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News » Carolina Panthers Notes, Quotes 2009-01-30

Carolina Panthers Notes, Quotes 2009-01-30

Carolina Panthers Notes, Quotes 2009-01-30
Defensive tackle Damione Lewis said he probably won't be back on the football field until training camp after recently undergoing rotator cuff surgery on his shoulder. Lewis, an eight-year NFL veteran who turns 31 in March, said he has been told by doctors that the surgery will take several months to recover from and said he expects to miss all of the team's minicamp in May as well as the three weeks of "summer school" or OTA's in June.

"It's just a matter of giving it time to recover," he said.

Lewis injured the shoulder in Carolina's Dec. 21 loss to the New York Giants.

However, instead of having surgery immediately to repair the problem, he elected to tough it out with the Panthers in the playoff hunt. He sat out the regular-season finale against the New Orleans Saints, but did return for the playoffs and started against the Arizona Cardinals.

Lewis started 15 games for the Panthers last season and had 43 tackles, four sacks and one fumble recovery. Lewis signed a contract extension before the 2008 season after the Panthers decided to trade Kris Jenkins, who had started ahead of Lewis in 2006 and 2007.

--Former Panthers defensive coordinator Mike Trgovac has decided to join the Green Bay Packers as their new defensive line coach.

That's a clear demotion from the job he held in Carolina the last seven seasons.

The Packers recently hired ex-Panthers head coach Dom Capers as defensive coordinator, so Trgovac will be taking orders from him. He'll also be coaching a 3-4 defense, instead of the 4-3 the Panthers ran here in Charlotte. Ironically, that is the defense Julius Peppers said he'd prefer to play in.

Panthers general manager Marty Hurney said Trgovac informed the team he was not coming back one day after he told them he was at the Senior Bowl.

"We had offered Trgo a contract and he informed us (that) night that he was going to pursue other options," Hurney said.

Earlier in the day, public relations director Charlie Dayton said the Panthers had offered him a contract and thought Trgovac was coming back but that he had "a change of heart."

It's unclear at this point why Trgovac changed his mind and Hurney wouldn't comment on that, saying, "That is something you would have to ask him."

--The Panthers had five defections from coach John Fox's staff this year, including Trgovac, quarterbacks coach Mike McCoy, defensive line coach Sal Sunseri (University of Alabama), linebackers coach Ken Flajole (linebacker) and defensive back coach Tim Lewis (Seattle).

The Panthers filled McCoy's spot with Rip Scherer and Trgovac's spot with Ron Meeks, but the other jobs remain open. Meeks is expected to fill out his staff soon.

--Former Panthers outside linebacker Kevin Greene has joined the Green Bay Packers as a linebackers, coach where he will work under former Panthers coach Dom Capers and with former Panthers defensive coordinator Mike Trgovac. Small world huh?

--Despite rushing for an NFL-high 18 touchdowns last season, DeAngelo Williams seems content to play under his current contract. He has two years left on his rookie deal but could be in line for a huge deal at this time next season if he has another huge year like he did in 2008.

--Defensive end Julius Peppers' agent, Carl Carey, has been quiet on the moves the Panthers have made on the defensive side of the ball with their coaching staff, but it's unlikely the changes will have an impact on Peppers, who wants out of Carolina.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "He had a bad game. He didn't have a bad season. He's not a bad quarterback. He had a bad game. It happens." -- Coach John Fox on QB Jake Delhomme after Carolina's 33-13 loss to Arizona.

Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: January 30, 2009

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