What it means: The Panthers fall to 3-9, and this one isn’t going to help coach Ron Rivera’s job security. Carolina lost to a team that had won only one game this season. That ended an opportunity for Rivera to put together back-to-back wins for the first time since Weeks 15 and 16 of last year. Rivera said it’s been made clear to him by owner Jerry Richardson that he needs to finish the season on an upswing to have a chance to keep his job. But Carolina flubbed a chance to get on a bit of a roll. Barring some dramatic turnaround to finish the season, it seems likely the Panthers will be looking for a new coach after the season.
No defense: The Panthers came in knowing they were facing a good running back in Jamaal Charles. But they weren’t able to slow Charles down at all. More importantly, the Panthers made quarterback Brady Quinn, who entered the game without a touchdown pass this season, look like a Pro Bowler. Carolina’s defense simply couldn’t get Kansas City’s offense off the field. The Chiefs dominated in time of possession, largely due to lengthy touchdown drives in the second and third quarters. The Chiefs ended up holding the ball for 37:13.
All for nothing: Quarterback Cam Newton threw three touchdown passes and ran for 78 yards and didn’t make any major mistakes. Newton and the offense probably could have scored a lot more points if the defense had been able to give them more time with the ball.
Worst drop of the season: Newton easily could have had a fourth touchdown pass. A wide-open Brandon LaFell dropped a sure touchdown pass in the third quarter.
Amazing stat of the day: The Panthers now have lost all 13 coin tosses (12 at the start of games and once for overtime) this season. Carolina even tried a new approach on this one, asking fans to vote on whether to call heads or tails on Facebook. It didn’t make any difference.
What’s next: The Panthers host the Atlanta Falcons next Sunday.