Good Wednesday morning, Carolina Panthers fans. I have a few more links than yesterday. The most interesting, to me, was an article by Pat Y listing the top (in his opinion) future hall of fame candidates from each NFC South franchise. Who do you think should or shouldn't make the list? Here are your links for Wednesday July 7, 2010:
There are probably a few names that could be in the conversation. There's Richardson, Fox, Moose and some promising youngsters... Although Smith or Richardson would probably be the frontrunners. What do you think?
NFC South Hall of Fame debate. (ESPN.com)
Panthers: Steve Smith, wide receiver.
Claim to fame: Smith has 574 career receptions for 8,330 yards and 50 touchdowns. With all sorts of injuries at running back, Smith put the 2005 Carolina offense on his back and carried the Panthers to the NFC Championship Game. That season, Smith had 103 catches for 1,563 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Case for enshrinement: He’s the best player in the history of the franchise. Initially expected to be nothing more than a kick returner, Smith made himself into one of the most dynamic receivers in the NFL. His touchdown catch in double overtime in the divisional playoff round against St. Louis put the 2003 Panthers into the NFC Championship Game.
Case against enshrinement: It’s getting more difficult for receivers to get into the Hall of Fame as the NFL has evolved into more of a passing league. At the moment, Smith’s numbers aren’t even close to Hall of Fame material. Smith’s also had some troubles. On three different occasions, he has had physical altercations with teammates. Playing in a small market with a franchise that’s never had back-to-back winning seasons doesn’t help either.
Bottom line: Let’s not count Smith out of the Hall of Fame race yet. He’s 31, but he really hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down. He’s going to miss some time in training camp as he recovers from a broken arm, but he should be ready for the start of the regular season. With either Matt Moore or Jimmy Clausen taking over as the new starting quarterback, Smith’s numbers could suffer. But he remains Carolina’s only proven threat in the passing game. If he can play another four or five years at a high level and get his career yardage above 13,000, he could have a shot. Of course, it would only help if the Panthers can have a few more playoff seasons.
More after the jump.
This is a super long update on the Panthers including many skill positions:
For new-look Carolina Panthers lots of change ... for the better? (USAToday.com)
• They're counting on the running back tandem of Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams, with more than 2,200 combined yards last season, again to rank among the best in the league.
• The quarterback is now Matt Moore, who has started all of eight games but went 4-1 to end 2009.
• Coach John Fox will make $6 million this season but didn't receive a contract extension, making his situation a tad uncomfortable. Only three players — Smith, kicker John Kasay and left tackle Jordon Gross — remain from the team that reached the Super Bowl following the 2003 season before losing to the New England Patriots. Change is the word these days in Charlotte, and the locker room has had a decidedly different vibe than in recent years.
A little bit of NFL talk on the Mac Attack;
Mac Attack Hour 3 7/6. (WFNZ.com)
In hour 3 today we looked for fans that fired up for football season, and talked about the beast that is Brock Lesnar.
A new article on John Fox and the USO tour with a slightly different take:
Panthers' Fox, 3 other NFL coaches visit troops in Afghanistan (CharlotteObserver.com)
With several military bases located in North and South Carolina, Fox was peppered with Panthers questions at nearly every turn. "Most of them wanted to know about Steve Smith playing flag football," the coach said, referring to the star wide receiver who will miss training camp after breaking his left arm while playing in an adult flag football league. "Most of them love Steve, and they know he'll be back for the opener, so they weren't too concerned," Fox said. There was also talk about similarities between football and the military. "Look, they probably have the ultimate motivators in their leaders. You can see that by the commitment these soldiers have," Fox said. "We as coaches, we can just tell them that we're proud of them and appreciate their sacrifices and their efforts."
I like the Wallace acquisition even more after reading this:
NFL stars bowl strikes to help youngsters. (TCPalm.com)
Cleveland Browns safety and Riviera Beach native Abram Elam remembers. "I have lost three siblings to murder in the streets of Riviera Beach," said Elam. "I believe by showing that I can persevere through adversity and tragedy, maybe I am able to spark a sense of hope in the lives of the children of this community to never give up on their dreams." Founded June, 2008, the T.E.A.M. Elam Foundation is the brain child of Elam. His organization was formed specifically to combat violence and negative influences surrounding youth. T.E.A.M. Elam introduces young people to positive influences which ultimately leave lasting impressions on children’s lives... The recent T.E.A.M. Elam bowling fundraiser at Jupiter Lanes drew several noted athletes. The group included... Wallace Wright (Carolina Panthers).
This story comes from New Mexico. I love when these guys give back to their communities - especially when theyr'e not being paid to do it:
Panthers' Martin hosts free football camp. (KOB.com)
NFL player and Farmington native Charly Martin returns home to work with local kids. The Carolina Panthers wide receiver hosts his first football youth training program Tuesday and Wednesday at his old stomping grounds, Piedra Vista High School.
Fantasy football link of the day:
I'm the camp that believes from a fantasy standpoint that Stewart's year-end numbers will be the same or slightly better than Williams. Also note LaFell cracks the list:
Offseason Lowdown: Movers and Shakers. (Rotoworld.com)
DeAngelo Williams was given a slight bump with Jonathan Stewart dropping two spots. While I love Stewart's talent, I'm not as confident as Silva and Rosenthal that coach John Fox is ready to make this a dead-even 50-50 timeshare... Greg Jennings and Steve Smith South both fall into our top-12 at the position, but the three of us are all over the map on their values. I still have Smith at No. 7 while Rosenthal kept him at No. 13 and Silva dropped him from No. 14 to No. 16. Similarly, Silva is the Jennings lover at No. 6 while I have him 11th and Rosenthal has him 17th... and -- oddly enough -- Panthers rookie Brandon LaFell is 77th.