2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Rivera: Panthers were too conservative on offense

By STEVE REED - AP Sports Writer
    2013-09-09 14:15

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Panthers coach Ron Rivera wants to see his team take a few more shots down the field this Sunday against the Buffalo Bills.

Rivera said Monday the team's offensive approach was too conservative in its 12-7 loss to the Seattle Seahawks and needs to change in the coming weeks.

Rivera said the Panthers need to ``look at getting the ball vertical.''

In Carolina's first game with new offensive coordinator Mike Shula calling the plays, quarterback Cam Newton attempted only three passes beyond 10 yards downfield, according to STATS INC.

Newton's longest pass attempt was 23 yards from scrimmage, even though the Seahawks were without their top three defensive ends and didn't apply much pressure.

``We looked through it and talked about it and those are the things we'll look to change,'' Rivera said. ``We have to create more of those opportunities.''

Newton finished with a career-low 125 yards passing and averaged just 5.4 yards per completion.

Despite Newton's strong arm, the Panthers were content to throw dink and dunk passes underneath the coverage and run the ball against the Seahawks.

``We took what the defense gave us,'' Newton said.

But Rivera wants more.

The third-year coach said he was pleased with the team rushing for 134 yards and averaging 5.2 yards per carry against one of the NFC's best defenses, but wants to see his team make strides in the passing game.

Rivera believes that Newton throws one of the best deep balls in the game and that needs to be a point of emphasis.

``We do have the throw the ball a little more, so we are going to continue to work on that to get that balance back,'' Rivera said.

Shula previously spent four seasons (1996-99) as an offensive coordinator with Tampa Bay Buccaneers and developed a reputation for being too conservative.

During that four-year span the Bucs were 29th in total offense, 27th in points scored and last in the league in passing, according to STATS INC. They never finished better than 22nd in total offense in any of those four seasons.

Still, Shula seems to have the support of his players.

Newton was quick to defend his new coordinator after Sunday's loss, saying Shula did an ``unbelievable job'' of calling plays.

``We had a game plan going into this game and I believe that we stuck to it,'' Newton said. ``We just have to make it through our mistakes, come back and watch this film and get better like that. We did some things that were very exciting, but as an offense and as a team we just have to be more thorough to a degree and finish drives.''

Several Panthers, including wide receiver Steve Smith, have been critical this offseason of former offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski, who left to become the head coach of the Cleveland Browns.

Smith said last week Chudzinski was out to attract attention as a potential head coach and his play calling affected the team.

Smith said things will get better, predicting the Panthers will see the Seahawks in January come playoff time.

``I think outside of the loss there are some things that are very positive in the offense,'' said Smith, who accounted for Carolina's only touchdown on Sunday. ``We were playing against a pretty good defense. I think we take away some obvious things, and we're possibly looking at a different ball game.''

This might be a good week for the Panthers to turn things around.

The Bills allowed 288 yards passing and two touchdown passes in a 23-21 loss to the New England Patriots.

``Offensively, we have to score more than seven points, that's what it all comes down to,'' said offensive tackle Jordan Gross. ``We were driving there at the end to get ourselves in scoring position and we've just got to be able to finish those drives. It's frustrating because obviously we were in the game and that's a good team - and you just hate to lose that one.''

---

Online: AP NFL website www.pro32.ap.org

---

Follow Steve Reed on Twitter: http://twitter.com/SteveReedAP

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Drew StantonDec 17 07:33p

Arizona Cardinals QB Drew Stanton (knee) said this injury is different from any other he's ever had, and he said it's too soon to know if he could return [ More ]

Carlos HydeDec 17 07:03p

San Francisco 49ers RBs Frank Gore (concussion) and Carlos Hyde (ankle) did not take part in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Jay CutlerDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

Jimmy ClausenDec 17 06:43p

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler will be benched in favor of QB Jimmy Clausen in Week 16 against the Detroit Lions, according to a source.

