5 key observations from second Panthers scrimmage at Colts

(Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) Rodney Smith
(Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) Rodney Smith /
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Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Jaycee Horn /

Carolina Panthers won’t be pushed around

If the Carolina Panthers were a little tentative during the first joint practice with the Indianapolis Colts, that was certainly not the case on Day 2.

The entire session was filled with different scuffles, with punches thrown and things threatening to get out of hand on occasions. This is a far cry from the timid Panthers teams over the last couple of years and although Brian Burns described it as “chaos”, the defensive end said it’s all part of Carolina’s growing mentality that nobody will push them around in 2021.

"“Chaos. That’s about it. That’s all I can say. . . . I like the edge everybody was bringing. It gets me pumped up. Things got a little edgy, a little out of hand, but it’s football. It just shows the edge the team has and the mentality we came out with today, not to get pushed around today.”"

This aggressiveness is welcome.

Providing it’s harnessed in the right way when push comes to shove in a game-day situation.

Matt Rhule is well known for running high-tempo practices with lots of intensity. Things boiling over against opposition other than your teammates during training camp is all part of the business, but the head coach was pleased that his team was sticking up for each other and looking after their own.

"“Yesterday, the defense played to the whistle, today we said let’s play through the whistle more. Offensively, I think it’s good for our guys. You hate when McCaffrey, a guy comes over and clubs him, and he falls to the ground. But at the end of the day, it’s good contact for him. It’s a chance to protect the football.”"

Carolina has some fight in them at last. Here’s hoping we see similar commitment and togetherness when competitive action begins.