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Inside the Game: New Orleans Saints, Carolina Panthers connections

Take an inside look at the connections between the Saints and Panthers before their Week 17 matchup on Sunday, Dec. 30

New Orleans Saints vs. Carolina Panthers Connections

  • 2015-16 and LB A.J. Klein was a fifth round (148th overall) draft pick of Carolina in 2013 and played four seasons with the club, playing in 60 games with 23 starts, making 155 tackles, four sacks, an interception, a pass defense, three forced fumbles and 27 special teams stops
  • S Kurt Coleman played for the Panther from 2015-17
  • TE Benjamin Watson prepped at Northwestern (Rock Hill, S.C.) HS. Watson and Carolina LB Thomas Davis were college teammates at Georgia
  • QB Drew Brees was tutored by Panthers Offensive Coordinator Norv Turner as a rookie with the San Diego Chargers in 2001. Turner tutored Saints QB Teddy Bridgewater in Minnesota from 2014-16. Turner's son Scott, also tutored Bridgewater as the quarterbacks coach of the Vikings
  • Bridgewater, CB Josh Robinson and Panthers CB Captain Munnerlyn were teammates in Minnesota
  • Panthers RB Travaris Cadet was signed by New Orleans as an undrafted free agent in 2012 and played for the club from 2012-16
  • S Vonn Bell, CB Eli Apple, CB Marshon Lattimore, WR Michael Thomas and Panthers WR Curtis Samuel were teammates at Ohio State
  • Carolina Tight Ends Coach Pete Hoerner served on Saints linebackers Coach Mike Nolan's San Francisco offensive coaching staff from 2005-08. Nolan served as Turner's defensive coordinator in Washington from 1997-99 and Turner served as Nolan's offensive coordinator with the 49ers in 2006
  • New Orleans Asst. Wide Receivers Coach Ronald Curry played for Turner in Oakland from 2004-05
  • Carolina S Mike Adams was tutored by Nolan in San Francisco from 2005-06 and played with Watson in Cleveland from 2010-11
  • Asst. Special Teams Coach Kevin O'Dea and Carolina Head Coach Ron Rivera served on the same staff with Chicago
  • Def. Line Coach Ryan Nielsen served as defensive line/recruiting/run game coordinator at North Carolina State from 2013-16
  • Curry was a four-year starter at quarterback at North Carolina and also was the starting point guard on the school's 1998-99 and 2000-01 basketball teams where he played with Panthers DE Julius Peppers. S Chris Banjo and Peppers were teammates in Green Bay
  • Panthers TE Chris Manhertz spent the 2015 season on the Saints practice squad and played in three games with two starts for them in 2016
  • G/T Andrus Peat and Panthers RB Christian McCaffrey were teammates at Stanford
  • Panthers Def. Coordinator Eric Washington played TE at Grambling State from 1989- 90. Saints def. coordinator Dennis Allen and Washington served on the same Texas A&M staff in 1997
  • Panthers Running Backs Coach Jim Skipper served in the same position with the Saints from 1986-95 and served on the same New York Giants offensive coaching staff with Saints Head Coach Sean Payton from 1999-2000
  • Saints Director Of Player Engagement Fred McAfee also played for Skipper when he served as running back Coach in New Orleans during McAfee's first tenure with the club from 1991-93
  • Carolina Assistant Defensive Line Coach Sam Mills III is the son of former Saints LB Sam Mills, who played for New Orleans from 1986-94 and is a member of the Saints Hall of Fame and the club's All-50th Team
  • Panthers Running Game Coordinator John Matsko served as offensive line coach in New Orleans from 1994-96. Matsko and Giunta served on the same St. Louis Rams coaching staff from 1999-2000
  • Quarterbacks Coach Joe Lombardi and Panthers Linebackers Coach Steve Russ were teammates at Air Force Academy in 1994
  • Nolan tutored both Rivera and Panthers Secondary Coach Richard Rodgers as a member of the defensive staff at the University of California. Payton and Rodgers were teammates with the Arena Football League's Chicago Bruisers in 1987
  • Panthers Senior Advisor To The General Manager Mark Carrier was a standout at Nicholls State
  • LB Alex Anzalone and Panthers DE Bryan Cox Jr. were college teammates at Florida. Cox's father Bryan Sr., closed out his NFL playing career with the Saints in 2002
  • Panthers CB Lorenzo Doss prepped at St. Augustine HS and then played at Tulane for Saints Senior Offensive Assistant/Wide Receivers Curtis Johnson at Tulane
  • LB Craig Robertson, Watson and Panthers LB Ben Jacobs were teammates in Cleveland in 2011 and 2012

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