Philip RiversDec 17 06:13p

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers (chest, back) took part in a walkthrough Wednesday, Dec. 17, but didn't take part in practice, but he fully expects to play in [ More ]

Carlos HydeDec 17 05:43p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (knee, back) received good news from his MRI results, but he said it would take a miracle for him to play in Week [ More ]

Robbie GouldDec 17 04:53p

Chicago Bears PK Robbie Gould (quadriceps) did not participate in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Cam NewtonDec 17 04:13p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) was listed as a limited participant in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Frank GoreDec 17 03:13p

San Francisco 49ers RB Frank Gore (concussion) visited with a doctor at the team's facility Tuesday, Dec. 16, as part of the NFL's concussion protocol. Gore did not participate [ More ]

Ryan MathewsDec 17 02:33p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) is not participating in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

C.J. SpillerDec 17 02:13p

Buffalo Bills RB C.J. Spiller (shoulder) was limited during practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Blake BortlesDec 17 01:53p

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles (foot) was limited during practice Wednesday, Dec. 17, and is listed as questionable for Week 16.

Julio JonesDec 17 01:43p

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is not participating in the portion of practice open to the media Wednesday, Dec. 17.

DeMarco MurrayDec 17 01:33p

Updating a previous report, Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand) wasn't expected to do a lot at practice Wednesday, Dec. 17, but he took first-team snaps at running back [ More ]

Cam NewtonDec 17 01:23p

Carolina Panthers QB Cam Newton (back) returned to practice Wednesday, Dec. 17, and he worked with the second-team offense in the portion of practice open to the media. QB [ More ]

DeMarco MurrayDec 17 12:43p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand) is participating in individual drills during practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

T Y HiltonDec 17 12:23p

Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (hamstring) is not participating during the media-access portion of practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Rashad JenningsDec 17 11:23a

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (ankle) will not participate in practice Wednesday, Dec. 17.

Keenan AllenDec 17 11:03a

San Diego Chargers WR Keenan Allen (collarbone, ankle) said he is taking his injuries 'week to week.'

Denard RobinsonDec 17 10:13a

Jacksonville Jaguars RB Denard Robinson (foot) has a partially torn ligament in his foot, according to head coach Gus Bradley. Recovery time is six to eight weeks, but he [ More ]

Marc TrestmanDec 16 09:33p

The Chicago Bears are expected to fire head coach Marc Trestman, according to a source. The team's ownership met Tuesday, Dec. 16, after the team's Week 15 loss against [ More ]

Julio JonesDec 16 09:33p

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is expected to be ready to play in Week 16 against the New Orleans Saints. However, offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter indicated the possibility [ More ]

Zach MettenbergerDec 16 06:43p

Tennessee Titans QB Zach Mettenberger (shoulder) missed practice for the second straight day Tuesday, Dec. 16.

DeMarco MurrayDec 16 05:53p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand) will likely be a game-time decision against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 16, according to owner Jerry Jones. Jones said the team is [ More ]

Julius ThomasDec 16 05:33p

Denver Broncos TE Virgil Green continued to lead the team's tight ends in snaps with 50 in Week 15 against the San Diego Chargers, even with TE Julius Thomas [ More ]

Aaron RodgersDec 16 05:23p

Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers is 0-2 with a 35.6 total quarterback rating at Tampa Bay in his career. He threw three interceptions in each of those games.

Blake BortlesDec 16 04:23p

Jacksonville Jaguars QB Blake Bortles (foot) was jogging, throwing and moving around well while being limited at practice Thursday, Dec. 16. He showed no signs of being limited by [ More ]

Colt McCoyDec 16 04:23p

Updating a previous report, Washington Redskins QB Colt McCoy (neck) was told by doctors that he only needs two to three weeks for the aggravated nerve in his neck [ More ]

Keenan AllenDec 16 04:13p

Updating a previous report, San Diego Chargers WR Keenan Allen (collarbone) could be placed on Reserve/Injured if the team is eliminated from playoff contention. Allen will not play this [ More ]

Ryan MathewsDec 16 02:43p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) did not practice Tuesday, Dec. 16.

Colt McCoyDec 16 02:33p

Washington Redskins QB Colt McCoy (neck) was placed on season-ending Reserve/Injured Tuesday, Dec. 16, according to head coach Jay Gruden.

Keenan AllenDec 16 02:33p

San Diego Chargers WR Keenan Allen (collarbone) suffered a broken collarbone in Week 15 and is not expected to play this week. Surgery is not planned at this point [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group