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Carolina Panthers

Beason recovering, transitioning

CHARLOTTE – Seven-year veteran Jon Beason understands what's required to come back from injury.

The Panthers linebacker is currently in the process of returning to full strength after offseason knee and shoulder surgeries.

"It gets a little tedious, but that's part of being a pro," Beason said. "You have to take care of your body."

Beason was a limited participant during the Panthers' offseason training activities (OTAs), but he's happy to say he's ahead of schedule.

"I'm feeling pretty good. At this point I can't be more happy with it," Beason said. "Training camp was the goal, but (I'm) feeling so good we're going to work in a little bit in the minicamp."

That mandatory minicamp will take place next week at Bank of America Stadium. It will serve as the next step in the Panthers' offseason and the next step in Beason's comeback since he was placed on injured reserve four games into the 2012 season.

It also serves as another opportunity for Beason to get used to his new surroundings.

After starting 57 of 69 games played at middle linebacker, Beason is switching to weakside linebacker.

Luke Kuechly – last season's NFL tackle leader and Defensive Rookie of the Year – will continue to man the middle in place of Beason. Thomas Davis, who started 12 games at weakside linebacker last season, will shift to the strong side.

"It's definitely an adjustment," Beason said. "I found myself out there (in OTAs) going through some reads saying, 'Oh, I have to remember what position I'm playing and remember my fits.'

"We're working hard. We're getting our chemistry down."

The transition is made easier due to Beason's vocal nature – something that won't change, regardless of what position he's playing.

"The thing about Beason is he is a good talker. He helps everyone get lined up," Kuechly said. "That makes people comfortable, and obviously Beason is a very accomplished linebacker. (He) knows what he is doing and has pride in his game."

First-year linebackers coach Al Holcomb believes Beason has the tools to thrive at his new outside position.

"I believe at this point, Jon just wants to win. Whatever it's going to take from the team standpoint, he's going to do," Holcomb said. "I think he's going to transition well to the outside, and he's going to give us a presence there."

Beason is looking forward to training camp to get a true sense for his new position and the makeup of the linebacking corps.

But he's all smiles after OTAs gave him a taste of what's to come.

"You see how good we can be. It's almost like the perfect fit to a puzzle right now," Beason said. "We're completely bought in, and we're just trying to get used to the change."


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