Carolina Panthers

Can’t catch a cold

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As I mentioned in the previous story, I went to bed last night with the Carolina Panthers holding a solid 23-6 lead over the Indianapolis Colts in the fourth quarter on a raining Monday night in Charlotte.

That lead turned out to be less solid and more slippery.

Lots of things happened after I put on my footie pajamas and went to sleep.

The Colts somehow stampeded back and forced overtime.

I’ve read that Panthers’ receiver Ted Ginn Jr. could have helped his team avoid the extra session if he had simply caught a pass that landed right in his hands while running wide open down the sideline, toward the end zone. Ginn was at about the Colt’s 16 when the ball arrived via Cam Newton. Two Colts defenders were in the area code, but probably not close enough to catch the speedy receiver had he caught the ball.

You know, Ted has a history of dropping passes. He caught two of the 10 balls thrown his way in Panthers’ win Monday. That means eight passes somehow failed to be secured in the hands of the professional pass catcher.
If you saw any of the broadcast, or if you were at the game, you know it was raining pretty hard in Charlotte last night. So maybe, I thought, the ball was wet and it slipped through Ginn’s hands.

And then I saw the play.

Yep. There’s the proof. Ted Ginn couldn’t catch a cold on a raining fall night in North Carolina.

To paraphrase Axel Foley: Was he trying to catch the ball with his eyes open or was he, like, using the Force? (Man, that’s an old reference.)

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If nothing else, you’ll catch a cold out there

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CamNewtonIt looked fun.

Watching the Colts and Panthers battle it out in pouring rain on a sloppy field in Charlotte Monday night took me back a few years to when Dan, Joe, Jon, Brian, that kid with the goofy eye, a few others and I used to splash around the backyard on an occasional rainy late afternoon. Sometimes, it was two-hard touch, but mostly tackle.

You remember those games, right? Your mom would always yell out the back door, something about how your ruining your clothes and you’re going to catch a cold, while you’re dad never said a word because he knew how much fun you were having.

For as much fun as it looked being out there in the wet, wild, wonderfulness of it all Monday night, the game quality was a mess at times.

There were four interceptions and the two teams combined to fumble the ball five times and both quarterbacks, Andrew Luck and Cam Newton, threw 43 incompletions.

One of those incompletions was a dropped pass by the Panthers’ Ted Ginn, who was wide open for what could have been a 56-yard touchdown strike in overtime that would have…

Wait!

What?

I checked out of the game early in the fourth quarter with Carolina firmly ahead 23-6. I don’t know what the heck happened after I went to bed, but the Panthers blew the lead but won the game 29-26 on a Graham Gano 52-yard field goal in overtime. Gano missed an extra point in the game.

After the game, players from both teams rushed inside to do their homework.

Football + Rain = Good

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PanthersRainA flood watch has been insured for the Charlotte, North Carolina area and up to 3 inches of precipitation could fall there today.

Rain is expected throughout the night, too, when the city’s undefeated football team, the Carolina Panthers, host the less-than-impressive Indianapolis Colts – they’re 3-4 – on Monday Night Football.

The forecast, according to Accuweather.com, is calling for heaving rain throughout the day and a 100 percent chance throughout the game, which kicks off at 8 p.m. local time. Temperatures are expected to be in the low 60s.

Bring your umbrella if you’re going to the … no wait, umbrellas aren’t allowed in Bank of America Stadium.

So, which team will benefit most from the wet playing conditions? Heck if I know.

I have to admit, I’m still on a World Series hangover – it ended way too soon, didn’t it? – and I’ve hardly paid attention, yet, to football this season. But, I’m sure I’ll catch up quickly.

That being said, you have to believe the team with the better running game would have an advantage. The homestanding Panthers lead the NFL in team rushing with 144.7 yards per game, and the Colts fall near the bottom of the rankings, 27th to be exact, at 93.6 yards.

That’s just some quick, lazy analysis that doesn’t mean much.

By the way, Opening Day of the 2016 baseball season is 153 days away.