Weather isn't raining on Panthers' parade

CHARLOTTE – Rain, rain go away. Come again another day.

Although actually, this isn't the time to take a rain check on wet weather.

"We really had extra time if anything," tight end Greg Olsen said after relentless rain reduced the Panthers' football activities Thursday to a walkthrough in the catacombs of Bank of America Stadium. "We didn't miss any practice reps or things we needed to go over. Would it be nice to stay on schedule and not have to think about it? Of course. But I don't think it's made too much of an impact."

Rain has pelted the region all week, but coming off the mini-bye created by playing on Thursday Night Football last week, the Panthers began preparations for Sunday's game at the Lions on Tuesday – one day earlier than they normally would have.

A mostly light rain didn't stand in the way of practice Tuesday and Wednesday, and the team still has a nice forecast for Friday to work with.

"Last night, checking the weather and sitting in with (director of football operations) Bryan Porter, we talked that if we got in the morning and it was raining, we would just go ahead and flip-flop the schedules," head coach Ron Rivera said. "So we took what we were going to do on tomorrow and did it today so that tomorrow we'll be able to go out and have a situational practice, which is typical of our Fridays so we'll be on a regular schedule."

Rivera said that quarterback Cam Newton, who hasn't thrown much early in game weeks as part of what Rivera calls a "new normal," was going to throw Thursday. Instead, he'll throw Friday.

"It's a little frustrating for me," offensive coordinator Norv Turner admitted, "because you want to get out and you want to practice and you want to get all the time in. But it looks like we'll get a good practice in tomorrow."

Sure, the Panthers would welcome the option of practicing indoors during a rainy week like this, but Olsen said the team has done well during his time in Carolina coming off less-than-ideal weather conditions pregame.

Well, the team has done well for the most part.

"We only lost to Atlanta when the hurricane came through. Oh, and the hurricane before D.C.," said Olsen, a collegiate standout for the Miami Hurricanes. "Two hurricanes. Other than hurricanes we're doing great. We're 0-2 against hurricanes."

Meanwhile in Detroit, here's what the Lions' outdoor practice looked like Thursday.

There remains a chance of snow there through Saturday morning.

"As far as the travel's concerned, I mean, that's one of the beautiful things about what Bryan and his guys do. They always try to stay ahead," Rivera said. "One of our advance guys will leave tomorrow so he'll be up there on Friday, checking things out and keeping us abreast as to what goes on.

"Probably the best thing is obviously we'll be playing indoors."

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