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Panthers 14 Buccaneers 20: The Panthers play inexcusably bad football in prime time again and fall to 0-2

This was nothing short of pathetic from the Panthers.

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Well, that certainly happened.

There’s no nice way to say this — the Carolina Panthers played like absolute garbage at home against what should have been an inferior opponent and fell to 0-2 on the season after some of the worst football I’ve ever seen in my 10+ years of writing about this football team.

This is the kind of game that should get someone fired, but we know that won’t happen. Ron Rivera will tell the media the there were a lot of missed opportunities but we all know that’s just code for “I got outcoached and we got outplayed but there’s nothing we can or will do about it so what else can I say?”, and we’re going to eat it up and believe that this team has a chance to be good even though logic should tell us that they just don’t have that in them right now.

Cam Newton was downright dreadful tonight. He missed wide open receivers all night long, and while some of that blame goes on the putrid offensive line that couldn’t block someone on social media, Cam made poor decisions with the ball and terrible throws all night long. The Panthers had the ball at the Tampa 11 yard line with 1:30 left in the game with a chance to win the game with a touchdown, and Newton missed a wide open Curtis Samuel in the end zone on third down.

If that wasn’t enough, Norv Turner called what has to be the worst play he’s ever called given the situation on fourth down when he called a direct snap sweep play to Christian McCaffrey that was immediately shut down because anyone with any modicum of sense knew that it was going to be a run to the outside. When you have a 6-foot-5, 250 lbs quarterback who can run a quarterback sneak to pick up one yard to set up first and goal from the one... why wouldn’t you just run the outside direct snap sweep? That sounds good, right? Well... Norv thought so.

The lone bright spot tonight was the defense. They kept the Panthers in this game and honestly they didn’t deserve to lose tonight. Luke Kuechly ended the game with around 753 tackles and a safety, and most everyone looked good on that side of the ball. Donte Jackson had a forgettable night after getting worked by Chris Godwin, but for the most part I can’t complain too much about their effort. When you hold your opponent to 20 points at home, you should win most of the time. That’s on Cam Newton and Norv Turner, and there simply isn’t an excuse for it right now, though I’m sure we’ll hear plenty of them for the next 10 days.

The Panthers are 0-2 and have to travel to Arizona in 10 days to hopefully try and pick themselves up off the floor, otherwise it looks like it’s going to be a long year.

How upset are you right now, Panthers fans? Sound off in the comments.

Live updates

Final score: Panthers 14 Buccaneers 20

Welp. Unless a miracle happens the Panthers are 0-2.

This will depend on the spot but he didn’t get it lmao.

And it’s 4th and 1 after a delay of game by the defense for calling two consecutive time outs.

And it’s 4th and 2. Game riding on this play.

And it’s now 3rd down. Oh boy.

After a review the Panthers have the ball 1st and 10 at the 11 yard line with 1:45 left on the clock.

The Bucs get called for a facemask and we have a first down, but they’re reviewing the play to see where the ball will be spotted.

CMC picks up another first down and gets out of bounds.

Two minute warning: Panthers 14 Buccaneers 20

Moore looks to be short of the first down but the officials gave a very generous spot. They owe us one tbh.

It’s 3rd and 4 after Olsen makes a nifty catch and gets out of bounds.

I honestly don’t know why Ron bothers to challenge calls.

(I don’t think this will work out the way Ron wants.)

Ron Rivera is challenging a non-call for pass interference. Let’s see how this goes.

Cam finds a wide open Samuel to get the ball to midfield.

The Panthers have two timeouts and the two minute warning to score a game winner.

And the Bucs kick the field goal and it’s now a six point game. Panthers 14 Buccaneers 20

It’s fourth down and the Panthers may have some life as they’ll only be down six if the Bucs kick the field goal.

The defense is clearly tired which makes this a lot harder.

There are just four minutes left. The Panthers are running out of time and currently trail 17-14.

And of course they pick up the first down because why wouldn’t they?

Big third down here. Let’s see what happens.

Samuel should have caught that but it was thrown behind him. Palardy out to punt and now the defense has to bail out the offense again.

Sigh. Another bad throw and another fourth down.

Cam misses a wide open D.J. Moore that would have been a first down. Now it’s 3rd and 10. Cam has been bad tonight.

AND ANOTHER SACK! Dontari Poe with the play. It’s now 4th down.

Jermaine Carter and Mario Addison with a huge sack for a loss of 11 yards. The defense is playing well right now.

The Panthers go for it on 4th down and my god that has to be the worst play they’ve run tonight. They didn’t get the first down, in case you were wondering.

And it’s 4th down.

It’s 3rd and 1 after CMC churns for four yards.

The Panthers pick up a free five yards on a neutral zone infraction. 2nd and 5 now.

Cam has been nearly picked off on like 12 consecutive throws, at least that’s how it seems.

Chris Hogan returns the free kick to the 47 yard line so the Panthers are set up to possibly tie the game or take the lead with good field position.

And it appears to be a safety. Would have preferred a touchdown tbh, but we’ll take it. Panthers 14 Buccaneers 17

Well, we just scored either a safety or a touchdown so that’s good.

