#1. Several players did not practice today, most of which were given a “Vet Day”. QB Cam Newton was scheduled to have this day off. RB Christian McCaffrey, LB Luke Kuechly, TE Greg Olsen, C Matt Paradis, OT Daryl Williams and DT Kawann Short all sat out. DB Rashaan Gaulden is dealing with some tightness in his back.
#2. G Dorian Johnson and LB Brandon Chubb were waived today due to injuries. The Panthers signed rookie G Rishard Cook, who played at UAB, and K Joey Slye, who played at Virginia Tech but has spent time with the New York Giants and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
#3. S Tre Boston was here today. He spoke with Hurney and Rivera first. Then he spoke with the players on the sidelines,however, he spent the most time with the fans and signing autographs.
#4. QB Kyle Allen and LT Greg Little got all of the 1st team reps on offense today. CB Corn Elder got 1st team reps at nickel CB, too.
#5. During 1 on 1 DL vs. OL drills, several reserve offensive linemen got heavy reps against 1st team defenders. C Tyler Larsen, G Brandon Hearn and OL Dennis Daley actually held their ground fairly well going against NT Dontari Poe, DT Kyle Love and DE/OLB Mario Addison. I was honestly shocked by their results on some reps.
#6. During 1 on 1 WR vs. DB drills, the two standout players today were WRs Aldrick Robinson and Terry Godwin. They simply were winning at the line of scrimmage and catching the ball in stride. Robinson seems to get open with ease and Godwin just catches the ball with a smoothness that is rare for a rookie 7th rounder.
#7. Here were the following highlights during 11 on 11 team drills: WR Torrey Smith had the catch of the day with an amazing 1 hand grab from QB Kyle Allen, as he was being covered by CB Javien Elliott. WR Chris Hogan made a very difficult catch over CB Corn Elder. Today was WR DJ Moore’s time to abuse whatever CB was trying to guard him. First it was CB Donte Jackson that he just snatched the ball over. Next up was CB Josh Thorton, who gave up a few sideline grabs. One of my favorite “Wow” moments was when RB Jordan Scarlett and LB Andre Smith met at the goal line at the same time, jumped up and both came down with the ball. Credit was given to Scarlett for the score, but it honestly could’ve been an interception too. RB Elijah Holyfield finally displayed his abilities today, both running and catching the ball. I do not care about his time in the 40 yard dash. He has quickness and speed that allowed him to make at least 5 plays that resulted in 8 yards or more. It was pretty cool to see LT Greg Little and RT Taylor Moton show some aggression finishing off blocks in the running game. Words of praise kept coming from offensive line coach John Matsko during these drills. LB Christian Miller made about 3 nice plays today. He is effective dropping into coverage more than I initially thought.
#8. My overall impression on today’s practice was, there is some nice talent on the depth chart behind the 1st team players. I truly believe that some players just need to be given enough reps to impact the game. I noticed that there is a lot of communication going on between units on both sides of the ball. Players are really holding themselves accountable and are willing to teach each other techniques that can help make them better. RB Jordan Scarlett had his 1st dropped pass of training camp and you can tell it bothered him. He stayed on the JUGGS machine for 20 consecutive minutes after practice. After 7 practices, I can say that this has been a competitive training camp so far and you can see the foundation for success slowly being built. Still a ton of work left, but I feel confident enough to say that we are trending in the right direction.