Panthers defensive end Charles Johnson insisted he’d be ready to go for Sunday’s game against the Jets.
The Panthers could have used him Sunday against the Saints.
Johnson returned from a two-week absence caused by an MCL sprain (which was caused by Patriots tackle Marcus Cannon’s leg-whip), but didn’t make much of an impact in Sunday’s loss. He was in the backfield on his first snap, and played 51 of the team’s 65 defensive snaps, but didn’t have a sack.
He was still sore and icing, Monday, saying he knew he needed to improve.
“I mean it was good to just get out there and get the feel of it,” Johnson told Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer. “Put a new brace on it and just got to keep getting better from what I did. . . .
“We didn’t get after [Saints quarterback Drew Brees] like we wanted to. They had a good game plan and we didn’t execute like we’re used to. When he holds on to the rock we’ve got to get after him. When you got one-on-ones, you got to win. I feel like we could have helped out tremendously, and we’ve just got to learn from our mistakes.”
Of course, Johnson wasn’t alone disappearing. The only sack from the defensive line came from backup end Mario Addison.
For the Panthers to bounce back over the last three games, they need more from a recovering Johnson along with partner Greg Hardy, who was equally quiet Sunday while Brees picked them apart.