This Friday Edition of Paw Prints starts with some kudos to our offensive line, ranked 5th best in the league:
OPEN Sports - 2010 Fantasy Football Offensive line rankings
It isn't all about pass blocking, however. The O-line is critical for running backs, too. The Carolina Panthers limped to the finish line last season, losing stars book-end tackles Jordan Gross (broken leg) and Jeff Otah (knee, shoulder) to season-ending injuries in '09. It's a wonder RBs DeAngelo Williams, Jonathan Stewart and company were still able to rack up the second-best yards per carry average at 4.8. However, a look closer at the numbers reveals a staggering fact. That YPC number might be way more if not for 59 negative-yardage runs in '09. Gross and Otah are expected to be ready for Week 1, so that helps the fantasy appeal of Williams and Stewart even more. In case you were wondering, Washington had just 29 rushes for negative yardage, which is a wonder with all of their injury problems at the running back spot last season.
So what's with the 59 plays of negative yardage?
We didn't talk much about this guy when we signed him, but he's a local kid hoping to shock the world:
The Charlotte Post - Grateful Guy happy to land with Panthers
Guy, a former West Charlotte High standout, signed a free agent after playing collegiately at Louisville. Coming home is the realization of a dream for the receiver and kick returner, who turned down a contract offer from the Oakland Raiders. "It’s a great opportunity for me," he said Friday during minicamp at Bank of America Stadium. "I grew up watching Carolina play my whole life. Back in the city of Charlotte, I’ve got a lot of support here, a lot of family here.
This might be another reason Clausen slide on draft day:
Als coach a Tebow backer | Football | Sports | Toronto Sun
Trestman spent part of his CFL off-season working with both the Denver Broncos’ surprise first-round pick and Carolina second-round pick, QB Jimmy Clausen. Trestman’s reputation for success with young quarterbacks is such that he was asked to mentor them both heading into the NFL combines. Clausen was rehabbing an injury at the time of Trestman’s visit so it was just classroom work with the California native, but with Tebow it was on-field work as well and Trestman came away impressed.
He sat out rather than try out. Fair or not, smart or not, it could still have an affect.
The Canton Repository's Steve Doerschuk believes that QB Jake Delhomme will be the Browns' Week 1 starter barring "anything short of a disaster in Delhomme's preseason play." While we agree that Delhomme is the favorite in his battle with QB Seneca Wallace, we don't consider him a shoe-in to win the job. Wallace has experience in Cleveland's offense and is much more athletic than Delhomme. Plus, the way Delhomme has played the past couple seasons, "a disaster" in the preseason is a distinct possbility. We'll keep our eyes on this situation throughout the summer, but the winner of this battle won't be a quality fantasy option.
After our 0-4 preseason disaster last year I'm hoping for better execution this year.
This is the prime reason we won't see an extension of the NFL season to 18 games:
18-game schedule isn't on table yet - CharlotteObserver.com
"Adding two more games will now add eight more barriers to a guy being able to get just five years of health care," said Smith. "I know fans may think if you break your hand on the first play of your first game as a rookie, football players will have health care for the rest of your life," he said. "It's not true."
I can't say that I blame them, but it might help the CBA process....Alert: Hot chicks...
2010 TopCats selected
We recently completed a comprehensive audition process, which included rehearsals, interviews, meetings and competitions", said TopCats Manager Tina Becker. "This year's group of contestants impressed us with their talent as well as passion to be a part of the Carolina Panthers organization. We are thrilled to introduce the 2010 squad and look forward to an exciting season."
Here's a good laugh, what is the even money on odds for the number of sacks puts up this season?
I Bet You: Julius Peppers Sack Total — Blog Down, Chicago Bears
15 or more – 18-1
10 to 14 - 8-1
Five to nine – 3-2
Four or less – 15-1
NFL Leader – 40-1
NFC Leader – 15-1
Team Leader – 6-5
More Than Alex Brown – 3-1
Continues to buy drinks for all patrons of bars he attends – GUARANTEED.
5 to 9 my friends...for $16M or so, maybe $20M I don't remember. Yet out defense can't replace him? Something doesn't jive.