And now Jameis takes a delay of game so that’s good for Carolina’s defense.

The Bucs almost make the Panthers pay, but Godwin was ruled out of bounds at the 40.

Palardy pins them deep as the punt is downed at the Bucs three yard line. That’s probably the best thing the Panthers have done all night, in case you’re wondering how this game has gone.

Cam overthrows everyone but there’s a flag for holding. The penalty is declined and it’s now 4th and 12 and Palardy will punt. Sigh.

That looked like a legal pick play to me. Just saying.

Cam almost throws another pick on 3rd and 2 and there’s a flag on the play. It’s offensive pass interference so it’s 3rd and 12 now.

Moore makes a nice spinning catch to pick up 18 yards and a first down.

End of 3rd quarter: Panthers 12 Buccaneers 17

And the kick is no good. The Bucs still lead by five. It’s 4th down after Perriman can’t come down with it in the end zone. The Bucs will try a field goal to make this an eight point game.

And it’s now 3rd and long. The defense should do their job here.

The Panthers got lucky that Jameis couldn’t connect with Evans or this would be an even bigger deficit.

And now the Bucs are just running it down the Panthers’ throat.

Welp. Cam fumbles and the Bucs recover. No flag to bail the Panthers out this time. Boos have started filling the stadium as the Panthers are currently playing like trash.

Fortunately the Panthers were bailed out by defensive holding so they retain possession.

Sigh. Cam throws to a wide open linebacker and the Bucs have the ball.

And the Bucs score another touchdown. Peyton Barber knifes straight through the defense to give the Bucs the lead back. The XP is good. Panthers 12 Buccaneers 17

The Bucs are driving and the Panthers should stop them from doing it.

And McCoy gets a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness. Come on Gerald... it’s always the second guy they flag. They always flag retaliation.

Oh, Luke. Dropped an easy interception. He’ll want that one back.

Apparently holding is not being called tonight.

Shaq Thompson makes a nice tackle-for-loss on Ronald Jones.

HE DOINKS IT OFF THE UPRIGHT AND IT’S GOOD. The Panthers take the lead. Panthers 12 Buccaneers 10

Joey Slye is out to try a 51-yard field goal.

And Cam is sacked yet again. The offensive line is not having a good night.

Cam is sacked again. Daryl Williams is not doing a good job tonight at left tackle.

Cam finds Olsen again for another big play. This time for 41 yards.

And it’s 4th down, so the Panthers defense does their job.

And it’s now 3rd and 13 after the run is shut down again.

After a run for no gain and a false start, they’re even deeper in their own territory.

On the bright side, the Bucs are backed up deep in their own territory.

Cam takes another shot and it affects his throw. It’s now 4th down.

And now it’s 3rd and long after Cam can’t connect with Olsen. Cam takes another hit.

And Daryl Williams gets blown up and Cam takes a sack. That was less than ideal.

Cam finds Olsen for a 33-yard gain and the offense is off to a good start.

And we’re back. The Panthers start the second half on offense.

Halftime: Panthers 9 Buccaneers 10

And the kick is good. The Panthers trail by one at the half.

LOL they called a run play for some stupid reason and now this is a longer field goal than it should be. Slye will come out to try a 54-yard field goal.

Chris Hogan makes a first down catch and the Panthers take a time out with 0:18 left in the half. They are at the Bucs 34 yard line.

Cam throws a strike to Moore and he gets out of bounds. The Panthers are now in Bucs territory.

The Panthers are moving the ball down the middle of the field. They are near midfield with just under a minute left in the half.

Donte Jackson got cooked on that play, for those keeping up with such things.

Touchdown Bucs. Jameis finds a wide open Godwin in the end zone to give the Bucs the lead. The extra point is good. Panthers 6 Buccaneers 10

Two minute warning: Panthers 6 Buccaneers 3

Jameis drops a dime to Mike Evans for 41 yards and the Bucs are in field goal range.

And Palardy’s punt is muffed but the Bucs jump right on top of it. The ball must be a bit slippery tonight.

And Cam overthrows everyone and it’s now 4th down. He has been off tonight. Not sure if it’s the weather, the wet ball, or just bad execution.

It’s 3rd and long after two meh plays.

Cam gives the offense some breathing room with an 11-yard strike to Samuel.

McCloud lets the punt sail over his head and the Panthers will start this possession deep inside their own territory.

And now it’s 4th down. The punt team is coming out and it looks like the Panthers will get the ball back with about 5:30 left in the half.

It’s now 3rd and 14 after an offensive pass interference call on OJ Howard and an incomplete pass.

And it’s good. The Panthers now have the lead. Panthers 6 Buccaneers 3

It’s 4th down so Joey Slye will try to give the Panthers the lead.

We’re coming up on 3rd and 3 after Moore picks up 7 yards on a slant.

Cam finds Olsen for 16 yards on the first play of the drive.

Ray-Ray McCloud returns the punt 37 yards into Bucs territory.

Brian Burns picks up his first career sack by taking care of Jameis Winston to force a punt.

Gerald McCoy blows up the play in the backfield to a hearty cheer from the crowd.

