2015 DRAFT GUIDE
Panthers defeat erring Ravens 34-27

By DAVID GINSBURG - AP Sports Writer
    2013-08-23 02:30

BALTIMORE (AP) - The Carolina Panthers enjoyed many happy returns in a preseason victory over the defending champs.

Now if only they can do something about their inconsistent offense, the Panthers would be ready to start the regular season.

Ted Ginn Jr. took a punt 74 yards for a touchdown, and Carolina's defense scored three times in a 34-27 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday night.

Drayton Florence took an interception 71 yards into the end zone, Thomas Davis scored on a 2-yard fumble return and D.J. Moore intercepted a pass by Tyrod Taylor and ran 31 yards for a touchdown.

It was a weird game. The Ravens finished with 27 first downs compared to 14 for Carolina, outgained the Panthers 357-173 and had an 11 1/2-minute edge in time of possession.

``I was absolutely not pleased with how I played,'' said Carolina quarterback Cam Newton, who went 10 for 19 for 99 yards and was sacked three times.

But four Baltimore turnovers made the difference.

What did we learn about the Ravens and Panthers?

1. FLACCO, RECEIVERS NOT IN SYNC: Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco threw two interceptions, which is two more than he threw in the postseason last season.

That overshadowed his 169 yards passing and touchdown throw to Marlon Brown.

``Tonight was one of those games that we did a lot of good things, but we had some miscommunication and turned the ball over too much,'' the Super Bowl MVP said.

Regarding Flacco's three interceptions during the preseason, coach John Harbaugh said, ``A lot of that is he's trying to get a feel for guys. I can't say if everybody was where they were supposed to be on routes or not. That's the stuff we'll look at.''

2. PASSING THE TORCH: With standout middle linebackers like ex-Raven Ray Lewis and longtime Bear Brian Urlacher retired, the stage is set for new blood to assume the mantel as the NFL's best defensive playmakers. The Panthers think they have a potential successor in Luke Kuechly.

The AP Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2012 had four tackles and three assists against the Ravens, intercepting a pass and forcing a fumble. But you'd never know it from talking to him.

After the game, Kuechly heaped praise on the defensive line for putting him in position to succeed and talked about how the linebackers succeeded as a unit, instead of focusing on his individual achievements.

``He's a very humble young man,'' said Carolina coach Ron Rivera, ``so I'll do it for him: He has the opportunity, I think, to ascend. If he continues to grow, most certainly we'll talk about him in the same vein as those linebackers.''

3. SOLID DEBUTS: Ravens cornerback Lardarius Webb played in a game for the first time since he tore his left anterior cruciate ligament last October in a game against Dallas.

Webb started and performed well. Afterward, he couldn't have been much happier.

``It felt great just to be out there with the guys and have that game feeling,'' he said. ``Just be back in the field, it felt good to the heart.''

Webb was credited with three tackles and knocked away a pass.

Guard Marshal Yanda also made his preseason debut following offseason shoulder surgery.

``It felt pretty good,'' he said. ``Obviously, I wish we could have played better as a team. But the shoulder felt good, so that was definitely a plus.''

On the Carolina side, linebacker Jon Beason needed only three practices to get ready for his 2013 preseason debut, starting Thursday night. It was his first action since Week 4 of last season.

Knee and shoulder injuries sent him to injured reserve for the bulk of 2012 and he had surgery to repair a knee microfracture in October. His first practice in pads came Sunday.

4. INJURIES HAPPEN: Taylor was removed from the game in the fourth quarter after taking a hard hit to the head, but that was pretty much the extent of the Ravens' injury list.

``He went through the concussion protocol there, so we'll just have to play that one by ear,'' coach John Harbaugh said. ``Other than that, we came out healthy and I'm very pleased with that.''

Carolina lost backup receiver Kealoha Pilares in the first quarter because of a knee injury. He will have an MRI on Friday.

``There's a little concern, but we'll keep our fingers crossed,'' Rivera said.

Guard Amini Silatolu left in the second quarter with a strained hamstring and running back Kenjon Barner rolled his ankle.

5. READY, SET, GO: Last week, the Panthers' defense had issues with the Eagles' no-huddle. The Ravens tried the same ploy Thursday night. Aside from Baltimore's TD on its opening drive, Carolina did a better job of handling the offensive strategy.

``They kind of caught us on our heels, but we settled down,'' said Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis. ``We established ourselves and went out and performed the way we're capable of performing.''

The Panthers know teams scouting them will take notice of how they defend the no-huddle, and they fully expect Seattle to try it in Week 1 of the regular season.

``That's something, as a defense, that we have to work on,'' Davis said.

