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Panthers 31 Chiefs 33: The Panthers hung tough but couldn’t pull it out against the defending champs

The Panthers played a lot better against the Chiefs than anyone expected, but couldn’t pull off the upset.

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The Panthers came to Kansas City and tried everything they could to pull off an upset win, but they couldn’t quite pull off a victory and fell 33-31 to the defending champs.

This game had everything. Fake punts, onside kicks, 15-yard quarterback scrambles on fourth-and-14, missed calls by officials that probably changed the course of the game, and of course — dynamic plays by the game’s best play makers.

The Panthers had no right to be in this game considering their opponent, but they were. They should have lost by a hell of a lot more than two points, but they didn’t. They showed a lot of fight, a lot of heart and a lot of grit today, and that’s something that Panthers fans should be proud to see. Sure, we didn’t come away with a win today, but honestly if you would have told me that we lost the game on a missed 67-yard field goal as time expired that would have won the game, I would have called you crazy. I’ll take this result all day long because it showed me that the Panthers belong. We haven’t belonged in a while, so it’s nice to finally feel that way again even if it’s in a losing effort.

There are some things the Panthers need to improve on, mostly on defense, but I’m giving them some slack because a) they’re young, and b) the Chiefs are really good. I’ll take these bumps in the road because it could have been a lot worse.

Panthers fans have every reason to be proud right now, and I hope you realize that as you’re reading this. The Panthers are 3-6 and have a tough task next week against the Buccaneers, but for right now we can take solace in the fact that we almost shocked the world.

I know that’s what I’m going to do.

Fourth quarter: Panthers 31 Chiefs 33

The Chiefs continued their drive that ended the third quarter and took advantage of the Panthers defense blowing their coverage on Tyreek Hill to increase their lead. Harrison Butker missed the extra point to keep the Chiefs’ lead to single digits at 26-17 with 14:23 left in the game.

The Panthers took over on offense and Teddy Bridgewater put the team on his back and drove them down the field to put the Panthers back into the game. There were two amazing receptions by Curtis Samuel and Christian McCaffrey to move the chains, but the key play came on fourth-and-14 when Bridgewater scrambled for 15 yards and dove over the defenders to pick up a huge first down to keep the drive going. Bridgewater then took the ball himself on third-and-goal and scrambled into the end zone to pull the Panthers to within two points at 26-24 with 10:22 left in the game.

The Panthers tried an onside kick and caught the Chiefs off guard, but the ball didn’t travel the required 10 yards and the Chiefs were given possession after the penalty. The Chiefs drove down the field and scored to extend their lead back to two possessions at 33-24 with 7:40 left in the game.

The Panthers drove down the field and pulled within two points again on a Christian McCaffrey touchdown run to make the score 33-31 with 1:53 left in the game.

The Panthers tried another onside kick but couldn’t recover it, but the defense stepped up and made their first stop of the day and forced the Chiefs to punt. The Panthers used all their timeouts on defense and had to go 89 yards with less than two minutes left to win the game. They weren’t able to pull off the upset but they surely went down fighting. Joey Slye missed a 67-yard field goal wide right as time expired to seal the game for the Chiefs.

Third quarter: Panthers 17 Chiefs 20

The Panthers started the second half on defense after taking the ball to begin the game. The Chiefs drove down the field efficiently to start the quarter, but Sam Franklin made two big plays to force a fourth down field goal try that Butker missed to preserve the Panthers’ four-point lead.

The Panthers couldn’t take advantage of the shorter field after facing a fourth-and-2 and a 51-yard field goal attempt by Joey Slye that bounced off the upright to keep the score 17-13. The Chiefs took over with a shorter field and that was all they needed to jump out to their first lead of the game. After a big play by Travis Kelce to put the Chiefs inside the red zone, Patrick Mahomes found Clyde Edwards-Helaire in the flat and the running back did the rest to give the Chiefs a 20-17 lead with 4:42 left in the quarter.

