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Foxhole: Rookie review


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

On injuries: Jon Beason - hamstring. C.J. Davis - ankle. Thomas Davis - knee. Those three did not practice.

On the severity of linebacker Thomas Davis' knee injury: It's nothing that will require surgery. He's just day-to-day.

On how long he expects Davis to be out: It's a knee sprain that will heal up, and we'll get him back out here.

On why wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett left practice: He bruised his wrist. He's fine.

On rookie running back Mike Goodson: Very early on I noticed he's an explosive guy any way you get the ball in his hands, both as a runner and as a pass receiver, and I think he's continued that. He's still learning, being a rookie, but he's still been able to show some of that explosiveness even as he's feeling his way through learning the offense.

On if it was hard to scout Goodson coming out of college because he saw limited action at Texas A&M: Not really. There was plenty of evidence on tape of that explosiveness. Our guys liked him, and we've got scouts in there year round. He's a guy that we thought could help us, and I think he's showing that so far; we've not been disappointed at all.

On how Goodson gets incorporated into the offense playing behind DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart: Number one, you've got special teams roles. He's got some return ability. He's got that long speed, so covering in the kicking game is big. Even as a receiver I think he's unique. So some of those types of roles, and I'm sure we'll find things for him to do.

On how rookie cornerback Sherrod Martin is doing: He's had a good camp. We're still very early. They are all young guys that are kind of feeling their way, learning the defense. But he's doing a good job so far.

On what is involved with Martin transitioning from playing safety in college to playing cornerback in the NFL: He played both in college, so that's not a bad thing. I think you've got to be kind of wired right to be a safety, a lot of the run diagnosis and stuff like that. And he's got the skill set to play corner, a little bit like Charles Godfrey was a year ago.

On the progress of rookie defensive end Everette Brown: He really wants to be good. He's got a great attitude. He's spent a lot of time with Julius (Peppers), and I think he's making good progress.

On the importance of Brown spending time with veteran defensive end Julius Peppers: It's big. A lot of having good team leadership, and I think we have that, is guys willing to teach. Whether it's Brad Hoover helping out Tony Fiammetta or Julius helping Everette, those guys will all have roles, so the further they come along the better for us.

On if Brown will be challenged by his size (6-foot-1, 256 pounds) when going against bigger offensive linemen: I think there are some smaller people at all positions. Steve Smith is small for his position. (Indianapolis defensive end) Dwight Freeney is not the world's biggest human being, and he's had a lot of success. These guys come in all different shapes and sizes, and a lot of it is being good football players, and we think Everette is a good football player.

On how much defensive coordinator Ron Meeks influenced the selection of Brown given the fact that he had smaller defensive ends with Indianapolis: I think everybody would prefer to have a bigger guy, but the bottom line is finding football players. We're not trying to be small; there are just different sized football players.

On if he would rather have the cornerbacks cover the same receivers for an entire game or have the cornerbacks play one side of the field: We've done both. Each game takes on its own personality. Sometimes matching up is an option; sometimes it's left and right. But you mix that up. Everybody in the league does that; we've done both.

On what he is looking for in the team's nickel back: Again, that varies. Sometimes people have little slot receivers and sometimes a small nickel matches up better. Sometimes people have big receivers. It varies, so we just try to get as many different guys to play as many different roles as you can, and, hopefully, they have flexibility.

On if the competition for nickel back is at the outside position with cornerback Richard Marshall playing the slot position in the nickel defense: It's way too early to tell. We're going to have our three best guys out there and we're sorting that out as we speak.

On if there will be a live scrimmage at Fan Fest: We'll talk about that as we go; we've not made a decision either way. (It depends on) where we think our football team is. We are definitely practicing but we haven't reached that decision yet.

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