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Game Quotes: Panthers vs. Patriots

HEAD COACH RON RIVERA

On his team's performance: "Missed opportunities more so than anything else. When you break this football game down and we get an opportunity to go back and look at it, it was about missing opportunities. We had guys wide open and we over threw them. We were wide open and we dropped the ball. We missed opportunities on some cut backs in terms of our running game. We missed some blocks. On the defensive side we missed two chances for interceptions that we just straight up dropped. We missed a couple tackles, big tackles, and a couple blocks. So that's really what this is about was about taking advantage of opportunities in front of you and we didn't. The bottom line is they did some good things, credit them, but I'm disappointed in some of the things that we didn't do more so than anything else. We just didn't play the way we are capable of and that is what is disappointing."

On Joe Webb: "I thought Joe Webb did some nice things. That's typical Joe. He gets an opportunity and he will make things happen. That's one of the nice things about having a guy like that as one of your backup quarterbacks."

On frustrations during preseason:"One of the things I talk to you guys about it when you guys ask me what I want out of the game is consistency. We weren't very consistent in the first half. I think we were only 1-4 or 1-5 in third downs. We had opportunities on third down. That's bothersome. We get down to the red zone twice with the first unit and don't get any points. That's disappointing. Again, it's about playing consistent and making the plays when you have opportunities. That's what is frustrating more so than anything else. As coaches we have to go back and look at it and make sure we are putting these guys in the right position to make plays. I have to make sure we are doing the things that we are supposed to give these guys every chance to have success. Again, we have to go out and execute."

On pulling Cam Newton in the first half:"No. Just so everybody understands, that was all part of it because we moved some players around. This was mapped out. This was planned out and this didn't have anything to do with that. If you want to talk about trying to get a spark, when it was fourth and two from our own 48 and I went for it, I was hoping to get a big play out of it. We almost did. Bersin almost made a great catch. I was looking for something to ignite us then. The thing that happened with bringing Derek Anderson in, bringing in Cameron Artis-Payne at running back and putting Daryl Williams at left tackle that was all planned out and mapped out. It had nothing to do with that."

On if his team will be prepared for Week 1:"Oh yeah. Most certainly. Because, lower those passes. Catch the ball. We are right where we need to be. Catch the interceptions. Make the sacks. We are right where we need to be. We are in position to make plays. That's the best thing about it. It's not like we weren't there. It wasn't like we were getting our butts whipped. That's the thing that I'm ok with is that we weren't. That's a good football team over there, it really is and they are very well coached. We had opportunities and we didn't make the plays. That's the disappointing part. If we weren't in position to make plays I would be upset. But I'm not. I'm just disappointed more so than anything else."

On Newton's performance:"Disappointing. He had opportunities and he knows it. He talked about it on the sideline. He missed some guys. That's the hard pill to swallow and he knows it. That's probably the most important thing is that our quarterback understands what we are trying to do, how we are trying to attack them. He understands that he made good decisions, now it's a matter of execution. Those are thing that we will work out."

QB CAM NEWTON

On the offense's play:"Well, we took our turns making mistakes and any time that happens, you know you're going to get those kind of results. There's no need to panic. It just comes down to having a good week of practice and the truth of the matter is that we played a great team. You know, great players who are coached extremely well and they are very stingy. That's all it comes down to. We will be better from this. I'm glad it happened. I'm not glad we lost but I'm just glad that we had an understanding that we're not that good yet. We will be better."

On the possibility of Rivera playing the first team playing against the Steelers next week:"If that's what he wants, then we've got to do it. We know we're going to have a great week of practice and it's just eye-opening. Like I said, there is no need to panic or press the panic button. But for us, we do need better production from everybody including myself. There were times in the game where I forced certain things where I shouldn't have and I just have to be more mature and have more understanding of the offensive just to check it down, and let guys do what they do."

