The Panthers did a lot of things right against a tough opponent, Seattle Seahawks, and there are a lot of good things to take out of the first game. Rivera: “There were a lot of good things that happened and those are the things we are going to build on.” Panthers out rushed Seattle picking up 134 yards on the ground versus Seattle’s 70 yrds. QB Cam Newton had a 97.2 Passer Rating—he was good for 69.6 completion percentage.Zero INT’s. DeAngelo Williams averaged 5.1 yards on the ground.
M. Lynch only averaged 2.5 yards and was 17-43. Williams put up 20+ more yards than Lynch with one less carry.
Area in need of improvement: Passing/Receptions— Olsen was the leading receiver in yards with 56; Smitty was second with 51. The Panthers total Passing yards were 119 compared to Seattle’s 300. The only time the Panthers put up any points was in the 2nd Qtr. 3rd Down Conversions: Panthers 5-11-45%
Top leaders defensively: C. Godfrey, L. Kuechly, and T. Davis. Godfrey is credited with a sack on R. Wilson, as is C. Johnson.
Panthers were successful a majority of the game and stuck with the game plan. Unfortunately, they came up short in the end, loosing their home opener against Seattle 12-7.
Panther’s fans are wearisome of the close; down to the wire games where the Panthers let a lead go and cannot seal the deal at the end. Rivera was asked if it brought back memories of the close loses that happened early last season and Rivera responded in the affirmative. Rivera: “Yes it does, unfortunately.” “I like to believe that we have an opportunity to change that.” “We had opportunities to win.” “We had an opportunity to beat a team that a lot of people are crowning right now.” “It should be a wakeup call for us that we can play against anybody and we are most certainly capable. And we’re going to win some football games.” “Let’s not forget, we played a good football team.” “We’ve got to learn how to capitalize.” “We’ve got to find the answer early. We’re going to find the answer and get rolling.”
Cam wants to remind the fans, “It’s not a panic for us.” “If we (as players) can make the most out of every opportunity, we’re going to be alright.”
Cam is under a coaching staff that preaches execution, individual responsibility, and discipline. Rivera’s militaristic philosophy demands every one to do their assignment. Some fans are already calling for Rivera’s seat, wanting the HC out the door and a new staff brought in. Rivera: “We had missed opportunities.” Missed opportunities to put points up on the board, and turnovers in the redzone. “It’s disappointing.” In the fourth quarter, defense allowed a couple of conversions on third downs—unfortunate missed opportunities. “We can correct all those things.”
Some players were undisciplined and cost their team: Frank Alexander threw a punch and was ejected and Armond Smith had a few flags thrown his way.
Cam doesn’t feel like it was Seattle that stopped them but it was their own, personal doing as to why they didn’t win the game. “We didn’t make the plays.” Cam credits their personal penalties, unsportsman like conduct, stalling drives, as a shot in the foot. Cam says that they will fix their mistakes and get ready for Buffalo. Cam feels that they did some things right today and didn’t do some things right, in regards to sustaining drives and moving the ball in manageable down situations.
Cam feels like the offense can be more aggressive. Cam: “We have to be more aggressive and take the bull by its horns.” “As a team, we have to be more thorough, to a degree.” “I feel we left too much out there on the field and that’s what we said we weren’t going to do. But we’re all human and we’re going to come back.”
“This is the first game and we’re going to learn from it.” “Let’s not panic, we’re going to be alright.”
Cam: “This game did not come down to one particular play.”
DeAngelo Williams felt otherwise, saying the game changer and nail in the coffin was the fumble. “That was my fault.” “Unfortunately, today they got the ball out and it cost my team and fans a hard fought win and I apologize.” “It came down to that one drive and I ultimately ended it.” William’s is bearing the burden and did not take the fumble lightly.
Williams said, Seattle came in and stole a win. He and the rest of the team are looking to put the loss behind them and make the needed corrections to move forward. Williams: “We’re going to continue to fight and make the playoff and Superbowl run.” “We’re going to fight to the end. Unfortunately for us, the ball didn’t bounce our way, it bounced theirs.”
INJURY: It’s not looking good for Gary Williams. Williams will go for a MRI.
Written By: Phillip Boyce
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