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Carolina Panthers

Rivera's remarks: Gettis tears ACL


Comments from Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera.

DAVID GETTIS UPDATE AFTER EVENING PRACTICE: Unfortunately, David had the MRI, and it looks like he tore the ACL. They are going to go ahead and finish up the evaluation process in about a week once the swelling is all gone and everything like that, so we'll go from there.

On if Gettis is out for the season: We'll see.

On how disappointing it is to lose Gettis, who ranked second on the Panthers with 508 yards receiving on 37 catches as a rookie last season: It's disappointing because the young man really showed. He had a good last few days. He's got a bright future. Whatever it entails, he'll get it right and we'll have him ready to go when he's ready.

On how the injury occurred: It was down in the red zone. He was releasing and he got jammed, and his foot caught and slipped in a bad direction. So it was disappointing. The young man, like I said, was having a really good camp.

On the status of wide receiver David Gettis, who injured his knee during practice Wednesday night: I'm waiting to hear. He went up to get an exam and once he gets the MRI done, we'll get a conclusive answer. As of right now, all I really know is he tweaked the knee.

On how many wide receivers and tight ends might make the final roster: A good number. We have some players that all deserve that opportunity so we're going to have to wait and see. The biggest thing we've got to look at, obviously, is how that total number impacts the other positions. But we've got a good number of tight ends that can help us. We've got a couple of young guys that we want to think about trying to keep around and the same thing at wide receiver. A lot of it depends on what comes out with David (Gettis) today as well, and then we'll see from there.

On if it is conceivable that four tight ends will make the team: It's conceivable we could keep four tight ends; we could keep three. The same thing with wide receiver - we could keep five, six or seven. You've got to look at all those possibilities. It's a good question to have, especially for us in this offensive system.

On if linebacker Thomas Davis can return to the level of play he was at prior to being injured: Without a doubt. Based on what I'd seen him do up until the other day, I don't see why not. He shows the explosiveness, the quickness that we were hoping he has.

On the team's cornerbacks: The biggest thing is getting Chris (Gamble) back and having him on the practice field yesterday. You saw his value, making a great play on the ball thrown to the tight end. That kind of shows you his abilities. He's been practicing very well, and I'm glad we took the approach we did to try not to force him to get back on the field until he was ready. What we're looking for is another guy to step up and be our number two guy. Captain (Munnerlyn) has come in and shown us that he has those kinds of abilities. He's a little man but he's a little man that plays big, and I think that's a huge plus for us. So I'm excited about that as well. Then we've got a group of guys that need to distinguish themselves. Some veteran guys that have played (before), they've got to distinguish themselves. Kendric Burney, I don't want to say has been a surprise, because we've always felt he had the ability. We have some questions on him, but he is answering those questions very well. It's going to shape up to be a very exciting battle. The one guy that we're all curious to watch will be Brandon Hogan when he comes off the PUP (physically unable to perform list).

On when cornerback Brandon Hogan will come of the physically unable to perform list: I'm not quite sure. I know he's progressing very well. He has been working with the training and strength and conditioning staff very well.

On when linebacker Jon Beason will be able to practice: We're looking toward next week as long as he continues to progress. He had a real good day yesterday running with the training staff and the conditioning staff.

On if rookie wide receiver Kealoha Pilares is catching his eye: Very much so. There is a group of young receivers that have caught my eye. Again, we've talked about Armanti (Edwards) as well. When you see a young guy succeeding and taking those steps forward, it's kind of neat.

On what he likes about Pilares: There is a quickness about him, and he's got good football sense and savvy. Also, he's a guy that we're looking to potentially contribute on special teams.

On if running back Mike Goodson's role will expand: We can most certainly do that, but again we've got two terrific backs (DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart). So it's going to be hard to get guys on the field all the time. But I think Goody is going to get some opportunities as well.

On if it is harder this year for street free agents and undrafted rookie free agents because there were no offseason mini-camps and OTA's: Yes. We missed out on 24 practices, roughly 1,500 snaps. That's between 65 and 75 snaps a practice that you missed and that's a lot of development time. And the guys that it's really tough on are the undrafted free agents, because that's when they would get most of their opportunities. Now what we have, you can't afford to put those guys out there. What you have to do is put the guys out there that need the reps, so those young guys are missing them. Unfortunately, it's kind of happenstance, and you wish it wasn't that way.

On the quarterback rotation for the first preseason game: We will finish that tonight.

On if the starters will play more this preseason than they have in years past: Yes. They're going to have to, and that's the reality of it. We're going to ask the guys to make sure they're ready to go and understand that we've got to take them a little bit further than they're probably used to. But it's for the sake of us developing as a team.

On if his approach to the preseason is different because of the shortened offseason: Yes. Probably the biggest change, obviously, is we're going to take these guys a little bit further into each game, and that's just the way it has to be. The young guys have to be ready for their opportunities. A big reason they have to be ready is because they're not getting as many reps. Hopefully, they're taking the time to spend in their books and they're asking their coaches for a little extra help, because they're going to need it.

On his preseason philosophy and how much he plays to win: We're going to play to win but not at the risk of losing anybody either. When you get to a certain point and you start pulling guys out, you don't want to stick a guy in there with a group of young guys. That's the thing that we will be cognizant of. But we're playing everything to win.

On how excited he is about his first game as a head coach: To me it's very exciting. I'm excited as heck. I look forward to, I really do. It's what I've worked for and dreamed about. Now the opportunity is here, and I most certainly want to jump on it. If we do anything on Saturday, I really expect us to play hard. That's the only thing I can ask of our guys - play hard - and we'll go from there.

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