Hardys personal foul
The setup: Redskins faced third-and-10 from their 3, 10:56 remaining in first quarter.
What happened: Robert Griffin III completed a short pass to Joshua Morgan, who was brought down well short of the first-down marker. But DE Greg Hardy hit Griffin in the helmet with his hand after he released the ball, giving Redskins a first down at the 23.
Why it mattered: The Redskins would have been punting deep in their own end. Instead, they got new life and ended up driving 68 yards for a Kai Forbath field goal and 3-0 lead.
Panthers goal-line stand
The setup: Redskins had a fourth-and-goal from the 2, 5:21 remaining in the second quarter.
What happened: Griffin ran right, but was forced out of bounds by safety Charles Godfrey and backup cornerback Josh Thomas for no gain, turning the Redskins away after a 16-play drive that took 10 minutes off the clock.
Why it mattered: Washington, the league leader in fourth-down conversions, had already converted two fourth downs on the drive. After the defensive stand, the Panthers went 98 yards for a touchdown to take a 14-3 halftime lead.
Newtons run for a first down
The setup: Panthers faced a third-and-2 from their 10, 3:55 remaining in the second quarter.
What happened: Quarterback Cam Newton ran left behind pulling guard Jeff Byers, picking his way for 11 yards to get the Panthers out of field-position hole.
Why it mattered: Newtons run was the first of three third-down conversions on a 10-play, 98-yard touchdown drive, which tied for the second-longest in team history. Newtons 19-yard scoring pass to Steve Smith put the Panthers up 14-3 at halftime.
Armantis big catch
The setup: Panthers took over at their 9 after a Redskins punt, 14:17 remaining in the fourth quarter.
What happened: Armanti Edwards, lined up in the left slot, ran an out-and-up route and Newton hit him in stride. Edwards ran 82 yards down the sideline, the longest completion in team history that did not go for a touchdown.
Why it mattered: Two plays after Edwards catch, Newton bulled in for a 1-yard touchdown run to give the Panthers a 21-6 lead.
A combo sack
The setup: Redskins faced a fourth-and-16 from their 43, 6:03 remaining in the fourth quarter.
What happened: With Griffin in the pocket looking for downfield receivers, defensive ends Greg Hardy and Charles Johnson converged on him and sacked him for a 9-yard loss.
Why it mattered: The play put a dent in the Redskins comeback hopes. When Griffin was sacked, thousands of fans began filing out of FedEx Field.