Those of you familiar with SB Nation may know Cat Scratch Reader as the network's Carolina blogger. He and I exchanged some Q and A for Sunday's game. Here's what he thought:
Jake Delhomme's injury was a costly one -- how capable has David Carr looked?
David Carr is very capable of carrying the torch for Jake. I think Jake is a better QB but Carr plays hard, throws a pretty nice ball and is more mobile than Jake. His flaws include getting happy feet and scrambling backwards too much and he has a funny throwing motion. Sometimes he also makes a bad pass and gets picked off. Yet in spite of this if the rest of offense makes plays then the Panthers can win with Carr.
What are your thoughts on the Testaverde signing and his willingness to start this weekend if Carr isn't ready?
I think it would be stupid to start him. He's prone to throwing interceptions when he knows the offense and the players around him. When he doesn't, I perish the thought. I'd rather see the rookie Matt Moore. Testaverde may say he wants to start but really I think he wants to be paid a lot of money to carry the clipboard, wear the headset and ride the pine! Seriously, I don't see Testaverde lasting long in the starters role.
When you look at the talent in Arizona, does anything particular catch your attention? Anything that makes you say, We need to stop this guy?
The no huddle offense worries me a little and the big play ability of Boldin and Fitzgerald. The safety position has been a liability at times. The Panthers have been susceptible to the short crossing routes so that's what they need to stop. The Panthers play the run well, have lots of speed but have only two sacks on the season. Getting a rush on Warner will be a priority but again, that's been a priority every week and it hasn't materialized. I expect some creative blitzes from the Panthers.
Do you think Colbert is coming around or is it time to replace him as the number two?
It's way past time to replace him. He actually had a pretty good game last week but he's too inconsistent. He will make a nice catch one moment and drop an easy one the next. I would have thought the rookie Dwayne Jarrett would be in there by now but for some reason he can't get on the field. The Panther coaches are suggesting he is too soft on blocking but he has soft hands and can make the big catch. I would really like to see him get in the game this Sunday.
Finally, how do you see the game playing out?
The Panthers are 3-0 on the road so I expect them to play fairly well as long as Carr starts. I expect a low scoring game unless either offense gives up points on turnovers. This game has the potential to be an ugly, back and forth plodding game. For the Panthers to win the defense will need to hold the Cardinals under 20 points. If Carr executes the offense and the defense plays inspired ball then the Panthers will pull it out 20 – 16. If the Panthers turn the ball over a lot or give up the big play they are in for a long afternoon. If Testaverde starts then all bets are off. The Cardinal fans should be pissed if they don't win fairly easily against a Panther team starting a 43 year old QB they just signed less than a week ago.
To see what I thought, swing by his blog next.