Falcons leave it late
Atlanta tame the Panthers to remain unbeaten
Last Updated: 01/10/12 8:42am
Matt Ryan: Threw for 369 yards and three touchdowns
The Atlanta Falcons needed a late field goal to beat the Carolina Panthers and maintain their perfect start on Sunday.
Atlanta rallied to win on Matt Bryant's 40-yard field goal in an outcome that may have left Panthers head coach Ron Rivera regretting the decision to punt on fourth and one with his team leading 28-27 and 59 seconds left on the clock.
Carolina quarterback Cam Newton, who threw for 215 yards and two touchdowns and also rushed for 86 yards and another score, fumbled on third down and although the Panthers recovered the ball, they fell a yard short of making the crucial first down.
Rather than see if Newton and the offense could make that yard, Rivera punted the ball back to Atlanta, with his special teams doing well to pin the Falcons back on their one-yard line.
Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan made the most of getting the ball back in his hands, throwing a superb 59-yard pass deep to receiver Roddy White who made a great catch setting up Matt Bryant for a game-winning 40 yard field goal.
Ryan completed 25 of 40 passes throwing for 369 yards and three touchdowns with one interception while White was on the receiving end of two of those touchdown passes as he put up 169 yards.