Eric's decision to forfeit the game in the last episode was a huge one, and that certainly isn't ignored here. Signs calling Eric a quitter are left on the Taylor's lawn (loved Tami casually going, "Hey hon!" when he saw her removing them), and as for the team themselves, they stop showing up to practice, humiliated and angered by what Eric did. It was a great quandary to put Eric in - we know he did what he did because he thought it was protecting them, but now he has to deal with the consequences, and eventually comes to realize he hurt these boys more than helping them.
Buddy telling Eric that the Panthers star running back Luke had a fake address to stay at West Dillon was a big moment - Is there a bigger Panther fan than Buddy? But his anger towards being pushed aside by Joe McCoy, along with his friendship with Eric, all give him good reasons to do what he does - even though he, of course, begs for it to be kept a secret.
This led to some excellent material for Tami, as Joe attempted to pressure her into backing off on sending Luke to East Dillon. But this is Tami Taylor and she stood her ground and stayed tough. Things got rougher when Joe hinted Eric might have known about this empty lot address before and used it for his own purposes - and even threatened to begin an investigation that could jeopardize previous Panthers wins, including Eric's state championship. I began to think to myself, "Okay, but in Dillon, wouldn't Joe be crucified for doing this to the Panthers?" And thankfully, Tami thought exactly the same thing - in a great scene in which she told Joe, in front of a large group, that she was standing firm and brought up his threats, in an effective way of stopping him from doing anything.
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