CHARLOTTE – You could hear the urgency in linebacker Thomas Davis' voice on Thursday. And you can bet teammates will hear it in the visitors' locker room when the Panthers get ready to face the Saints in the Superdome on Sunday.
The margin for error is shrinking for the reigning NFC Champions, and he's well aware.
"We started our season out 1-4 and we had so many high expectations coming into this season," Davis said. "Without a doubt, we have to realize that everything we set out to accomplish this year is still in front of us.
"But we also need to realize that the window is closing. We can't continue to lose football games if we want to accomplish the things we want to accomplish."
Davis was a captain on the 2013 and 2014 teams that made the playoffs after rough starts. But he knows this rough start in 2016 has to end before it's too late.
"The time to win is right now," he said. "We're not looking for this to be another 3-8-1 start and pray and hope other people do our jobs for us. It's all about controlling what we can control."
Davis said the entire team shares in the blame for its current record.
"Too many mistakes across the board," he said. "It speaks to the inconsistency we've had all season long as a group. It's not about one person or one position. We're not getting it done as a football team."
As a team, Davis believes the Panthers can right the ship. When asked if he and the other captains thought about organizing a players only meeting, he said it wasn't necessary.
Everyone is on the same page and knows what needs to be done. It's a matter of doing it on Sunday.
"It's never going to become a situation where we start to point fingers and there starts to become a rift in the locker room," Davis said. "We understand that's when teams fall, that's when they collapse. We understand we have to stay the course. We have to believe in each other, and we can dig our way out of this hole that we've put ourselves in."
View photos of the Panthers' week of practice leading up to their game against New Orleans.