Carolina Panthers defeat Arizona 31-21 in 1st home game with fans

Carolina Panthers

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WNCN/AP) — The Arizona Cardinals’ defense appears to have sprung a leak.

After holding the 49ers and the Washington football team to a combined 35 points to start the season 2-0, the Cardinals are suddenly having trouble stopping anyone.

Arizona allowed Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to put together four scoring drives of 75 yards or longer in a 31-21 road loss that dropped the Cardinals to 2-2.

What’s gone wrong? Carolina piled up 444 yards, was a combined 8 of 12 on third- and fourth-down conversions and controlled the ball for more than 37 minutes.

The Panthers (2-2) jumped out to an early lead — going up 14-0 in the first quarter.

Arizona scored in the second quarter by managing to convert an interception into a later touchdown.

Carolina managed to score again by halftime, which put the Panthers up by 14 at the half.

In the fourth quarter, Carolina’s Ian Thomas scored his first touchdown on just his fourth catch this season.

Joey Slye kicked a late field goal for the Panthers, then putting Carolina up 31-14.

Kyler Murray, the Arizona quarterback, threw two touchdown passes Sunday. Arizona scored a late touchdown in the fourth quarter, which put the final score at 31-21.

The Panthers were allowed to have about 5,200 fans in Bank of America Stadium for Sunday’s game under new North Carolina COVID-19 guidelines. There were no fans allowed for the team’s home opener.

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