It’s OUR time–The time is NOW. The pieces are put-in-place. Now it’s time to execute.
All across the nation, from the sports media to various critiques— they’ve all downgraded the Panthers, even though the Panthers finished strong, winning their last few games against some tough teams.
For the Panthers, it is all about buying into to what the coaches have been implementing. For the players it is all about executing, and holding themselves accountable. It isn’t so much what the outsiders are saying; it’s about doing their own personal best: Breaking records, never-giving-up, and going the extra mile. This has been the story and legacy of the Carolina Panthers: “Keep Pounding.”
The Panthers will host the Seattle Seahawks this Sunday at Bank of America Stadium. The Panthers are looking to start off the season on the right foot with a win—holding on to the momentum to carry them thru the rest of the season. It is no secret that the Panthers have a tough schedule and can arguably be said to be in the toughest division that includes the Saints, the Falcons, and the Buccaneers.
The Panthers mindset is to look at one play at a time—playing in the moment. The Panthers QB, Cam Newton has also taken to this way of thinking, holding on to his new slogan, his new mantra—“Next play.” QB coach, Ken Dorsey, will continue to repeat it in his ear, calming Cam and making sure he continues to stay focused on the play at hand.
It is all a mindset. The Defense has also bought into the mindset of aggressive, attack-oriented football. The defense has proven in the preseason that they are to be respected and feared throughout the league.
“Rivera wants the Panthers to start strong, be physical and pick up where they left off last season,” via Panthers.
What to Expect Sunday:
If Amini Silatolu is healthy, he is expected to start at LG. If he isn’t, Wharton and Scott will see time at LG, via Panthers.
Mike Mitchell has a calf strain. If he is not ready to go come Sunday, expect to see a lot of the new addition: Mikell. Rivera is excited about having Mikell on the team saying that “he brings a lot to the table (he has) lots of experience against several of the Panthers opponents this year,” via Panthers. Mikell was brought in due to health and injuries, not so much preseason performances, said Rivera. Mikell is excited to be on a team where he can be a part of a very effective defense. He is impressed with the front 7, via Max Henson, with the Panthers.
Mike Tolbert has also practiced this week in pads. Tolbert, if given the ok will start against the Seahawks. Tolbert said, via Jon Jones with the Observer, “I feel confident they’re going to give me the green light” come Sunday.
Kenjon Barner is “hopeful” to play week 1, but said that it is “in the hands of trainers.”
Jeff Byers also was back at practice and said he will play Sunday.
Hartsock also returned and will play on Sunday.
Who will start in Florence’s spot? —The Battle of the Josh’s (Norman) or (Thomas) both have different strengths and abilities: Norman plays more long and open, while Thomas is more physical—both are young and can contribute and be long-term, i.e. the future, says Rivera. Capt. Munnerlyn thinks Josh Thomas will be the team’s other starting CB, via Steve Reed.
Rivera said, “We think they’re a very physical team who will try and run the ball, which they do very well, and pound it out.” It’s going to depend on their game plan and how they react in certain situations. Defensively, they’re quick and rely on their speed. “It’s a good football team, and we have to be on our A-game,” said Rivera, via Panthers. “They’re a very well balanced team.”
Key Players injured for the Seahawks: Cliff Avril (DE); Michael Bennett(DE); Bruce Irvin (DE); Percy Harvin (WR).
A Strong Secondary : Sherman; Kam Chancellor; Earl Thomas.
A Good RB :Marshawn Lynch
Good WR’s: Golden Tate; Sidney Rice.
A Good QB: Russell Wilson.