Carolina Panthers’ quarterback Jake Delhomme struggled on Sunday against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and was fortunate that his running backs bailed him out. Delhomme threw for only 65 yards with two interceptions, but D’Angelo Williams (152 yards) and Jonathan Stewart (110 yards) kept the chains moving as the Panthers won their second straight game defeating the Bucs 28-21. Tampa Bay has now lost ten straight dating back to last season and are 0-6 for the first time since’85. Carolina improved to 2-3 with the victory.
NFL sports bettors were faced with a choice between two teams with dismal ATS records in this game, and those who had the guts to take a 1-3 team as a -3 road favorite were rewarded with the cover. It was Carolina’s first NFL pointspread cover of the season and left them with a 1-4 record against the number. Tampa Bay has covered one of their six games this year.
Delhomme attempted only seven passes in the second half, but the way Williams and Stewart were running there was no reason to put the ball in the air. Williams said that even though Tampa Bay knew what was coming they couldn’t stop the Panthers’ running game:
“I’m sure everybody in the stadium knew what we were going to do. There were times they had nine in the box and we were still getting 7 or 8 yards.”
There’s been little impatience locally with Bucs’ rookie head coach Raheem Morris, but his weekly habit of explaining the obvious to rationalize yet another loss is starting to wear thin:
“We got overpowered at the end, and really throughout the game.”
Carolina safety Dante Wesley was ejected after clobbering Bucs’ return man Clifton Smith after a fair catch call. After the game, Wesley gave this defense for his actions:
“I was just trying to make a play. You can check my record. I’ve never really tried to hurt anybody. I’ve never tried to take a cheap shot on anybody.”
Wesley could face a possible fine or suspension from the NFL but, in all fairness, it did appear to be a momentary mental lapse as he was trying to make a big play and not a deliberate attempt to injure Smith.
Tampa’s schedule has the look of them going from ‘the frying pan into the fire’ as they host the New England Patriots next Sunday-fresh off of their 57 point drubbing of Tennessee. Carolina has an easier draw, hosting the Buffalo Bills next Sunday. The game is currently off the board pending the status of Bills’ QB Trent Edwards who suffered a concussion in Sunday’s win over the New York Jets. The Panthers will then play on the road the following two Sundays, traveling to Arizona and New Orleans.
Ross Everett is a freelance writer and highly respected authority on sports betting odds comparison. He writing has appeared on a variety of sports sites including sports news and sportsbook directory sites. He lives in Southern Nevada with three Jack Russell Terriers and an emu. He is currently working on an autobiography of former energy secretary Donald Hodell.