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Moore excited about Panthers' new-look, wide-open offensive schemes

Matt Moore has been getting used to new things all offseason, and what he saw on the field this week just added to them.

The Carolina Panthers quarterback laughed and called the offseason "wild."

From the departure of Jake Delhomme to the arrival of Jimmy Clausen, Moore has been dealing with a lot of changes. Looking at a four-wide receiver set Thursday morning, after spending three days working on nothing but the passing game, had to leave him wondering if this was the Panthers' offense.

Moore takes the changes the same way he's taken all news, however, with a shrug and a nod and a grin, moving on.

"It's been great, it's been really good," he said of the team's early emphasis on the passing game. "We're trying, I think it's publicly known that we're trying, to better our passing game."

To that end, he has thrown it more in four days than he ever imagined he would as a Panther.

The Panthers used their first three days of OTAs as a passing camp, never handing off while working on a myriad of new formations. Thursday's first day of full-squad practices was the day they installed the four-receiver package, something the Panthers have rarely used.

"There's a lot of repeat stuff from last year, but there has been some new stuff, some new concepts, some little nuances have changed offensively," Moore said. "The new stuff has all been good. You put that stuff in and run it a couple times and see how it goes, and it's been a positive outcome so far."

Pressed for the differences, Moore admitted the offense seems more aggressive, even if it's early to make such declarations. For example, he pointed to this week's three-wide work, when in past years the same plays were run with two receivers and a tight end.

"In years past, certain situations you get in a rhythm of going to the same or similar routes, over and over," Moore said. "You might mix in a different formation here and there. But we've thrown in some brand new concepts. It's completely different. Just guys learning to be in new spots before the snap, and learning to be in new spots after the snap. ...

"Third down has been a big (emphasis). Just some guys playing some different roles, where usually we'd have a tight end we've got a wide receiver now, things like that. It's been really good."

The Panthers had reasons for reeling in the passing game last year, when they sank to 27th in the league in passing yards. For one, Delhomme struggled (eight touchdowns, 18 interceptions). That led to them making things even more conservative. Throw in the lack of trustworthy targets and the problems multiplied.

That has led to a fresh start, which Moore described as "awesome." But as much as a shift in play-calling, Moore admitted he's doing his job differently now that he knows the spotlight's on him.

"The approach is a little different," he said. "When you go in as the No. 2 or No. 3 guy, you're still kind of in learning mode. Now you go out and you're the No. 1 guy and you've got to hit it off the first step.

"I don't think I've changed personally, but just my approach I guess a little has changed slightly."

If he feels more pressure, it doesn't show.

"I think obviously experience has something to do with that," center Ryan Kalil replied when asked about Moore's demeanor. "Matt Moore coming in the first time is a lot different than the Matt Moore we see in the huddle today.

"He's somebody that we've played with in the past, he's come in in some crucial situations in the past, and he's always done a great job. So we have nothing but all the confidence in the world in him."

They need to, because there's not another quarterback on the roster with an NFL start, and his eight gives the Panthers the least-seasoned group in the NFL.

"Experience is big," Moore said. "You're right, eight starts isn't much, but it's there. You've been in the fight. You ask these guys who haven't played, when they do get this experience, you change quickly.

"Although it isn't a lot, there is something to be said for the little time I've spent in there. So it's kind of benefiting me I guess."

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