SANTA CLARA – Kyle Allen had never lost in the NFL. He was 5-0 as a starting quarterback entering the Week 8 clash with the unbeaten San Francisco 49ers.
That run came to an end with a thump at Levi's Stadium.
He also threw his first career interception – three of them, unfortunately – in Carolina's 51-13 defeat.
"It's football, man. Stuff's not always going to go your way," Allen said. "I think as a team we're going to learn from this film, we're going to learn from what we did, and it starts with me especially. I'm going to learn from what we did and we're just going to move on from it and not make the same mistakes twice."
Entering the game, Allen acknowledged what everyone knew – this was going to be his toughest test to date, without question.
The 49ers boast arguably the league's best defense. They sure looked like it on Sunday against the Panthers, sacking Allen seven times, six of which came in the first half.
"They didn't blitz much, their D-line just did a really good job of rushing. I tried to come into the game and get the ball out of my hands quick as much as I could, but D-line did a really good job," Allen said. "There were definitely a couple of sacks that were completely on me. Just get the ball out of my hand or get it to the check down."
San Francisco's rush and coverage worked in near-perfect harmony, making like difficult for Allen throughout. He completed just 51 percent of his passes (19-of-37) in addition to the three picks.
In the second half, with his team down big, head coach Ron Rivera felt Allen started to press, which is understandable given the situation.
"I was just inaccurate with the ball today," Allen said. "I think in the second half we saw a couple get away, and those turnovers in the third quarter just put our team in a bad position. You're not going to win games if you're turning the ball over and the other team's getting the ball inside the 20. That's just putting our defense in a bad position. Just didn't come out in the second half the way we needed to."
Allen's previous career-low passer rating was 85.6 a few weeks ago against Jacksonville. Against San Francisco, he finished with a 28.9 passer rating.
It was a humbling experience for Allen and everyone in that locker room. And especially for Carolina's young quarterback, it was a true learning experience.
"I mean, it's a 16-game season. It's one game. We've got to look at the film, we've got to learn from it, we've got to really see who we are as a team," Allen said. "Like I said coming into this game, it was going to be a measuring stick to see where we are as a team. We're going try and dig deep and really figure out what we did wrong and try and wash it away, but still keep that memory of today in our mind. Keep that taste in our mouth, because today was not a good day for us.
"I know how good we are as a team, I know how good we can be as a team, so we've got to learn from it and keep pushing forward."
View photos from Week 8 as Carolina takes on San Francisco.