Panthers struggling at halftime vs. Dolphins

Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

The Carolina Panthers were unable to stop Miami in the first half, and serious adjustments are needed.

The Carolina Panthers entered Miami as one of the NFL's hottest teams, but the heat has been turned on them with the Dolphins cruising to an easy halftime lead, 16-6.

Cam Newton was hit in the face early by defensive end Cameron Wake, but it's hard to attribute his poor first-half play to a single shot to the mouth. Newton completed just 10 passes in the first half, recording 100 total yards and throwing a costly late interception that ensured any potential momentum was sucked from the Panthers entering the break.

Poor protection has hurt the Panthers on offense, while the defense didn't do itself any favors. Defensive end Charles Johnson was unable to play due to injury, and the team's pass rush has been lacking throughout the day. Cornerback Captain Munnerlyn struggled on two deep passes to Mike Wallace, and the Dolphins are in control at halftime.

It's unclear whether Carolina can get back into the game, but the team will need serious adjustments at halftime. The score doesn't reflect how much they've been outmatched and if Miami can convert short field goals into touchdowns this game will quickly become a blowout.

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