Ron Rivera spoke with the media today in Charlotte to wrap-up yesterday's game and talk about some of the schematic elements to the Carolina Panthers' game plan. The big talking point was the running backs, as Rivera addressed several questions regarding DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart, while deflecting any suggestions of changing the load to give Stewart more touches. In short: Nothing is changing when it comes to the running backs, and Rivera had a salient answer why this wouldn't happen.
I have to give a shout out to our astute CSR readers who noticed Williams was in on more seemingly obvious rushing downs, while Stewart has been given the benefit of being in packages that could be viewed as either run or pass formations. This notion is something confirmed by Rivera as he talked about the play book having specific packages designed for D-Will, and other that are tailored to J-Stew. What this means is that it's very difficult to know who is being more successful, because the two players aren't running the same plays. When pressed about whether he's concerned about DeAngelo's lack of production Rivera was dismissive, saying if you really break down the film you'll see DeAngelo is just a 'block away' from making a big play on several occasions.
More after the jump
On the injury front we have some good news as Rivera confirmed that both Charles Godfrey and Chris Gamble should be cleared by Wednesday in time to practice and play this week. We'll need both players healthy to help us face a pass happy Chicago Bears' offense.
The Panthers' head coach said some very interesting things about the tight ends as he called Jeremy Shockey a 'quiet leader' praising his veteran leadership, while calling Greg Olsen one of the most 'cerebral' players on the football team. He views Shockey and Olsen as similar players on the field, but different people off it and loves the versatility they add to the offense as receiving tight ends.
Coach Rivera was doling out the praise to the secondary as he singled our Chris Gamble, Darius Butler and R.J. Stanford as having excellent games, however, he took a special moment to praise Captain Munnerlyn who he feels is getting lost in the shuffle. He praised his abilities as a corner and how he has played thus far in 2011.
In preparation for next week's game Rivera said he prepares the same way, but acknowledged that playing the Bears had 'personal meaning' to him.