The Panthers host the St Louis Rams on Sunday in what could be a turning point in the season. Getting the team to 500 with the prospect of playing a struggling Tampa Bay team next week should have the players and coaches excited.
We could be one week away from the first winning record in over 3 seasons.
But before we get ahead of ourselves, there are the Rams. Here are the story lines from St Louis...
Quintin Mikell had a conference call with St Louis reporters....From St Louis Today
As for facing his former coaches and teammates in the Rams, Mikell concedes: “Obviously, whenever you get to go against your former team, it’s always so good. And you get excited to show ’em what you still have. So I definitely am motivated. Not more than any other week, but it’s just a different type of motivation this week.
Mikell spent the last two seasons with the Rams and was let go solely for salary cap reasons. The team and coaches concede he is still a good player.
"He’s helping their defense,” Fisher said Wednesday.
"He’s still playing at a pretty high level,” quarterback Sam Bradford added.
Mikell has familiarity with Sam Bradford and the Rams offense and should be a big asset to the Panthers this week. Panthers Defensive Coordinator Sean McDermott and Mikell have a longer history, dating back to Philadelphia. I think it is a safe bet that Mikell had been in Sean's ear all week long.
The Rams are excited about rookie linebacker Alec Ogletree
“He’s running sideline to sideline, and he’s making a lot of plays for us,” Rams coach Jeff Fisher said. “I think his interception on Sunday was evidence he’s preparing, studying.”
Ogletree, 22, leads the team in tackles (46) and forced fumbles (three).
Ogletree was the 30th pick in the 2013 draft. While the former Bulldog has shown some promise, his PFF scores are up and down. Playing against TJ Yates has given him some confidence, but facing Cam Newton is a different matter.
With the St Louis Cardinals leading the NLCS against the Dodgers 3-2, I am really not all too sure that the Rams are on the radar under the great arch. Decent local stories are few and far between featuring the Rams.
Can't say that I blame them, I can remember how exciting it is to have a professional sports playoff team. Would be nice, wouldn't it?