CHARLOTTE – When the Panthers finalized their 53-man roster, rookie cornerback Zack Sanchez was surprised to learn he hadn't survived the cut.
But the fifth-round draft choice, now on Carolina's 10-man practice squad, is approaching that obvious disappointment with a positive attitude.
"I've been here before," Sanchez said. "It's nothing new to me. I've just got to grind a little harder."
When Sanchez says he's been here before, he's referencing his first year on campus at Oklahoma when he was redshirted.
"It's reminiscent of my freshman year at OU," Sanchez said. "I'm ready now. But there are decisions that have to be made. Things happen. When my opportunity does come, I'll seize it like I'm used to doing."
Sanchez said the coaching staff told him they want to see more consistency and better technique as he continues to develop.
A call-up from the practice squad could come in a few weeks, or it might not come at all. Either way, Sanchez knows he better be ready.
"I've got to be on my job day in and day out," he said, "and prove to them that I am ready to play when they need me."
View photos from the Panthers' week of practice leading up to their game at Denver.