We haven't talked about it much this week but the Panthers walked away with more problems than just a 'L' from the Bills game. They absorbed a couple new injuries that present problems this week when they travel to Phoenix to play the Cardinals.Three of them to be exact but there is a silver lining. In all three cases we will instead get an extensive look at some younger players which might help us make some key off-season decisions.
Free safety Charles Godfrey missed his second straight day of practice Thursday and was still on crutches in the locker room afterward. He declined to talk about the ankle injury that has him in a cast, but it seems clear they're going to have to look elsewhere for a replacement.
"It's one of those day-to-day things, and I'm preparing as if I'm going to be the guy's who's number is called," Martin said. "I'm excited in a way. No matter how big or small my role is, I just want to come in and be accountable."
So is the Martin experiment at CB over? He seems better suited at S than CB since he was beat out by 7th round pick Captain Munnerlyn for the nickel spot. I would prefer to see Martin start at FS rather than Teal just to see if this kid is better suited at S. Heck one INT and he would match Godfrey's career total. Godfrey has shown very little at FS in my view other than a propensity to arrive a step late.
The next injury is that to WR Musin Muhammad (knee). Darin Gantt still maintains Jarrett is a player just waiting for a chance. If not sure which will come first, Jarrett catching two passes in a game or the rapture. My money is on the rapture. I have neither the time or patience to continue another 'when is Dwayne Jarrett going to step up' rant. Hopefully he will play the entire game and if he does nothing then maybe we can finally ship him out with Delhomme in the off-season.
The third injury is to TE Dante Rosario (knee). First let me say I was wrong about Rosario in the preseason. I thought he was a 3rd stringer and on his way out. Again, WRONG. Rosario has mad receiving skills and honestly I wouldn't mind seeing him line up like a WR. That said we will miss him this weekend if he can't go but I'm just as excited to see TE Gary Barnidge. He looks really good last week in his brief appearance (3 catches for 77 yds), in particular on that 52 yard catch down the right sideline. The big guy can move.
So as key as these three players are to the Panthers 1st team all three present opportunities for players-in-waiting to step up and earn their paychecks, and maybe future paychecks as well.