Can't blame Carolina GM for being quiet

September, 20, 2013
9/20/13
8:00
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Under normal times, Carolina Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman would love to talk about his years with the New York Giants, who are coming to Charlotte on Sunday.

But these aren't normal times for Gettleman, who left the Giants in January after 13 years as the director of pro personnel.

The Panthers are 0-2 and Gettleman has been busy reshuffling the roster that was hit hard by injuries in the secondary during Sunday's 24-23 loss at Buffalo. If they lose to the 0-2 Giants he may be faced with a decision on whether to keep head coach Ron Rivera during the bye week.

It's not the circumstances Gettleman envisioned when Carolina owner Jerry Richardson offered him a position he'd almost given up on ever getting. So you can't blame him for not wanting to talk about anything leading up to this game.

But you know this is a big game for Gettleman. He wants to show an organization that he helped win two Super Bowls that he can succeed as the chief architect.

Giants coach Tom Coughlin already likes what Gettleman has done with the roster.

"That’s a good roster he’s put together," Coughlin said. "Dave is very thorough, he’s very knowledgeable. He’s been evaluating talent for a long time, he’s very good at it and I think it shows in his roster."

It shows the most on the defensive front. Gettleman's first two draft picks were tackles Star Lotulelei and Kawann Short. It's part of his wide-body approach he got from the Giants, specifically from Coughlin.

"Big men allow you to compete," Gettleman said before the opener, crediting Coughlin with teaching him that.

Said Coughlin, "You’ve got to have them, you have to have those guys up front or else you can't do a lot of things that you may want to do .... They do allow you to compete."

You can only imagine how much Gettleman wants to compete and beat the Giants. He was so discouraged after being bypassed for general manager jobs prior to the call from Richardson that he'd asked the Giants to let him take a step back.

"After the last go-around last year where there were four general manager positions open and frankly, I couldn't get a sniff, I just thought it was time to think about things," Gettleman said when introduced as Carolina's GM. "I just needed to change my focus. I needed to get a broader vision."

He's getting a broad vision now, maybe broader than he ever imagined or wanted.

And you can't blame him for not wanting to talk about it.

David Newton | email

ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter

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