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Carolina Panthers

Foxhole: Refreshing right guard

Comments from Carolina Panthers head coach John Fox following the team's training camp practice.

On who did not practice: Charles Johnson was back out there; that was good to see. New ones: Nick Hayden - side. It's not a rib; he pulled something. Mike Goodson - ankle. It's not broken. Then we have our regulars: Thomas Davis (knee), Brandon LaFell (bruised leg), Louis Leonard (knee), Richard Marshall (back), Charly Martin (finger), Eric Moore (hamstring), Jeff Otah (knee), Duke Robinson (conditioning), Steve Smith (arm), Jonathan Stewart (ankle), Tyrell Sutton (calf) and Marcus Walker (calf).

On the seriousness of running back Mike Goodson's ankle injury: I don't know. They're still evaluating it, but it's not broken.

On what kind of camp Goodson was having prior to the injury: Very good. He had a good camp a year ago, but he's a year better now. He's way more assignment sound. He's got confidence in what he's doing and he was playing that much faster because of it.

On if Goodson's injury makes it that much more important to get running backs Jonathan Stewart and Tyrell Sutton back: We've definitely got a couple of backs out with Jonathan Stewart not practicing as well as Sutton. We'll evaluate Mike Goodson as we go. We're getting a little thin there but we'll see where we are and act accordingly.


On if it is hard to evaluate the right guard position since Mackenzy Bernadeau has been the only player working with the first team so far: We're getting looks at other people. Just because it's not with the ones doesn't make a difference. They are still getting the same number of reps as the ones. We're looking at different guys there. Of course, Jeff Otah has not been out, so some of the guys that would be candidates are playing a little more tackle. But they're getting guard reps. When we get Duke back out there and Jeff back out there, we'll get some of those guys a little bit more reps.

On having a young right guard among a veteran group of starting offensive linemen: All three of those guys (Mackenzy Bernadeau, Geoff Schwartz and Duke Robinson) have played football for us. We don't have a ton of starts there, but Mackenzy has started some and Schwartz started some at tackle at the end of (last) season and performed well. I think we've got a good cast of characters there. Duke we know about; we've just got to get him fit. They'll take care of who plays.

On if guard Duke Robinson is close to being ready to practice: He's day-to-day.

On the tight ends and how the group works together: Three (Jeff King, Dante Rosario and Gary Barnidge) of the four were with us last year. We were pretty successful running the football, so we've got a pretty good idea of what they're capable of. It's been well documented we're trying to improve our passing game, and I think those guys are all capable. We just have to get them involved a little bit more. So from a passing game standpoint, we're trying to grow our offense some, and they're pretty well battle tested running the ball - blocking in the run.

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