Any time a player suffers a serious injury like an ACL tear, there is always a question about how that player will look coming back and how long it may take for them to be fully recovered. However, Kelvin Benjamin seems to have answered those questions in the first few practices at training camp.
The Carolina Panthers' wide receiver has looked very strong and has looked like the physically dominant wide receiver he was as a rookie.
This is probably the best news for a player, who in his first season in the league had over 1,000 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. However, Benjamin has recently said that he is a completely different wide receiver now.
In an interview on WFNZ on Friday, Benjamin said: "My rookie year there was so much I left out on the field. I'm a totally different guy. I sat and watched every receiver in the league. I stole everything."
This type of studying could be great for a player like Benjamin who did have his flaws, with the primary one being the dropped passes. In 2014, he was tied for the league lead in this category with 10 according to Sporting Charts.
The best news for Cam Newton and this offense is that even with how well he has looked in the early stages of camp, the team still is limited the former first round pick. During that interview with WFNZ, Benjamin was asked if he is completely healthy.
"For the most part, I feel like I am there. I mean you gotta go. It's all in your mind right now and I still will be second guessing it at times."
The mental aspect of an injury like Benjamin is something that shouldn't be discounted as he tries to push that knee. The goal is eventually to just play without thinking about it.
Ron Rivera was asked after practice on Friday about his wide receiver and he reiterated the same sentiment that Benjamin did that they are trying to ease him back and limiting his reps. However, the Panthers' head coach probably summed up Kelvin Benjamin the best with one simple phrase: "He just makes plays."
After the past few practices, it would be hard for anyone to argue that point.