Panthers ready for Bouman

The Panthers insist the Saints' decision to bench quarterback Aaron Brooks in favor of seldom-used backup Todd Bouman will not cause them to change Sunday's game plan.

"We'll be the same," safety Mike Minter said. "We will use the same plan we've had all week. We scheme more against a team than individual players anyway. We just have to be ready to adjust if they do something different."

The Panthers are expecting a steady mix of three-step drops from Bouman, a strategy Brooks employed to beat the Panthers 23-20 in the season opener more than three months ago.

"That's what they do, three-step drops," Minter said. "They haven't changed all year. I think they will probably try to run the ball and shorten the game and play some defense."

Clearly, the Panthers won't have to worry as much about Bouman scrambling.

"(Bouman) is not immobile, but he's not an Aaron Brooks," safety Marlon McCree said. "So we have to be aggressive like we would if Aaron was going to play. Every week we like to be aggressive and dominate the line of scrimmage, so whoever that quarterback is back there, our game plan doesn't change."

The Panthers are likely to get defensive end Mike Rucker back for this game. He practiced on Thursday.

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