There’s good news today about starting DT Star Lotulelei, as reports from the AP state he could be back by the start of the regular season for the Cats.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera says he expects starting defensive tackle Star Lotulelei to be back on the field for the Sept. 13 regular-season opener against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The former first-round draft pick has missed most of training camp and both preseason games with a stress reaction in his right foot.
For now, he remains in a boot and continues to be held out of practice. Lotulelei broke the same foot in practice last January causing him to miss Carolina’s NFC division round playoff game against Seattle.
Lotulelei’s role with the Panthers is to occupy double teams up front and allow linebackers Luke Kuechly and Thomas Davis to run to the ball and make plays.
Defensive end Charles Johnson (calf) and wide receiver Devin Funchess (hamstring) also did not practice Tuesday.
“Obviously, we feel awful for Kelvin,” Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman said in a statement. “He’s worked tremendously hard to put himself in a position to have a strong year.
“We’re confident he will attack his surgery and rehab with the same determination he has met all challenges before.”
The injury occurred during Wednesday’s joint practice with the Miami Dolphins when Benjamin made a routine cut during a one-one-one pass drill against cornerback Reshad Jones.
Benjamin was transported to Charlotte for an MRI that confirmed the tear.
The loss of the 6-foot-5 Benjamin leaves Carolina without its No. 1 wide receiver. Benjamin caught 73 passes for 1,008 yards and nine touchdowns during the 2014 season after Carolina selected him with the 28th pick of the draft.
Just in time for NFL Kick-Off, Bud Light – the Official Beer of the NFL – is bringing a new Panther Bud Light can to the Carolinas. The new packaging features Panthers colors, as well as a slogan every Panthers fan can relate to: The perfect beer for growling so loud it shakes both states.
Bud Light worked closely with its NFL team partners to create new can designs for the 28 teams that it is partners with for the 2015-2016 season. Each design features a customized scroll message that speaks directly to each team’s passionate fan base. The cans are on shelves now.
What do you think of the new Bud Light Panthers can?
Panthers star wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin has been carted off the field with an apparent left leg injury, Steve Reed of the Associated Press reports.
The injury occurred during the first day of scrimmages Wednesday with the Miami Dolphins at Wofford College. Benjamin appeared to slip as he made a cut while running a crossing route. He sat up afterward holding his left leg.
After Benjamin went to the ground, several players from both teams took a knee around him.
Trainers attended to Benjamin and quickly called for the cart to take him into the locker room. Quarterback and close friend Cam Newton helped Benjamin into the cart.
Newtown said Tuesday, “What’s the blueprint of a franchise quarterback? Leading your team. I’m not going to let anyone dictate how I play.”
It’s rare for a franchise quarterback to be involved in a fight in practice, let alone be the instigator. Most, like Newton, wear red jerseys to protect themselves and stay out of the way.
But despite the risk of injury, the 6-foot-5, 245-pound Newton says “you’ve never seen a guy in a red jersey like me. You’re not going to shape or form me to who you want me to be. I’m here for” my teammates.
Newton wasn’t injured Monday after chasing down Norman.
I like pulling for players who show great improvement and have an upside. TE Brandon Williams (aka Swole Bones) is one of those players.
Panthers TE Brandon Williams (groin surgery) is limited…
Williams underwent a minor procedure in June and is expected back for the second week of camp. It’s a note for preseason DFS players to file away. Williams, a former college basketball player and athletic freak, logged a heavy 58 snaps in last year’s exhibition opener and produced 3-50-1. Be sure he’s healthy before using him this year. Jul 23 – 10:45 AM
Source: Steve Reed on Twitter
When asked about his injury, Williams said he “will be back real soon.”–Charlotte Vibe, Chris Jennings
Here is a recent interview he had with Chris Jennings @ CharlotteVibe:
Q: What have you learned from TE’s?
A:Both Greg Olsen and Ed Dickson are great…with their veteran experience, I learn a lot and am more comfortable, being able to relax, using good technique and fundamentals when it comes to blocking and route running.
Q: In the off-season what did you work on the most?
A:I worked on catching the ball and being more versatile. Being able to catch the ball whether its high or low, etc. Im catching like, 300 balls a day. Trying to get better. I continue to work on my blocking, that’s always something I can improve on. I try and get better everyday.
I feel like Im a good receiver and blocker. Im versatile and want to get better. That’s the plan.
Q: How do you feel about practicing against another team, the Miami Dolphins, in training camp?
A:It’ll be fun going against someone else other than your own teammates. Your own teammates respect you and wont try and take any cheap shots, so, you never know what to expect going against another team.
Q: What do you think of Charlotte.
A:Im originally from Chicago. I love Charlotte. It’s a great city. It’s a lot smaller than Chicago. Charlotte’s growing, it has a lot of things a big city has to offer, minus the bad things like crime and traffic.
It seems every time Cam Newton’s name is mentioned in the media there is a notation that he’s been sacked or hit while throwing and rushing 587 times — 270 times more than any other quarterback since 2011, David Newton of ESPN.com reports.
There was a time when coach Ron Rivera was concerned with every hit. He encouraged Newton to slide instead of dive forward to reduce the contact.
Newton even took sliding lessons.
The attitude since Newton signed a five-year, $103.8 million extension has leaned toward letting the face of the team do what he does best.
Newton certainly doesn’t plan to change the style that has netted him 2,571 rushing yards and 33 rushing touchdowns, more than any quarterback in the league the last four years.
“I’m always getting questioned on how I run,” Newton said. “I never, up to this point, got that wild shot like I see other players take. One of those hits where you’re like, ‘Gollee, he just got killed.’
“I’m always the one either delivering the blow or sliding away from the hit.”
The hit that resulted in Newton fracturing a rib in a preseason game against New England last year wasn’t vicious. The defender’s knee hit Newton in an exposed spot just below the back of the shoulder pads as the quarterback dove to the ground.
And Newton may have been able to avoid that if he weren’t under strict orders to be careful while rehabbing the left ankle that required offseason surgery.
“Sacks, touches, hits, I’m fine,” Newton said. “I’m walking tall. This is a football game and it’s supposed to be played as such. I’m not in the sport of ballerina, gymnastics. This is a physical sport. I knew what I was signing up for when I decided to play this game.”
Panthers defensive tackle and former first-round pick Star Lotulelei was carted off the practice field Monday morning with a foot injury, but Panthers coach Ron Rivera indicated the apparent foot injury may not be serious, Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer reports.
Lotulelei experienced soreness in what Rivera believed was his surgically repaired right foot but wasn’t sure. Renowned foot and ankle doctor Robert Anderson, who’s also a team doctor, is in Spartanburg and would evaluate Lotulelei.
“He just thought we should get him up (to the locker room) and take a look at it,” Rivera said. “So that was a good thing, a positive, and we’ll probably know a little bit more once I get upstairs.”
“Hopefully it’ll be good news. And we’re being very optimistic about it, and we might be being overly protective. So hopefully that’s exactly what it is.”
Lotulelei fractured his foot in January during a practice before Carolina’s playoff loss to Seattle. Anderson performed the surgery.