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Monday Brew: Frank Reich says Victory Monday is the same 

Frank Reich

CHARLOTTE – The Panthers waited seven weeks to earn their first win of the season, and while head coach Frank Reich knows there's bound to be extra excitement in the day-after meetings, Victory Monday remains a Monday in terms of workflow.

That's what he stuck to after Carolina's 15-13 win over Houston at Bank of America Stadium.

"It's the same thing," Reich said. "We talked about that in (meetings). I mean, Monday is Monday film review. It's the same win or lose; we talk about 'be the same guy.'"

The Panthers did get a chance to celebrate in the locker room after walking off the field with a W over the Texans, which included music, smiles, and encouragement across the team.

But every Monday is about improvement – even if the atmosphere is inevitably different than it is after a loss.

"We understand the mood is going to be a little different after a win than it is after a loss," Reich said. "But the mindset we have is an obsession to get better. So everything you do – watch the film, study the film, be critiqued (and) don't take it personal. Coaches and players have to be obsessed about getting better."

Reich said he feels that the team is making strides from multiple facets. On offense, he has noticed fewer penalties and turnovers; execution is improving, while mental errors need to be corrected. On defense, it's about maintaining improvements against the run (as they saw against Houston) and limiting more explosive plays.

So just like after a loss, the mentality is reviewing and learning.

The mood may be lighter, but that hasn't changed. 
"It's the same thing; we've got to just continue to find ways for us to take the next step," Reich said. "It's going to be (to) eliminate mental errors. That's a big next step for us."

– Reich said he had a brief conversation with general manager Scott Fitterer about phone calls he has taken as the NFL trade deadline looms Tuesday at 4 p.m.

Reich said his conversations with Fitterer will continue if the need arises, as his philosophy has always been to trust the general manager and that communication would come as needed.

"He's leading that process; he'll do a great job," Reich said of Fitterer. "He'll pull me in when needed. We'll have some conversations later today to see if anything's come up in the last 24 hours that's worth talking about. And sometimes it does, and then sometimes things fizzle out. So we'll see how it all plays out."

– Outside linebacker Brian Burns admitted he felt discomfort while playing with an injured elbow in Sunday's matchup against the Texans.

But he had a definite retort when asked if he'd be able to continue playing through the injury.

"I got through it last week," Burns said. "Why not get through it this week?"

– Reich spoke highly of the impact right guard Austin Corbett had in his first game back from last season's ACL tear.

Even more than the impact he had in helping set up for the Panthers' late-game success running the ball, Reich said how Corbett affects the team off the field is just as significant.

"I think it speaks to Austin, his character; I think it speaks to the respect that he has on the team," Reich said. "He steps into the huddle, he steps into the locker room, guys look to him as a leader, a playmaker, as a difference maker on the field. Man, it's sure good to have him back and continue to build with him being right in there at the center of things for us."

– Reich said the coaches delivered game balls after the Houston win to quarterback Bryce Young, wide receivers Jonathan Mingo and Adam Thielen, and tight end Tommy Tremble on offense; defensive end Derrick Brown, cornerback Donte Jackson, and linebacker Frankie Luvu on defense, and outside linebacker Amaré Barno, cornerback Dicaprio Bootle, and kicker Eddy Piñeiro on special teams.

Take a look at the best pictures from pregame, in-game, and postgame action from Sunday's win against the Texans.

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