Panthers deny Washington’s bid for division-clinching win

The visiting Carolina Panthers took advantage of the mistake-prone Washington Football Team for a 20-13 victory against a team directed by their former coach Sunday in Landover, Md.The outcome prevented Ron Rivera’s team from clinching the NFC East.Washington (6-9), which tries next week to claim the divisional title by playing the regular-season finale at Philadelphia, was in position to wrap up the division because of the New York Giants’ loss earlier in the day at Baltimore.Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins Jr., who had a rough week with off-field issues, committed three of the team’s four first-half turnovers.The Panthers (5-10) won for only the second time since mid-October. It was only the franchise’s second victory in its last 14 December games.Carolina quarterback Teddy Bridgewater was 19-for-28 for 197 yards with a touchdown and an interception.Haskins was 14-for-28 for 154 yards with two interceptions and a lost fumble. He was replaced with slightly more than nine minutes remaining by Taylor Heinicke, who directed Washington on a drive covering more than 85 yards before a sack and a fourth-down touchdown play nullified by a holding penalty led to a turnover on downs.On the next possession, Heinicke threw a 29-yard touchdown pass to J.D. McKissic with 1:50 remaining. The Panthers recovered an onside kick and ran out the clock.Haskins started for the second week in a row because of Alex Smith’s calf injury. Heinicke finished 12-for-19 for 137 yards.

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