The Carolina Panthers are looking to improve to 3-0 as they face the Pittsburgh Steelers, who hope to put a tough Thursday Night Football loss behind them.
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The Carolina Panthers have started the season 2-0, and they will look to stay undefeated against the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Panthers beat the Detroit Lions last week as starting quarterback Cam Newton returned from a rib injury.
Newton played well with 281 passing yards and a touchdown on 22-of-34 passing, and the Panthers played without starting running back DeAngelo Williams, who nursed a thigh injury.
However, Williams is expected to return on Sunday night. Tight end Greg Olsen continues to be one of Newton’s favorite weapons, as he caught six passes for 72 yards against the Lions.
Meanwhile, the Steelers are coming off 10 days rest after a loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger struggled greatly as he was held to 217 yards and an interception.
Running back Le’Veon Bell continued to look great though as he ran for 59 yards on 11 carries and added five receptions and 48 receiving yards.
Bell will face a big test against the Panthers defensive line though, which ranks sixth in the NFL in run defense.
The Steelers run defense is another story, and Williams and Stewart will both be healthy. Plus, Newton has the ability to make plays with his legs.
Since the Steelers are seventh in pass defense, Newton may opt to run more often than he usually does.
If the Panthers can take an early lead, Bell will be wiped out of the game, and their physical defense should be enough to improve their record to 3-0.
Prediction: Panthers 27, Steelers 17