The Carolina Panthers had the ball deep in San Francisco 49ers territory and head coach Ron Rivera lived up to his “Riverboat Ron” nickname as he rolled the dice and went for it on fourth down. Unfortunately, the 49ers defense stuffed Cam Newton on a quarterback sneak attempt, with 49ers linebacker Ahmad Brooks stepping up to make the big play.
Here is a look at the defensive stand from San Francisco, via @gifdsports:
There is some good news for the Panthers, however.
They were able to make the decision to gamble thanks to the belief that they have in their defense and the unit came up big by forcing a punt. After a solid punt return from Ted Ginn Jr., the Panthers took a deep shot with a beautiful ball from Newton to Steve Smith to take the lead.