Week 2 of the NFL preseason continues Saturday with the Carolina Panthers hitting the road to take on the Tennessee Titans in Nashville. The two teams have spent the week participating in joint practices, and will have a good opportunity to experiment with their play-calling come game time.
Saturday’s only afternoon game will start at 3 p.m. ET and air on NFL Network. Viewers can also stream it on Watch NFL Network.
The Panthers won’t have quarterback Cam Newton under center again Saturday, but the team didn’t have a problem coming away with a Week 1 preseason win over the Texans without him. The emergence of rookie rusher Christian McCaffrey started slowly, but his elusiveness and burst through the seams are worthy of all the hype he’s been getting. He finished his first NFL contest with 33 yards on seven carries against Houston.
Likely to be one of the offense’s most targeted weapons, McCaffrey will see more touches in the preseason until rookie wide receiver Curtis Samuel makes his way back to the field. With Newton slowly making his return and Samuel having yet to get in more than a day’s reps in training camp, the offense as a whole will be looking for others to step up, like wideouts Kelvin Benjamin, Devin Funchess, and Russell Shepard.
Newton made some progress during joint practices this week, throwing during team drills for the first time since July 30. He’s still a little ways off from making a full return, but head coach Ron Riviera isn’t concerned that the quarterback will be ready for the regular season opener against the 49ers.
“Today was a good step. It was very positive,” Rivera said, via the official team site. “A lot of good things happened. I’m really pleased with his progress.”
Newton could even be ready to play in next week’s preseason game, according to NFL.com.