1. Panthers Pro Bowl LB Luke Kuechly says Josh Allen is poised to make jump in year two
After the first joint practice, Josh Allen told media he wanted to get Panthers six-time Pro Bowl linebacker Luke Kuechly’s thoughts on a specific play the Bills ran against him during the team period. Kuechly’s comments entailed why he liked that play and how it’s difficult for a defense to react.
WKBW’s Matthew Bové spoke with Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly after practice. The linebacker gave Allen and his offense a few compliments.
“I think obviously his athleticism is one of his biggest strengths,” Kuechly told Bové. “Big arm, he’s fast. He runs well. But I think what he did a good job with today, the ball came out quick. He was quick on his reads. Those guys did a really good job. He’s got some good guys to throw the ball to. I thought Cole Beasley did a really good job running routes today, so you know they did a great job and we are excited to get back out there tomorrow.”
Kuechly thinks Allen has many options that can create success on offense during the season.
“They have guys on offense that can make plays with LeSean and Frank and then the new additions out wide at the skill positions,” Kuechly added. “They’re good up front. You look at young quarterbacks and they make a big jump from [year] one to two and I think Josh is poised for that.”
Allen said the goal is to make each team better since the Bills don’t face the Panthers in the regular season.
2. Sean McDermott believes Panthers will provide a good test for team
Joint practices are known to get a little heated between opposing players. But, Panthers head coach Ron Rivera said there is no room for fighting during the joint practices with the Bills. McDermott agreed explaining a reason why they are practicing against Carolina is due to the preexisting relationships.
“Trust is a big part of it and a big part of us coming here,” McDermott said. “The relationships you have and knowing how the Panthers practice, knowing how we practice we are similar in that regard, in terms of what we want to get done and how we want to get it done.”
McDermott sees many benefits in taking his team to South Carolina ahead of Friday’s preseason game against the Panthers.
“This is a good football team,” McDermott said. “Not only with their front, but in all areas. They’ve played in some big games, which is where we’re trying to get to. They’re pretty skilled up front. It will be a really good test for us here.”
One advantage to practicing against the Panthers is a chance to see a different base defense than their own. The Panthers switched to a 3-4 base, which the Bills will see in their opponents this season.
“It offers a lot of benefits,” McDermott said. “Number one is going against a good team in the Panthers and an organization and a staff that’s been together a very long time. At this point in camp guys get a little bit tired of seeing the same guys across the line of scrimmage, so it offers a change of scenery. For us, it’s really a chance to get in front of a different system and scheme and to develop again as an overall football team.”
On Tuesday, Aug. 13, Bills faithful traveled from all over to support the Bills at the team's first of two joint practices with the Carolina Panthers. Click through to see some of the best photos from the afternoon.
3. Kevin Harlan and Rich Gannon set to call Bills season opener
The Bills open the 2019 season away against the New York Jets on Sunday, Sept. 8. CBS announced Kevin Harlan and Rich Gannon will be on the call for the first game. Harlan will be play-by-play, and Gannon will be the analyst.
For the second game against the New York Giants on Sept. 15, Greg Gumbel is on play-by-play, Trent Green is the analyst and Melanie Collins is the sideline reporter. You can hear Gumbel and Green prior to the Giants game as they will call the Bills preseason game against the Lions on Aug. 23.
The first two games will be on CBS and air at 1:00 p.m. EST.