CHARLOTTE – With first place in the division on the line in New Orleans, the Panthers picked a perfect time to get healthy.
"I'm excited about the fact that we'll have some of our top line guys back," head coach Ron Rivera said. "It's good to have the young guys get opportunities, but I'm thrilled.
"It's a great situation to be in. As we get into this stretch run we can get everybody back healthy and, hopefully, we can continue on that way."
Rivera said Williams and Blackburn will assume their roles as starters.
However, he made it clear that rookie linebacker
"We have young guys that are in the wings that have played a lot for us that have made plays for us," Rivera said. "We've learned some things about us as a football team."