Veteran wide receiver Muhsin Muhammad took advantage of the extra attention the Falcons paid to star wideout Steve Smith and burned young cornerback Brent Grimes repeatedly in man coverage. Muhammad's 147 receiving yards were the most he had in a game since Week 13 of the 2004 season.
Carolina worked its power-running, deep-passing offensive game plan to perfection. The Panthers averaged 10.1 yards per pass play, connecting on two touchdowns from over 35 yards, and their long ball was set up by a successful rushing attack that brought up Atlanta's safeties.
Ryan threw a career-high 41 passes. ... Falcons backup RB Jason Snelling had his first career catch in the fourth quarter. It went 11 yards. ... Panthers OT Jordan Gross left the game with an injury in the first half and did not return. ... Going into the game, the Panthers wanted to curb their tendency to commit penalties, but they failed to do so, ending the game with 11 for 90 yards.