What does football and the Army together have anything to do with this forum you might ask? I write with trepidation as sometimes military analogies are not well received. However, since I really do not post that often, I'm hoping you give me a shot. For the TL;DR crowd, I promise to keep this bottom line up front, so please bear with me. Again, I am looking at an intelligent conversation - not a knee jerk, emotional reaction that has somewhat dominated the board as of late.
First off, I've been in the Army since 2001. Enlisted for a while and now an officer. I have seen the full gamut of leadership at it's best and worse, both at home and in combat. Based off my 11 years of experience as a leadership professional, here are a few of my observations/parallels with the Panthers leadership.
1. Football teams are like combat units to a certain extent. Both require special individuals to do things that most sane people avoid at all costs. Both require extensive planning (Operations orders = Game plans), both require immense amount of training at highly technical and skilled positions. And above all, both require leaders to direct not only the unit, but provide guidance through calm, patient, and decisive demeanor in both good and bad times.
2. The Panther's Offense is like a Platoon, and you can consider Cam Newton to be the Platoon Leader. Now most anyone in the military well tell you that most PLs can be cocky, a little too self-assured, a bit rough around the edges, and lack a certain bit of poise and refinement seen in older officers. The upside to them though, is that most have an extreme amount of potential, are highly trained and very reliable even if their methods are sometimes unorthodox. What they lack is experience. I like to think of Cam as this kind of officer. He has tremendous upside with his talent and unorthodox way he plays. As a former platoon leader, I can tell you that the platoon often adopts the personality of it's leadership. I see this with Carolina. They are inspired by Cam's infectious and insatiable desire to win. However, one cannot help but notice when he faces adversity, he caves. His emotions get the better of him and it affects his guys. I'm not knocking the guy totally here, but if he wants to win, sitting on the bench, scowling and pouting is not going to inspire anyone. The key to leadership isn't about establishing a brand when times are good. It's about facing adversity head-on, being a positive influence despite the circumstances - especially when the going gets tough and you find yourself down a touchdown or two. I think Smitty said something to the same respect. http://espn.go.com/n...ack-cam-newton. Short end though, Newton is only in his second year. He still has a lot to learn, and I have no doubt that over time, he will gain that poise and refinement. We can't expect it from him right away. Maturation takes several years. However, I believe the sooner he realizes this, the more successful the Panthers as a team will be.
I could go on, especially about flexibility in planning and how leaders above Cam need to adapt better to the flow of the game, but I will save that for a later post.
As far as I'm concerned...if you quit watching, your opinion isn't worth crap. This fan base doesn't need anymore quitters on it.
Your opinion is duly noted and subsequently ignored. What this forum needs is honest and frank discussion, not name calling and senseless bashing.
It's painful for any fan to watch their team crash and burn on the national stage. Cut me some slack bro. I am stationed in Germany and the game was on at 330am. If I was a quitter, I wouldn't have got up at 2am to watch. Not going to waste precious sleep while we are getting blown out in the fourth quarter.
Please try and contribute more than just name calling in your next post. Thanks.
I kept quiet the first two weeks. I wanted to asses the team. I wanted to make sure that the Saints game wasn't a fluke.
Well, after 2.75 games (I quit watching after Cam's second pick) I can't help but shake my head at the coaching.
Inept. Flaccid. Soft. Embarrassing.
NOT what you want to see the national stage.
You cannot tell me the absence of Jon Stewart made that big of a difference in our offense. Creativity and the ability to adjust during games, not overpaid talent makes or breaks games. We have the talent, not the creativity. Look at the Giants - no names at WR and RB, yet they had breakout games. Why? Coaching.
I can't help but wonder why we call at 7 step drop back for Cam when we know they are bum rushing our Oline. Where are the screens and 3 step drop passes? Stop running gimmicks.
Defense? Do we have one? I went back and rewatched the Saints game. Blown assignments by the Saints and few dropped balls. Reverse that and they probably would have won. It wasn't a stellar Defensive performance by any stretch. Fast Forward to the Giants game and you have DBs too soft in coverage. No stunts or workable blitz schemes. I could go on and on.
