DAYBREAK 5TH QUARTER

John Beck's debut soured in 33-20 loss - Daybreak 5th Quarter

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From all of us at Daybreak 5th Quarter, we'd like to commend you if you made it out of Sunday's slate of early NFL games without either:

The bright side is that Beck didn't throw four interceptions. The bad news is that Washington still lost. (Photo: Associated Press)

A) Falling asleep on the couch
B) Raging at your television for actually broadcasting such horrid football
C) Swearing off of the NFL forever and committing to a life of bocce ball

Yes, several of those games got rather interesting at the end - namely that wild finish in Miami - but for the most part, between about 1 p.m and 3:30 p.m., I could have thought of at least 75 things I would have rather done than watch the NFL.

(So, I went and played flag football at Anacostia Park instead.)

NOTHING FINER THAN CAROLINA - So, now what?

The Redskins can evidently make all the changes they want on offense...starting John Beck namely...but when the defense can't find ways to slow Cam Newton down through the air or on the ground the result is typically less than favorable.

Newton's 256 passing yards and 59 yards on the ground, along with a rushing score from Jonathan Stewart and three ill-timed turnovers, led the Carolina Panthers to a 33-20 win over the Redskins. It's just the Panthers 2nd win of the season.

Check out out our photo gallery of Sunday's Redskins/Panthers game.

Beck had his moments in his first NFL start since 2007, going 22 of 37 and slinging a touchdown to Fred Davis in the 4th quarter to cut the Redskins deficit to 30-20.

On their next offensive possession with a chance to reduce the deficit even more, though, Beck's 2nd and 15 pass deep in Washington territory was picked by Panthers CB Chris Gamble.

Here's a recap,  here are the photos, here are some stats, here's DeAngelo Hall calling Cam Newton "pretty Ferrari" and, to alleviate some of the sting, here are some highlights from Super Bowl XVII.

GIL BRANDT'S TAKE - Gil Brandt, the renowned former Dallas Cowboys general manager, sighed early this morning when asked whether he could point to any one of yesterday’s NFL games to highlight for his weekly commentary exclusive to WJLA.com.

“That’s going to be hard because there was so much,” he said. “What Tebow did in the Broncos’ comeback, what the Saints did to Indianapolis, Plaxico with his three touchdowns, DeMarco Murray breaking Emmitt’s record, and you can just keep going and going and going.”

He settled on one game, and for one reason.

“I think one of the big stories every week continues to be Cam Newton,” Brandt said of the Carolina Panthers rookie quarterback, who led his team past the Redskins. “It’s really funny, because 90 percent of the people I know said he couldn’t play at this level, or at least not this early. That’s a pretty darn good defense they have in Washington, and look what he did.

“I think the reason that Carolina is going to get better in a hurry is because Cam Newton makes everybody around him better. People are starting to find that out.”

I'VE BEEN WAITING ALL DAY FOR... - The stats don't lie. The Baltimore Ravens, most known for their stifling defense, have outscored their opponents 100-38 in their last three victories.

However, going up against rookie quarterback Blaine Gabbert and the Jacksonville Jaguars on Monday night, this week might be a time for the defense to grab the torch once again.

And, if there's one guy on that defense who knows how much it means to shine in the Monday Night spotlight, it's Ray Lewis.

"Whatever opportunity you want to leave, whatever legacy you want to leave, these are the nights you leave it," Lewis told his teammates this week in practice, according to the Baltimore Sun.

With a win in north Florida, the Ravens would move to 5-1 and solidify their perch on top of the AFC North for now, a day after 2nd-place Pittsburgh got to 5-2 with a convincing victory over the Arizona Cardinals.

Here's a preview from the Sun. In the Jacksonville Daily News, the scribes are decrying their their players to save Jack Del Rio's job.

NFL Hot Reads

-Seriously, Indianapolis, just stop. No, really. You're making our eyes bleed. Going 0-7 to start the season is one thing, but giving up 62 on national TV is an abomination.

-So, Tim Tebow is OK, yes? Despite taking seven sacks, the precocious Broncos quarterback became the first QB to lead a team from down 15 with less than 3 minutes left in the game to win since 1970.

-I strongly feel that anyone who was forced to watch the Seattle/Cleveland game should be given $20 in cash for their trouble. Here's your recap: the Browns won 6-3, and the score reflects just how remotely interesting the game was.

After the jump - the Terps get embarrassed in Tallahassee, Virginia stumbles, Virginia Tech romps and a prayer is answered in East Lansing.

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