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Panthers 31 Saints 34: The Hog Molly Report

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Injuries and ineffectiveness plagued the Hog Mollies inside the dome down in New Orleans, and there are many challenges yet to come.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome ladies and gentlemen to the Hog Molly Report, where winning in the trenches is all that matters. Before we begin, we open with the reciting of our usual motto:

In keeping with the proven philosophy that building a team from the inside out is the best strategy for long term success, my goal will be to watch the hog mollies each game during the season and give them a grade based on their performance.

This week we will look at the Carolina Panthers heart-wrenching defeat at the hands of the New Orleans Saints, where the team once again failed to finish a scoring drive to put the game away. The Hog Mollies had a hard time protecting Kyle Allen for a variety of reasons, while the defense once again allowed big gains on the ground.

Offensive Hog Mollies

Yards per Carry: 4.2 Season: 5.0 (T-2nd, NFL)

Yards per Play: 5.4 Season: 5.3 (21st, NFL)

QB Hits allowed: 6 Season: 69 (24th, NFL)

Sacks allowed: 4 Season: 38 (28th, NFL)

Third downs converted: 5 of 13, or 38% Season: 31% (28th, NFL)

Rating: 2 out of 5 Hobbled Hams

2 out of 5 hogs

The Carolina Panthers continue to face constant re-shuffling of their offensive line on a near weekly basis due to injury. This week was especially bad as both Greg Van Roten and Greg Little had to leave the contest due to various maladies. Van Roten is now out for the season, and it is possible Little misses the Washington game as well. There were a couple moments where it was clear to me that this group, among other problems, simply lacks the consistency in communication that a good offensive line should have. Not really their fault. Daryl Williams plays a new position every week the moment someone goes down, or sometimes for no good reason at all. More on Daryl later...

Here’s your pressure report:

Here’s your sack report:

Q2 04:36. 2nd & 8, CAR 47 - Kyle Allen sacked by Mario Edwards, fumbled, recovered by Carolina. Greg Little retreats way too much off the snap, and based on the rest of the line, he may not have been up to speed on the playcall. It basically leave him alone in space, and he’s eventually beaten on a swim move for the sack.

Q2 03:51. 3rd & 16, CAR 39 - Kyle Allen sacked by Demario Davis, this is the infamous Cameron Jordan punch that gave us a first down anyway. Trai Turner appears to look right and be beaten inside almost immediately, again, might be another miscommunication on the offensive line on who was supposed to block who.

Q2 00:38. 1st & 7, NOR 7 - Kyle Allen sacked by David Onyemata. Daryl Williams in at left guard, middle of the pocket gets pushed too far back, Kyle Allen attempts to step up and escape and nearly pulls it off... but isn’t fast enough to escape the reach of Onyemata.

Q4 02:10. 3rd & 4, NOR 4 - Kyle Allen sacked by Marcus Davenport. Everything was blocked up pretty well initially though Dennis Daley (now in at left tackle) gives up the sack on the second move by Davenport. New Orleans has great coverage on this play, however... Kyle Allen could have dumped it to McCaffrey, who would have been 1 on 1 at the goal line on a corner with a head of steam. Likely a touchdown if he checks it down... either way, another second of time and a different result is likely.

It’s funny, many of us have been saying that Daryl Williams should have started the season at left guard, and that statement has now been validated by what we saw against the Saints. He actually did a good job of it, just giving up one pressure while in the game for more than a half. Williams does not lack for power, it is his lateral agility that is questionable. Putting him at guard limits the space he is responsible for, and he can just be an anchor.

Matt Paradis continues to be groan worthy in the middle of the line, as center is probably on my short list of positions the Panthers should look at in the first three rounds of the draft. Daley and Little both had a tough time at left tackle today. I see a lot of positive signs from both, for rookies I think they both show great potential. It is exceptionally rare for a rookie to make a positive first year impact at left tackle, the curve from college to pro is huge there.

Defensive Hog Mollies

Yards per Carry: 6.6 Season: 5.0 (30th, NFL)

Yards per Play: 7.3 Season: 5.6 (19th, NFL)

Sacks given: 2 Season: 41 (2nd, NFL)

Third down allowed %: 4 of 10, or 40% Season: 41% (22nd, NFL)

Rating: 2 out of 5 Slaughtered Swine

2 out of 5 hogs

I just want to say this right now, and I’ll probably write a stand alone article on this, but the fact that Brian Burns is seeing so little playtime on defense is a damning indictment of this coaching staff’s continued lack of desire to play their young players unless injury necessitates it. Burns saw just 34% of the teams defensive snaps this week, still managed a sack and two pressures. I get that Bruce Irvin has actually been pretty good, but Burns is a guy who you find a space for out there.

Overall, the NFL has figured out that we still don’t present much of a resistance when running the football, and they can neutralize our pass rush by simply just, ya know, not passing a lot. Dontari Poe now being out for the season alongside Kawann Short is a lot less than ideal, as I don’t anticipate the situation getting much better.

Hog Molly of the Week: Nobody

To be honest, this was a pretty lackluster performance from everyone in the trenches. There were no standouts that I want to bring to the forefront. We need to get better, and hopefully a game against the ailing team from the D.C. area might be just what we need right now.