Carolina Panthers rookie returner Philly Brown wanted to apologize to his teammates after his fumbled punt turned into a touchdown for the Pittsburgh Steelers in a 37-19 loss on Sunday night.
Coach Ron Rivera told him told him not to.
“That’s not why we lost the football game,” Rivera said. “You win and lose as a team. You’ve got to understand that, and I think he does. He’s going to come back and do the best he can.”
Brown had seven catches for 66 yards for his first career receptions, but it’s the fumbled punt that haunted him. Rivera said the team will continue to evaluate the returner position, but he again made it clear Brown gives the team the best opportunity at returning kicks and punts.
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“If you want an explosive guy back there, a guy that give you a home run, Philly’s the guy,” Rivera said. “We can’t put ourselves in a position to fail. We’ve got to put ourselves in a position to succeed.”