Player Spotlight: LS JJ Jansen

USA TODAY Sports

44 and counting...

Fun Facts About The Number 44

44 is part of the tribonacci sequence.

0, 0, 1, 1, 2, 4, 7, 13, 24, 44, ?

What is the next number in this tribonacci?

44 is the retired number of baseball hall of fame inductees Hank Aaron and Reggie Jackson.

44 is also the retired number of NBA hall of famers Jerry West and George Gervin.

Jersey number 44 was officially retired in 2005 at Syracuse University because it was worn by four legendary players: Jim Brown, Ernie Davis, Floyd Little, and Rob Konrad.

Can you name the 44th state without looking? Are there any fans who currently live in this state or have lived there before?

Who can name the 44th President of the United States? I'm looking for the name only. Political views can be discussed on other websites.

LS JJ Jansen

If you've never experienced the privilege of reading a profile on a long snapper, then you're in for a treat. Would you believe that long snapper is THE most undervalued position in all of football? It's a crying shame that many so-called fans treat these guys like second class citizens. Frankly, they don't get the credit they so desperately deserve.

That's why I believe number 44 is the perfect player to usher in the Carolina Panthers 2013 training camp in Spartanburg. I'm proud of the fact that this article places JJ Jansen on the proper part of the pedestal he alone is worthy to occupy. That would be the top, for those who haven't been paying attention for the past four years.

Have you ever stopped to think where any given football team would be without a competent long snapper? Let's just say that the scenes would be chaotic. Punters would be forced to chase down errant snaps, only to be tossed aside and pummeled by some lunatic special teamer. Worse yet, game winning field attempts would have to be aborted, and kickers would also be the victim of season ending injuries far too often.

It is also a mistake to assume these guys lack elite athleticism. Let me ask you this. How many people do you know who can snap a football with both the velocity and accuracy that these guys do? Don't be fooled, NFL level long snappers are a rare breed, and they must tirelessly work on their craft in order to remain relevant.

Think about this for a moment: Long snappers aren't allowed to make a mistake. They must be perfect, or else their careers are likely over. Can you name another position in football that operates under the same expectations and scrutiny? That's right, there are none. These guys must have nerves of steel because their jobs are on the line with every snap of the ball.

Not only is JJ Jansen an elite long snapper by day, but he also takes time out of his busy schedule to connect with fans in a very unique way. He runs a weekly contest(TriviaTuesday) that asks fans to answer a Panther related question via twitter. Jansen simply tweets the question, and the first participant to respond with the correct answer is the winner. Prizes include authentic player autographed equipment. I'm not sure how many other players in the NFL host a game such as this, but I can't imagine it's many.

Please do me a favor. The next time you watch the Panthers win a game without hearing JJ Jansen called by name, remind yourself how privileged we are to have one of the best long snapper's in the NFL.

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