Brown, Barden help Giants pound Panthers
By Sports Network
|New York Giants wide receiver Ramses Barden (L) catches the ball against Carolina Panthers cornerback Josh Norman during a NFL football game in Charlotte, North Carolina September 20, 2012. REUTERS/Chris Keane
In a year of replacement officials, it was a pair of New York Giants substitutes who shined on Thursday.
Andre Brown ran for two touchdowns and 113 yards, while Ramses Barden matched his 2011 receptions total with nine catches for 138 yards in the New York Giants' 36-7 thumping of the Carolina Panthers.
Brown was filling in for Ahmad Bradshaw, who injured his neck during the Giants' 41-34 come-from-behind win against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. Barden got the start after Hakeem Nicks hurt his foot and third-receiver Domenik Hixon suffered a concussion during Sunday's game.
Coming off a 510-yard passing performance against Tampa Bay, Eli Manning was an efficient 27-of-35 passing for 288 yards and a touchdown for New York (2-1), which dropped its opener to the Dallas Cowboys before prevailing in its next two contests.
Martellus Bennett hauled in six balls for 73 yards and a score in the win.
Cam Newton threw three interceptions and completed just 16-of-30 passes for 242 yards, but did rush for a touchdown, while Greg Olsen racked up 98 yards on seven receptions and Steve Smith added 86 yards on four catches for the Panthers (1-2), who defeated the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.
Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart was inactive for the game due to a toe injury.
New York scored on each of its first four possessions and jumped out to a 20-0 lead.
Brown asserted himself on the opening drive and carried the ball three times for 38 yards before Bennett caught a 14-yard seam route from Manning, which capped the 8-play, 80-yard march.
After Jason Pierre-Paul stopped Newton for no gain on a 3rd-and-3 on Carolina's first series, Brown scampered for a 16-yard run off the right guard and Barden added a 21-yard reception before Lawrence Tynes booted through a 47-yard field goal.
Following another Panthers punt, Barden hauled in passes of 20 and 14 yards, which preceded Brown's 1-yard TD plunge to conclude a 9-play, 72-yard trek.
Osi Umenyiora forced another Carolina punt after sacking Newton on a 3rd- and-3, and Barden caught two more passes for 44 yards, before Tynes kicked a 49-yard field goal.
The Giants, who led 20-0 at the break, outgained Carolina 287-125 yards in the first half. Brown registered 96 yards on the ground, while Barden tallied 123 yards on seven catches.
Joe Adams fumbled the second half kickoff, which led to a 30-yard Tynes field goal.
Newton finally got the Panthers into the end zone on their next touch when he took a quarterback draw up the middle for a 1-yard score midway through the third.
A pair of Tynes field goals, 36 and 27 yards, respectively, sandwiched around another Brown 1-yard touchdown, concluded the scoring.
Victor Cruz had 42 yards on six catches for New York after registering 179 yards receiving against the Buccaneers ... DeAngelo Williams racked up 50 yards rushing on 11 carries for Carolina ... New York outgained Carolina, 405-327.