CHARLOTTE, NC - AUGUST 13: Brandon Jacobs #27 of the New York Giants runs with the ball against the Carolina Panthers during their preseason game at Bank of America Stadium on August 13, 2011 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
One of my favorite things about the preseason is watching players with seemingly no chance to make the roster play themselves onto the bubble. This preseason for the Panthers is no different. In particular we've got a couple bubble players who are getting lots of playing time because starters are sitting out nursing injuries. Here's some guys on the bubble I'm hoping to see perform tomorrow.
T Byron Bell 6'5" 339 lbs
The word is the coaches are impressed with this monster of a guy. He's been getting work at both guard spots and at RT since Otah and Schwartz are out with injuries. I expect the Panthers to keep 9 o-linemen and only the first 6 or 7 are locks. Bell could very well warrant that 9th spot if he can play multiple positions
LB Thomas Williams 6'1" 240 lbs
Williams was the defensive star of the second half in the first game against the Giants. With Jon Beason sidelined with injury Williams is getting plenty of playing time in the second half. Let's see if he can keep it up again this week. He could sneak on the roster simply for special teams play if a guy like TE Gary Barnidge misses some time.
We've got a couple more bubble players to watch tomorrow night...after the jump...
WR Charly Martin 6'1" 212 Lbs
Martin is another guy looking to grab a spot that might be reserved for a special teams ace. Martin has always played well when he's given the chance. He was lost to injury last season after one game so he has a lot to overcome. Martin has sure hands and high energy. It's not whether he will make a play Friday night, its simply 'when'.
CB Kendric Burney 5'9" 190 Lbs
Burney has shown an ability to break on the ball with 3 passes knocked down last week. The Panthers secondary is in a state of flux so if Burney continues to impress he could very easily make this squad.
DT Andre Neblett 6'0" 295 Lbs
Neblett was the biggest surprise to make the roster last season. The 2nd year player would seem to have a leg up given the Panthers injury situation up front. Yet the emergence of DT Corvey Irvin has but Neblett's roster spot in serious jeopardy. Neblett really needs a good performance against the Dolphins.