The Panthers couldn’t get anything going on their next drive either and had to punt the ball back to the Chiefs while trailing by three points. Teddy Bridgewater took his first sack of the game to set up a second-and-27, and the Panthers couldn’t recover enough to put points on the board. The Chiefs took over on offense and held the ball through the end of the quarter with a 20-17 lead over the Panthers.

Second quarter: Panthers 17 Chiefs 13

The Panthers continued their second drive as the second quarter began but were facing a third-and-7 and were unable to pick up a first down, so they had to punt the ball back to the Chiefs offense. The Panthers ran another fake punt and picked up a first down when Joseph Charlton found Brandon Zylstra wide open in the middle of the field for a huge gain and a first down. The Panthers took advantage, and two plays later Curtis Samuel took and end around into the end zone for the Panthers’ second touchdown of the day to jump out to a 14-3 lead with 12:39 left in the half.

The defense did their job again on the Chiefs’ second drive by forcing Harrison Butker to attempt a 55-yard field goal on fourth-and-10. The kick was good and the Chiefs were able to cut into the Panthers’ lead to make it a 14-6 game with 11:01 left in the half.

The offense couldn’t add more points on their next drive (and it didn’t help that they were robbed of a first down after a bogus offensive pass interference call), and had to punt the ball back to the Chiefs. Charlton’s punt was shanked and only traveled 21 yards, which gave the Chiefs good field position and allowed them to drive down the field and score a touchdown to pull to within one point at 14-13 with 3:43 left in the half.

The Panthers couldn’t find the end zone on their next drive, but they did manage to add to their lead when Joey Slye made a 47-yard field goal to extend the lead to four points at 17-13 with 0:46 left in the half.

The Chiefs couldn’t take advantage of having nearly a minute left in the half and the Panthers took a four point lead into the break.

First quarter: Panthers 7 Chiefs 3

The Panthers won the opening coin toss and elected to receive the kickoff to try and jump out to an early lead with their offense. The offense did everything they could on a 15-play drive that took 8:53 off the clock and netted them seven points when Teddy Bridgewater found Christian McCaffrey open in the flat on a gutsy fourth-and-3 play from the Chiefs 9-yard line to take an early 7-0 lead with 6:07 left in the quarter.

The Panthers defense did their job and protected the lead by forcing the Chiefs to settle for a field goal attempt on their opening drive, and Harrison Butker was able to put points on the board and cut the Panthers’ lead to four points at 7-3 with 1:38 left in the quarter.

The Panthers took over on their second drive but didn’t change the score as the quarter came to a close.

Game day inactives

The Panthers and Chiefs have released their lists of inactive players. The bad news for the Panthers is that rookie linebacker/safety Jeremy Chinn will not play today. That probably decreases the Panthers’ chances of winning today, but on the bright side (I guess?) their chances were already slim to begin with. If Chinn has to miss a game for the Panthers, this game is probably the best one for him to sit out.

The Panthers are also down two offensive linemen as Russell Okung and Michael Schofield are both inactive today. The Panthers will have to rely on Dennis Daley and Greg Little to fill the void there, so hopefully they’re up to the task.

Sammy Watkins will not play for the Chiefs today, but they have so many weapons on offense that it probably won’t make much of a difference to the game’s result.

You can check out the full inactives for both teams below.

Panthers inactives

Chiefs inactives

The Panthers and Chiefs face off at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. at 1 p.m. ET today.

Game day information

What: Carolina Panthers at Kansas City Chiefs
When: Sunday, November 8 at 1 p.m. ET
Where: Arrowhead Stadium (Kansas City, Mo.)
TV: FOX; Kevin Burkhardt, Daryl Johnston (coverage map)
Streaming: FuboTV, FOX Sports Live, Yahoo! Sports, Panthers mobile app
Radio: Panthers radio (local); Mick Mixon
Spanish Radio: Panthers radio (local); Jaime Moreno, Antonio Ramos
Weather: 74° / Partly Cloudy / 16 mph S wind / 10% rain (complete forecast)

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