4 keys to victory for the Panthers at the Falcons in Week 5

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Rasul Douglas
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Rasul Douglas /
2 of 5
Carolina Panthers
(Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports) Ian Thomas /

Utilize the tight ends

One only has to look at the way Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers dismantled the Falcons across the middle on Monday Night Football to see where their deficiencies lie. They were torched by tight end Robert Tonyan’s three-touchdown performance that played a leading role in their demise. But whether the Carolina Panthers can do the same remains to be seen.

This would represent a complete turnaround in ethos from an offense that has used their tight ends sparingly during the first quarter of the campaign. But the likes of Ian Thomas and Chris Manhertz will not get a better chance to have a breakout game than they will this weekend.

This bears more significance for Thomas, who was the player with most responsibility on his shoulders coming into the campaign.

He has looking to fill the enormous void left by prolific veteran Greg Olsen after he departed in free agency for the Seattle Seahawks. But this has come with just nine targets, five receptions, 30 receiving yards, and one touchdown through four games.

Offensive coordinator Joe Brady got plenty of success with his tight end sets at LSU during their National Championship triumph in 2019. This is an area of real weakness from the Falcons’ perspective and targeting it heavily will be a key component to whatever success comes Carolina’s way.