5 harsh lessons the Carolina Panthers must learn after Week 1 loss

(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield
(Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports) Baker Mayfield /
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Carolina Panthers
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Carolina Panthers’ run defense is simply not good enough

Heading into Week 1, most Carolina Panthers knew the only way they’d lose this game is if the Cleveland Browns got their run game going. Unfortunately for those supporting the home team, this dreaded scenario came to fruition.

The Browns’ offense had 217 yards on the ground with star Nick Chubb exploding for 141 yards at an average of 6.4 per carry. Phil Snow was frosty with reporters pre-game when they questioned him on how Carolina would be better against the run – claims that weren’t backed up when it came to the crunch.

Carolina’s run defense was an issue a year ago and the Panthers staff have done little to help in that regard. No player was drafted who could set the edge and they waited until September 5 to bring in any sort of help in the form of Henry Anderson.

It wouldn’t be a surprise to see the front office bring someone else into the fold. The Panthers would be smart to give free agent Ndamukong Suh a call, who has the experience and production that could be a shrewd asset to this struggling defensive line unit despite his advancing years.

With the Panthers facing Saquon Barkley and the New York Giants in Week 2 – who totaled 238 rushing yards at the Tennessee Titans – change is certainly needed. Whether the right adjustments can be made in a short space of time is another matter.