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Along the Sidelines - Bears Edition

Carolina Panthers NFL

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#1 Zod



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Posted 10 August 2013 - 07:48 AM

Welcome, Panthers Fans, to a new day and a new opportunity to raise our hopes for a glorious season. Well, preseason anyways.


Sir Purr begins the new season every year with his sparkler tipped flagged before the players are introduced.



Speaking of Sir Purr, I have a bone to pick with him. He has started photo bombing me on the sidelines. Here I am trying to get a picture of a gorgeous rookie Topcat and he slowly glides in with that catpoop eating grin. Curse you.



But enough with that, on with the football.


Cam Newton was labeled a captain for the first time in his career. He welcomed the change with his usual pregame enthusiasm on display. As players walk on to the field for warm ups, he calls out specific ones for a mid air collision. Here, Greg Hardy obliges him.



I was a bit surprised to see Taurn Poole get so many early snaps. I am still not too sure what to think about it as Poole has not gotten many first string reps in all of training camp. One possibility is that Poole is on the bubble. The coaches may want to see early what he is capable of and give him that opportunity. All things considered, I think Poole did well with the first unity but production dropped off when playing with the threes and fours. 



Greg Hardy seemed excited just to get some pent up aggression out on someone not wearing a Panthers uniform. A few times the officials needed to try to calm Greg down a bit. In Greg's defense, the Bears Offensive Line were talking quite a bit and getting in a few extra post whistle shoves. Don't anger the Kraken.



Luke Kuechly looks to be in mid season form. Also a Captain this year, Luke has really stepped up his leadership game. Last season he would make the defensive play call in the huddle. This season, he is making the play call and giving further individual instruction and support.



The first string Offensive Line I felt held up well for a first preseason game. Amini Silatolu is starting to look worthy of a second round pick. The left side of the line will be a strength this season.



Kenjon Barner's first touch as a Panther was a fumble. That is not great. This promoted some fans to compare him to Deshaun Foster or Mike Goodson, which is both silly and sad all at the same time.



What was great was Barner's vindication. In a show of faith in the rookie, Mike Shula went right back to Kenjon in the next series. Barner rose to the challenge and had the best performance of any Panthers running back. He had the most yardage, the most yards per carry, and a touchdown. You should get used to seeing defenders around Kenjon's feet this season.



David Gettis has a lot to prove this preseason and he is off to a good start. You can't help to pull for this guy. He has had obstacle after obstacle and still he strives to be a contribute.




Chase Blackburn is fun to watch on the field and on the sideline. It seems his motor doesn't simply stop when the play ends. Chase is probably the most vocal defensive veteran since Mike Rucker.



I don't think anyone predicted Josh Norman to be the MVP of the game. Norman exited the Rivera Doghouse in epic fashion, and he took a football with him.



This was by far the most exciting play of the game. The players standing around me erupted and screamed SIX as soon as Norman caught the ball. Josh headed directly to the jump zone after scoring the touchdown where fans were eager to congratulate him.



Which brings me to my final observation.


Cam Newton is a new man. He hasn't dimmed his enthusiasm or his love of the game, but he has added a sense of confidence. Not confidence in himself, he has always had that. But a confidence in his team. Cam was much more vocal and engaging on the sidelines. He offered encouragement, advice, and support to any player in a Panthers uniform. This folks, is maturity. Cam was the biggest cheerleader for Norman's reception and touchdown. His enthusiasm was contagious to the entire team.


It appears Cam Newton 2.0 has arrived.




Also.... I want that hat!






#2 fieryprophet


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:38 AM

Sir Purr knew exactly what he was doing, I can't blame him at all. That is one gorgeous TopCat rookie.

On the rest of your notes I enjoyed the up close observations and will concur that Cam seemed very much engaged with his teammates even from the sidelines. I about busted a gut watched him flip out about Clausen's run.

Speaking of Jimmeh, he turned in a good performance for a 3rd stringer, you could tell he wanted to seal the win.

#3 nctarheel0619


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:46 AM

Nice write up good sir.

#4 SpeedOFLight


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:48 AM

That sir purr photo bomb is hilarious lol.

#5 Montie_0123


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:49 AM

Very nice picture write-up like always I hope this is something that will happen all season.

#6 redbuddha


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 08:49 AM

When they said they were gonna make sure Cam wasn't our leading rusher who knew they were going to put that burden on Clausen among the qb's.

#7 CLTPanther


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 09:07 AM

Next time Sir Purr does a photo bomb, kick him in the ballz

#8 Jesse


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 09:11 AM

Photos turned out great per usual. Also, I have that beanie Cam has. It has the fuzz ball on top originally and is the comfiest thing ever to slide onto my head.

#9 TheRumGone


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 09:17 AM

thanks zod. your story time rivals my parents when i was a child.

#10 iBBB


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 09:40 AM

I really enjoyed how the players jelled in yesterdays game. ron was vocal and comfortable, finally. so was cam, like you pointed out. all three sides of the ball played like a solid unit, especially the D. 


And Ron's Fist Of Confidence:


#11 OnlyPantherFaninMaine


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Posted 10 August 2013 - 09:47 AM

I've been meaning to ask this for a while...what are the wrist guards Luke always wear in practice and in games? Do they just provide support to the wrists when making a tackle so they do not get snapped back or what? He seems to be the only linebacker I've seen wear them. 

#12 Zod



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Posted 10 August 2013 - 10:32 AM

Not sure