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Foxhole: Smith returns


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

On injuries: C.J. Davis - ankle. Thomas Davis - knee. Landon Johnson - groin. Nate Salley - knee. Jonathan Stewart - ankle. We did have one groin strain today with Mortty Ivy. We got James Anderson back. Steve Smith practiced on a limited basis.

On wide receiver Steve Smith returning to practice: I think he'll make it; the early prognosis around the country was maybe not but he'll be O.K. Like I said earlier when he first got hurt, if this were in-season it would probably be a whole different mode, but I think he's going to be fine. It doesn't mean he's going to definitely play or not Monday night, but he's healthy.

On using trick plays during the preseason: There are different philosophies on that. This is a team (New York Giants) we are going to play (in) the regular season as well as our next preseason game in Miami. Both teams we play in the regular season. We'll just try to keep them guessing as much (as we can), just as I'm sure they're going to keep us guessing as much as they can.

On how much install has been completed for the first preseason game: We don't game plan per say. We only spend one practice on looking at the opponent. As a coaching staff we don't game plan. In this particular case, as I mentioned earlier because we play them again, you don't want to show too much and yet you still want to get a good evaluation of your players. We're probably about 30 percent through our installation; I'm talking about of our whole books - offense, defense, special teams. We're just trying to see how fundamentally sound we are at this point and evaluate players.

On if this preseason game will be a good indication of where the defensive line and run defense are: Yeah, I think regardless of who we play. Obviously, the Giants are a good football team, a playoff team the last couple of years, so I think from that standpoint it will be good. The first units don't go an exceptionally long time in the first game, but we're anxious to see how our guys respond to a game situation as I'm sure the Giants are.

On if Mackenzy Bernadeau can fill the versatile offensive lineman role that Geoff Hangartner played last year: We hope so. We had him in our system all last year, and we saw good growth and development during that time. He's definitely not disappointed us. I think he's had a very good camp thus far. We'll see better when we get against an opponent.

On how wide receiver Jason Carter, who spent last season on injured reserve with a knee injury, has looked: Good. Jason has been a guy that seems to make plays ihere at training camp; he jumps out at you. Like I said, we're going to get those questions answered as we move forward through the preseason games. He's shown good toughness and the ability to make plays. Now he's got to do it in games.

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