Despite their descent into the hellacious depths of .500-level averageness, the Panthers are a formidable squad. Regardless of whether Jake Delhomme or David Carr is throwing the ball, Steve Smith is a threat to any secondary (Threat Level Midnight) and requires a double-team on every play. The Panthers can still run and grind out the clock, but their offense doesn't seem as reliant on the ground-n-pound as it once was.
Defensively the Panthers will be playing without linebacker Dan Morgan, but their star-studded defensive line should give the Saints fits.
I get the feeling that the Saints' defense will need to win this game.
Just a refresher:
|YPG||Pass YPG||Rush YPG||TDs/Game|
In my opinion, the linebackers have been the only unit on this team that has played at a reasonably productive level. They aren't a dominant unit, just solid, and their performance is undoubtedly tied to the play of the units surrounding them. The Dome Patrol, they ain't.
Hence, I gave them a B.