Green Bay Packers: 5 Things to Know About the Panthers

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 03: Teammates Kyle Allen #7 and Christian McCaffrey #22 of the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on November 03, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA - NOVEMBER 03: Teammates Kyle Allen #7 and Christian McCaffrey #22 of the Carolina Panthers during their game at Bank of America Stadium on November 03, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) /

As you prepare to watch the Green Bay Packers take on Carolina this afternoon, here are five things you need to know about the Panthers.

After a devastating loss a week ago in Los Angeles, the Green Bay Packers will look to rebound against the Carolina Panthers and head into their bye week with an 8-2 record.

On offense the Packers were quick to abandon the running game last week, but today they’ll face a Carolina defense that has struggled against opposing running backs, both in the passing and running games. As a result, we will hopefully see a heavy dose of Aaron Jones and Jamaal Williams which will also help Green Bay control the clock.

Meanwhile, the defensive side of the ball is going to have their hands full as they have to account for Christian McCaffrey who is a matchup nightmare. The Panthers will rely heavily on him and slowing McCaffrey down may be an impossible task, but when given the opportunity, they’ll have to get after quarterback Kyle Allen and capitalize on any mistakes.

As always, I’ve teamed up with a writer from Green Bay’s opponent and this week that is Danny Jaillet of Cat Crave, where they cover anything and everything Carolina Panthers. Danny was kind enough to answer five of my questions that will help provide some insight into this Carolina football team.

How has the Carolina offense transitioned so smoothly from Cam Newton to Kyle Allen?

Danny: Carolina has done a nice job of playing through running back Christian McCaffrey. However, McCaffrey isn’t the only answer for this team. Although he may not put up record-breaking numbers every week, Kyle Allen has been a tremendous game-manager. He moves the ball down the field, and tries to avoid negative plays as often as possible. For their part as a team, the Panthers have done a nice job of saying in effect “Kyle is our guy, right now and we are going to ride with him.”  That certainly has helped to things go smoothly

Through 9 weeks, what is your biggest concern about the Panthers?

Danny: The offensive line would have to be my biggest concern. It seems like we were saying that at this time last year as well. However, injuries have hampered the line throughout the course of the season.. Against a tough Green Bay Packers defense, they are certainly going to be challenged this week.

What is the best aspect of this Panthers team?

Danny: The best aspect of this Panthers team is that they grind out wins. They never give up, and they always play hard. Even in defeat, that are not easy to put away. With Newton out, it would have been easy for the team to just pack it in. Instead, they have rallied around Kyle Allen and given him their full support. The togetherness and closeness on this team is not something that we saw last year.

What are 1 or 2 keys to winning at Lambeau on Sunday?

Danny: Winning the time of possession battle is certainly one key to the game. The Panthers would be wise to keep the Green Bay Packers’ offense on the sideline for as long as possible. Now, if pace of play dictates that the Panthers have success moving the ball at a quicker pace, then so be it. However, it would be in their best interest to keep Aaron Rodgers and company on the sideline for as long as possible.

Secondly, I would say limiting turnovers would be another huge key to the game. Allen will have to make sure to just take what the defense gives him. Unless it opens up, Allen should not go for the big play for fear of turning the ball over. Giving the Packers offense any second-chance opportunities would be detrimental.

Who is one player on offense and one on defense that Packer fans may not know well but could make an impact on Sunday?

Danny: This name might be familiar to some, but he is often forgotten about. Curtis Samuel has caught 30 passes for 407 yards and three touchdowns on the year. After what has been an injury-plagued career to this point, Samuel has done a nice job of bouncing back and having a successful, healthy season. He should figure to play a role in the game on Sunday.

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Defensively, Shaq Thompson has helped carry the load at linebacker. He has 69 tackles and three sacks on the year. After the departure of Thomas Davis, some were wondering who would help fill the void. Although it is tough to replace a guy like Davis, Thompson has certainly tried his best to minimize the hole at the position.