3 primary keys to victory for the Carolina Panthers at Lions in Week 5

The Carolina Panthers have entered must-win territory.
Frank Reich
Frank Reich / Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
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Carolina Panthers must stop the run

The Detroit Lions are an old-school football team. Running the ball and physicality are the basis of their entire game plan week in and week out, which is quite the opposite of almost everyone else in the league.

This could pose problems for the Carolina Panthers, who have shown a distinct lack of any kind of run defense for years.

The Panthers have given up at least 130 rushing yards in each of their four games this season - nowhere near good enough to keep up with any team in today's NFL. With the exception of the Atlanta Falcons, none of them really rely on it as their primary method of gaining momentum.

This spells trouble against the Lions as that is their calling card, it is where all of their offense comes from. Hard running and play action. And with the Panthers not having anyone in particular left at the linebacker position that is capable of sealing the holes left by the interior defensive line aside from Frankie Luvu, there isn't much that the team can do.

The only possible boon that the team may be able to call upon is Jeremy Chinn moving closer to the line of scrimmage. Something that hasn't been utilized since the young player's first season in the league.

This will leave the secondary shorthanded, but stopping the run is the more vital part of this game. Leave the pass defense to handle its own thing because at least it has proven capable of containing some of the best wide receivers to this point.