by Jeff Taylor
That’s one we didn’t deserve.
Starting with the three drives each ending with a 3rd-and-short we failed to convert, you knew this was going to be closer than it needed to be. Turns out that if DeAngelo Hall does not freak out, the Panthers probably lose.
And don’t hang this just on Hall. Falcons head coach Bobby Petrino also freaked out when Hall was called for popping Steve Smith in the head. Petrino screamed at the refs, further pushing Hall over the edge instead of calming him down.
Together they wasted a 361-yard day from QB Joey Harrington and a career-day from WR Roddy White. But get used to that. QBs and WRs are going to have lots of career-days against the 2007 Panthers. This defense cannot pressure the QB and cannot cover a coffee table between the hash-marks. We may be the first team in history to play prevent defense for an entire year.
And don’t get too excited about the ground attack, either. If the Panthers are not ahead late, I doubt we are running the ball in Jeff Davidson’s gimmicky scheme. DeShaun Foster ran great and the OL with Jeremy Bridges at RG was much improved and a little nasty run-blocking, but as noted above, Davidson did not trust the ground-game to start the game.
From here — go Titans, beat the Aints.