4 pivotal matchups that will decide Panthers’ game at Giants in Week 7

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Derrick Brown
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Derrick Brown /
1 of 5
Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) D.J. Moore /

Panthers -2.5. 1 PM ET. 87. FOX. 1-5. 3-3. Sunday, October 24. 31

What are some key matchups to watch when the Carolina Panthers go in search of a much-needed victory at the New York Giants in Week 7?

Well, that was a rollercoaster for Carolina Panthers fans everywhere. The team showed life late in the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Vikings and rode a missed field goal to overtime, only to see their hopes evaporate thanks to a K.J. Osborn touchdown.

Things didn’t necessarily start well for the Panthers on Sunday with Sam Darnold throwing an ugly interception on the first play of the game after scrambling from a clean pocket and that kind of set the tone.

Dropped balls, bad passes, blown blocks, and undisciplined play.

Robby Anderson was a disaster for all but the last drive, in what has become business as usual for the newly extended receiver. D.J. Moore wasn’t much better.

Tommy Tremble and Terrace Marshall were non-factors with the second-round pick out of LSU the only one with a catch.

Shi Smith did finally get some NFL action and made the most of his two targets, hauling both in for 20 yards and bubble resident Brandon Zylstra had another nice showing before injury forced him out of action and onto IR.

But mentioning performances that lackluster should go to show just how bad this game was for the Panthers. One that all of us just want to forget.

Winning on Sunday against a New York Giants team that never even got off the ground this season would go a long way toward that.

Star youngsters Saquon Barkley and Daniel Jones have been largely disappointing this year. The former Pro Bowl running back has been a shell of himself before injuring his ankle and missing a Week 6 game where the first-round quarterback threw three picks and no touchdowns.

This disappointing offense pairs with a defense that has given up 38 and 44 points in the last two weeks and has been largely outplayed most of the year. This could be encouraging for a Panthers offense that has struggled in every way for the past three contests.

With the way this team is playing, however, there are no sure things. Here are some key matchups to watch come Sunday.