Things are not going well for the Carolina Panthers.
Head coach Ron Rivera cut his media conference short Thursday after he received repeated questions about quarterback Cam Newton. Two minutes into the conference, after receiving nothing but inquires about the injured QB, a frustrated Rivera ended the conference and left the podium.
The action begins at the 1:30 mark in the video at the top of this post. After listening to a question about if Newton will travel to Arizona, Carolina’s next opponent, Rivera says:
“I’m not going to talk about it anymore, guys. Let’s talk about Arizona. I mean, I haven’t really talked about Arizona, so it would be good to answer those kind of questions. ... I know it’s about Cam, but I don’t know any more until tomorrow, so let’s just talk about Arizona. If not, there’s no reason for me to stand here.”
When the next question was about Newton, despite Rivera’s request, that’s when it hit the fan. Rivera dropped his head and walked away from the podium.
“I just asked you to ask me questions about somebody else. So I’m not going to do this anymore, OK? I told you, I won’t know anything until tomorrow.”
Rivera didn’t appear angry or enraged, and he wasn’t even rude as he left. He seemed mostly frustrated that he continued to get questions about Newton, who didn’t practice on Thursday for the third straight day due to a left mid-foot sprain, when he didn’t have any more information to give.
But this is what Rivera signed up for as an NFL head coach. Newton is the team’s star quarterback, and since he’s injured, that’s who all the questions are going to be about. With Newton’s injury and the Panthers playing below expectations, Rivera might want to gird his loins for more questions he doesn’t want to answer.
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