Carolina Panthers May Scale Back Zone Read Package, and More NFC South News

Knox BardeenNFC South Lead WriterOctober 26, 2012

CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 16:   Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers and teammate Jonathan Stewart #28 during their game at Bank of America Stadium on September 16, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

When the Carolina Panthers fired general manager Marty Hurney it sent shock waves through the organization. And you'd better believe it hammered home the fact among the coaching staff that job security wasn't guaranteed.

That's why head coach Ron Rivera has already instituted slight changes this week, according to the Charlotte Observer.

The team is now taking a 30-minute break between the morning walkthrough and practice. It's also continued to tinker with the offensive line personnel now that Ryan Kalil is gone for the season.

But those are minor changes. There may be a huge change coming.

Starting in Chicago this week, you may see the Panthers move from their zone-read package and shift toward a power running game.

This was foreshadowed against Dallas when Jonathan Stewart received most of the carries while DeAngelo Williams watched from the sideline (although I believe Williams might also have been in the midst of a punishment from management after a few retweets from Twitter hit a little too close to home).

Joe Person reports that he doesn't believe the zone-read scheme will go away, just that it will be used much less.


Atlanta Falcons 

Here's an NFL Network preview of the Falcons game Sunday against the Eagles.

Daniel Cox looks at one of the issues that plagued the 6-0 Falcons of late, not getting off to a fast start. []


Carolina Panthers

The $89.21 million running back corps has gained 73 yards combined over Carolina's last two games. Ouch [Charlotte Observer]

Ron Rivera said that Luke Kuechly was better suited for middle linebacker, according to the Charlotte Observer


New Orleans Saints

Wide receiver Joe Morgan and tight end Daniel Graham have both been ruled out of Sunday's game against the Denver Broncos, according to WWL-TV.

The Times-Picayune completely breaks down Sunday's upcoming game against the Broncos.


Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Pewter Report handed out grades for the Buccaneers' win Thursday night in Minnesota.

Donald Penn said Jared Allen got lucky in the third quarter when he sacked Josh Freeman. [Tampa Bay Times]