Chargers get first score in the fourth quarter; Carolina leads 31-7
Score: Panthers 31, Chargers 7.
Scoring play: A 9-yard touchdown pass from Philip Rivers to Antonio Gates.
Drive: 5 plays, 38 yards, 2:07.
Key play: A pass interference call on Josh Thomas. With the Chargers on the Carolina 22, Rivers passed to Denario Alexander that appeared uncatchable. The official threw a flag on Thomas for pass interference, and the Chargers were given the ball on the 9-yard line.
Time of game: 14:02 in the fourth quarter.
Worth mentioning: DeAngelo Williams fumbled the ball in Carolina territory to give San Diego the nice field position. The fumble was only Williams' second of the season.
Steve Smith scores and Panthers lead Chargers 31-0
Score: Panthers 31, Chargers 0
Scoring play: A 4-yard touchdown pass from Cam Newton to Steve Smith
Drive: 8 plays, 56 yards, 4:44
Key play: DeAngelo Williams had three straight rushes for nine yards each in the middle of the drive. Williams took the Panthers from the San Diego 32 to the 5 on three straight rushes to set up the touchdown.
Time of game: 8:56 in the third quarter.
Worth mentioning: That's Smith's third touchdown of the season to go along with his 1,000-yard receiving season.
Panthers hold Chargers scoreless in first half, lead 24-0
SAN DIEGO For the second consecutive week, the Carolina Panthers have blanked their opponent in the first half.
Carolina leads San Diego 24-0 after two quarters of play at Qualcomm Stadium, where the home team has been unable to get any big plays against the Panthers defense.
The Panthers have outgained the Chargers 251 to 66 while San Diego has only five first downs.
Carolina got on the board after its first drive was capped off by a 1-yard touchdown leap by fullback and former Charger Mike Tolbert. He pounded another touchdown in after the Panthers recovered a Philip Rivers fumble deep in Charger territory.
Cam Newton hit DeAngelo Williams on a tipped checked down to the back that went 45 yards for the third score of the game. Newton is 14-for-27 today with 194 yards. Playing without starting center Geoff Hangartner, the Panthers have allowed Newton to be sacked twice.
Graham Gano tacked on a 33-yard field goal in the final seconds of the half to give Carolina its largest lead over any opponent this year.
Carolina led Atlanta 16-0 at halftime last week before going up 23-0 in the second half.
With 44 yards in the first half, Steve Smith now has 1,043 receiving yards this season. Its his second consecutive year with at least 1,000 receiving yards and the seventh of his career.
San Diego will receive the ball to start the second half.
Williams scores and Panthers pad lead
Score: Panthers 21, Chargers 0
Scoring play: A 45-yard touchdown pass from Cam Newton to DeAngelo Williams.
Drive: 6 plays, 72 yards, 2:47.
Key play: Steve Smith started the drive with a 15-yard pickup on the ground. The Panthers showed the Wildcat formation and the direct snap went to Williams. Williams then flipped it to Smith on a reverse and he cut upfield for 15.
Time of game: 0:58 in the first quarter.
Worth mentioning: Cam Newton entered the game with 119 consecutive passes without an interception, easily his longest of his career. He's thrown 10 so far, with two close calls. His touchdown pass was tipped, and the play before he was hit as he threw and the ball fluttered in the air before falling to the ground.
Tolbert's one-yard run makes it 14-0
Score: Panthers 14, Chargers 0
Scoring play: A 1-yard touchdown rush by Mike Tolbert.
Drive: 4 plays, 21 yards, 1:36.
Key play: The Panthers got the ball on the San Diego 21 after Philip Rivers fumbled for the 12th time this season, which leads all players in the NFL. James Dockery came away with the ball in the pile that saw Greg Hardy get into it with Chargers' FB Ryan Mathews.
Time of game: 4:54 in the first quarter.
Worth mentioning: The Panthers have six plays inside San Diego's 5-yard line. The Chargers have six plays in the game so far.Score: Panthers 7, Chargers 0
Tolbert scores, puts Panthers up 7-0
Scoring play: A 1-yard touchdown rush by Mike Tolbert.
Drive: 13 plays, 80 yards, 6:31.
Key play: A 1-yard rush by quarterback Cam Newton on fourth down. On the Chargers' 2-yard line, the Panthers were in a 4-and-1 situation and head coach Ron Rivera declined to settle for a field goal. Newton picked up the one yard for the first down to set up Tolbert's leap into the end zone.
Time of game: 8:29 in the first quarter.
Worth mentioning: With an 8-yard catch in the first series, Steve Smith now has 1,007 receiving yards this season. It's his seventh season in his career in which he's tallied more than 1,000 yards receiving, and his second consectuive season doing so.
Sunday's roster news mixed
SAN DIEGO The Panthers' injury news was mixed Sunday, when they announced wideout Brandon LaFell is active for the game against the Chargers and strongside linebacker James Anderson is inactive.
Both players were listed as questionable after missing last week's win against Atlanta. LaFell has been recovering from a turf toe, while Anderson has a lower back injury.
Assuming LaFell plays, the Panthers will be without four starters against San Diego Anderson, center Geoff Hangartner, defensive tackle Dwan Edwards and running back Jonathan Stewart.
Among those four, Anderson was the only one who made the trip to San Diego.
The had five starters out against the Falcons.
The rest of the Panthers' inactives: QB Jimmy Clausen, OT Bruce Campbell and WR David Gettis.