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Ron Rivera on Panthers’ offense: “I want touchdowns”

Carolina Panthers v Philadelphia Eagles

PHILADELPHIA, PA - AUGUST 15: Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers calls out the play in the first half against the Philadelphia Eagles on August 15, 2013 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennslyvania. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

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The Panthers’ first-string offense has been on the field for eight series over two preseason games, resulting in one touchdown, two field goals, one interception and four punts. That’s not enough for coach Ron Rivera.

After the Panthers’ 14-9 loss to the Eagles, Rivera said field goals will not suffice.

We kicked two field goals, but I want touchdowns,” Rivera said, via the Charlotte Observer. “When you play a fast-strike offense and you play a team that can get the ball into the end zone in a hurry, you have to score touchdowns. Field goals are not enough. And that’s the disappointment.”

Panthers quarterback Cam Newton hasn’t looked particularly good in the preseason, completing 11 of 23 passes for 128 yards, with one touchdown (which came on a drive that started in the red zone) and one interception. Rivera, however, seems to believe the offensive line is more to blame for that than Newton.

“We did miss a couple throws. But he was running for his life twice, and both times he overthrew the ball. I’m not sure you put that on the quarterback alone,” Rivera said.

Whoever is to blame, Rivera will feel a lot better if he sees Newton getting the Panthers into the end zone next week.