Local Football Bloggers
Hey Panthers, The Broncos Are Coming, The Broncos Are Coming (And So Are John Fox And Peyton Manning)
The Broncos and Panthers hook up for just the fourth time ever this Sunday and it should be a memorable day. John Fox returns, the only head coach to lead Carolina to a Super Bowl, and QB Peyton Manning, who won the big game in 2007, visits as one of his final stops before landing in Canton when his Hall of Fame career is over.
Despite their win over the Redskins, the Panthers took their lumps last Sunday which included kick return specialist Kealoha Pilares being lost for the season. Once again it is next man up and this time it is David Gettis who will see his first regular season action since 2010.
Ron Rivera has drawn his share of criticism, but how much of it is really deserved? With a little luck, the Panthers could be 4-4 and few would be looking for an exit strategy for the head coach. Maybe the media should cut him some slack and give him a chance to succeed in Charlotte.
There is a big difference in the Panthers’ defense that opened the season and what they look like now. While injuries have played a role in the roster shuffle, Greg Hardy has emerged as a threat to be one of the finest sack masters in the game.
If the Panthers are going to equal last season’s 6-10 record they will have to go 5-4 the rest of the way and the road ahead is a bumpy one starting off with the Redskins in their stadium. Carolina’s Cam Newton and Washington’s Robert Griffin III are quarterbacks cut from the same mold but so far RGIII is having a better year.
The Panthers record is abysmal, they seemingly have more players on IR than actual healthy starters and the trade deadline is Thursday at 4 p.m. Carolina needs some cap relief to help the new general manager when he is named, but will they make the necessary deals to begin the rebuilding process?
The dictionary says the word “tackle” is to seize, stop, or throw down (a ball-carrier), something the legendary Deion Sanders allegedly did 492 times. Luke Kuechly has just 34 through his seven-game NFL career but he might have more of the definition-type than the Hall of Famer.
The Panthers are 1-6 but you cannot blame defensive end Dwan Edwards who has been everything – and more – since being picked up before the start of the season. Having already set a personal best in sacks, Edwards is just one behind team leader Charles Johnson in that department.
They say there are no moral victories when you have a losing record. but for the Panthers, getting a win against the Bears may not be as important as how they play. Chicago has the top rated defense and the 8th best offense – a lethal combination for anyone – so Carolina needs to keep it close and let the chips fall where they may.
For Cam Newton it might have been the first day of the rest of his football life following a calm and somewhat candid conversation with the media after practice on Wednesday. While not being able erase those rather forgettable postgame press conferences,he did come off as someone who might be learning from his mistakes.