---

AP NFL website: http://www.pro32.ap.org/poll

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Richard RodgersJul 1 05:03p

Green Bay Packers TE Richard Rodgers could see more playing time in 2015, according to Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com. Rodgers played 528 snaps, while fellow TE Andrew Quarless played [ More ]

Rob HouslerJun 30 03:13p

Cleveland Browns TEs Gary Barnidge, Rob Housler and Jim Dray could all end up taking over for TE Jordan Cameron, who is now with the Miami Dolphins. Head coach [ More ]

Sam BradfordJun 29 05:22p

Philadelphia Eagles QB Sam Bradford (knee) is expected to be in the final phase of his rehabilitation from a torn anterior cruciate ligament once training camp begins. Bradford's second [ More ]

Charles JohnsonJun 29 02:02p

Minnesota Vikings WR Charles X. Johnson appears to have everything it takes to produce in the NFL, according to offensive coordinator Norv Turner. 'He's got great work ethic, and [ More ]

C.J. SpillerJun 28 09:02p

New Orleans Saints RB C.J. Spiller has a perfect skill-set for head coach Sean Payton's system, which relies on getting the ball to players in space, according Chris Wesseling [ More ]

Tony MoeakiJun 25 07:12p

Atlanta Falcons TE Tony Moeaki will compete with TE Jacob Tamme for the Falcons' starting tight end job during training camp. QB Matt Ryan praised both tight ends for [ More ]

Kelvin BenjaminJun 25 03:52p

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin's reported weight gain this offseason is being overblown, according to general manager Dave Gettleman. Gettleman expects Benjamin to be ready to go for training [ More ]

Antoine CasonJun 25 03:03a

Free-agent CB Antoine Cason (foot) will miss the 2015 season due to surgery he underwent on Tuesday, June 23. Cason (Ravens) did not specify what type of surgery he [ More ]

Marvin JonesJun 24 09:13p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Marvin Jones (ankle, foot) did not play in 2014 due to multiple foot and ankle issues, but he is healthy and was impressive in organized team activities (OTAs) and minicamp.

Keith WenningJun 24 02:43p

Free-agent QB Keith Wenning (Ravens) signed with the Cincinnati Bengals Wednesday, June 24. Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Pierre GarconJun 24 02:23p

Washington Redskins WR Pierre Garcon could be featured more often in the passing game this season based on the offseason workouts. Garcon often lined up to the right of [ More ]

Martavis BryantJun 24 01:43p

Pittsburgh Steelers WRs Markus Wheaton and Martavis Bryant are expected to compete for the No. 2 wide receiver job during training camp. Both players performed well during offseason workouts.

Peyton ManningJun 24 11:53a

Denver Broncos QB Peyton Manning was the subject of preliminary trade discussions with the Houston Texans, according to a source. The talks occurred before Manning restructured his deal and [ More ]

Rueben RandleJun 24 10:53a

New York Giants WR Rueben Randle was the best receiver on the field by a wide margin during spring practices, in the opinion of beat writer Jordan Ranaan. Randle [ More ]

Chris IvoryJun 24 10:43a

New York Jets RB Chris Ivory is listed as the starting running back entering training camp, according to beat writer Rich Cimini's unofficial depth chart. RB Bilal Powell is [ More ]

Devonta FreemanJun 23 10:22a

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman enters training camp ahead of RB Tevin Coleman on the depth chart.

Joseph RandleJun 23 10:02a

Dallas Cowboys RB Joseph Randle appears to be the clear leader at running back, and it's his job to lose in training camp.

Ahmad BradshawJun 22 11:32p

Free-agent RB Ahmad Bradshaw (Colts) has been suspended one game for violation of the league's substance abuse policy. If he signs with a team he must sit out for the first week.

Terrelle PryorJun 22 04:33p

Cincinnati Bengals WR Terrelle Pryor was claimed off waivers by the Cleveland Browns Monday, June 22, according to a source.

Fred DavisJun 19 06:02p

New England Patriots TE Fred Davis was released Friday, June 19.

Dennis PittaJun 19 02:22p

Baltimore Ravens TE Dennis Pitta (hip) was not medically cleared to practice in minicamp as he continues to recover from his second dislocated and fractured hip in as many [ More ]

Isaiah CrowellJun 19 01:22p

Cleveland Browns RB Isaiah Crowell could be the workhorse back if his ball security improves, according to offensive coordinator John DeFilippo.

Devonta FreemanJun 19 01:12p

Atlanta Falcons RB Devonta Freeman will be used in a lot of different ways, including as a receiver, according to head coach Dan Quinn. 'I knew Devonta had terrific [ More ]

Chris OgbonnayaJun 19 11:32a

Free-agent RB Chris Ogbonnaya (Giants) announced his retirement Friday, June 19.

John MoffittJun 18 11:02p

Free-agent OG John Moffitt unretired Wednesday, June 17, and cleared waivers Thursday, June 18. He is free to sign with a team of his choosing. The Philadelphia Eagles, Miami [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 09:32p

Free-agent QB Terrelle Pryor is going to give it a shot at playing wide receiver in the NFL. Some teams have already expressed an interest.

Allen RobinsonJun 18 09:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars WR Allen Robinson was described as 'unbelievable' by QB Blake Bortles Thursday, June 18. 'He's definitely a threat now in the red zone. ... He's physical. He [ More ]

Terrelle PryorJun 18 05:32p

Cincinnati Bengals QB Terrelle Pryor was waived Thursday, June 18.

Taylor ThompsonJun 18 05:32p

Tennesse Titans TE Taylor Thompson was waived Thursday, June 18.

Matthew MulliganJun 18 04:32p

Free-agent TE Matthew Mulligan (Titans) signed an undisclosed contract with the Buffalo Bills Thursday, June 18.

Carlton MitchellJun 18 04:22p

Free-agent WR Carlton Mitchell (Buccaneers) signed an undisclosed contract with the Atlanta Falcons Thursday, June 18. WR Shane Wynn was waived.

Daniel ThomasJun 18 04:12p

Free-agent RB Daniel Thomas (Dolphins) signed a one-year contract with the Chicago Bears Thursday, June 18. Financial terms were not disclosed.

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2015 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group