SPARTANBURG Panthers camp was as chippy as its been all three weeks Tuesday as messages were sent between teammates via harder hits and more trash talk.
Running back Tauren Poole got leveled by cornerback Sherrod Martin on a play that knocked him down. Wide receiver Louis Murphy and cornerback Josh Thomas got tangled up away from the ball and went to the ground before getting up and exchanging some heated words.
Coach Ron Rivera, taking into account how long the team has been in Spartanburg, understood why it happened, but he hoped after practice that it was out of his players system.
Theres a lot of sniping that goes on. Those little things shouldnt matter, Rivera said. Weve just got to get past that. Its that time in camp. Lets be honest, were 2 1/2 weeks into it, and they drag a little bit. Thats going to happen. Thats why it is good when you get a chance to play against somebody else.
Defensive end Charles Johnson added that the heat, as well as the competition for roster spots, also played a role in tempers flaring.
Its just that time of camp. People out there working hard. It gets hot. Once it gets hot, a lot of stuff just keeps going. You get tired and a lot of things go out the window, Johnson said. Its all good competition. People have to learn how to practice against their own teammates. That comes along in training camp.
Huddle up: Usually at the conclusion of practice, Rivera will huddle the team and deliver a short message. Tuesday afternoon, he had all of his players take a knee as he gave a much longer address.
Its that time where weve got to be able to push through these last couple of days, Rivera said of his message. Weve got to keep our focus because we are going to be breaking camp.
Seeing Moore: The Miami Dolphins will come to town Friday night, and a familiar face will be under center against the Panthers.
Former Carolina quarterback Matt Moore is set to see at least a quarter of action at Bank of America Stadium, and one former teammate said he looks forward to competing against him.
Matt Moores a good quarterback. I always liked Matt Moore, Johnson said. When he was here I felt like he did a good job for us. He always had good timing. Its going to be good to play against him and see how he does. Were going to try to get after him just like we get after everybody else.
In three seasons with Carolina, Moore played in 22 games and went 7-6 as a starter.
Daily kicking update: Olindo Mare gets plenty of distance when kicking off, but he has been consistently short on field-goal attempt of 50 yards or more throughout camp.
Rivera has noticed.
Ive wondered that, too. Because you watch him do kickoffs and watch him put them deep into the end zone. And he has that kind of ability, Rivera said. Right now I wonder. But when you watch him, hes been deadly accurate for the most part inside 35, 40 yards.
Mare was 2-for-4 on field-goal attempts Tuesday, missing a 51-yarder that fell several yards short. Justin Medlock was 4-for-4, including one from 51 yards.
• Injured receiver David Gettis came out to practice for the first time in weeks. Gettis (hamstring/ACL) was not in a jersey or pads and spent most of his time on the exercise bike.
• Running back Poole was carted off the field midway through practice. Rivera said it appeared to be a concussion. That makes two players since Saturday (Nate Ness) with concussions. Its unclear if the Martin hit and subsequent fall caused the concussion.
• Most rookies have at least one extra pair of shoulder pads to tote back to the locker room. But as Luke Kuechly was signing autographs, he was carrying three extra sets.
• Running back DeAngelo Williams seemed to have caught a stinger in his left hand after a rush. He shook it off, went back to the huddle and ran the ball out of the wildcat in the next possession.
• Of the three quarterbacks in the two-minute drill, Derek Anderson and Jimmy Clausen recorded touchdowns. Anderson found Louis Murphy and Clausen found Lamont Bryant. Cam Newton was picked off by Josh Norman in his drill.
• In Newtons two-minute drill, the quarterback threw slightly behind tight end Greg Olsen. But Olsen stuck his arm out and one-handed the catch before going upfield and stepping out of bounds.
• While Norman was making the No. 2 cornerback battle interesting, incumbent Captain Munnerlyn turned in a nice play, too. In a 7-on-7, red-zone drill, Munnerlyn, at 5-foot-8, broke up a pass in the end zone to 6-3 Seyi Ajirotutu, who had both hands on it before Munnerlyn jarred it loose.
Three questions with:
WR Joe Adams
Q: You had a pretty impressive runback against the Texans, but it wasnt anything new. Ive seen your YouTube videos of what you did at Arkansas. What was in your mind?
Just making guys miss and hopefully giving my teammates a chance to block it up so I could get around the corner.
Q: Did you see Cam Newton running alongside you on the sideline?
No I didnt see him until the play was over. But then he jumped on me and I felt him.
Q: Were there any nerves with it being your first NFL game?
I wasnt really nervous. I just wanted to get that first hit out of the way.
Getting to know:
S D.J. Campbell
Height: 6-0. Weight: 200
NFL experience: None. He played four seasons at Cal, where he started all 13 games his senior season. The cornerback racked up 71 tackles and picked off two passes in his senior year for the Bears.
The scoop: Campbell has been getting mostly third-team reps behind Sherrod Martin and Haruki Nakamura. He saw some action Saturday at safety in the second half of the exhibition against the Texans.
Bet you didnt know: He attended Cheyenne High in North Las Vegas with two of Panthers coach Ron Riveras nieces.
Staff writer Joseph Person contributed