BOSTON (CBS) — The Patriots will have to be ready on Thursday night to weather a storm, because the Carolina Panthers won’t be taking their third preseason game lightly.
Panthers head coach Ron Rivera said Monday that he anticipates that his starters — including quarterback Cam Newton, running back Christian McCaffrey, and linebacker Luke Kuechly — to play in the game.
While that has become the standard for the third preseason game of the summer, Rivera said that his team will be using Thursday night as an opportunity to see where they stand.
“They’ve been the gold standard for a long time,’’ Rivera said of the Patriots, per ESPN.com. “You want to go out and see just how good you are. It is a good measuring stick as to who we can be as a football team.”
The Panthers are coming off a 7-9 season, the second time they’ve missed the playoffs in the three years since they reached the Super Bowl.
This marks the fifth time in six years where the Patriots and Panthers have met in Week 3 of the preseason. The Patriots won in 2014, 2015 and 2016, while the Panthers won at home last summer.
The Patriots get back to action in the preseason with a game against the Carolina Panthers on Thursday night, and WBZ-TV has you covered from start to finish. It begins with Patriots All-Access at 7 p.m., followed by the game at 7:30 p.m. Stay tuned after the game for Patriots Fifth Quarter for all reaction, analysis and postgame press conferences.