NFL teams with new coaches dispute disadvantage

By Arnie Stapleton

Associated Press

Published: Friday, July 29 2011 12:00 a.m. MDT

Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera, right, and head trainer Ryan Vermillion, left, leave the players dorm as players arrive at Wofford College for the beginning of the NFL football team's training camp in Spartanburg, S.C., Friday, July 29, 2011.

Chuck Burton, Associated Press

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — The compacted training camps and abridged free agency are challenges for everyone. They could be doubly difficult for the eight NFL teams with new head coaches installing their schemes on the fly and getting their first real look at their rosters following the 136-day lockout.

One-fourth of the league's 32 teams are rolling out a new coach this year: the Cowboys, 49ers, Panthers and Vikings in the NFC and the Broncos, Browns, Raiders and Titans in the AFC.

In many ways, those eight franchises are behind the proverbial 8-ball, but they all insist they're in much the same situation as everyone else navigating the free agency fire drill and training camp cramming sessions.

But unlike teams such as the New Orleans Saints, they simply didn't have the established staffs and entrenched systems.

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