Earlier today the National Football Post did their draft preview for the Carolina Panthers in which they identified the team’s primary, secondary and tertiary priorities heading into April’s draft. Not surprisingly they highlighted the desperate need for the organization to find a talent upgrade at the defensive tackle position, and to that end single out Michael Brockers and Dontari Poe.
The Panthers would owe No. 3 quarterback Jimmy Clausen $923,000 if he’s still on the roster next month – a hefty sum for a player who was inactive for every game last season.
But coach Ron Rivera did not close the door on a Clausen return, saying he appreciated how the former Notre Dame quarterback handled himself last year after he lost his starting job to No. 1 pick and NFL Rookie of the Year Cam Newton.
The simplest answer is often the correct one
This axiom is basically a boiled down version of the principal known as Occam’s Razor, and something that I think is extremely apropos around draft time. By nature we tend to over complicate the draft by looking for hidden meaning, subterfuge and double-talk, but more often than not teams tend to be pretty predictable when it’s time for them to turn in their pick.
January was the month of Kirkpatrick and Brockers, and now February is shaping up to be Justin Blackmon central, at least in terms of mocking him to the Carolina Panthers. Scout’s Inc. and Todd McShay have the Oklahoma State WR falling to the Panthers at #9, which is a slight shock given two months ago there were legitimate mocks that had him being the #2 overall pick and heading to St. Louis.
In the quiet of the Carolina Panthers’ training room, Jon Beason and Thomas Davis greet each other the same way each morning when they arrive at Bank of America Stadium for another day of rehab and weightlifting.
“We working?” one of them will ask.
The other will nod, and with that, the two veteran linebackers resume the business of getting their bodies back to 100 percent.
Even after Cam Newton’s record-setting rookie season, NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock says he’d still take Andrew Luck over the Panthers’ quarterback if the two were in the same draft.
Franchise quarterbacks don’t come along too often. And when they do, a team’s fortune can dramatically change.
A year ago, the Carolina Panthers debated whom they would select with the top overall pick in the NFL draft. They had so many needs that every option seemed like a quality choice. But the team took what many pundits thought was a risky move and they selected quarterback Cam Newton of Auburn.
The Carolina Panthers didn’t have any problems scoring last season. Rookie quarterback Cam Newton had a prolific inaugural season helping the Panthers score 25.4 points per game which tied them for 5th best in the league.
Fans of the Carolina Panthers can actually be somewhat proud of their losing season this past year. Despite their 6-10 record, Carolina had a pretty exciting season considering; and it was all thanks to their new quarterback Cam Newton. A rookie quarterback who arguably had the best rookie season of any quarterback who has ever entered the league. With a guy like this who is looking like he has what it takes to be a leader for years to come, the team might have a better future depending on the help they get around him. Not to mention Newton’s main weapon, Steve Smith, and two producing running backs in De’Angelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart who pose a threat to defenses; but when they are off the field, that is when problems arise. First things first:
It remains to be seen if Carolina Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis can come all the way back after tearing his ACL for the third time. But it sure sounds like Davis’ confidence is already at full strength.
Davis, a University of Georgia product, was in Athens on Tuesday night speaking to the Touchdown Club of Athens and he made some strong statements about how he expects the Panthers to fare this season.
The Panthers have locked up Steve Smith, the team’s career receiving leader, for at least four more seasons while also easing salary cap concerns.
A Panthers spokesman confirmed Smith has agreed to a three-year contract extension. Smith is expected to sign the contract Tuesday and address the media Tuesday afternoon.
This past Tuesday the NFL unveiled the new Nike uniforms for all 32 teams. Most all looked about the same, except for the Seattle Seahawks and our own Carolina Panthers. The new logo is featured, as well as the words, “Keep Pounding” embroidered in the neck line. It was great to see the new look, but what I kept wondering was whether we would see Stewart on a number 28 Panthers jersey this season.
The Panthers need help at all three levels defensively, though the highest-rated defensive player in the draft, LSU cornerback Morris Claiborne, will likely be snatched up within the first five picks.
That leaves linebacker Luke Kuechly (Boston College) and linebacker/defensive end Quinton Coples (UNC); defensive tackles Fletcher Cox (Mississippi State), Michael Brockers (LSU) and Dontari Poe (Memphis); and cornerbacks Stephon Gilmore (South Carolina), Dre Kirkpatrick (Alabama) and Janoris Jenkins (North Alabama via Florida) as potential picks at the nine spot.
We’ve talked a lot this offseason about how the salary cap has prevented the Falcons, Panthers and Saints from doing everything they would like in free agency.
Well, guess what? The 2013 free-agency period is pretty much guaranteed to be even quieter than this year. Even the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who made a huge splash in free agency, are likely to join the club.
I got a look at what all NFL teams currently have committed toward the 2013 salary cap and the picture isn’t very pretty. The Saints have been back-loading contracts, the Bucs have been front-loading them and the Falcons and Panthers have done some restructuring that takes up more 2013 cap room.
The Carolina Panthers just announced a move that might not sound like much, but it has the potential to have some implications in the defensive secondary.
The Panthers have signed safety Reggie Smith, who spent the last four seasons with San Francisco. Smith primarily was a backup and special-teams player, but he did start the final seven games of the 2010 season.
Maybe Smith will end up simply being a backup and special-teams player. But the third-round pick in 2008 appears to have some upside in the Panthers’ eyes.
“Reggie has been on our radar since the beginning of free agency and is a player we think can come in and compete at safety,” general manager Marty Hurney said. “We brought him in for a visit Tuesday and it worked out. He is another player we’ve added to increase the competition.”
Sounds like Martin will have some competition in camp. This is a no-lose situation for the Panthers. In a best-case scenario, Smith can come in, outplay Martin and win the job. Or Smith’s presence might light a fire under Martin and his play could improve.
The NFL preseason schedule was just announced for every NFL team and included was a whopper of a game for the Carolina Panthers, who play on the road against the New York Jets on Sunday, Aug.26th at 8 p.m. on NBC.
Yes, national TV, and Cam Newton vs. Tim Tebow. The two were briefly teammates at Florida, remember, where Newton was a mostly unknown backup and Tebow was the Heisman Trophy winner. Newton would later transfer to Auburn and win his own Heisman, and now Tebow has been traded to the New York Jets to back up Mark Sanchez.