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Panthers Vs. Falcons Game Recap: Atlanta moves to 4-0 on late comeback

Matt Ryan led a late fourth quarter comeback to beat the Panthers 30-28 and keep Atlanta undefeated.

Kevin C. Cox - Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons moved to 4-0 after Matt Bryant kicked a game-winning 40-yard field goal with five seconds left to beat the Carolina Panthers by a score of 30-28.

The Falcons took over at their own one-yardline, trailing 28-27 with just 56 seconds to play. Struggling offensively during the fourth quarter and with no timeouts remaining, things looked bleak for the Falcons, but Matt Ryan hit Roddy White for a 59-yard gain on the first play. White went up and over two Panther defenders to haul in the pass.


The Falcons were able to move the ball to the Panther 22-yard line, setting up Bryant for the game-winning kick. The drive was setup by a mistake by Cam Newton. Newton appeared to have a first down on the previous drive, but fumbled and the recovery spot was short of a first down, forcing Carolina to punt.

Newton finished 15-of-24 for 215 yards and two touchdowns while also adding 86 yards and a touchdown on the ground. Ryan completed 25-of-40 pass attempts for 369 yards and three touchdowns. The game went back-and-forth with six lead changes and neither team leading by more than 10 points.

Atlanta led 17-14 at halftime and took a 24-14 lead early in the third quarter but Carolina came storming back to take a 28-24 lead. The Falcons added a field goal to pull within one and had an opportunity for a big play in the fourth quarter but Julio Jones was unable to get two feet in bounds on a deep pass. Jones had gotten behind the Panthers' defense but Ryan's throw took him out of bounds.

Ryan was under constant pressure, with Carolina notching seven sacks and 12 quarterback hits. Charles Johnson was a terror for the Falcons all game, notching eight tackles, three-and-a-half sacks and five quarterback hits.

The Falcons remain atop the NFC South at 4-0 while the Panthers fell to 1-3.

Fantasy studs and duds

Cam Newton did a little bit of everything, throwing for 215 yards and two touchdowns while also rushing for 86 yards and a touchdown.

Michael Turner ran for 103 yards and added three receptions for 68 yards and a touchdown. Ryan threw for 369 yards and three touchdowns while White finished with eight receptions for 169 yards and two touchdowns.

Julio Jones had a quiet day for the Falcons, catching just one pass for 30 yards. Jones didn't record his first catch until the fourth quarter.

Injury report

Both teams finished relatively healthy, with no major player from either team leaving the game with an injury.

Did they cover?

The Falcons opened as 6-point favorites and entered the game as a 7-point favorite in some places, but they failed to cover either number despite picking up the win.

What's next?

10/7 1 p.m. ET: Atlanta at Washington

10/7 4:05 p.m. ET: Carolina vs. Seattle

This story originally appeared at SB Nation.

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Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.