On the 30th of December 2018, the Carolina Panthers defeated the number one seed New Orleans Saints 33-14. Although the Saints benched an abundant amount of their main players including Drew Brees and Alvin Kamara, the team showed abysmal effort because the game meant nothing to the Saints.
Stud: Dwayne Washington
Despite not playing in the first half AND the Saints losing, Dwayne Washington was all over the field. He posted a stat line of 11 carries for 108 yards and 1 touchdown. Washington was a highlight in a rare Saints loss.
Dud: Teddy Bridgewater
While Drew Brees day out of the game, Bridgewater took the future Hall of Famer’s place on Sunday. The young QB only managed to find the end zone once. He threw for just 118 yards and 1 interception. In his first start since 2016, Bridgewater couldn’t fill in the shoes of the team’s starting QB.
Stud: Kyle Allen
After QB Cam Newton received a season-ending injury, the Panthers names Kyle Allen the starter. The 22-year-old threw for 228 yards, over 100 more yards than the opposing QB Teddy Bridgewater. The two touchdowns that he threw aided the Panthers in the overall routing of the Saints.
Dud: Eli Apple
The former New York Giants defensive back did not show up on Sunday. Apple had only 2 combined tackles with no interceptions. He was also outrun by Curtis Samuel when the WR received a 53-yard touchdown pass from Kyle Allen.
Stud: Cameron Artis-Payne
Christian McCaffery played only one quarter on Sunday for the Panthers. As a replacement, the team put in the heavy hitting RB Cameron Artis-Payne. He dismantled the New Orleans defense, getting 1 touchdown on 16 carries. Although he had only 56 yards rushing, Artis-Payne was a fitting replacement for the talented McCaffery against the first-place New Orleans Saints.
Dud: Micheal Thomas
Because of a lack of effort and the benching of Drew Brees, the New Orleans passing offense was nowhere to be found on Sunday. The number one receiver for the team couldn’t detect any separation and caught 5 passes for 29 yards. Eventually, the superstar was benched at the beginning of the fourth quarter.
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