Panthers Tidbits 6-18

The next time the Panthers gather as a team will be in Spartanburg, S.C., in late July for the start of training camp. The Panthers wrapped up three weeks of summer school practice sessions on Thursday at Bank of America Stadium. "It was outstanding," coach John Fox said. "We had great participation and guys were focused."

Fox made a deal with his players before camp began that he would call off the final week of coaching sessions as long as the players worked hard the first three weeks.

He lived up to his word.

"I think he wanted to get out of here as much as we did," joked cornerback Ken Lucas.

Said Fox: "Our goals were to let them know how we do things around here -- our meeting schedule, our practice schedule, the way we do drills, the way we practice and the tempo of practice. We had a great, great three weeks."

Players report to training camp on July 28 and the first practice is the following morning.

Fox knows there will be plenty of big expectations surrounding this year's team, but believes the Panthers have the maturity and veteran leadership to handle it.

"There is confidence here, but our guys understand it's not what you do on paper, but what you do on tape that matters," Fox said. "We know how hard we need to work and that's why we've worked so hard. There is a sense of confidence that you expect when the expectations are high. I don't have a problem with that."

Quarterback Jake Delhomme said he likes what he sees from rookie running back DeAngelo Williams so far, but said it's still too early to know just how much he'll contribute this season.

"He makes good cuts like he wants to set up his blocks," Delhomme said. "But until you put on the pads nobody knows.

"Nobody knows if he's going to break that tackle or if he's going to see the backside cut. Nobody is going to know those things. We'll know that pretty soon. But he did it year after year in college, so I expect him to do pretty well."

Delhomme was jokingly asked if he'll wear a helmet now when he's riding horses in light of the head injury to Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

"I can't tell you the last time I've been on a horse," Delhomme said. "We have our racehorses, but I don't ride them. And I understand. If we have one that is acting up, I won't get around him. I like to shoot basketballs too, but I can't tell you the last time I've shot a basketball. It's not worth it."

WR Steve Smith missed the final week of summer school sessions with a tight hamstring. He should be fine for training camp.

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