Observations from Carolina Panthers training camp in Spartanburg:
▪ Defensive end Kony Ealy returned to practice after a short stay in the concussion protocol. He did individual and position drills but was limited in team drills. Receiver Stephen Hill (knee) was also back at practice. Receiver Philly Brown (ankle) and defensive end Rakim Cox (back) sat out, but coach Ron Rivera was hopeful they’ll be ready for Fan Fest Friday night.
▪ The second shoving match in camp was short-lived. Cornerback Lou Young and receiver Keyarris Garrett pushed each other a bit after a play during team drills.
▪ Safety Tre Boston made two great plays late in practice. He blitzed Cam Newton and came in untouched for what would have likely been a sack. Late in the same drill he picked off Newton and returned it several yards. Only Fozzy Whittaker could have stopped Boston from getting into the end zone.
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▪ Linebacker Ben Jacobs continues to defeat blocks. Last week it was against tackle David Foucault and Thursday it was against guard Chris Scott. Later in the day he picked off a Joe Webb pass. His special-teams abilities will also help him when the Panthers begin trimming their roster.
▪ After a strong early practice, receiver LaRon Byrd has been slipping. He had a bad drop on a pass from Derek Anderson midway through practice and couldn’t haul in a high pass later.
▪ Tight end Marcus Lucas had consecutive nice catches during team drills. His first came from Anderson and the next from Webb.
▪ Safety Kurt Coleman laid out nicely for a pass breakup on a deep sideline throw from Newton to Greg Olsen.