Mike Florio Explains Why Panthers Fans Need To Be Realistic
Mike Florio from NBC/PFT joined the guys as he does each Wednesday and really stirred things up today when discussing his take on the Panthers and their recent winning streak.
“It’s one thing to beat up on bad teams and get ahead by 14 points or more and have everything go your way,” said Florio. “It’s another thing to be down 14 points and turn it around. That’s a point I’ve been making all year. Can this team handle adversity in a given game? Or will it fold tents and give up if it finds itself 10, 14, 20 points behind? that’s what I wanna see.”
“The rest of the schedule is not as easy as the past four weeks have been – two games against the Saints still left to play. We have to be realistic; the rest of the schedule is not easy. Things can turn around quickly and perceptions can change in one three-hour chunk of a Sunday afternoon.”
When asked about what Ron Rivera has to do to ensure that he’ll stay the Panthers coach for 2014, Florio expressed these thoughts:
“He’s gotta win the mob as of early January. It’s got to be impossible for (Panthers GM) Dave Gettleman to fire Ron Rivera. it’s gonna be a gut feeling based on the local support. If the Panthers don’t make it to the postseason, if they finish 8-8, 9-7, whatever the case may be, if you want Ron Rivera, you better make it known because the Panthers are going to have their ear to the ground and they going to be monitoring what the reaction would be by firing Ron Rivera.Ultimately it’s driven by the customer. It’s an entertainment business, and if the people of Charlotte want Ron Rivera to stay with the team that’s going to be a major factor whether he stays – if they don’t make it to the playoffs.”
After some prodding from Mac and co. about why he feels that the Panthers are due for a possible downturn, Florio went further: “You get your butt kicked by the 49ers and you realize, ‘you know what, that’s what the elite teams in the NFC are really like,’ that can be the equivalent of putting the pin in the balloon. It’s gonna be hard to turn around and recover from a thorough butt-kicking by the 49ers because even if you make it to the playoffs, your reward for making it to the playoffs is gonna be getting killed again by a team like the 49ers.”
Florio isn’t all down on the Panthers though. He understand that fans are optimistic. “I’m just being realistic, I understand part of the fun of football is to get caught up in the possibilities – ‘hey, we’ve won four games in a row and maybe we can keep winning, maybe we can catch the Saints, maybe we can win the division, maybe we can get homefield advantage in the postseason, maybe we can get to the Super Bowl’ – that’s great.But when you get yourself caught up in that and it all comes crashing down, it hurts a lot more than it does if you have one eye on the possibility that bad things are coming.”
“So you’re welcome Panthers fans, I’m trying to save you from the despair of getting yourself all worked up about winning the Super Bowl and having it all come crashing down.”
Florio ended the interview with one nugget of gold: “Go to San Francisco and do what the Colts did in week three and I will stand on my desk and I will say the Panthers are going to the playoffs.”
Do you agree with Mr. PFT? Will the Panthers prove Florio wrong? Answer in the comments section below and listen to the rest of the interview for more of Florio’s comments on the Panthers and the rest of the NFL including the current situation in Miami and why the NFL can’t do much about the recent health issues of its coaches.