Atlanta lost one red-zone opportunity by fumbling the ball and two other opportunities deep in Carolina territory by failing to convert on fourth down.
Normally, a team that blows this amount of chances to score some points in the first half can expect to go into its halftime break with a deficit, or at least a closer game than desired against a weaker opponent.
The score at halftime: Atlanta 21, Carolina 0.
It's been that type of season for the 2010 Carolina Panthers. No matter how badly the opponent plays, they not only find ways to lose, but can't even produce a competitive game.
Take Week 5 against the Chicago Bears, for example.
Filling in for Jay Cutler, who was out with a concussion, Todd Collins and Caleb Hanie combine for a total of 51 passing yards for the Bears. Despite the grounded air attack, the Panthers let Chicago leave Charlotte with a solid 23-6 victory.
There's bad, and then there's just plain terrible. That's just what the Panthers were in 2010.
How do they compare to the worst teams in NFL history?
Some of you might say that's unfair considering that Carolina won a second game this year, something that a few teams (including the 2001 Panthers) couldn't manage to do. Some teams can't even claim to have one victory on their record.
That's right: Carolina's two wins (which were at home, no less) came against the two worst teams in the 2010 NFC West. The first-ever division in which a below-.500 team clinched a playoff spot as the division champion.
Imagine if, say, the 2008 Detroit Lions played against those two teams. Can we throw out the possibility of them beating at least one of those two teams?
Would the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers still be the only team in the Super Bowl era to go winless throughout an entire season?
Just something to think about.
This article can also be seen on http://drewrosten.blogspot.com/.