Panthers vs Bills: Following an average preseason the Carolina Panthers began this campaign with a dominant 23-3 win over the San Francisco 49ers. Quarterback Cam Newton started the game and gradually returned to form over its’ course. Newton’s need to rebuild chemistry with his wideouts led to an up and down first half.
Newton did have a couple of nice plays in the opening pair of quarters, such as a 40-yard touchdown strike to wide receiver Russell Shepard. Newton had a much stronger second half, completing each of his six passes.
Here’s all of the information you will need to follow the Panthers’ game against the Bills on television, radio and the internet.
TELEVISION BROADCAST: CBS (WBTV-TV in Charlotte). Kickoff set for 1:00 p.m.
On The Call: Kevin Harlan, Rich Gannon
LOCAL RADIO BROADCAST: WBT-AM 1110 AM in Charlotte market, Panthers.com
On The Call: Mick Mixon, Jim Szoke, Eugene Robinson, Sharon Thorsland
Rookie running back Christian McCaffery began to make his case for Rookie of the Year. The 21-year old had an impact on every single play. Offensive coordinator Mike Shula’s decision to make McCaffery the focus had San Francisco targeting him frequently. This strategy opened up passing lanes for the likes of Shepard, tight end Greg Olsen and company.
FOX television analyst Chris Speilman did remark the young Stanford grad was being “force-fed” due to his frequent use as McCaffery made the most of his opportunities. He finishing with 85-all purpose yards, though he did lose a fumble late in the game.
The Panther defense, maligned during the preseason, returned to form against San Francisco. Led by linebacker Luke Kueckly and returning Panthers legend Julius Peppers, the unit ruined opposing quarterback Brian Hoyer’s day. Hoyer threw an interception and was sacked four times while being limited to only short throws against Carolina’s defense. However, running back Carlos Hyde did add some lengthy rushes for San Francisco.
With a road win in the books the Panthers open their home set with the Buffalo Bills. The Bills beat the New York Jets on Sunday and are led by former Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott. His knowledge of his old team’s schemes could prove problematic for Carolina offensive coordinator Mike Shula.
Here are three things to know ahead of the Week 2 game, which will kick at 1:00 pm on Sunday.