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After a quiet night in Charlotte, Panthers hope game brings city together

Police officers block the access road to I-277 near Bank of America Stadium on the third night of protests  in Charlotte, N.C. Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016, following Tuesday's fatal police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton) AP

Even as the NFL was announcing yesterday that they planned to hold Sunday’s Panthers-Vikings game as scheduled, there was an awareness that it hinged on things staying calm overnight.

Charlotte did its part, as the third night of protests after the police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott remained largely peaceful.

But before they knew it would be that way, the Panthers expressed a mixture of hope and trepidation about the possibility of gathering 70,000 people on Sunday for a football game.

“If you look at the way the South is and the way the game of football is, it has a unique way of bringing people together,” Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis said, via Bill Voth of Black and Blue Review. “This is a tough time right now in our community in our city, and we need something that’s going to bring people together.”

Panthers coach Ron Rivera compared it to a situation from his time in San Diego, when wildfires forced the team to leave for a week of practice in Phoenix, but they came back for the game that week, providing a bit of a lift.

But tight end Greg Olsen also had some dad instincts, saying he might have his family curb their normal pre-game routine.

“My wife usually takes the kids Uptown and they tailgate with my family and friends,” Olsen said. “I said, ‘Maybe this week, just come to the game, park in our lot and go up to your seats and get settled in. Is it worth just moseying around town in such a heightened state of kind of chaos?'”

The good news is, there was a decided lack of chaos on the streets of Charlotte Thursday night and Friday morning, thanks in part to a midnight curfew instituted by the mayor. And while there has been no final announcement, that might be enough for the show to go on.

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18 Responses to “After a quiet night in Charlotte, Panthers hope game brings city together”
  1. Karmi says: Sep 23, 2016 7:44 AM

    Best stay away from the game … Black Panthers leader (Babu Omowale) says “Only thing I can say is it ain’t no fun when the rabbit has the gun. And right now the black man is the rabbit.” That was his answer to why blacks are now “targeting whites.”

  2. fmc651 says: Sep 23, 2016 7:46 AM

    Davis, Olsen and Riveria were well spoken on the topic yesterday, well done. I hope it helps.

  3. realqc says: Sep 23, 2016 7:51 AM

    It was nice to see the “opportunists” overshadowed by people protesting peacefully last night and no one destroying my city. People have questions, people are upset. Two men have lost their lives and one young man has a long road ahead of him. Let the facts come out. Show you care about lives by preserving them and help mold our youth to understand that they ultimately control their destiny, not a group of people or a politician. Do not embarrass our community. Enjoy the Panthers take it to the Vikings on Sunday.
    God bless Charlotte and give peace of mind to those who can not think rationally at this time.

  4. All Knowing says: Sep 23, 2016 8:39 AM

    Nothing will bring a city together faster than an asskicking of the pathetic Queens of the North.

    Panthers 45 Queens 0

  5. peytonwantsaflag says: Sep 23, 2016 9:19 AM

    “Charlotte did its part, as the third night of protests…”

    YEA! way to go Charlotte! Way to stop, stealing, robbing, wrecking, exploding, pillaging, looting, and creating all other sorts of mayhem-

    Excuse me, but there’s a difference between “protest” and “riot” – please let’s not sugar coat this, it does no one any good- this was a riot. The nfl would not cancel a game for a protest.

  6. jbdvks says: Sep 23, 2016 9:24 AM

    All Knowing says:
    Sep 23, 2016 8:39 AM

    Nothing will bring a city together faster than an asskicking of the pathetic Queens of the North.

    Panthers 45 Queens 0
    —————————————————-

    You mean like the week-one asskicking at the hands of the Broncos? How soon we forget……

    Vikings 20, Kittens 17

  7. diveleft says: Sep 23, 2016 9:39 AM

    All Knowing says:
    Sep 23, 2016 8:39 AM

    Nothing will bring a city together faster than an asskicking of the pathetic Queens of the North.

    Panthers 45 Queens 0

    ÷÷÷÷÷÷÷÷

    If that’s the outcome of the game you’re hoping for, looks like Charlotte won’t be coming together anytime soon.

  8. arpy911 says: Sep 23, 2016 9:49 AM

    The curfew was not enforced last night. And the only serious skirmish was when protesters flocked to block the highway, objects were thrown at the police and they responded with tear gas to clear the crowd. This happened in sight of the stadium — as the picture with the resulting police line shows. One of the favorite tactics of the protesters (whether you agree with their cause or not) is to inconvenience people by causing traffic disturbances — blocking freeways — and the reality is, the crowd getting to and leaving that game is a major opportunity. This has occurred in my area, although never with the looting of tractor trailers and burning of goods that occurred on Wednesday night in Charlotte. Hopefully nothing will happen. As some black leaders pointed out Wednesday, the violence then becomes the focus rather than what is actually being protested against.

  9. kickinpuppies says: Sep 23, 2016 10:36 AM

    Sad that a players family have to worry about their safety due to “protesters”.

  10. ncarmchairqb says: Sep 23, 2016 10:37 AM

    I doubt Richardson would move the team but after this and the ACC, NBA all star and NCAA pulling out of NC I would not be surprised to see new ownshership leave. Positive Ferguson contributed to Rams leaving St Louis. Who wants to run a business where the civic fabric can be so unstable ?

  11. dizzybruhbruh33 says: Sep 23, 2016 10:41 AM

    All Knowing says:
    Sep 23, 2016 8:39 AM
    Nothing will bring a city together faster than an asskicking of the pathetic Queens of the North.

    Panthers 45 Queens 0

    _________

    Top of the division currently… that’s what we call kings, buddy😉

  12. I'm not a football punk says: Sep 23, 2016 10:48 AM

    The Vikings played their Super Bowl last week. Escaping with a 3 point win, against the Packers.
    The Panthers will dominate this game, but it will be low scoring.
    20-6.

  13. bobnelsonjr says: Sep 23, 2016 10:53 AM

    It is reported that 70% of those arrested had out of state identification. These are paid troublemakers.

  14. lindacaseauthor says: Sep 23, 2016 11:06 AM

    All Knowing says:
    Sep 23, 2016 8:39 AM
    Nothing will bring a city together faster than an asskicking of the pathetic Queens of the North.
    ———————-
    Lol. Yeah right, Cheesehead. If you believe that I have a 100 story skyscraper to sell you in Turd Bay.

  15. mnvikes1961 says: Sep 23, 2016 11:36 AM

    Sorry Panther fans- so many butt-hurt Packer trolls on this thread. They can’t beat us- so they follow Viking related threads- taking their desperate little shots.

    Hopefully the city will be calm- you guys need this. Should be a very good game. In order for the Vikings to win- their D will have to play very well and not let Cam get comfortable- much like what they did to Rodgers last week. Your defense is tough- will be interesting to see how Bradford plays against them.

    Here’s to no injuries (please- we can’t take any more)- Cheers!

  16. purpleguy says: Sep 23, 2016 12:49 PM

    Not saying at all that I think my team will win against the NFC SB representative on the road, but if the city of Charlotte is looking for the result of a football game to bring people together, they’re looking in the wrong place.

  17. amaf21 says: Sep 23, 2016 1:01 PM

    I wouldn’t hold your breath.

  18. melikefootball says: Sep 23, 2016 4:28 PM

    The only way it will bring city closer is if they can steal the beer and burn down the concession stands, that has been the norm so far in the name of justice.

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