Panthers’ Rivera wants better effort from players



SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) — Panthers coach Ron Rivera says he’s looking for better effort from his players this week in practice following what he called a “disappointing performance” Saturday night against Houston.

Rivera was not thrilled with his players’ lackluster approach in the 26-13 preseason loss.

Rivera stressed throughout training camp the importance of building an identity at home, even in the preseason. He says the players didn’t approach the game with “a sense of urgency.”

In particular, Rivera wants to see improved play from the reserves, many of whom are battling for roster spots.

Linebacker Jason Phillips says Rivera told players their effort “didn’t meet his expectations,” which could mean a grueling week of practice is ahead.

Carolina (No. 20 in the AP Pro 32) breaks training camp at Wofford College on Wednesday.