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Game quotes: Panthers vs. Patriots


Thoughts on the team's performance vs. New England:"I think there were a lot of good things that went on out there. I talked about doing certain things and being consistent. We were pretty consistent for the most part. We put ourselves in position, now we just have to capitalize. That is probably the biggest disappointment more than anything else. Third down was very good as an offense, very good as a defense on plays like that. We came out in the second half, drove the ball down and punched it in to score a touchdown. I'm really happy about what we did right there. Then the defense came out, held them, got the ball back and forced the punt. We did the things that we needed to do. We did the things I wanted to see us do. The disappointment obviously is we had some opportunities. We dropped a couple of interceptions we should have had. We dropped a couple of passes we should have had. We missed on a fourth down situation. But again, a lot of things we did I was really proud of. I think we are getting better. We are heading in the right direction and I'm fired up about that."

Thoughts on how the receiving corps can improve: "The biggest thing more so than anything else is Corey Brown has to stop putting the pressure on him to replace Kelvin Benjamin. To replace Kelvin is going to be a unit job, not a one man job. I tell these guys I need one guy making one play. I don't need one guy trying to make a lot of plays. That's the bottom line. Corey has to stop thinking that it has to be him to do it because that's what happened. He wanted to stay in the third quarter, wanted to stay in the fourth quarter and give him a couple chances to make a couple plays. That's what I told him. I said, "Corey stop thinking you have to and start wanting to." I put my arm around him and told him you have all the time in the world, you have all the ability in the world, you show it. Now go out there and do it because you want to do it, not that you have to."

On Corey Brown's touchdown drops over the last two games:"It's not concerning. I think the truth of the matter is he is putting too much pressure on himself, at least in my opinion. He has opportunities. He will capitalize on those opportunities. We believe in him. We believe in who he is. Sure, he has made a couple of mistakes but that is a part of football too. Now how he handles it, how he bounces back, that is going to tell us what kind of football player he really is. We will find out. We have a whole other week to get ready. I'll expect him to pick it up. I'll expect him to do what he needs to do."

On the status of WR Devin Funchess and DE Charles Johnson: "They are very close to returning. In fact, they came out and ran before the game and of course they tell you that if they had to they could play. It was good to see them out there working, running the way that they did. It's one of those things that once we get to Sunday's practice we are going to add on a few more guys. We will have Charles Johnson out there. We will have Kawann Short out there. We will have Devin Funchess out there. So I'm excited about that."


Comments on talking with WR Corey Brown after a dropped pass: "There is no need to publicize something that is already understood. As an offense, we just have to be better after. At times it was exciting to see and now looking back, it is just frustrating that at halftime the defense had played their tails off and only ended up with six points. The scoreboard did not tell the outlook of the game but perception is a reality. From afar, looking at the score you would think that we had a game that we were struggling in. With the defense playing like they did, we have to find a way to put more points up on the board."

On his confidence in the offensive players around him: "I have full confidence in the personnel, I've got full confidence in myself that we will have a great week of practice, get back on track and know that we have to keep this winning attitude. We have to find ways to win and today we found ways to lose."

Overall thoughts on the performance of the offense:"We moved the ball. We did move the ball but when the defense goes out there and gets turnovers, we cannot let those opportunities go in vain and we did that today. We had what we wanted and played a great team in the third preseason game. They are the defending champs and we just let those guys get away. It is nothing to take against what they did. They are a great team and we understand that but we are a great team too. We have aspirations to be even better but with the performance that some of us showed at times is not good enough. I am speaking not necessarily to a specific group. I am speaking as a whole I have to be better. Defensively, they have to be better, special teams has to be better and as a whole, the Panthers have to be better."


On the team's scoring drive in the second half: "That's always a good thing, the third pre-season game coming out of halftime, having that kind of drive and getting that kind of experience under your belt. We really benefitted from a couple of their penalties, we moved the ball then we were able to convert a couple of short yardage situations so that was good. Then we had the nice touchdown to Mike (Tolbert). We probably could have, should have had at least one if not two touchdown drives there in the first half, so that was disappointing. I think maybe we took a step forward. I don't know how big of a step until we watch the tape."


On his dropped interception:"Before he even threw the ball when his arm was releasing it, I was there. And it felt like eternity for that ball to get there. Then it dived on me and I tried to breadbasket it. As soon as I tried to get up, my feet got tangled and the ball hit my feet. Bene almost picked it up. It was bad. It was bad all the way around. The worst part about it was it was so simple. But you know what, that's where that extra repetition comes in. It just doesn't stop. Catch one thousand balls this week, we're going to have to amp it up to five thousand next week. I'm going to be out there until my hands turn to blisters."


On Brian Folkerts filling in for Ryan Kalil:"Brian did a great job of stepping in there and filling that huge gap. Ryan Kalil is a great guy and he does an amazing job out there, so it's a big hole to fill and I thought he did a great job. It was a slow start over the first two series but I thought he picked it up and then coming into the second half, just going out there and scoring a touchdown was huge, we did a lot of good stuff. There were still some things we have to get corrected but I thought the whole offensive line group did pretty good."

On the running backs' play: "Those guys make it easy on us so we just do everything we can to get some lanes open for them for as long as we can; it's fun blocking for those guys. We really appreciate how hard they work every single day and how hard they run the ball so it's great."

On his role with the team this season: "This has been a completely different year from what I'm used to. The majority of the years I've been a third string guy barely getting any snaps. My rookie year I got eight snaps in the preseason, so I feel extremely blessed to have this opportunity to go out and play. Last year was huge for me being able to go out there and start and have success just to prove to myself that I could do it. I always take the aspect of trying to get better each and every day."

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