5 big observations from practice Day 10 at Panthers training camp

(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Paddy Fisher and Jermaine Carter
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Paddy Fisher and Jermaine Carter /
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Carolina Panthers
(Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports) C.J. Saunders /

C.J. Saunders impressing the Carolina Panthers

Although there are quite a few players ahead of C.J. Saunders on the Carolina Panthers depth chart, the wide receiver has been catching the eye over the last couple of practices in pursuit of earning a surprise roster spot.

Saunders was a late arrival to the Panthers this offseason and is growing in confidence after a period of adjustment. The former team captain at Ohio State is quickly becoming a dependable presence for quarterbacks to utilize, something that hasn’t gone unnoticed by head coach Matt Rhule.

"“Our quarterbacks love throwing him the ball, because they know he’s going to go get it.”"

It’s been a rocky start to life in the NFL for Saunders, who was denied another year of eligibility with the Buckeyes by the NCAA, going undrafted and failing to do enough to earn an extended stay with the Atlanta Falcons.

There is still much work for Saunders to do in the coming weeks. He must continue progressing at practice and also take advantage of any targets that come his way throughout the preseason.

Leaving a big impression on the field when it matters will do far more for Saunders’ chances than anything else. Whether he can rise to the occasion or not is another matter entirely.