panthers back towards his hometown, as the New York Giants await at MetLife Stadium for Week 2.

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Story originally appeared on Panthers Wire