Hello Panther fans. If you are like me, you are tired of skimming over mock drafts, potential trades, and other NFL news. You are ready for the 2010 NFL Draft to happen, and to start speculating on how our newest Panthers will pan out, and why they were good and/or bad picks.
So it is time to have some fun. Good old fashioned football fun. It's time for...
IRON MAN FOOTBALL
For those unfamiliar with the rules of Iron man football, you are only allowed to pick 11 players. All 11 players must play both offense and defense, as well as special teams. Yes. This is grunt football at its finest.
What I want to know is, based on our current roster, who would your 11 Iron Man players be? What would be their positions? What is your plan for the offense and defense?
My 2010 Carolina Panthers Iron Bowl Team
Matt Moore- QB, FS
Jonathan Stewart- RB1, OLB
DeAngelo Williams- RB2, LDE, KR1
Steve Smith- WR1, CB2, KR2
Chris Gamble- WR2, CB1
Chris Harris- TE, SS
Jodan Gross- LT, DT
Thomas Davis- LG, OLB
Ryan Kalil- C, RDE
Jon Beason- RG, MLB
Jeff Otah- RT, DT
On Offense, we keep most of our playmakers intact. We have Jordan Gross and Jeff Otah at their native Tackle positions to allow for better protection on the edges, as well as running to the outside. Ryan Kalil stays at center to help out our new Guards in the middle Thomas Davis and Jon Beason. Chris Harris moves to the edge of the line as a floating TE. Matt Moore still calls the plays, and we run a Pro-Set formation with both DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart in the backfield. Smitty gets to stay on the outside, and we convert Chris Gamble to WR2.
The offense will rely on making the defenses guess at which RB is going to get the ball on generally a run off tackle, option, or sweep. By running a lot of plays with pulling guards, we can negate the lack of experience of TD and Beason at Guard, and use their speed to get them outside into space where they can just knock someone over. Pass protection will get help from having two running backs in the backfield at their native positions in case anyone gets by either inexperienced guard. Chris Harris at TE will be expected to chip and release a lot for tough yards underneath as a safety valve for Moore. The passing playbook will be dominated by Playaction, Screens, and 5 yard slants.
On Defense, we create a giant road-block in the middle with both Gross and Otah taking up space. The pass rush suffers, as we favor a line with more of a run stopping approach, with our only true pass rusher being DeAngelo Williams and his speed. We will put a lot of load on the LBs as we have a lot of experience there. We also expect that Jonathan Stewart would make a fine linebacker. We keep CB1 intact with Gamble, as well as take our best WR and make him the other corner. Matt Moore is relegated to FS duty, as there is no better place for him, and at a minimum he can use his knowledge as a QB to possibly jump a route and be a ball hawking type. We rely on Chris Harris at SS to pick up his slack.
The defense converts to a conservative Cover 3 scheme, where we can be content to not have as good a pass rush, and hope that the opposing iron man team does not know how to find the holes in the zone coverage.
So how about it Panther fans? Grade my Iron man team... and tell me what you would do differently.