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38
Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Carolina 0 14 14 10 38
Arizona 7 3 10 0 20
20
1:05 PM PT2:05 PM MT3:05 PM CT4:05 PM ET20:05 GMT4:05 1:05 PM MST3:05 PM EST3:05 PM CT0:05 UAE (+1)16:05 ET19:05 , September 22, 2019
State Farm Stadium, Glendale, Arizona  Attendance: 60,104

Panthers-Cardinals Preview

According to STATS
According to STATS

Carolina Panthers at Arizona Cardinals

  1. Carolina is trying to avoid its first 0-3 start since 2010, the year before Cam Newton was drafted. The Panthers have lost their only two visits to Arizona during Newton's tenure -- in 2011 and '13 -- even though he threw for a combined 730 yards. Before Newton's arrival, Carolina had been 4-0 in Arizona.
  2. Newton has lost a career-high eight straight starts and has not thrown a touchdown pass in four in a row. He's now at risk of becoming the first player since Steve McNair in 1999 to not throw a TD pass in five straight games in which he had at least 10 attempts.
  3. Kyler Murray has joined Newton and Kirk Cousins as the only active QBs to throw for 300+ yards in each of his first two NFL starts. No quarterback in the Super Bowl era has thrown for 300+ yards in each of his first three career starts.
  4. The Cardinals are a league-worst 1-7-1 at home since the start of last season. They're the only team averaging under 17 points at home during that span with just 13.9 per game.
  5. Carolina has won 23 straight games when not committing a turnover, the longest active streak in the NFL - Dallas is next at 19 in a row. The Panthers' only win in their last 10 games is the only one in that span in which they did not turn the ball over.
  6. Greg Olsen is coming off just his 11th career 100-yard game, tied for 13th all-time among tight ends. Olsen, though, is seven yards shy of becoming the fifth TE in NFL history to have 8000 receiving yards; the others are Tony Gonzalez (15,127), Jason Witten (12,488), Antonio Gates (11,841) and Shannon Sharpe (10,060).
Team Comparison

Carolina
 
Arizona
20.5 Points 22.0
286.0 Pass Yds 328.5
83.0 Rush Yds 66.0
1 Takeaways 2
(AP Photo/Mike McCarn, File)

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Arizona's Kyler Murray and Carolina's Kyle Allen will be competing for the spotlight when the two teams face each other Sunday in Week 3.

In some ways, it's just like old times for the quarterbacks and former college teammates.

Allen will make his second career start after the team ruled starter Cam Newton out because of a mid-foot sprain he aggravated on Sept. 12. Allen is 1-0 as a starter after beating a New Orleans team in Week 17 that was already looking ahead to the playoffs.

Cardinals coach Kliff Kingsbury doesn't expect any letdown from the Panthers, even without Newton.

"Last time Kyle Allen stepped on the field they won and scored 30 points on the road," Kingsbury said. "We understand we'll have our hands full."

Murray, the No. 1 overall pick in April, has had a very promising start to his NFL career. He's just the second quarterback in NFL history to throw for at least 300 yards in his first two career games.

The other guy? Newton, who was also the No. 1 pick in 2011. Both also won the Heisman Trophy.

But now that Newton can't go, the Panthers (0-2) turn to Allen, who is in his second season. Murray and Allen played together at Texas A&M in 2015, splitting time for a team that finished with an 8-5 record.

In a strange twist, both of the highly rated recruits ended up transferring at the end of the season. The two say they got along fine, even if circumstances weren't ideal. Murray called it a "tough situation." Allen said they were "never super tight. We had a mutual respect for each other obviously."

Now they will be on the same NFL field.

"We went to school together. We played together," Murray said. "I don't really have control over who starts over there. That's their deal. I just have to get ready to play, and whoever's their quarterback is their quarterback."

FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH

Receiver Larry Fitzgerald has looked 10 years younger over the Cardinals' first two games with 13 catches for 217 yards and a touchdown.

The 36-year-old has developed a quick rapport with Murray and the connection looks like it's going to be a go-to for Arizona (0-1-1) all season. Panthers coach Ron Rivera said Fitzgerald is a player - along with Panthers TE Greg Olsen - whom he encourages young players to emulate.

"He's the right kind of person, the right kind of young man who understands what it takes to be successful in this game," Rivera said. "It honestly doesn't surprise me that he's still playing, and it doesn't surprise me that he's having success like he is because he works at it."

RED-ZONE WOES

Arizona's offense has been very efficient this year except when it gets in the red zone. That was a big issue in last week's 23-17 loss to Baltimore: The Cardinals had to settle for three field goals after getting inside Baltimore's 5-yard line. It would help to get David Johnson going in the run game. He had just 14 yards rushing on seven carries in Week 2.

KUECHLY ON A TEAR

The Panthers may be 0-2 but it has little to do with the play of linebacker Luke Kuechly, who is off to another terrific start. The five-time All-Pro selection had 17 tackles, including a tackle in the end zone on running back Peyton Barber for a safety in last week's 20-14 loss to the Buccaneers. Kuechly now has 973 tackles for his career, passing Hall of Fame linebacker Brian Urlacher for the most tackles by a player through his first eight seasons. Kuechly's average of 9.4 tackles per game is second only to Miami's Zach Thomas (9.8) in NFL history.

"They have such smart defensive players," said Kingsbury. "It starts with Kuechly, who gets everything lined up and has such a great feel for the game and knows what offenses are going to run before they even run it."

ALL McCAFFREY, ALL THE TIME

Panthers offensive coordinator Norv Turner said before the season he wanted to limit Christian McCaffrey's reps in the offense for fear of wearing him down. Well, that hasn't quite happened. Through two games, McCaffrey has been on the field for all 137 offensive plays. After combining for 209 yards on offense and two TDs in the season opener against the Rams, McCaffrey will look to get back on track against Arizona after being held to 53 yards by the Bucs. The Panthers scored 14 points against Tampa Bay, but it came on four field goals and a safety.

THIRD-DOWN STRUGGLES

If the Panthers want to succeed on offense they will need to start with moving the chains and sustaining drives. Carolina is converting a paltry 32% of its third downs (8 of 25) and is 0 for 3 on fourth-down conversions. A big part of that is the Panthers haven't used the multidimensional Newton as a runner as they have in the past due to shoulder and foot issues. In fact, Newton has five carries for minus-2 yards with two fumbles. With Allen expected to start at QB, it could add another dimension to the offense.

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AP Sports Writer Steve Reed contributed to this story.

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Follow David Brandt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/davidbrandtAP

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More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP-NFL

Updated September 20, 2019

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