SportsNation Blog Archives Carolina Panthers
Which team will win the NFC?
In the afternoon, the San Francisco 49ers exacted revenge -- through a close call -- on the Seattle Seahawks team that thrashed them earlier in the season. At night, the New Orleans Saints put a thunderous stop to the Carolina Panthers' eight-game winning streak, moving a game up in the NFC South race. Who will take these divisions? Is Seattle your pick to win the NFC championship?
pollcenter:category=4781+whichteamwillwinthenfc?Chris Graythen/Getty Images
NFL Week 14 -- Panthers at Saints
The New Orleans Saints' consolation prize for a blowout loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Monday? A home game against the team that might just steal away the NFC South title. That's right, Cam Newton & Co. have won eight in a row, pulling even with Drew Brees' team atop the division. Oh, and these teams meet again at Carolina in two weeks.
Bigger surprise -- ARI or CAR?
On Oct. 6, the Carolina Panthers lost to the Arizona Cardinals 22-6 in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals moved to 3-2, while the Panthers dropped to 1-3. Carolina hasn't lost since, moving its win streak to seven Sunday with a late victory in Miami. Arizona? It dropped the next two -- then won four in a row, including Sunday's 40-11 rout of the division-leading Indianapolis Colts. Bet you didn't have both of these teams beating out the likes of Green Bay, Dallas, Washington and Atlanta this late. Will it last?
The controversial ending of the Panthers' win over the Patriots on ESPN's "Monday Night Football" raised questions and eyebrows on Twitter, where football players and athletes from other sports weighed in on the pass interference penalty that wasn't.
Cardinals kicker Jay Feely thought the play, in which Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly appeared to impede Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski's progress, was definitely a penalty.
That is absolutely pass interference. He never looked back for that ball.— Jay Feely (@jayfeely) November 19, 2013
Free agent punter Chris Kluwe was among those who thought a no-call was the right call.
For the record I think Gronk was interfered with, but it was after he had already put himself in a position to make it uncatchable. No flag.— Chris Kluwe (@ChrisWarcraft) November 19, 2013
But then again ...
Wife and I are arguing over the end of the MNF game. I told her it's obvious she never played football. She replied with "neither did you."— Chris Kluwe (@ChrisWarcraft) November 19, 2013
Baseball has taken steps to apply instant replay more often next season -- a big change in a sport where the umpire traditionally gets the last word, even when the call was incorrect. That mindset seemed to be reflected in many of the MLB player tweets we saw.
I wanna see the refs explanation to pick up flag !!! #crazy— Mike Trout (@Trouty20) November 19, 2013
There also seemed to be support among MLB players for calling the play a penalty.
The ending was a topic of conversation outside the sports world, too:Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Just how good are the Panthers?
Another week, another big test passed by the Carolina Panthers. This one came on "Monday Night Football" against the New England Patriots, with Cam Newton leading a late touchdown drive in a dramatic 24-20 win (complete with controversial ending). That gives Ron Rivera's team its sixth straight win, moving it to 7-3 on the year and firmly into playoff position. Will the Panthers be a legitimate threat come playoff time?