Good Wednesday afternoon, Carolina Panther fans. I know it's been a few days since Steve Smith's injury, but this is still the bulk of the news on the Panthers at this point. I am in the camp that believes this is an all-around plus for the younger guys on the team to get extra snaps and show us what they can do. You never want to see a player get injured, and I feel bad for Smith, but at least it won't have the negative impact that Thomas Davis' injury had. There are tons of links, articles and blog posts on this subject, so I tried to select the best ones or at least select ones that tried to look at it from a different perspective. Here are your links for Wednesday June 23, 2010:
Here's a good all-purpose article on Steve Smith's injury. If you check out nothing else, it will give you the high points:
Panthers WR Steve Smith breaks arm playing flag football. (CarolinaGrowl.com)
"He basically was messing around and playing some flag football," agent Derrick Fox said. "He was playing some defensive back. He tried to break up a pass and slipped and fell. He caught himself with his arm and it broke. It was the same arm as last time, but a little different spot. He knew it right away. The x-rays showed a break." Fox said he was under the impression that Smith was "messing around with the kids" playing football when he broke it, but ProFootballTalk.com first reported Smith broke the injury at an adult flag football game. It turns out that game was at the Siskey YMCA in Charlotte.
The title makes this sound like a fantasy article, but it's actually from a physical therapist who is also an orthopedic clinical specialist (Translation: an in-depth article on the biology of the broken arm):
Carolina Panthers' Steve Smith shouldn't lose fantasy value following arm fracture. (ESPN.com)
Darin Gantt of the Charlotte Observer is reporting that the broken bone in question is the radius, the same bone Smith fractured in December. The radius is one of the two bones of the forearm, and it runs from the elbow toward the thumb side of the wrist joint. The radius is commonly broken by falling on an outstretched arm (which is how Smith's agent, Derrick Fox, indicates this latest injury occurred) or by a direct blow, which is what happened to Smith in December when his forearm met squarely with the helmet of New York Giants' safety Michael Johnson after a 27-yard reception.
A trio of videos about Steve Smith's injury on NFL.com:
NFL Videos: Smith's injury impact. (NFL.com)
What the Panthers will do without Steve Smith at camp and which young WRs need to step up.
NFL Videos: Wounded Panther. (NFL.com)
Steve Smith injured his arm playing flag football; how long will he be sidelined?
NFL Videos: Muhammad on Smith's injury. (NFL.com)
Find out what former Panthers WR Muhsin Muhammad has to say about Steve Smith's broken arm.
Smith made a dumb mistake, but at least the Panthers won't make it worse by fining him:
Panthers won't hit Smith's wallet. (ESPN.com)
That act alone could be challenged as a violation of Smith’s contract. There’s no specific language in there saying he can’t play flag football, but there are some words about participating in activities that could be physically dangerous. A team official said the Panthers have no plans to pursue the issue.
Tuesday's Mac Attack show was loaded with NFL talk. I know last time around with the Smith-Clausen thing, Florio seemed to be in the wrong, but it sounds like he nailed it on Smith's arm:
Mac Attack Hour 1 6/22. (WFNZ.com)
In hour 1 today we discussed the news of Smitty breaking his arm in a flag football game
Mac Attack Hour 2 6/22. (WFNZ.com)
In hour 2 of the Mac Attack we spoke with Mike Florio of Profootballtalk.com about the Smitty situation
Mac Attack Hour 3 6/22. (WFNZ.com)
In hour 3 today discussed where Smitty ranks among the WRs in the league, and we spoke to Solomon Wilcotts of the NFL Network/CBS
In case you were wondering, there is also some non Steve Smith Panthers news today:
An article on Matt Moore from his hometown paper:
Matt Moore: Ready for the role. (The-Signal.com)
But times have changed. "It's come that time where all the questions have to be answered," Moore says. "I've got a lot of experience from years past and I'm going to use that, put in work and just try and win ball games." In the end, the times are all that have changed, because if there is one thing that certainly has not, it's Moore. He's the same as he always has been - an everyday guy throwing a football and loving every minute of it.
An article on Tony Fiammetta from his hometown paper:
Fiammetta returns to his Old Stomping Grounds. (AmericanChronicle.com)
Carolina Panthers fullback Tony Fiammetta stood on Walkersville High School's practice field on Monday. The field wasn't nearly as prestigious as NFL stadiums Fiammetta has played in. Heck, it wasn't even as prestigious as the venues it was tucked between -- Walkersville 's stadium and baseball diamond. But for Fiammetta, the practice field wasn't just some nondescript tract of grass -- it literally contained his football roots.
Probably the biggest non-Smitty news:
QB Pike signed. (Panthers.com)
The Carolina Panthers have signed sixth-round draft choice (204th overall) Tony Pike from Cincinnati, the team announced Tuesday.
Interesting piece on the young guys in the receiving corps. I seriously can't wait to see what these guys can do:
Big Question: Will Fox trust rookie WRs? (ESPN.com)
Fox, who is in the last year of his contract, needs to think more about possible big plays than possible big mistakes by LaFell and Edwards. The Panthers desperately need someone to take some of the defensive attention off Smith. LaFell is big and strong and has all of the tools to be an every-down receiver. Edwards is speedy and dynamic and can give the Panthers a real slot receiver for the first time in years. Fox has been given the parts he needs at wide receiver. Now he just has to use them.
