During Pat Riley’s run as the coach of the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1980’s, he wrote a book that featured a concept he called the “Disease of More” to explain why it is hard for teams to remain at the top of the mountain after attaining success.
Riley’s theory was centered on the idea that players start wanting more playing time, more money or more of something else the next year and that works against a team’s chances of staying at a high level. Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly didn’t describe it exactly that way during an appearance with Alex Marvez and Ovie Mughelli of Sirius XM NFL Radio, but he was in the same ballpark when talking about the team’s need to keep the same mindset they had before last year’s run to the Super Bowl.
“It’s even more important that we believe in the same mindset that we had after the ’14 season of, ‘This is where we are, this is where we’ve got to get to,'” Kuechly said. “We can’t have the mindset of, ‘Well, we went to the Super Bowl last year, we’re already here, we don’t have to get that far.”
The Panthers didn’t win the Super Bowl, of course, and that untaken step should be a significant piece of motivation. In addition to keeping the right frame of mind, the Panthers will also have to keep an eye on any toll that their extended 2015 season and the resulting shorter offseason has on players as they try to do what the Broncos did in February.