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Falcons 101: Taking a look at the Falcons complicated history with the Panthers

In a series as old as I am, the Falcons own a significant edge. Will it continue this week?

Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images

The Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers have been challenging one another for the last 23 years. In that time, both teams have experienced significant highs and even more significant lows—either way, both teams have been inconsistent in their time since their first meeting on Sept. 3, 1995.

Let’s dive a little deeper into the history between these two franchises.

46 Games. 28-18.

Atlanta and Carolina have played 46 times since 1995—Atlanta has won 28 of those meetings. This series feels a lot closer than it is due to the recent success the Panthers have seemed to have against Atlanta, but this comfortable lead paints a pretty solid picture for the Falcons.

Again, these two franchises have been pretty inconsistent throughout the last 20 years or so, but it is refreshing to see that Atlanta has had some consistent success against a division rival.

Back to the records: of the 28 Atlanta victories, 17 of them have been in Atlanta. Atlanta does not lose at home to Carolina very often—six times in 23 years. While the overall series weighs heavily in favor of Atlanta, these games have been pretty close: average margin of victory in the series is 1.89 points.

The last 10 years

More recently, the Falcons and Panthers have gotten more and more competitive while still maintaining overall trends in the series. The last 10 years, the Falcons are 12-8 against Carolina and are coming off of a season split in 2017.

Matt Ryan has played pretty well against the Panthers, completing 65 percent of his passes for 31 touchdowns in the 20 games played. Ryan has, however, thrown 15 interceptions in that span—this is the most Ryan has thrown against any divisional opponent. Most worrisome, though is the rate at which Ryan has gotten sacked: the Panthers have gotten home against Ryan 53 times in 20 games. That is 2.65 sacks per game. Ouch.

Series quick hitters

  • Biggest win: The Falcons beat the Panthers by a whopping 41 points on Nov. 24, 2002. Michael Vick and company lead the Falcons to a 41-0 win in Carolina.
  • Biggest loss: On Dec. 13, 2015, the Panthers beat the Falcons in a dominant performance in Carolina. In a win that brought them to 13-0 on the season, Cam Newton and the Panthers torched the Falcons 38-0.
  • Cam Newton is 6-8 against the Falcons. He’s completed 56 percent of his passes for 18 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.

In the 47th meeting between these teams, the Falcons look to avoid an 0-2 start to their 2018 campaign. The Panthers and Falcons clash in Atlanta at 1 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. To watch, tune in to FOX. To listen, check out 92.9 The Game in Atlanta. Be sure to check back here for more coverage!