I know we are capable of more because of what we did last year. I have seen it. Is it too much to ask to have the team prepared with a solid gameplan? I have no doubt things will straighten out, but right now, it's just atrocious.
Bad coaching is a big part of it, but a bad roster hurts too. The bottom third or so of our roster is awful. When you waste valuable roster spots on non-NFL caliber guys like Edwards and Clausen you have less room for special teams contributors.
finally someone hits the nail on the head. i guess i am not taking crazy pills after all!
i'm for winning, but i am also realistic. new schemes, new coach, new coordinator, new players and you guys act like we should be winning every game with a shot at the super bowl. realistically, we go 6-10 at best this year. so i dont get worked up over a loss like this. is it aggravating? yes. do i ge frustrated with the calls/mental mistakes? yes. but i expect this things to happen with a team that is growing. be patient and give the team some time to grow. its only the 4th game of the season. rome wasnt built in a day.
I can't help but notice a few threads that tend to lean towards negativity. (I know not all of you are.) And while I empathize with the lamentations of those who are disappointed with the miscues here and there, I have a few positive things to consider:
1. Cam keeps us in the game. Look, I got it. He threw a few picks yesterday and maybe didn't play a perfect game. But compare him to the play of Jimmy Clausen last year...we are at least scoring points. Enough points to be competitive. He passed for over 400 yards against the highly touted Green Bay defense - no small feat for a guy with only 2 games professional experience.
2. Chud isn't afraid to take risks. With a new offensive coordinator, the schemes may be a little different. Not everyone is going to be on the same page right away. Implementing the schemes, wrinkles, tweaks if you will, to a FLAT non-existing passing attack from last year will take some time. This also includes new players in the system. At the end of the day though, you don't have to worry about a draw play up the middle on 3rd and 13 as were the typical play calls from the Fox-onian era. Chud will attack and give us a chance to stay in the game. Over time I believe that the offense will gel and gain balance, fixing the RZ offense as well as the running game. For now, despite turning the ball over 4 times, we still had a believable chance to tie the defending super bowl champions. Not too shabby for a rebuilding team.
3. It's been several years since I was truly excited about watching the Panthers. Since the final days of the Delhomme (RIP) and through the Jimmy Clausen fiasco, we are finally competitive. The Panthers may not win, but at least exciting plays are made to keep the game close. Exciting enough to get me off my couch cheering. And having missed last season due to a deployment to Iraq, I can tell I was thankful I couldn't watch Clausen run scared s***less.
So in conclusion, I know some out there might blame whomever for the loss. Realistically, those miscues will continue throughout the year. However, despite that, many things are exciting to watch and once everything starts to click, Carolina is going to be lights out.
Since I am a visual kinda guy, I put everything into a graphical representation. In essence, I will sum up this flacid performance today with numbers. For all you MMORPG players this should make sense. Here goes - Carolina Panther Fan Approval Rating fromula.
Pro - New, untested talent +10
Con - Failure to utilize said talent -10
Pro - Jarrett makes 2 catches +2
Con - Only 5 catches for Smith -10
Pro - First offensive TD +10 (5 bonus points for it going to Smith)
Con - Predictable play calling -50
Pro - Jeff Davidson almost in tears +10
Con - Jeff Davidson still the OC -50
Pro - Matt Moore throws a TD + 10
Con - Matt Moore throws 3 INTs in redzone -100
Con - D Will disappeared in the 2nd half -100
Con - No effing blocking -100
Pro - Secondary INTs +20
Con - Secondary surrendered 3 TDs -100
Pro - Jimmy Clausen sees action + 50
Con - Jimmy Clausen given no chance by o-line -100
Based on these numbers, my fan approval rating for the Carolina Panthers is at -648 on a scale or erroneous porportions. In fact, this makes no sense, but who cares. Tired of flacid, mediocre, predictable football.