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Newton, Panthers hand Eagles seventh straight loss
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - Cam Newton passed for two touchdowns and ran in two more as the Carolina Panthers took a 30-22 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles in a battle between two last-place teams.
Newton finished the game 18-for-28 with 306 yards through the air and added 52 yards on 14 carries for the Panthers (3-8), who snapped a two-game slide but still sit at the bottom of the NFC South, two games back of New Orleans.
Steve Smith had four catches for 60 yards and became the 27th player all-time in the NFL to go over 11,000 receiving yards for his career. Gary Barnidge and Brandon LaFell had first-quarter touchdown catches in the win.
Rookie Bryce Brown made his first career start in place of an injured LeSean McCoy and set a single-game rookie record for the Eagles (3-8) with 178 yards. He carried the ball 19 times and had two scores along with four catches for 11 yards, but had a pair of fumbles in the third quarter. McCoy suffered a concussion in last week's loss to Washington.
Nick Foles made his second straight start under center as Michael Vick is still recovering from a concussion. He went 16-for-21 in the game, but managed just 119 yards as Philadelphia has lost seven straight for the first time since losing the final seven games of the 1994 season and are two games behind Washington and Dallas for last place in the NFC East.
Trailing by a point to start the second half, Carolina began it with the ball at its own 5 after a clipping penalty on the kickoff. On the third play, Newton went deep for Louis Murphy, who made a leaping catch in double coverage for a 55-yard gain.
Newton runs of 14 and nine yards got the ball down to the 5-yard line, and he finished the drive with a leap over the pile as he stretched the ball over on a 1-yard score for a 21-15 lead with 9:13 to play in the third.
Brown fumbled the ball on the Eagles' next possession, but the Eagles held the Panthers to a three-and-out and got the ball back at their 31. On the third play, Foles went deep for Jeremy Maclin, who didn't make the catch but did draw the flag for a 51-yard pass interference down to the Carolina 5. On the next play, Brown turned the corner around the right end to give the team a 22-21 lead with 3:30 to play in the third.
Carolina was again held to a three-and-out, but Brown fumbled on the first snap and the Panthers got the ball back at the Philadelphia 45. The team got down to the Philadelphia 5, but that was on fourth down and a 23-yard field goal from Graham Gano made it a 24-22 game with 12:40 to play.
Philly crossed midfield on its ensuing touch, but Brown was stopped on a 4th- and-1 to give the Panthers the ball back at their own 40.
The Panthers used the short field to add to their lead and Smith got the drive started with a 31-yard catch on the first play. Following a 13-yard catch from Mike Tolbert, the Eagles were penalized for an offside and encroachment to give the Panthers an easy 10 yards and put the ball at the 6-yard line. Two plays later, Newton took it in himself. The extra point, though, was missed and it was a 30-22 contest with 4:40 to play.
Brandon Boykin had a nice return on the ensuing kickoff as he got 44 yards, but he was stripped of the ball and Carolina took over near midfield.
The team faced a 2nd-and-14 after a holding call and 6-yard catch by Smith, but Mychal Kendricks got flagged for holding to give the Panthers a first down. After forcing Philly to burn its final two timeouts, the Panthers faced a 3rd-and-4, converting it with a 10-yard catch by Murphy. The team converted one more first down then killed off the rest of the clock.
The Eagles moved the ball quickly on the opening possession of the game, highlighted by runs of seven and 19 yards from Brown. Brent Celek then made a 16-yard catch, hanging onto the ball as he was hit to get it to the Carolina 14. The drive stalled there, though, as a pair of incompletions from Foles sandwiched a dropped snap that he recovered and lost four yards on. Alex Henery hit a 36-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead just under four minutes in.
Carolina came right back with an impressive opening drive, which included a 9- yard and 14-yard catch from Smith. From the Philly 24, Newton found Barnidge wide open over the middle in the end zone for his first career TD and a 7-3 lead.
Following a quick three-and-out from Philly, the Panthers went to work again and again took advantage of bad secondary play. On the third play of the drive from the Eagles' 43, Newton hit a wide open LaFell near the 20 and he took it in untouched for a 14-3 lead with 3:36 left in the first.
The Eagles answered with a drive that lasted into the second quarter, but again came away with just three points. On the first play, an unnecessary roughness call on Greg Hardy gave the team a quick 15 yards and Brown later gained 19 on a direct snap that he took around the left end. After stalling at the 23, Henery hit a 41-yarder to make it a 14-6 game.
The Eagles defense held Carolina on its next touch and got the ball back at their own 32. On the second play, Brown took a handoff around the right end and raced down the sideline, getting into the end zone just before getting tripped up for a 65-yard score, the first of his career. The team went for two points and failed for a 14-12 game with 10:56 to play in the half.
Following another short possession from Carolina, the Eagles were able to take the lead with a nine-play drive that covered just 35 yards, but it was enough for a 45-yard field goal from Henery for a 15-14 lead with 3:20 to play in the half.
Henery was hit 19 straight field goals ... The Eagles lost wide receiver DeSean Jackson to a sternum injury and defensive tackle Fletcher Cox to a tailbone injury in the first quarter. Both players had an X-ray that turned up negative ... Carolina lost running back Jonathan Stewart to an ankle injury in the third quarter ... Maclin led Philadelphia receivers with five catches for 55 yards ... Carolina controlled the ball for 35:12 and outgained Philly, 398-311 ... Carolina snapped a three-game losing streak to Philadelphia ... The Eagles plays in Dallas next Sunday night ... Carolina plays in Kansas City on Sunday.
11/27 00:23:57 ET
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