The Giants were the team calling it a must-win earlier in the week.
But the Panthers were the team that played that way.
Carolina destroyed the Giants 38-0, sending Tom Coughlin’s team to its worst loss since he’s been coaching, and buying Panthers coach Ron Rivera a moment’s peace.
This one eclipsed the 44-7 loss to Minnesota to close the 2009 season, and drops the Giants to 0-3 with obvious issues on both sides of the ball. They had started at least 5-2 in each of Coughlin’s seasons (he took over in 2004).
The Panthers did it with ease, keeping them from ever attacking an inexperienced secondary. The Panthers tied a franchise record with seven sacks, and held the Giants to 150 yards.
They also played the kind of offense they needed to. They allowed Cam Newton to throw deep, and create his own space with his legs. It resulted in a balanced attack, with DeAngelo Williams rushing for 120 yards and Newton throwing for 223 yards and three touchdowns.