NFL Football
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Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Carolina 7 10 0 3 20
Denver 0 7 0 14 21
5:30 PM PT6:30 PM MT7:30 PM CT8:30 PM ET0:30 GMT8:30 AM 北京时间5:30 PM MST7:30 PM EST7:30 PM CT4:30 UAE (+1)20:30 ET23:30 , September 8, 2016
Sports Authority Field at Mile High, Denver, Colorado  Weather: 85°, Clear  Attendance: 76,843

Panthers-Broncos preview

According to STATS
According to STATS

Carolina Panthers at Denver Broncos

  1. The Broncos defeated the Panthers, 24-10, in Super Bowl 50, winning their first NFL Championship since the 1998 season, and the third in franchise history overall (also 1997 season). The contest marks the first rematch of the previous season's Super Bowl participants since 1970 (Kansas City and Minnesota).
  2. Carolina won 14 straight games to begin the 2015 campaign before losing, 20-13, in Atlanta in Week 16. The 2015 Panthers were the fourth team in the Super Bowl era to start a season 14-0, joining the 1972 Dolphins, 2007 Patriots and 2009 Colts.
  3. The Panthers scored exactly 500 points last season, leading the NFL in scoring for the first time in franchise history. Denver's defense led the league in sacks (52), pass yards allowed per game (199.6) and total yards allowed per game (283.1) in 2015.
  4. Cam Newton became the first player in NFL history with 30+ touchdown passes and 10+ rushing TD in a single season last year, on his way to winning the 2015 MVP. With 3837 yards through the air and 636 yards on the ground, Newton now has five seasons with 3000+ pass yards and 500+ rush yards in his career -- most of any player all-time.
  5. Trevor Siemian is set to make his first NFL start Thursday night, becoming the first quarterback with zero career pass attempts to start a season opener for the defending Super Bowl champion all-time. Siemian's has taken just one NFL snap in a regular-season game (rush for -1 yard).
  6. The Broncos have won eight straight home games versus NFC teams, scoring exactly twice as many points (310) as their opponents (155). The last NFC club to defeat Denver at home were the Lions, who did so on October 30, 2011 (won 45-10).
  7. Carolina had an NFL-best 39 takeaways in 2015 -- its second most in a single season all-time (42 in 2005). The Broncos turned the ball over 31 times last season (tied for third most in the NFL, and their most since 1996).
Team Comparison

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Much has changed since the Denver Broncos defeated the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50, and the evidence will be undeniable when the same teams kick off the 2016 season Thursday at Sports Authority Field.

Denver's win in Santa Clara, Calif., was a coming-out party for linebacker Von Miller, the Super Bowl MVP, who made life miserable for regular-season MVP Cam Newton and the Panthers.

Since that defining performance, Miller became the highest-paid player on the Broncos' roster - and the top-paid defender in the league. In addition, five-time league MVP Peyton Manning retired, the Broncos lost his backup Brock Osweiler in free agency and cut Mark Sanchez, the player acquired in March to become Denver's starter.

What's left is most of the core of Denver's defense, which harassed Newton and the Panthers into mistakes and missteps from start to finish in February.

"I think you could use a lot from that game, but you'd be fools to think that they're going to run the same plays," said Miller, who had 2 1/2 sacks and forced a fumble in Super Bowl 50. "I think that we could use some things that we didn't do well and some things that they did well and we think that they're going to try and attack us in those areas."

Continuity counts in Carolina's favor. The Panthers cut ties with All-Pro cornerback Josh Norman, who went on to sign a mega-deal with the Washington Redskins, but the heart of the NFC championship roster is otherwise nearly intact.

For his part, Newton downplayed his shot at redemption Thursday night, saying "it's not a rematch" at all.

Newton knows he won't see Manning on the field this time.

The Broncos didn't even announce a starter until after their third preseason game of 2016. Trevor Siemian, a 2015 seventh-round longshot out of Northwestern, beat out Sanchez and 2016 first-round pick Paxton Lynch for the opportunity to face Pro Bowl linebackers Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis.

While Denver head coach Gary Kubiak has been enthused about the growth of Siemian, the harsh reality is that the Broncos head into the 2016 home opener with question marks all over the offense.

That's feeding the heightened pulse of the Panthers, who marched through the regular season with a 15-1 record last season and aren't hiding the revenge play.

"I think it gives us that chip on our shoulder that we need knowing that's the team that held us back from our ultimate dream," Panthers fullback Mike Tolbert said.

It's not just Siemian getting comfortable. The entire offense is attempting to jell behind a mostly new front five. Only one starter from the Super Bowl offensive line, center Matt Paradis, is back.

Denver's piecemeal group will be facing a defensive line that the Super Bowl offensive line could hardly block. Panthers defensive end Kony Ealy had a game of a lifetime. He recorded three sacks and had a hand in two takeaways.

More than Ealy, the Broncos will be worried about the interior line of the Panthers, defensive tackles Kawann Short and Star Lotulelei.

Protecting Siemian is a top priority. The Broncos still have offensive weapons on the outside at wide receiver. This is the major area the Broncos hold the advantage. Demaryius Thomas and Emmanuel Sanders are two of the best in the NFL but for each of them to shine, they must hope the offensive line holds up and Siemian has the time and ability to get them the football.

The Panthers will be starting a rookie cornerback and playing a total of three rookies against the duo of 1,000-yard receivers.

Kuechly said Carolina won't overlook Siemian after studying his preseason film.

"I think he's smart; I think he's confident in what he's doing, and they do a good job of running the ball - that makes everything easier," Kuechly said. "I think he has a good grasp of what they're trying to do offensively, and we have to make sure we're prepared for it."

James Bradberry, Zack Sanchez and Daryl Worley all were selected by Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman to fill the void left in the secondary. All three, along with Bene Benwikere, will be tasked with trying to contain the Broncos passing attack.

The Panthers made the Super Bowl with average wide receivers last year. With the return of Kelvin Benjamin - who could be allowed to play up to 35 snaps in his first game back from a season-ending ACL injury in 2015 - and the maturation of Devin Funchess, Newton has legitimate threats on the outside to test the Broncos' feisty secondary.

Old reliable Greg Olsen had a career year at tight end in 2015 and will be looking to top those statistics versus a rebuilt Broncos' linebacking corp.

"We can't make or break our whole season on the first game," Olsen said. "What's done is done. The past is the past. We have a whole new season to look forward to. The more we try to hinge on correcting what happened in the Super Bowl, the more we're going to keep getting pulled back."

Updated September 6, 2016

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