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December 30, 2014

Rivera still coy about Williams' role in RB rotation

Ron Rivera is at it again.

While Arizona coach Bruce Arians told Charlotte reporters Tuesday the Cardinals are preparing to start Ryan Lindley at quarterback in Sunday's wild-card game, Rivera refused to definitively name Jonathan Stewart the Panthers' starter at running back.

Rivera was coy about the running back rotation before the Week 17 win at Atlanta, as well. DeAngelo Williams was listed as probable, but was held out for the fourth straight game with a broken bone in his right hand.

Stewart has rushed for 486 yards over the past five games, beginning with the Nov. 30 loss at Minnesota when Williams was hurt. Rivera said he didn't want Williams to aggravate the injury against the Falcons last week.

"I decided we're in a good spot right now," Rivera said. "We've got guys that are 100 percent healthy, and why expose an injury that's something as simple as a nick that could turn into something worse?"

Williams played in only six regular-season games, while a healthy Stewart had his best season since 2009.

But Rivera said he's not worried about disrupting the offensive chemistry by working Williams back in the rotation.

"No, he's part of our chemistry," Rivera said.

--Joseph Person

Posted by Observer Sports on December 30, 2014 at 03:14 PM | Permalink


I love you D-Will, but Stewart needs to carry the load with Fozzy getting the reps when Stewart is tired. Throw in Tolbert and Cam and the back field is set.

Posted by: D.W.G. | Dec 30, 2014 4:59:52 PM

Tolbert is out of shape (and old), almost useless. Williams is fresh but,... Stewart has been AWESOME this year by comparison. Fozzy, unfortunately doesn't fit as third "change of pace back"? Cam and Philly round out the Stewart 1st Williams 2nd backfield. We have a great chance!

Posted by: travelnight | Dec 30, 2014 6:11:58 PM

Tolbert is not old and useless! He just made the pro bowl last year!

Posted by: robert | Dec 30, 2014 6:52:11 PM

I agree, last year he was strong, low and fast, This year he, unfortunately is none of those.

Posted by: travelnlight | Dec 30, 2014 7:23:36 PM

You do realize that Williams is 2 years older than Tolbert?

Posted by: Steven | Dec 31, 2014 8:43:29 AM

Tolbert has not been himself this year. Has not even blocked well. Probably out of football shape from recovering from his broken leg.

Posted by: PanthersD | Dec 31, 2014 5:33:19 PM

I agree he`s part of our chemistry but Stew is hot right now and knows how the defenses try to strip the ball on he way down which makes me question can dwill hold the ball tight I mean stripping tight ,Coach why not be smart and let Stew carry the load and in the 4th if we have the game in hand then start rotating d will in to get ready for the next game,That`s what a strategic coach would do, No need in letting the opposing defense try to see if dwill can hold on from being stripped. We need to do everything in our power to win this game ,Carolina Panther Coaches have your guys ready to go 60 minutes ( NO EXCUSES )

Posted by: joe | Jan 1, 2015 5:36:51 PM

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