(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) — Cam Newton threw for three touchdowns and ran for 62 yards to lead the Carolina Panthers past the New England Patriots 24-20 Monday night in a game that ended in controversy.
After the Panthers took the lead on a Ted Ginn touchdown catch with 59 seconds left in the game, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady led the Pats 62 yards to the Panthers’ 18-yard line with time for one more play. Brady threw a pass into the endzone intended for tight end Rob Gronkowski. The ball was intercepted by Robert Lester but a penalty flag was thrown. It appeared Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly held Gronkowski, but the officials picked up the flag and without explanation ended the game.
When they throw the flag that’s what I thought it was going to be,” Gronkowksi said when asked if he thought he was held. “It was waved off so I can’t do anything about it. Got to ask coach about it.”
Coach being Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. Belichick didn’t have much to say on the play.
“There was no explanation given to me,” Belichick said when asked about why the the flag was picked up. “Officials ran off the field and I didn’t see anything.”
The victory gives the Panthers (7-3) their sixth win in a row. They will try to make it seven straight on Sunday when they head to Florida to take on Miami.
Meanwhile, the Patriots (7-3) head back home for their next game, which is Sunday night versus the Denver Broncos.
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