Monday, August 25, 2003
Ahh...football Panthers style! I wasn't able to watch the Packers game vs. Carolina, nor get a sneak peek at the remodeled Lambeau, but I didn't miss much either. The Panthers offense is offensive and unable to run or pass the ball effectively, and the Panthers defensive line is one of the best, and probably the best young defensive line, in football. Three guys (Peppers, Rucker, and Jenkins) have 10 sack potential and are effective against the run too. Off the top of my head, as long as Simeon Rice continues to hold up against the run, only the Bucs defensive line is better than the Panthers. The Packers had trouble moving the ball against the Panthers just like the rest of the NFL will have problems with them all year long, unless the offense against the Panthers has an effective scheme and game plan devised against it, while the Packers aren't showing any of their tricks on offense in the preseason. Ahman Green scored the lone touchdown and it sounds like he is completely healthy which is great news. Akili Smith struggled big in the game, but that is why he has to be number 3 behind Craig Nall or Doug Pederson. Smith doesn't know how to read and react to NFL defenses. That is why the Bengals got rid of him. I was afraid that Smith had lost all of his physical ability to play QB but he has proved to me this preseason that he has a great arm and good footwork, he just needs to learn how to play QB in the NFL, which, not surprisingly considering his entire career up to now has been with the Bengals, he hasn't learned yet. I am looking forward to what Smith will show next preseason. The Packers made a great move by trading for Scott McGarrahan. McGarrahan will not play much on defense but was huge for the Packers on special teams in his first tenure with the team. He seemed to be involved on every special teams tackle. Special teams last year was a weak link in last year's team, and this is the biggest improvement to the unit in the last year. Really. The defense got a bye this week vs. the anemic Panthers offense so it will be important for Ed Donatell to put his opening game defense on the field vs. Tennessee this week to show that they are ready, or it could be like last year where the defense gave up a lot of points to Atlanta and New Orleans in the regular season before they finally put it all together.