Panthers hope to string wins together

Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera during the second quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles.Photo: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Coach Ron Rivera: "It's about who you play next and how you play against them."

Coming off one of the most riveting victories in franchise history, the Carolina Panthers could build momentum after the stunning comeback against the Philadelphia Eagles.

The goal is to not make this latest result the defining highlight of the season, but to add to it.

"It's about who you play next and how you play against them," head coach Ron Rivera said. "But, again, I think it's a chance to take a big step."

The Panthers improved to 4-2 by rallying from 17 points down in the fourth quarter for the 21-17 victory at Philadelphia.

Next is a home game Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.

The Panthers have won two seasons in a row on the road against the reigning Super Bowl champion. Last year, it was at New England, and the Panthers followed that with another victory.

Switching focus to the next opponent is one of the requirements again this week because the Panthers are fresh off the greatest comeback in franchise history.

It also gave another example of quarterback Cam Newton's penchant for dramatics.

It marked his 17th fourth-quarter game-winning drive. His ability to excel in such situations might go overlooked at times because he doesn't fall into the category of a traditional pure quarterback.

"He's not a pure, pure pocket passer," Rivera said.

But he has continued to display other intangibles.

Before the 1-yard game-winning touchdown pass to tight end Greg Olsen, there was a defining play on the drive. On a fourth-and-10 play with just more than two minutes remaining, Newton threw while he was being hit, connecting with wide receiver Torrey Smith for the first down and quite a bit more.

"A lot is about his desire and wanting to win," Rivera said. "He wants the ball. Cam has always wanted the ball."

Newton's accomplishments during the game also included a historical marker. He rushed for three first downs, giving him an NFL-record 343 rushes that picked up first downs. That's the most by a quarterback in league history.

In order for more memorable moments to occur, the Panthers have lots to clean up. They've had some rough patches in the last three games in particular.

It took Graham Gano's 63-yard game-winning field goal two weeks earlier to upend the New York Giants and that was followed by a loss at Washington.

The victory at Philadelphia came with a defensive stop in the red zone. It included a would-be game-clinching interception by safety Eric Reid, but that was overturned on replay review and meant the Panthers had to seal the outcome with a fourth-down stop.

"I just feel fortunate enough to be able to win the game twice," Rivera said.

SERIES HISTORY: 6th regular-season meeting. Panthers lead series, 3-2. The Panthers won the first three meetings and the Ravens won the next two, most recently in 2014.

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