The Panthers opened the 2021 preseason against the Colts during a game where zero Panthers starters saw any action. P.J. Walker started the sport at quarterback and played the whole half, and can Grier took the reigns for the last half.
Overall, it had been a tale of two halves. the primary half was pretty good because the second and third units played well against the Colts, and therefore the Panthers had a 15-10 lead at halftime. The last half was less fun because the bottom of the roster players played a half-filled with blown assignments, costly penalties, and badly executed offensive plays. The Colts were ready to close the gap on the Panthers and eventually took a 21-18 lead with 0:07 left within the game, which was the game’s final score.
Before you overreact to the present game, confine in mind that it’s the primary preseason game and this is often not necessarily a sign of what the team will appear as if during the regular season. Exactly zero of our starters played today, and Rhule appeared to be using this game as an evaluation of which roster moves he must make on Tuesday when he has got to make roster cuts. there have been tons of senseless penalties — mostly false starts — but those things are often fixed. It’s not time to panic yet, but it does mean the Panthers have tons of labor to try to do before they’re able to take the sector against the Jets in Week 1.
For those interested, below you’ll find a more detailed summary of the action, weakened by quarter. The Panthers won the opening coin toss and deferred to the last half. The defense struggled a touch to stay the Colts from moving down the sector, but sorted themselves out and made a punt because of a key third-down stop by Sean Chandler on a blitz.
The second-team offense did an honest job at moving the ball down the sector on their first drive and capitalized on a 60-yard catch and travel by Terrace Marshall (on a broken play where Walker scrambled out of the pocket to seek out the receiver, no less) to place the primary points on the board because of a 29-yard field goal from Joey Slye to offer the Panthers a 3-0 lead with just over six minutes remaining within the quarter.
The Colts mirrored the Panthers’ previous drive by taking advantage of an enormous play within the pass to line up a game-tying field goal to even the score at 3-3 with 2:50 left within the quarter. The Panthers made a couple of nice plays on defense but were unable to urge off the sector once they needed to and allowed the Colts to maneuver the ball downfield on an enormous play to line up the sector goal attempt.
The Panthers went three-and-out on their next drive, thanks partially to a false start penalty by Trent Scott that set the team back (it was his second false start of the day). Joseph Charlton boomed a top-quality 50-plus yard punt to line the defense up with good field position.
The defense did better on their next drive, because of a strip-sack by Marquis Haynes to offer the ball back to the offense deep inside Colts territory. The Panthers were ready to run one play before time expired within the quarter with the sport tied at 3-3. The Panthers opened the second quarter inside the red zone, but were unable to place the ball into the endzone and had to accept another field goal from Joey Slye. The chip was good and therefore the Panthers took a 6-3 lead with 14:47 left within the quarter.
The defense struggled a touch on third down during subsequent drive but tightened up once the Colts crossed midfield and stuffed a fourth-and-1 attempt when Frankie Luvu sacked Jacob Eason for a 13-yard loss to offer the Panthers defense a hard-earned turnover on downs. The offense picked up an enormous gain on their first play when Walker connected with Marshall for an 18-yard play. The offense couldn’t put anything together then big gain and had to accept another field goal, this point a 41-yarder from Slye to extend Carolina’s cause 9-3 with 8:07 left within the quarter.
Yet Gross-Matos picked up a sack for a loss of 6 yards on the defense’s first play after Slye’s field goal, but the defense immediately gave up an enormous play on second down. The defense buckled down on a subsequent set of downs, however, and made the Colts punt from midfield. The punt was downed at the Carolina 10-yard line with 5:07 left within the quarter.
Chuba Hubbard made his presence known on third-and-1 when he bounced off the road and picked up 59 yards to line the Panthers up with solid field position to undertake and put more points on the board before the top of the half. Walker connected with Shi Smith for an enormous 26-yard gain, followed by a pass from Walker to Tremble for the game’s first touchdown. The Panthers went for 2, but a holding penalty on Tremble forced the Panthers to choose the 43-yard point after instead. Slye’s attempt was no good, and therefore the Panthers took a 15-3 lead with 1:56 left within the quarter.
The Colts got off to a fast start on their next possession with a fast 31-yard strike, and that they continued to drive down the sector efficiently on the way to a touchdown that brought them within five points of Carolina’s lead with but a moment left within the half. Kenny Robinson committed an unnecessary roughness penalty that aided the Colts in their 7-play, 75-yard drive to form the score of 15-10.
The Panthers attempted a 63-yard field goal with two seconds left within the half but the kick was no good. The Panthers took a 15-10 lead over the Colts into halftime. Will Grier started the last half at quarterback for the Panthers, and therefore the first drive was a fast and uneventful three-and-out that gained five total yards. Joseph Charlton boomed another punt, and Kenny Robinson put a pleasant hit on the punt returner.
The defense got off to a shaky start by letting the Colts move the ball with ease, but a well-timed Kenny Robinson interception gave the ball back to the Panthers’ offense before the Colts could inflict an excessive amount of damage. The Panthers began to put an honest drive together — and even converted a fourth-down play — but were unable to place points on the board after failing to convert a second fourth-down play on the drive, and that they ended up turning the shock on downs back to the Colts.
The defense delayed and made the Colts punt the ball back to the Panthers, with Kendall Donnerson and LaDarius Wiley making an enormous play on the third right down to force the punt. The Panthers took over with five seconds left within the quarter and managed to run one play (with another illegal formation penalty) before time ran call at the amount with the Panthers still winning 15-10. The Panthers couldn’t put a drive together and had to punt the ball back to the Colts, but the returner muffed the punt and therefore the Panthers recovered, giving the offense an opportunity for more reps. Rookie long snapper Thomas Fletcher picked up the loose ball that was forced by Stanley Thomas-Oliver to offer the Panthers possession.
The Panthers benefited from a botched fumble recovery after Grier found Giovanni Ricci for a moderate gain, and therefore the Colts forced a fumble but did not recover it after a series of what can only be described as ‘preseason football theater’ where several players tried — and failed — to select up the loose football. The Colts challenged the ruling on the sector of a fumble out of bounds and lost, therefore the Panthers retained possession. All of that led to a fourth-and-2 situation a couple of plays later that gave Slye an attempt at another field goal. He was good from 32 yards to offer the Panthers an 18-10 lead with just over 10 minutes to travel within the game.
Troy Pride Jr. gave up two big plays and injured his knee — an injury that required the cart to require him off the sector — with eight minutes left within the game. The Colts scored a touchdown on the primary play after Pride began the sector to tug to within two points. They attempted a 2-point conversion to tie the sport and succeeded. The teams were tied 18-18 with 7:43 left within the game.
The Panthers were unable to place points on the board with their next drive because of three straight false start penalties that turned a manageable third-and-2 into a way harder third-and-17 situation that the Panthers were unable to convert. Charlton boomed another punt — this point a 53-yarder — to line the Colts back on offense.
The Colts were ready to drive down the sector and obtain inside the Panthers red zone with but two minutes to travel, and were ready to devour a first-and-goal with a moment left. They took a knee for the primary three plays and found out a chip field goal, which gave them a 21-18 lead with just 0:07 left within the game. The Panthers were unable to attain with the time remaining and fell 21-18 to the Colts to bring their preseason record to 0-1.