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Monday Morning Optimist: The Carolina Panthers introduced

  •  Efe Obada to Andy Dalton and learned about themselves in the process The Panthers had a couple of lingering questions from the offseason that proved major factors for their loss in Atlanta. The pass rush was anemic Authentic Graham Gano Jersey , the secondary was either very young or very old, and the running game sounded too dependent on a paper thin offensive line blocking for a guy that some didn’t believe could run through the tackles. They answered them Sunday, taking time to emphasize each weakness and fear that was exposed by their game against the Falcons.Matt Ryan moved the ball at will and Cam Newton had trouble keeping the offense on schedule. These were not great developments before a Week 3 date with the Bengals, who had been one of the stronger and more efficient teams in the league to start the 2018 season.Let’s not kid ourselves and think this would have been the same game if AJ Green had stayed healthy. Andy Dalton made great use of the rest of his offensive skill players, but you can’t discount the effect of losing one of the best receivers in the game. That said Youth James Bradberry Jersey , Efe Obada may have enjoyed a bigger shoot out. It would have given him more opportunities to rush the passer.The Panthers bye week comes at the perfect time for fans to revel in the glory that is their new breakout star defensive end. Obada has gone from feel-good story of the year to the heir apparent to Julius Peppers off the strength of one game (and a solid preseason). Is it too early to crown this man? Absolutely. Do we care today? Absolutely not.Obada was part of a resurgence of the Panthers defensive line that saw Mario Addison, Peppers, and Obada make huge plays while a handful of other players delivered key pressures. They answered the questions about the pass rush.Donte Jackson was his own revelation. The rookie corner stayed stride for stride down the field with Bengals’ speedster John Ross and hauled in two interceptions to punctuate a statement game. It turns out being very young is not a cause for concern in this secondary unit.Some of what happened yesterday was luck. Let’s march all day in Obada’s parade, but only if we acknowledge that his interception was a one in a million play. It was incredibly athletic. We should praise his awareness. We should also buy a round for Bengals’ fans because we’ve all been on the other side of those. Still, the tipped ball was a good play for the line. It was proof of a success that was nonexistent just a week ago. The Panthers would be 3-0 right now if this defense had shown up to play against the Atlanta Falcons.There can’t be optimism about Cam Newton’s performance since he proved yesterday that he is regressing as a passer. His 62.5% completion rating was a season low and thus a sign that the end is nigh. Woe is he.Fortunately , Christian McCaffrey was there to save the offense. He provided a consistency that Rivera must have loved. With 28 carries for 184 yards, McCaffrey finally out performed his quarterback on the ground. He also proved once and for all that he can run between the tackles. He also ran around some tackles. He also ran straight through at least one would-be tackler.Keep in mind, McCaffrey’s career day came behind that paper thin offensive line we spent so many weeks being worried about. I’m going to continue to be amazed at how well Chris Clark has done at the left tackle position so far. The Panthers may give him a lot of help in pass protection, but he’s at least good enough that his help is effective. That hasn’t always been the case when the Panthers leave in extra blockers.Now, if Newton can just keep his wide receivers from dropping perfectly accurate passes then he can finally take that next step toward being a decent quarterback. That is all that is standing between this team and a fifth trip to the playoffs under Rivera.Jokes aside Trai Turner Jersey , it seems as if the Panthers have found ways to adjust to their weaknesses and to answer those questions from the start of the season. They now have the bye week to look back more closely at what went right against Dallas, what went wrong in Atlanta, and how much they liked their game plan against Cincinnati. That is a good position to be in when facing down the rest of the season. And it leaves us fans two weeks to loop Efe Obada’s highlight reel.Panthers 2018 season opener countdown: 31 days to go We are 31 days away from the beginning of the Carolina Panthers 2018 season. That means today we take a closer look at cornerback Lorenzo Doss.Lorenzo Doss, CornerbackBioHeight: 5’11”Weight: 185 lbsAge: 24College: TulaneNFL Experience: 4 yearsLorenzo Doss was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Denver Broncos in 2015, and saw limited playing time there before being signed to the Buffalo Bills’ practice squad in 2017. After being let go from the Bills Authentic Kawann Short Jersey , the Panthers signed him to a reserve future contract as part of their unwritten agreement to keep moving players from Carolina to Buffalo, and vice versa. Here’s a brief summary of Doss’ career, courtesy of the Panthers’ website:Doss enters a crowded room at cornerback and is a dark horse to make the 53-man roster. He’ll be competing with Cole Luke for a roster spot, and depending on how he performs in the preseason he could be a candidate for the last spot on the depth chart or the practice squad.
      February 13, 2019 10:51 PM PST