Carolina Panthers anticipate intense joint practices with Buffalo Bills
Carolina Panthers host Buffalo Bills for practice ahead of Friday’s second preseason game.
After former Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott took over for the Buffalo Bills, coach Ron Rivera has been teasing the idea of a joint practice. Originally scheduled for last season, both teams elected to forego any joint sessions due to the changeover in ownership with the Panthers.
Now, a year later, both teams are meeting on the field ahead of their second preseason game scheduled for Friday, August 9 with kickoff at 7:00pm ET. It marks the home debut for the 2019 Panthers and the first game for many new faces inside Bank of America Stadium is expected to be a good one, despite the outcome having no effect on any standings.
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The recent laundry list of connections between Buffalo and Carolina since McDermott took over in 2017 has led many to affectionately deem the franchise ‘Carolina North’. While some – Kelvin Benjamin, Mike Tolbert, Derek Anderson and Joe Webb – are no longer with the team, plenty of guys who have now spent time in both locker rooms remain. This includes a recent signing for the Bills in cornerback Captain Munnerlyn who was originally drafted by Carolina in 2009 and has spent seven total years with the Panthers on two separate occasions.
Being released, his first time being cut in the NFL, Munnerlyn is excited for an opportunity to show the Panthers what they’re missing. Known for copious amounts of trash talk, Rivera jokingly compared his return to a “yappy dog”.
Despite the jovial comment, Rivera has warned his players against fighting and is sure to work closely with McDermott to ensure both sides exit the practices healthy. At times there will be scuffles among teammates during training camp so adding in the opportunity to go against another team entirely is expected to ramp up the intensity level quite a bit.
Practices are scheduled for training camp at Wofford College in Sparatanburg, South Carolina today and tomorrow.