The Saints need to win to keep alive any hope of advancing to the playoffs and that means they have some work to do in the second half against the Panthers.
Panthers running back Chuba Hubbard scored the only touchdown of the first half at the Superdome and the Carolina defense limited the Saints to three field goals over the first 30 minutes. That leaves them with a 10-9 lead over their NFC South rivals at the break.
Saints quarterback Taysom Hill has gone 11-of-17 for 166 yards in his return from missing last week while on the COVID-19 reserve list, but 61 of those yards came to set up a field goal just before the end of the half and the team squandered a golden opportunity for a touchdown when they failed to move the ball after Panthers quarterback Sam Darnold lost a fumble on a sack by P.J. Williams inside the Carolina 15-yard-line.
Darnold opened 9-of-9, but missed on his final three passes in his first start since Week Nine and he’s been sacked three times overall. Hubbard has 43 yards on 11 carries and Cam Newton checked in to run once for five yards as the Panthers try to end a five-game losing streak.