Stew's Take: The Panthers Should Feel Disrespected

No primetime games for Carolina in 2024. Jonathan Stewart sees that a sign of disrespect.
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Over the past couple of years, I've had the pleasure of co-hosting the Bleav in Panthers podcast with Desmond Johnson and legendary Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart. If you haven't checked us out yet, what are you doing? All joking aside, come stop by and chat with us each week during our open mailbag portion of the show. It's a lot of fun.

Each week after we record, I'll put together a quick write up here on the site highlighting a topic from the show, calling it "Stew's Take.'

On our latest episode, we did a complete rundown of the Panthers' 2024 schedule and discussed the elephant in the room - no primetime games. Stew details why the team should feel a certain way about it and use it as another tool for motivation.

“You guys should be upset. Panthers fans should be like, you know what? That’s jacked up, it’s disrespectful. But hey, the NFL realized the Carolina Panthers were 2-15 last year. The last time that we were that bad was when we were 2-14 in 2010. I was on that team. The following year, we bring in Ron Rivera, Rob Chudzinski is our offensive coordinator, and we draft Cam Newton. Cam didn’t get no primetime games his rookie year. We finished 6-10 that year and it was more exciting, we were scoring, we gave ourselves a chance. But I think going back to that year, I felt disrespected even though the year before we were 2-14. Now what I will say is that mentality can give you a shift within the culture, within that locker room. They don’t see us…they’re telling us we got to earn it. Go earn it so you can be seen. You play with that chip on your shoulder and I think it was recognized that year. Coach Rivera helped the locker room, helped the guys that had been there realize how much we are disrespected and how much we aren’t realized amongst the other professional teams because of the market we’re in.

"So when it comes to this year, I absolutely am using that energy as a player and channeling it through my play on the field. Now, hopefully next year, you’ve done something this year to put yourself back on the map. That’s exactly what happened. 2012, after a 2011 of no primetime games, in 2012 they said you know what? They showed us a little something, so let’s give them a primetime game. So hopefully, Bryce Young and (Dave) Canales gives the fans and gives the NFL something to look forward to for next year. But there is still an opportunity this year to flex your way to a primetime game. If you go out there and basically squeeze their pockets and make them put you on the big screen, then you’re set on the right path."


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