Cam Newton torches Packers, so it might be time to take Panthers seriously

Cam Newton threw three touchdown passes and ran for another score, and the Panthers took an important step toward securing home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs with a 37-29 win over the Packers.

Newton completed 15 of 30 passes for 297 yards and ran for 57 yards on nine carries in one of the better games of his five-year NFL career.

The Panthers (8-0) extended their regular-season win streak to 12 and put themselves in terrific shape in the NFC standings, where every other team has at least two losses.

Carolina outscored Green Bay 24-0 in the second period to open a 27-7 halftime lead behind three Newton scores.

The dual-threat quarterback was dominant in the first half, throwing for 209 yards and two touchdowns and rushing for 37 yards and another score. The Packers opened the game in man coverage and Newton made them pay right away by finding huge holes to run through for big gains.

Newton gave Carolina the lead for good at 10-7 with a 52-yard pass to rookie Devin Funchess to set up a 7-yard TD pass to Greg Olsen. Then he came back with a 39-yard touchdown strike to Philly Brown with 41 seconds left in the half.

Newton also hooked up with Funchess on a 14-yard pass for a 37-14 lead with 9:22 left. Newton repeatedly went after rookie cornerback Damarious Randall, and the Panthers, despite playing without top defensive end Charles Johnson, kept pressure on Rodgers all day.

More on this story on FOX Sports.

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