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Saints-Panthers Final Score: Saints Remain Winless Following 27-22 Loss to Cam Newton, Panthers

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Luke McCown and the Saints made a valiant effort but it wasn't enough as the Panthers beat the Saints 27-22 in Carolina.

Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

1st Quarter

  • Saints lose the coin toss but Panthers defer so Saints receive first.
  • I can't believe Luke Freakin' McCown is our starting QB. This is so freakin' weird. But he looks pretty damn good right out of the box starting 5/5. Payton is obviously not holding back.
  • Offense gets into the red zone by the drive stalls and the Saints elect to kick a field goal.
  • Saints take early 3-0 lead.


  • The Panthers start moving easily down the field with a bunch of Cam Newton completions. He's got a bunch of time to throw. The Saints defense is doing a good job at stopping the run.
  • Saints defense tightens up in the secondary and the Panthers punt away. Downed at the 6-yard line.
  • 3rd and 2 - McCown hits Willie Snead in the flat to pickup the first down.
  • McCown continues to be red hot and complete passes all over the place.
  • 3rd and 7 - McCown fits the ball in a tight window to Ben Watson for the first down.

2nd Quarter

  • Holding call on the Panthers gives the Saints an automatic first down.
  • Mark Ingram looking good toting the rock. Picks up a couple of first downs in the red zone, then carries it into the end zone for a TD! That caps off a 94-yard, 16-play, 9:11 drive. Wow!
  • Saints up 10-0 now.

  • Cam Newton runs for a first down but Greg Olsen holding nullifies the play.
  • GAME ALERT: the Saints have not had any penalties called on them yet.
  • Jonathan Stewart finally breaks off a big run for 14 yards.
  • Greg Olsen catches a short touchdown pass but an offensive pass interference call brings the touchdown off the board! Saints dodge a bullet.
  • Cam Newton ends up finding Greg Olsen for the touchdown a couple of plays later anyway.
  • Saints lead cut to 10-7.


  • Zach Strief gets called for false. That's the first penalty of the day for the Saints.
  • Tim Lelito gets called for holding. That's the second penalty of the day for the Saints.
  • 3rd and 21 - McCown goes deep to Ben Watson for exactly 21 yards and the first down. The Panthers challenge the spot and they end up a yard short of the first.
  • Morstead makes a great punt.


  • On the very first play of the drive Newton hits Olsen for a huge catch and run of 52 yards. Two minute warning.
  • 3rd and 13 - Dump off pass to Mike Tolbert but the Saints tackle him a yard short at the Saints 32-yard line.
  • 4th and 1 - Riverboat Ron Rivera decides to go for it, of course. Cam Newton dives for the first down.
  • 2nd and 12 - Greg Olsen is wide open for the first down at the Saints 2-yard line.
  • Panthers run out of time so they have to kick the field goal.
  • We've got a tie game at 10-10 at the half.

3rd Quarter

  • Panthers start off with the football.
  • 3rd and 7 - Newton has all day but can't find an open receiver before Kikaha finally gets the sack!
  • Panthers punt away. But a personal foul penalty on the Panthers forces them to punt it again with worse field position. Marcus Murphy field and put AND RETURNS IT FOR A TOUCHDOWN! That's the first Saints special teams touchdown in, like, 10 years.
  • McCown bobbles the extra point snap. Saints don't get it.
  • Saints take the lead back 16-10.

  • Brandon Browner called for an illegal contact penalty.
  • Newton hits a wide open Ted Ginn, Jr.for a 55 yard completion over the middle. Brandon Browner on the coverage.
  • Saints defense flagged for 12 men on the field. Here comes the stupidity.
  • Greg  Olsen catches another easy touchdown.
  • Panthers take the lead 17-16.

  • Another false start penalty for Zach Strief. That's rookie stuff.
  • 4th and 1 - Saints are on their own 39-yard line. Hand it off to Austin Johnson and pick up the first down by an inch! Ron Rivera again challenges the spot. The first down stands.
  • Ben Watson make a catch over the middle then fumbles the ball away. Panthers recover. That could be killer.


  • 3rd and 5 - Cam Newton has a ton of time in the pocket but can't find a man open down field. Scrambles away from Saints defenders and picks up a first down. VERY FRUSTRATING! Absolutely NO PRESSURE!
  • 3rd and 7 - Incomplete pass to Funchess in the end zone. Panthers settle for the 47-yard field goal.
  • Panthers extend lead 20-16.

  • 3rd and 2 - McCown misses his receiver over the middle but the Saints get lucky with a roughing the passer penalty called on the Panthers. Automatic first down!
  • Charles Johnson is injured on the play and is carted to the lock room.

4th Quarter

  • Saints are eventually forced to punt away.


  • Panthers just keep moving down field.
  • Saints defense blows a couple of third downs. They cannot get off the field.
  • 3rd and 2 for the Panthers deep in Saints territory. Crucial play. Cam Newton keeps the football and runs it way too easily into the end zone for the touchdown. I'm afraid the game is out of reach for the Saints at this point.
  • Panthers winning 27-16.

  • 3rd and 8 - McCown hits Willie Snead over the middle for a big first down.
  • Colston makes a big 22-yard catch a couple of plays later.
  • 3rd and 3 - McCown makes a beautiful touch throw to Spiller along the sideline for the first down in the red zone.
  • Khiry Robinson walks it in on the next play for the easy touchdown!
  • Saints go for two but the play is well defended. Saints will need a touchdown to win.
  • Panthers up 27-22.


  • Saints defense does their job and forces a Panthers 3 and out. Big series!
  • Saints offense takes over with a little under 4 minutes remaining. Time for Luke McCown to be a hero.
  • Mark Ingram rumbles for the first down after catching a  pass.
  • Willie Snead drops a perfectly thrown pass. Would have been a nice gain. Surprising from the sure-handed Snead.
  • Then Colston drops a should-have-been catch.
  • 3rd and 10 - McCown hits Brandin Cooks for the first down! Is this really going to happen?
  • Colston drops another pass he should have caught. Three dropped balls on this drive.
  • 3rd and 6 - McCown throws to Cooks in the end zone but the pass is intercepted by Norman on an very athletic play. Crushing blow.
  • Saints defense forces another 3 and out.
  • Saints take over at their 45-yard line with 10 seconds remaining. But they fail to make anything happen. Game over.

Team Stats

First Downs 27 24
Total Yards 380 431
Passing Yards 310 312
Rushing Yards 70 119
Penalties (Yds) 8(55) 10(88)
Turnovers 2 0
Punts (AVG) 2(46) 4(23)
Time of Pos. 32:44 27:16

Top Performers

L. McCown 31/38 310 0 1
K. Robinson 7 12 1 8
M. Ingram 14 50 1 9
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
W. Snead 5 44 0 15
B. Cooks 7 79 0 16
B. Coleman 1 9 0 9
C. Newton 20/31 315 2 0
C. Brown 1 12 0 12
J. Stewart 14 52 0 14
Receiving REC YDS TD LG
T. Ginn 4 93 0 55
E. Dickson 2 19 0 10
B. Bersin 1 13 0 13