Dear Carolina Panthers,
I know the moments seem bleak and the fans are difficult for you. I know that there are many reasons to want to quit. We all feel like the world is against us and want us all to fail. It feels like this is the kind of moment when success seems many years away from us. But these are the kind of moments when greatness is just right there. In 2013, a team that was five years separated from a division title, coming off a total of 15 wins in the previous three years (Does that feel familiar?), and heartbroken with a 0-1 start, which became a 0-2 start was about to begin a monstrous season of 12-4 that scared the 49ers into cheating in the Divisional Playoff Round. That season would jumpstart three division championship titles, and four playoff runs in five years. In 2003, a team that also only won fifteen games in three years jumpstarted a Super Bowl season with embarrassing moments against the Cowboys and Eagles. Carolina just had a close game. The team is right there. Don't quit or roll your eyes into another 1-15 "Here we go again" run. We have seen that before.
But the Cardiac Cats boosted "Keep Pounding!" from the locker room to the living rooms of the Carolinas. So I will ask you to celebrate this season. Even though the results do not reveal it yet, we can see through the efforts of the players that the moments for Carolina history are just seconds away. But seconds away from success do not give second chances.
I ask you to get feisty and be belligerent about defending each other. I ask you to be loud about celebrating this season. The fans here will not do that for you. You have to believe in us enough to change our heartbroken minds. You are the ones who came here to be the heroes. We came here to see if you would be them.
I called this a "Thank You Letter" because I believe you will be those heroes this community wants and needs. There are people going through hard times looking for your wisdom and leadership especially in the hard times. Do not be tempted to address the media with a nonchalant or melodramatic attitude. They're our only connection as fans to you players. I hope to see changes in the attitudes and media so that you are encouraged to play your best and be inspired to keep moving. Like the Panthers, the media is not far from that goal.
Thanks for your passion and hard work. Thank you for trusting in each other. I ask that you become vocal in supporting the underdogs and people like Matt Rhule while it is easy to trounce on them in the bandwagon of Hell. If the Panthers are going to throw a Super Bowl parade, the team will need to practice parading now not later. This is a community team. It's called the Carolina Panthers not the Paycheck Panthers. It's more than a job. It's a dream that people spent their lives trying to keep themselves into experiencing for you. That is a responsibility.