The Carolina Panthers are off to the best start in franchise history at 6-0, a season that has seen this team battle through adversity and doubters. The Panthers are doing it old school with a smash mouth brand of football wearing down opponents and are just a pain to face. The running game has been phenomenal through the first six games and allowed us to play this brand of football.
We lead the league in rushing yards with 144.7 yards per game and attempts at just over 33 per game it’s just great to see this team frustrate opponents game after game. The best part about it is it’s not just been one guy it’s been the three-headed monster of Cam Newton, Jonathan Stewart, and Mike Tolbert complementing each other nicely giving opponents many different looks allowing the passing game to open up. Here are the stats for each of them to demonstrate the balance and continuity in the running game. Newton has 54 attempts for 245 yards and four touchdowns on the ground thus far in 2015. Jonathan Stewart has taken advantage of becoming the lead dog out of the backfield, he has 101 for a team-leading 423 yards and two touchdowns he is also accounted for 17 first downs.
Although, Deangelo Williams was our franchise leading rusher I think it’s been great for the team and Stewart not having to split carries and allowing him to get in a rhythm and the coaching staff to establish the running game without having to worry so much about getting them both carriers. Lastly, “Tub of GOO” Mike Tolbert is not only a great blocker, but is like tackling a tree making him a great option in the red zone and even on short screen passes. He has 20 attempts for 92 yards and two touchdowns, one rushing one receiving.
This definitely is the best part of our offense, so far this season a credit to everyone from the offensive line to offensive coordinator Mike Shula, who has been under fire over the last couple of seasons with questionable play calling, but it’s time to give him some credit being innovative with the formations and play calls putting this team in the best position possible to succeed on that side of the ball.
This team also relies heavily on this great defense that has been built since coach Rivera came to the Queen city. This year has been domination by that group led by the ageless wonder Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly flying all around the field and you add budding stars in Josh Norman, Shaq Thompson, Kawann short and many more. Just a nightmare for opposing offenses to face and the last time I checked a good running game and defense will play anywhere a recipe for success the rest of this year and beyond. This team is very special and live by the saying KEEP POUNDING Sam Mills would be proud! Go Panthers!