Newton, 28, is in some ways the prototypical NFL quarterback: 6-foot-6, 260 kilos with a robust, correct arm and the power to take off and make tacklers miss. In 2015, he led the Panthers to a 15-1 common-season document and the franchise’s second Tremendous Bowl look.
The Vikings, nevertheless, have stored the 2010 Heisman Trophy winner in verify. Since Zimmer turned the Vikings’ coach in 2014, Newton is zero-2 towards Minnesota with 4 interceptions and 12 sacks. In a 35-21 loss final September in Charlotte, N.C., Newton was sacked eight occasions and intercepted thrice with out throwing a landing.
“Nicely,” Panthers coach Ron Rivera stated Wednesday, Dec. 6, “totally different yr, totally different group of gamers. So, we’ll see what occurs.”
The Vikings and Panthers meet Sunday in a rematch at Financial institution of America Stadium with a lot on the road. Minnesota (10-2) is making an attempt to retain its maintain on the NFC’s prime playoff seed; the Panthers (eight-four) try to solidify a return to the postseason after a 6-10 end in 2016.
Newton’s means, or incapability, to crack the NFL’s second-ranked protection will probably be the story. After lacking a lot of coaching camp as he recovered from offseason shoulder surgical procedure, Newton appears to be his previous self. In his previous 5 begins, he has accomplished eighty of 146 passes for 896 yards and 7 touchdowns towards one interception.
Perhaps extra scary for the Vikings, he has run forty occasions for 304 yards and two touchdowns, gaining a mean of seven.6 a rush. He was listed on the Panthers’ damage report Wednesday as a restricted participant due to a proper shoulder damage.
“He is an ideal participant,” Zimmer stated Wednesday. “Greatest participant within the league two years in the past.”
After a 14-9 victory at Atlanta final week, the Vikings rank second in complete (289.1-yard common), dashing (seventy seven.7) and scoring (17 ppg) protection. They did not managed to sack Matt Ryan at Mercedes Benz Stadium however held the Falcons to 1 of 10 on third down. It was a disappointment for finish Everson Griffen, whose 12 sacks rank fourth within the NFL this season. However, he added, “If we go up towards any group, in the whole league, they usually’re 1 for 10 on third down, we will win the sport.”
Ryan is a unique goal, a pocket passer whose greatest protection towards a robust rush is a fast launch. Newton can take off and run. The Vikings have dealt with him their previous two conferences — a 35-18 victory Nov. 30, 2014, at TCF Financial institution Stadium and final season’s victory in Charlotte — however as security Andrew Sendejo stated, “You do not actually need to speak…