Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera: “Some People Have To Find Who They Follow, And Some People Have To Find Who Their Leader Is”

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The Drive Friday 10-26-12- Ron Rivera, Head Coach of the Carolina Panthers, stopped by “The Drive” to talk to the guys before their big matchup against the Chicago Bears this Sunday.

He started out by talking about the tough week he and the Panthers’ organization just endured.

“It most certainly has been a tough week. And when you’re not winning games, you’ve been close, that makes it tough. And then when you combine that with set of circumstances were deal with, it makes it even tougher.”

Despite all the instability surrounding the team, Rivera insists that he and his guys are remaining focused on the task at hand.

“Nobody misses Marty (Hurney) as much as I do… But what I’ve tried to do, is I’ve tried to do is help our players understand and focus on who we play next, getting ready for who we play next, and try to stay in the moment.”

He also addressed the perception of his sideline demeanor and how people might perceive that lack of emotion as indifference or that it translates to lack of passion, but he said even though he understand that sentiment, he insists that theory could not be further from reality.

“You know it’s funny, cause you look at certain things, and people say ‘look how ridiculous he looks, he losing his mind.  He screaming at people.  He’s cussing.  He’s throwing things around…’  I mean, if we win those football games, people would say ‘Oh boy, it looks like he’s in control’… So take everything with a grain of salt.  There’s some things that I need to do different, most definitely…  If we are going be trending up, then I need to do some things differently, as well.  Not just me, but my coaches and my players.”

There’s been a lot of news originating from events off the football field, but there needs to be changes on the field for Rivera and the Panthers, too.

“You Are What Your Record Says. We’re A 1-5 Football Team.  Can that change? Most definitely.  And it needs to start this Sunday”

Cam Newton has also been the recipient of a healthy amount of criticism, but he also addressed what he believes is the real issue with his team so far this season.

“I think (getting beat the line of scrimmage) is a part of it.  A lot of things start and emanate from the point of attack…  At the point of attack, you need to win.  I will say this: defensively, we’ve made a lot of strides at the point of attack…  Now offensively, we win some we lose some, but we need to be more consistent.  We’ve got to win more than we’ve lost.  That’s part of the emphasis…  We’ve got to run better.  We’ve got to be able to protect better.   There’s a lot of things that have to happen a the point of attack…  We’re finding these things, and we’re trying to correct them and we’re trying to get them worked out.”

The Panthers will look to improve to 2-5 on the year when they take on the 5-1 Chicago Bears at Soldier field this Sunday at 1:00 PM, EST.

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