And it’s 1st and 15 after a false start.

The Bucs get almost 50 yards on the punt return but there’s a block in the back penalty that negates it. Still tied at 3 in the 2nd quarter.

And it‘s 4th down.

Back-to-back penalties by Taylor Moton makes it 2nd and 24.

CMC takes the ball up the middle for the first down on the first play of the second quarter.

End of 1st quarter: Panthers 3 Buccaneers 3

The Panthers get a free 5 yards after a neutral zone infraction on the Bucs. It’s now 2nd and 1 instead of 2nd and 6.

McCloud muffs the punt but fortunately Donte Jackson is there to recover it. The football is quite wet tonight, y’all.

And because of that it’s 4th down after Cameron Brate only picks up 5 yards.

The Bucs just went from 3rd and 1 to 3rd and 6 because they had too many men in the huddle.

LUUUUUUUUUUKE Kuechly just blew up Ronald Jones for a short gain.

And Slye’s kick is good. The game is now tied. Panthers 3 Buccaneers 3

And Cam’s pass can’t find Greg Olsen and the Panthers will try to tie the game with a field goal.

Cam has to throw it away and it’s now 3rd and 8.

Cam finds Jarius Wright for a first down. The offense is moving again.

Devin White has been ruled out for the rest of this game.

Cam throws deep to Curtis Samuel for 44 yards! Huge play by the Panthers!

And the kick is good. The Bucs take the lead early. Panthers 0 Buccaneers 3

The Bucs are facing a fourth down but they’re in field goal range.

And we’re back. They still didn’t give the Panthers the ball like they should.

And now we have a weather delay. Fun.

LOL they didn’t overturn a clear bad spot. Why do we bother with replay if the officials will refuse to admit they got it wrong?

And he’s ruled short, but there’s a chance that Ron could challenge because that looked like a bad spot.

Cam keeps it himself and stretches to try for the first down, but they’re going to have to measure because he could be short.


The Panthers now face 4th and 1 in Bucs territory. Let’s see what happens.

Bucs rookie linebacker Devin White is down on the field getting attention. Hopefully he’s okay.

The offense is moving the ball well so far. They’re near midfield and have picked up a few first downs.

That was not an ideal return by Ray-Ray McCloud and the Panthers will start at their own 5 yard line. (The return was -3 yards.)

The Panthers defense is up to the task and the Bucs will punt.

Joey Slye is out to kick off and we’re about to get this underway, and it’s a touchback. The Bucs will start at the 25.

Kickoff is set for 8:20 p.m. ET, so stay tuned!


The Carolina Panthers have a short week to move on from their Week 1 loss to the Los Angeles Rams as they face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in a short Week 2 at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C. on Thursday, September 12 at 8:20 p.m. ET.

Below you can find all the information you need to catch the action as it happens live on Thursday night.

Game day information

What: Carolina Panthers vs Tampa Bay Buccaneers
When: Thursday, September 12 at 8:20 p.m. ET
Where: Bank of America Stadium (Charlotte, N.C.)
TV: NFL Network; Joe Buck, Troy Aikman, Erin Andrews, Kristina Pink
Local TV: WJZY 46 (Charlotte only)
Streaming: FuboTV,, Yahoo! Sports app, Panthers mobile app
Radio: Panthers radio (local); Mick Mixon, Jake Delhomme
Spanish Radio: Panthers radio (local); Jaime Moreno, Luis Moreno Jr
Weather: 85° / Partly cloudy / 3 mph ESE wind / 15% rain (Complete forecast)

Miscellaneous information

Mobile app

You can download the official Panthers app to get live score updates during the game straight to your phone. Also, if you live in the NC/SC market you can listen to the live radio broadcast of every game with the app. You can find the Panthers app in your phone’s app store or you can download the app here.

Online streaming

FuboTV: You can stream and record live NFL games on FuboTV if you purchase a monthly subscription to their service. (Note: You cannot watch games that are broadcast on ESPN.)

Yahoo! Sports: You can stream live NFL games on Yahoo! Sports’ mobile app.

NFL GamePass: You can stream all NFL regular season games on demand if you purchase NFL Game Pass*. It’s a little pricey at $99, but it also includes access to All-22 film. If you’re just desperate to watch the Panthers game there is a 7-day free trial, but sign up at your own risk if you’re one of those people who forgets to cancel before the free trial is over.

*Note: You cannot watch regular season games live with this option. You have to wait until after the games are over before you can stream them.

TV replays

NFL Network will air condensed replays of a selected group of regular season games throughout the week. To see if/when the Panthers’ game will be replayed, you can check NFL Network’s television schedule for more information.

Roaring Riot watch parties

If you’re unable to watch the game via live tv or streaming, or if you prefer to watch in the company of fellow Panthers fans, check out the Roaring Riot to see if there is a watch party in your area. Membership is not required to get in the door, but if you’re interested in purchasing a membership you can find all the information you need here.


The Panthers will wear blue jerseys for this game.


If you’re into that sort of thing, you can find info on NFL game odds by clicking here.

Stay tuned for a live update thread when the game kicks off at 8:20 p.m. ET on Thursday!

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