Cam Newton stars as Panthers beat Lions to go to 4-1

The touchdown reception in the first quarter by Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey, the team's No. 1 draft pick this year (No. 8 overall), was the first touchdown of his National Football League career.

Newton had offseason surgery on his throwing shoulder, couldn't throw to teammates until training camp, spent part of training camp on the shelf because of shoulder soreness and played one series in the preseason. There's a role he plays for us, but he's not limited to just one single role. Newton might face questions from at least one woman on Sunday because Fox assigned Pam Oliver to be the game's sideline reporter.

Expect an exciting game in a matchup of two of the NFL's better teams.

"This is why I showed up", said veteran safety Mike Adams, who signed with the Panthers during the offseason. "I'm pretty excited about that".

The Fourth quarter would once again see the Detroit Lions at a disadvantage going into the final quarter of the game.

Rookie back Christian McCaffrey notched his first career TD on a 6-yard shovel pass, and Detroit-area native Devin Funchess scored vs. his hometown team when Newton rocketed a 10-yard pass to him in the back of the end zone. The Panthers have won both of those games. He finished the game with seven catches for 53 yards and a touchdown. Tight end Ed Dickson led all players with 175 receiving yards, highlighted by receptions of 64 and 57 yards.

"Coach will handle all that stuff, talk to you guys about all that kind of stuff, but we just got to get into a rhythm earlier on offense", Stafford said. Detroit took the first possession of the game and partly due to a penalty against Carolina were able to end the drive with a 30-yard field goal by M. Parter.

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"I just think we got into a little bit of a rhythm", Lions head coach Jim Caldwell said. "Look out for us". Stafford led the offense to the two quick scores within two-and-a-half minutes after the Panthers defense largely shut Detroit down to that point.

But they're winning the close games they lost a year ago and they're doing it without Olsen and Pro Bowl center Ryan Kalil, who hasn't played since the opener because of a neck injury. "We need him. Hopefully, he gets healthy really soon and is out there with me working together". That's probably the bigger thing. We were right there. "But it was great, man, that we got to get in there".

Carolina Panthers tight end Ed Dickson had a career day in Detroit.

The Panthers defense harassed Matthew Stafford all game long, as they moved to 4-1 on the young season.

With no unbeaten teams in the NFC, critics are still trying to figure out who the best teams are.

And then the past two weeks happened. Led by Anthony Zettel's four sacks, Detroit's defense has dominated early this season, ranking fourth in scoring defense with 17.5 points allowed per game.

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