HOUSTON – It was an escape act Kyle Allen will never forget.
And it came in crunch time.
It was third-and-6 at the Houston 29-yard line with 3:14 left in the game, Panthers leading 13-10, and Carolina’s quarterback had pressure coming right at him. It was none other than J.J. Watt, who is only one of the best defensive players in the league and a future Hall of Famer.
Watt had Allen dead to rights.
“Most quarterbacks would go down when they see that bulldozer come toward them,” defensive end Mario Addison said.
But Allen ducked underneath the 6-foot-5, 288-pound defensive end and slipped out of his grasp. Then he looked up and saw wide receiver Jarius Wright screaming for the ball, and he got it to him for the 17-yard gain.
“That was just reaction,” said Allen, who was determined to make up for three lost fumbles earlier in the game. “We were trying to get a ball to DJ (Moore) on the left side, he kind of got caught up in the middle of the field, I was getting ready to throw it and I saw [Watt] squirt through.
“Just kind of reacted, got out of it. Thank God I stayed on my feet.”
Tight end Greg Olsen was still in disbelief after the game.
“Kyle getting out of that is incredible,” Olsen said. “We needed a play when things weren’t going very good. That broken play saved us. It was huge. I saw him almost down on one knee and stand up and Jarius was wide open. It was awesome.”
The Panthers ran three more plays before Joey Slye converted a 26-yard field goal to make it a 6-point game with 28 seconds left. The Panthers then closed out the 16-10 victory,
“If I make that play at the end, probably out of field goal range, probably we get the ball back with some time left,” Watt said. “I put that 100 percent on me. I have to make that play. (Allen) made a great play."
It was an act of magic in the pocket that surely made Cam Newton proud.
“Unbelievable. Reminded me of Cam, honestly,” safety Tre Boston said. “Those are the type of plays you need to win a ballgame.”
View photos from Carolina's game at Houston in Week 4.