CHARLOTTE Many of the gamers had gone. The cameras had largely exited the stadium and the booming music and synthetic crowd noise had gone been turned off. However nonetheless on the sector at Bank of America Stadium was Panthers quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. He was working with tight finish Chris Manhertz on routes, performing because the defender and displaying him examples of how particular routes may be run. Manhertz, historically a blocking tight finish, is growing right into a receiving menace within the Panthers’ new offense this yr. After the tight finish left, Bridgewater, who up to now in coaching camp is extra more likely to be seen staying late after observe relatively than being the primary one there, spent extra time engaged on his downfield passing earlier than the lights lastly turned off. Wednesday’s observe beneath the lights, broadcast to the general public for the primary time, is the brand new actuality. It’s one factor to listen to about it. It’s one other to see it with your individual eyes. Some adjustments had been refined, others not a lot. Whereas the group’s new chief staying out with a decent finish increasing his skillset on the sector far after observe is an instance of a refined shift, the TV broadcast of the observe flashing a prolonged graphic of all the group’s offseason departures was a bit extra … in your face. Cam Newton. Mario Addison. Greg Olsen. Trai Turner. James Bradberry. The checklist goes on. The reminders of who wasn’t on the market prolonged to the far edges of the sector, the place former Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly, now a group scout, stood on the sideline not in uniform, however as a substitute as an observer. At occasions Wednesday, he was a coach, giving tips to gamers like rookie Troy Satisfaction Jr. However with an absence of preseason video games as a result of COVID-19, Wednesday was the one actual glimpse of the brand new Panthers that followers will get earlier than they face the Raiders on Sept. 13. Outdoors of the reporters and group employees current, who had their temperatures taken earlier than getting into Bank of America Stadium, “The Vault” was empty, with followers’ faces solely showing on the video board. As NFL groups across the nation announce plans to carry video games with out followers in attendance — a minimum of to start out the yr — that sight is one we’ll proceed to develop accustomed to, whether or not in Charlotte or elsewhere. Wednesday night time’s observe was the second the Panthers have held within the stadium, and this time they cranked up the quantity on the group noise and music that performed virtually all through your complete exercise. Apart from the change in venue from the observe fields and bubble, it was extra like some other day at coaching camp. Nothing extraordinary. There have been good moments — Joey Slye hit all three of his field-goal makes an attempt and defensive finish Stephen Weatherly had a pleasant night time with a sack — and dangerous — Brian Burns jumped offsides on a fourth-and-5 throughout a two-minute drill. The Panthers have confirmed promise by every week and a half of open practices, however they’re nonetheless studying. This group has so much it nonetheless has to determine earlier than its first recreation simply over two weeks from now. All that, compounded with the actual fact they’re nonetheless attending to know one another. However what was lacking felt essentially the most notable, apparent or not. Newton, who Satisfaction Jr. and punter Joe Charlton grew up rooting for, wasn’t there, nor had been the followers that he handed balls off to after touchdowns. There are hubs of former Panthers in Buffalo and Washington that may bounce off the web page as extra recognizable. This was an introduction for everybody to the brand new actuality of Carolina Panthers soccer: Everybody watching from a distance as Bridgewater turned off the lights.