(11/17/14) The Panthers DST unit bounced back from a clubbing at the hands of the Eagles, but they still fell in a 19-17 loss to the Falcons in Week 11.
The Panthers held the Falcons to 346 yards of total offense in the game, but failed to make many big plays in the loss. They recorded one turnover, on a fumble, and had two sucks of quarterback Matt Ryan, en route to an 8-point Fantasy outing.
The Panthers have been up-and-down for much of the season, with four games with at least 8 Fantasy points over the last seven. They are set for a Week 12 bye, before taking on the Vikings in Week 13.
Panthers DE Charles Johnson dealing with personal issue
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(11/15/14) Panthers coach Ron Rivera told reporters that defensive end Charles Johnson has been away from the team for two days to deal with a personal matter. Johnson is visiting his ailing grandmother in a Georgia hospital.
According to the Charlotte Observer, Rivera hopes to have Johnson in the lineup Week 11 against the Falcons on Sunday.
"He's been in contact. Hopefully she'll take a turn for the good and we'll see him either later (Friday) or sometime (Saturday)," Rivera said. "He loves the Atlanta week, too. But he's obviously torn."
Panthers DT Kawann Short to remain in starting lineup
(10/26/14) The Panthers DST unit entered Week 8 against the Seahawks scuffling, but found some success in a 13-9 loss.
The Seahawks managed just 310 yards of total offense, as the Panthers held them to just two field goals through the first 59 minutes of the game. They forced a pair of turnovers, but had just one sack of Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson in the loss.
The Panthers have struggled with consistency this season, but have still reached double figures in Fantasy points in four of seven games. They will try to keep it going in Week 9, with a tough matchup on the way against the Saints.
Panthers' Bene Benwikere expected to get starting nickel job back
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10/20/14) Panthers cornerback Bene Benwikere is expected to get his starting job back at the nickel once he's fully recovered from an ankle injury, the Associated Press reports. Benwikere was inactive Sunday against the Packers and has not played since Week 5 against the Bears.
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One might expect the Panthers DST to carry the team this season as the offense is in flux. After the unit totaled a league-best 60 sacks last year while holding opponents to 15.1 points per game, that expectation seems reasonable. But just as the Carolina offense lost key players, so too did its defense. Cornerback Captain Munnerlyn and safety Mike Mitchell are both gone. Roman Harper might fill a spot at safety but the cornerbacks on staff leave a lot to be desired. On another team that would be a huge problem but considering the Panthers front seven and incredible pass rush, that might not be a big issue. It's a unit anchored by a pair of amazing pass rushers in Charles Johnson and Greg Hardy along with beefy D-linemen Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short. Linebackers Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis add more wrinkles to a defense that held opponents to 86.9 yards per game and 1,391 yards on the season. We're a little nervous about the pass defense getting lit up – the Panthers schedule includes their division rivals plus pass-wielding teams like the Bears, Lions, Packers, Eagles and Bengals. They're still a start-worthy unit but one not worth reaching for. They should be taken with a pick within the last three rounds of a draft.