Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) celebrates a touchdown by running back Jonathan Stewart (28) against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan Ebenhack) Phelan Ebenhack AP
Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) celebrates a touchdown by running back Jonathan Stewart (28) against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan Ebenhack) Phelan Ebenhack AP

Panther Tracks

News (and everything else) on the Carolina Panthers

Panther Tracks

Social media reacts to #Panthers 17, #Buccaneers 3

By Langston Wertz Jr.

lwertz@charlotteobserver.com

October 29, 2017 04:00 PM

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton didn’t play his best game in Sunday’s 17-3 win over Tampa Bay Sunday in Florida, but when the Panthers needed him most, Newton came up with big plays.

On a 2nd and 1 in the fourth quarter, Newton took off on a big option run to get inside the Tampa Bay 20. Then on third and 16, Newton lofted a pretty pass to Kelvin Benjamin for a touchdown pass that sealed the game. It also ended Carolina’s nasty two-game win streak.

First the plays.

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Now the reaction, on Newton, the Panthers’ stellar defense and winning again.

Bigtime throw by Cam Newton on third and long for a long TD. #NFL

— SportsPoliticsTruth (@BRADSPORTS) October 29, 2017

Panthers look good. Of course that’s not saying much against this dumpster fire. #ItsaBucsLife

— Tone (@alkwest06) October 29, 2017

This Panthers defense with Luke and without Luke shows his top MLB in the league status.

— Cody. (@The_SpacePope) October 29, 2017

I know you can’t win games with just one player, but ya’ll @LukeKuechly makes ALL the difference in a game. @Panthers #goat #59

— Jerrie Jackson (@JSaltsalt) October 29, 2017

Great game today from @Panthers!!! #KeepPounding

— Alex Rector (@arector12) October 29, 2017

Stewart’s big dive highlights early play

Carolina Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart (28) sidesteps Tampa Bay Buccaneers cornerback Vernon Hargreaves (28) and outside linebacker Lavonte David (54) during the first quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 29, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan Ebenhack)
Phelan Ebenhack AP

After not scoring a touchdown in a terrible offensive performance in Chicago last week, the Panthers went on a season-best 17-play drive in the first quarter against Tampa Bay and Jonathan Stewart went all Superman on a third down play from the 1.

THAT MAN FLYIN' @jonathanstewar1 7-0 @Panthers #CARvsTB pic.twitter.com/4R9QY0fnMv

— Chat Sports (@ChatSports) October 29, 2017

Several fans commented how Stewart’s diving play was the first rushing touchdown by a Panthers running back all season -- in Carolina’s eighth game.

Panthers got their 1st rushing TD from a RB in their 8th game. Having 4 wins is impressive with that stat!

— dean smith (@deansmith729) October 29, 2017

Was Panthers-Bucs Must-Bore TV?

For large swaths of the game, Panthers-Bucs wasn’t exactly must-see TV: full of flags, punts and not much scoring. Twitter noticed.

Panthers are winning, but this game is beyond boring. Better than the alternative, but not exactly must-see TV.

— Kyle Bailey (@KyleBaileyWFNZ) October 29, 2017

My living room while Panthers offense is on TV pic.twitter.com/WpbxOTQ30M

— John Barnet (@JohnGunstBarnet) October 29, 2017

As a Panthers fan, Im even able to realize this game is just...pathetic. Its painful tune into. Hell highschool games are more entertaining

— Andy (@Andy_Hayes1799) October 29, 2017

Peppers big moment, solid games

Carolina Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers, left, helped the Panthers control Jameis Winston and the Bucs Sunday
Jeff Siner TNS

Carolina’s defense was again quite good and Carolina defensive lineman Julius Peppers, at age 37, continues to prove age ain’t nothing but a number.

Peppers’ first half sack sent him further up the NFL all-time lists and earned him some well-deserved accolades on social media.

Julius Peppers moved into 4th place on the NFL's all-time sack list, passing Hall of Famer Chris Doleman pic.twitter.com/dxjtv78qva

— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) October 29, 2017

Julius Peppers has 7.5 sacks in 2017. He has produced fewer than seven sacks just once in his 16 NFL seasons.

— Panthers PR Dept. (@PanthersPR) October 29, 2017

And if you needed a reminder of how great an athlete, Peppers really is, check him out from his UNC basketball days.

Ronald Curry lob to Julius Peppers pic.twitter.com/2CAXUKm971

— Quan (@_LetMeRock) October 26, 2017