A week after the Patriots' defensive capabilities came into question against the Philadelphia Eagles, the unit responded with a tremendous effort against Carolina Friday night. The first team defense did not allow Cam Newton and Carolina's first team offense to sniff the end zone at Gillette Stadium as the Pats dumped the Panthers, 30-7 in both teams' third pre-season game of 2014.
Carolina didn't score until there was 1:12 remaining in the contest, with the first unit well gone.
Tom Brady played into the third quarter for the Patriots and was sensational, throwing for 204 yards and two touchdowns on 17-of-21 passing. Jimmy Garoppolo once again outshined Ryan Mallett as the rookie went 9-of-12 for 105 yards and a touchdown. Mallett went 2-of-3 for 14 yards when he got the ball for just one series early in the first half.
Follow Metro Boston sports editor Matt Burke on Twitter: @BurkeMetroBOS