On his interceptions:"Number one: the forced one. Also, it was just a bad throw. It was just a bad throw on the first one. Like I said, the second one was just a force. A couple guys in the wrong spot but with the style of offense we run, we just got to be on each other's Wi-Fi stronger than we have been. It's been a lackluster performance with the communication part and when that happens, if you already beat pre-snap, then the success rate is going to be extremely low. We know that as players, going into my sixth year, we have to be better."

On the play of the third and fourth teams:"We always know we're in good hands when Joe [Webb] is our quarterback. He's just a competitor. He loves to win. We just have to get in the groove of things and understand how to win football games. Today, he wasn't pretty but we still had opportunity to win. Coming out of halftime, defense playing lights out. It just comes down to, we're not playing good team ball. When I say team ball, I don't mean like internal problems. It's when the defense is playing good, then the offense needs to pick up the slack as well. When the offense wasn't playing good, the defense, I mean we couldn't ask for more of an opportunity. The first drive, the guy missed the field goal and the defense does their job. We couldn't flip the field position but that's what happens. Those are the things that we pride ourselves on and it just hasn't happened yet. Well let's say, this game it didn't happen."

LB SHAQ THOMPSON

On things the Panthers need to improve:"There were just some little kinks that we need to get better with, a little technique. That was probably the biggest thing.  This game came down to technique. We need to get back to the film, go with the corrections, and move forward.

We are going to dissect the game and see what really hurt us as we get ready for the season. Go back and fix the stuff that hurt us during the game and get better with it. Fix the corrections and move forward to attack the season."

On New England's quarterback play:"It was good for the young guys, especially, to see what type of quarterbacks that they will be facing this year. They'll be facing some quarterbacks that look like Tom Brady and some that look like {Jimmy} Garoppolo. They've just got to come out here and get better. We've got their back as a defense. As a whole defense we just need to get better and come in and watch film."

*RB Cameron Artis-Payne               *

On how he felt running the ball:"I mean it's just getting more comfortable. It's my second year now. First year there were a lot of growing pains as far as getting out on the field and not feeling fully comfortable. This year, I'm more comfortable. I wouldn't say "fully"* *yet but it's a lot better than what it was last year."

On where he needs to improve:"Like I said, just being more and more comfortable. At the end of the day, the more time that you get to play on the field, the more comfortable you're going to be and quicker you'll be with your reads. That's just where I'm trying to get to."

On offensive miscues:"It's just little stuff that we have to work on. It's nothing major. We'll get back to the drawing board this week. We'll work on it and we'll be sharp when the first game of the year comes."

*S TRE BOSTON                            *

On what the Panthers learned from the loss:"I think we learned a lot. It's a preseason game, Week Three of preseason. I think a lot of people learned a lot of different things today. For him, a little bit of a difference in speed of the game. You've got an offense like the Patriots who are going to come in, play a fundamentally sound ball game. You learn how to adjust to things faster. I think today was a good learning day. Even when you win, you can learn. Your loss is what you have to take with the learning curve."

On the importance of watching this game's film:"Very important. It shows us where we're at right now. We're supposed to be firing off on all cylinders right now, but we've got time. That's the great thing. It's Week Three and then we have Week Four and then Week One of the regular season. I think we'll get things rolling."

CB JAMES BRADBERRY

On his performance:"I feel like I had some good plays tonight, but I also had some bad plays. That first out route I should have had a pick. I kind of relaxed. I wasn't thinking the ball was going to come to me. It was a learning experience. I always play through the route at all times and I was full speed. It's still the pre-season. You can always learn from a pre-season game. In pre-season you're either winning or you're learning, so I'm just learning still."

On Thomas Davis talking to him:"I know he got in my ear one time when I was supposed to come in on my run support and I had my eyes on the tight end too long when I should have been just doing my technique and looking in the backfield and seeing two move towards me. Again, like I said I'm still learning. I'm getting a good feel for the game."

On the team's miscommunication in this game:"Yeah, definitely. I feel like we'll pick it up next game and especially when we get into Denver."

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