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The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

The Student News Site of North Carolina A&T State University

The A&T Register

Carolina Panthers and Bryce Young Lose Season Opener to the Atlanta Falcons

Kevin C. Cox
Getty Images

Number one overall pick Bryce Young and the Carolina Panthers struggled early in Sunday’s game against their division rival, the Atlanta Falcons.

Kicking off a new era for the Carolina Panthers, newly hired head coach Frank Reich and rookie quarterback Bryce Young struggled on the offensive end.

Young turned the ball over twice while completing 20 of 36 passes for 146 yards and a touchdown. He showed promise in the second quarter with a methodical 12-play, 75-yard drive, capped off by a touchdown pass to tight end Hayden Hurst.

The Panthers were missing one of their starting receivers, DJ Chark, in this game. Chark missed this matchup due to a hamstring injury that has been lingering since late August. With not much progress being made, the Panthers hope they can get their pass catcher back within the coming weeks.

 Panthers’ and NFL reporter for ESPN, David Newton, spoke to Bryce Young after his NFL debut. Young expressed frustration with himself in his performance.

“That’s unacceptable,” Young said. “That’s on me. I just have to clean that up. Not good enough, not good enough to [win]. I made crucial turnovers, which you can’t do, especially where they happened. That falls on me.”

Another turnover would come from running back Miles Sanders towards the end of the third quarter with a fumble in Falcons’ territory as the game was tied at 10. All three of these turnovers helped Atlanta as they turned these opportunities into 13 points.

The Falcons’ rushing attack was the highlight of the night. After one game, the two-back rotation of 2023 first-round pick Bijan Robinson and Tyler Allgeier looked dynamic as the two rushed for a combined 130 yards on 24 carries for two touchdowns.

On the other hand, the Falcons’ passing attack did not have a good outing, as quarterback Desmond Ridder threw for only 115 yards. 

The top two receiving threats for the Falcons, Kyle Pitts and Drake London, combined for two receptions for 44 yards, as London didn’t record a single catch for the day.

Carolina’s defense showed flashes in Sunday’s performance. Star pass-rusher Brian Burns had a tackle for loss, one and a half sacks, and a forced fumble, all in the first quarter of the game. The Panthers’ defense held the Falcons to 74 yards and sacked Ridder four times in the first half. 

Unfortunately, the Panthers’ defense lost its star cornerback, Jaycee Horn, to a hamstring injury in the first half. Horn has been placed on injured reserve and will miss at least the next four games.    

This loss resulted in the Panthers having an 8-21 head-to-head record versus the Falcons. Panthers’ head coach Frank Reich also remains winless in season opener games in his head coaching career. 

On Sept. 18, Young and the Carolina Panthers look to bounce back in their home opener as they take on their second straight division game against the New Orleans Saints at Bank Of America Stadium in Charlotte, North Carolina for Monday Night Football.

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