I know I praise this all the time, but Pat Y's mailbag is a great source of info on the NFC South:
NFC South weekend mailbag. (ESPN.com)
Russ in Reno, Nev. writes: Pat, I don’t understand you and John Clayton's love fest with Jimmy Clausen. What's wrong with sticking with Matt Moore as QB? He is 6-2 as a starter, including 4-1 finishing the season last year. Recall, Pat, he had "W's against Saints, Giants, and Minnesota, with his only loss at New England. I'd say that was not only respectable but how many young QB's in this league could have done equal. Moore is the perfect QB for John Fox. Also, the guy was much more productive in college than Clausen in big games.
Pat Yasinskas: Russ, I can’t speak for John Clayton. But I can tell you it’s not like I’m rooting for Clausen over Moore. I’m just stating my opinions. All indications are Moore will open the season as Carolina’s starter. As long as he plays well and the Panthers are winning, he’ll stay in that role. But the Panthers didn’t draft Clausen in the second round, and repeatedly try to trade up to get him sooner, because they want him sitting on their bench. If Moore struggles, Clausen will get his shot. The Panthers wouldn't have drafted Clausen if they were as sold on Moore as you are.
NFC South Monday mailbag. (ESPN.com)
Adam in Chapel Hill, N.C., writes: Purely a hypothetical, but say Matt Moore comes in and within the Panthers system sets the proverbial world on fire. How much of a wrench would this throw in the works? How would talent scouts have to readjust/reassess QB evaluation?
Pat Yasinskas: If Moore does play well, I don’t think it will change the scouting process. Remember, guys like Kurt Warner, Jake Delhomme and Tony Romo have come essentially out of "nowhere’’ to have good careers. Even Tom Brady was a late-round draft pick. It is kind of amazing that teams put so much money and effort into scouting and they seem to miss on a lot of prospects. I guess it just shows scouting is an inexact science and the human element, things like heart and intangibles, can really throw it off.
I haven't heard tons about this topic, but if more articles surface, I will be sure to include them in the coming days:
Stephen Davis lands minority coaching gig. (NationalFootballPost)
Former running back Stephen Davis will have a minority coaching internship in training camp for one of the teams he played for in his ultra-productive 11-year career. Davis will work for the Carolina Panthers, according to the Twitter account of his agent, David Canter.
Tweet of the day:
I'm sorry but I seriously had to laugh out loud when I read this:
Only if he's connecting at ... (Darin Gantt via Twitter)
Only if he's connecting at Douglas Airport and hangs around for the rocking chairs. RT @AbsoluteLe: Is TO coming to Carolina?
Fantasy football link of the day:
OK, this guy is super offensive. His articles are not for the faint of heart. I've been following him for over a year on Twitter and I read his intermittent postings on sportsgrumblings.com. I find his writing very entertaining, and I don't know who is contacts are in the NFL, but he breaks a lot of info before it comes out in the national media. If you play fantasy football and want to find some really good sleeper picks or busts to avoid, I would follow this guy. Just my $0.02. Here's a four page article outlining his thoughts on a bunch of fantasy-impact rookies:
The Fire Sale One Time is All it Takes. (SportsGrumblings.com)
Jimmy Clausen, QB Panthers – I like Clausen but I think he got drafted where he should have all along. Clausen is a solid second round pick but he still needs time to develop. He has the physical skills but Clausen really only had one great season at Notre Dame. If the Panthers can hold off on Clausen until 2011, I think his prospects of being a good quarterback will increase. However, with Carolina’s quarterback situation, Clausen could be under center three weeks into the season. If that’s the case, I don’t believe he will be ready to make an impact that soon.
Brandon LaFell, WR Panthers – LaFell is a tough guy to breakdown because he had terrible quarterbacks throwing him the ball the last two years at LSU. He is a big receiver with deceptive speed but he also drops some very catchable balls. I see LaFell as a bit of a project and if he does have a fantasy impact it will likely be for two or three years down the road.
Armanti Edwards, QB/WR Panthers – I have been covering I-AA college football for the past couple of years and I can tell you that Edwards is a special player. Many remember his performance three years ago when Appalachian State upset Michigan but overall Edwards may be the most dominant player in I-AA history not named Walter Payton. The Panthers obviously love him too because they traded a second round pick in 2011 to New England so they could move up and get Edwards. He will likely play receiver in the NFL and while he may not have much fantasy value this year I think Edwards will eventually become a big-time playmaker in Carolina’s offense.
The impact of Smitty's broken arm from a fantasy perspective:
Steve Smith expected to be out 10 weeks. (FFToolbox.com)
Fantasy Analysis: Missing training camp will hurt Smith, but it could actually help the Panthers also in that they will find out what Brandon LaFell, Armanti Edwards, and David Gettis bring to the table. Smith developed good chemistry with Matt Moore and put up his best numbers in Moore's starts at QB last season,. However, Moore started only 5 games at QB for the Panthers last season, so the two could have used some more time together working on their chemistry and timing. I think this will change Smith's ADP slightly in a negative manner because he has a new starting QB who will be throwing him balls in 2010 and only had a quarter of a season to work with Moore last season. Therefore, Moore and Smith might miss a few steps trying to connect with each other until week 3 or possibly even week 4 or 5 of the NFL season, but after that, expect Smith to have a rebound season with a 1,000 plus yards and at least a repeat of his 7 TD's from last season.