There's not much left to say about the Carolina Panthers' offense. Whether it's a crunch-time third down needed, or the final push into the end zone-- this unit are rarely able to come through. This week the Panthers face a team who are struggling overall, but who are more competent on defense than you might think.
X-Factor: DeAngelo Williams
It's been a while since we could think of D-Will as a difference maker, but this is a match-up primed for him to take advantage, even with limited carries. The Eagles' defense struggles with shifty running backs, which primes Monday's game to be one where Jonathan Stewart's effectiveness is limited.
What will Rob Chudzinski do? The true option plays that the Panthers ran to so much success in 2011 have been non-existent since their early failures this year. If Carolina add some running game wrinkles, and use DeAngelo as a true change of pace, they could have a lot of success against Philadelphia's lacking linebackers.
Carolina pass offense vs. Philadelphia pass defense
Last week Robert Griffin III and the Washington Redskins were able to complete over 90% of their passes against the Eagles, but this Philadelphia defense is one that's designed around stopping the deep ball. If teams have a quarterback who are able to make short, accurate passes underneath they struggle, but in longer developing routes it becomes extremely difficult to work against their talented secondary.
It will be imperative for Cam Newton to use Greg Olsen and his running backs a lot, but this season that has been a hit or miss affair. There's not a lot of reason to have confidence that this is the week the passing offense puts it together.
Carolina run offense vs. Philadelphia run defense
DeAngelo Williams could make an impact, but will he be used? This is a game where Jonathan Stewart is set up for failure, and again... there's no reason to imagine they'll figure this out early. Last week Alfred Morris, a similar North-South back only managed 3.8 yards per carry, and Stewart is struggling more this year than the Redskins' rookie.
With a team who understands their personnel, yes... the Panthers get the better of this one. However, I don't think they work this one out, and J-Stew runs at a brick wall.