Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A quick hit from Spartanburg

Mike Solarte

News and notes from Wednesday's morning practice:

** WR's D.J. Hackett and Steve Smith were injured during the practice session. Hackett with a toe, and Smith with an ankle. Head Coach John Fox says both injuries are considered minor, so don't look for them to miss too much time, with a 6pm workout scheduled for tonight. Considering both are veteran players, it wouldn't be a stretch to see them get 1, maybe 2 series of work during the preseason opener on Saturday against Indianapolis.

**Brett Basanez told me after practice he is anxious to play Saturday night, because "Matt's been in my spot too long." Seems Bas is fired up about trying to earn the backup QB role, but he is sit4ting #3 on the depth chart now, simply because Matt Moore was on the field at the end of the season, and played well. Basanez is a good guy, and a fiery competitor. We'll see how it translates in game situation.

**The D-line was getting a nice bit of work from Sal Sunseri during group drills. At one point, Sunseri asked if a certain player "had been drinking already," because he went to the wrong gap in a walk-thru drill. Suffice to say, the conversation got a little louder as Sal was "coaching him up," as they say. Sunseri was later overheard, um, loudly correcting Charles Johnson and others when they missed gaps, or jumped offsides during 7-on-7 drills. Seems the D-line is under a microscope this year, with the departure of Kris Jenkins and the retirement of Mike Rucker.

**Had the chance to speak with K Rhys Lloyd today, as well. A nice fella, who knows that he is fighting for the 53rd spot on this roster, given that Carolina does not traditionally carry 3 kickers. P Jason Baker and PK John Kasay are locks to make this squad, but Lloyd consistently bombs kicks into the end zone, an area that Carolina was horrible in last season. Lloyd has fit in nicely with this team, in terms of his personality. He's very social with his teammates, going so far as to earn the teams #2 ranking in the World Table Tennis Rankings--ok, the Panthers Table Tennis Rankings, sitting behind QB Matt Moore. The 2 engaged in a spirited battle after the morning workout, with Moore taking the victory. On a side note--Moore, originally didn't want to play Lloyd today, because he did not have his own paddle to play with. That's right, Moore brought his own ping pong paddle to camp. Hardcore stuff, baby.

**We'll have a look at camp on Sports Night, as the Panthers gear up for the Colts at Bank of America Stadium this Saturday night.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good stuff Mike!