Tag:Carolina Panthers
Posted on: May 23, 2011 9:47 am
Edited on: May 23, 2011 10:05 am

Newton working with ex-Cane Ken Dorsey too

Posted by Will Brinson

Cam Newton has all kinds of mentors and coaches helping him get better as an NFL quarterback.

But the latest guy added to Newton's list of helpers, per Peter King of Sports Illustrated, is a pretty interesting one: ex-Miami Hurricane star Ken Dorsey.

The logic behind the combination? Well, Dorsey knows Panthers' offensive coordinator Rod Chudzinski's system pretty well, having played under "Chud" as an OC in 2001 and 2002 at Miami, as well as 2007 and 2008 with the Cleveland Browns.

"The best way to describe it is it's like an old pilot grooming a new pilot to take over his plane," said George Whitfield, another of Newton's coaches. "The old pilot's teaching him about every one of the controls in the cockpit."

This pairing is particularly interesting to me, because it's not the type of thing that Newton would be doing to get his mind, feet and body right for the long term. It seems like a move Newton is making in order to try and make an immediate impact for the Panthers in 2011.

As Clark Judge recently wrote, it's kind of unlikely that any of this year's rookie signal callers will have a tremendous impact (the lockout's hurting them the most), but it sure does look like Newton is doing his best to get a grasp on what's supposed to be an incredibly complex offensive playbook.

That should be good news for the Panthers, considering how much they just invested in Heisman winner.

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Posted on: May 22, 2011 10:21 pm

Panthers hoping to bring back DeAngelo?

Posted by Will Brinson

Many an analyst has assumed that DeAngelo Williams is as good as gone from the Panthers for the 2011 season. After all, Carolina used their franchise tag on Ryan Kalil, instead of Williams, and the Miami Dolphins have been flirting with the former Pro Bowler quite a bit.

However, the Panthers might not be quite so cool with letting Williams roll out of town.

Dan Pompei writes in the National Football Post's "Sunday Blitz" that he's learned the 'Cats are much more excited about the depth they have at running back, "believe Williams is their best running back and hope he returns."

Pompei also cites the fact that new offensive coordinator Rod Chudzinki's system "calls for two backs to get a lot of action," which means that Carolina won't likely be thrilled at the prospect of "just" having Jonathan Stewart, Mike Goodson and Tyrelle Sutton on the roster.

Of course, whether or not bringing back DeAngelo is an easy decision will likely revolve around what kind of rules are in place for 2011. If it's 2010's rules, Williams will be a restricted free agent and have another year with the Panthers. If not, he'll be unrestricted.

If the latter happens, it's hard to believe that the Panthers would invest heavily in a position in which they have sufficient depth.

However, two things stand out here. One, the Panthers know better than anyone how much mileage Williams has on his tires; though he's suffered injuries over the past few years, he still doesn't have as many carries as a running back his age might typically have.

And perhaps most importantly -- Jerry Richardson is one of the leaders in the CBA negotiations. If anyone has a good idea whether or not a large group of potential free agents will remain restricted, he's the guy.

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Posted on: May 21, 2011 6:46 pm
Edited on: May 21, 2011 7:02 pm

Rookies are inherently suffering irreparable harm

Posted by Will Brinson

The biggest issue facing the Court of Appeals when they make their ruling on the June 3rd hearing -- at least in my opinion -- is whether or not the 8th Circuit believes the NFLPA actually dissolved.

But there's another tremendous issue that lingers with regard to the current stay of the injunction of the lockout: which party is suffering irreparable harm?

And while reading my colleague Clark Judge's excellent piece on "first-year phenoms" surprising in 2011, something hit me: the damage being done to younger players, courtesy of the current lockout, is absolutely irreparable.

Actually, it was quote from Brian Billick -- ironically, a part-time employee of the NFL itself -- that set it off for me (emphasis mine).

"Let's say they get no OTAs," said Billick. "And let's say we get a full training camp. Then I cut the odds down by at least 50 percent in terms of a quarterback's ability to come in and be a starter. And with every week into training camp we lose I think we knock it down 25 percent."

Those are BIG numbers, people -- imagine if you were a commission-based salesman and someone took away a quarter of your territory. Or even worse, half -- how much would that impact your ability to succeed in your job for the given a year?

Doing any sort of quantitatively accurate math on exactly how much damage would be done to say, someone like Cam Newton, is pretty difficult, simply because we don't know how good he'll be in 2010 and beyond. But here's the follow-up quote from Billick that's even more telling.

"You can't be overly optimistic with what you think you can get done with rookie quarterbacks -- which means a year from now I don't know that we'll know anything more about Cam Newton than we do this year," Billick said.

Now, there's plenty of room for clarification to that quote, but to me, it seems like a player in Cam Newton's situation is having somewhere between 50 and 100 percent of his season killed off by the lockout, depending on how long it goes on.

And there's an argument out there that Newton is still going to get paid (well) and still develop as a quarterback. But here's the counterargument: when he loses somewhere between a half- and full year of development as a result of the lockout, he loses an impossible-to-calculate digit in terms of financial gain from a new contract.

He loses a year of production and/or learning in the prime of his life. He loses, even if you want to be conservative with the average number of years that a first-round quarterback plays, one-tenth of his career.

And there are -- if you want to count Christian Ponder, Jake Locker, Andy Dalton, Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert -- at least six Newtons out there who are being irreparably damaged.

This holds true for unsigned free agents too. And the players haven't shied away from making that point to the courts. The problem is, the Appeals Court doesn't seem that interested in the argument that a bunch of agents and lawyers are making with respect to the livelihood of a young football player in the NFL.

What they need to be doing is checking with the people who know better than anyone how much a year of learning can damage the career of a rookie in the NFL: the defendants.

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Posted on: May 19, 2011 3:57 pm
Edited on: May 19, 2011 4:19 pm

Jury sides with Beason in civil trial, awards $1

Posted by Will Brinson

Panthers linebacker Jon Beason has been involved in an ongoing civil trial over the past 10 days or so, as a man named George Frye accused Beason of hitting him in a Charlotte's finest gentlemen's club, the Uptown Cabaret.

Frye claimed that he told another Panthers' player he'd seen Beason and a woman doing cocaine at a Lake Norman, NC party and that Beason got really mad and hit him. Beason testified on Wednesday that he took a swing at Frye but there's "no way" he made contact.

And on Thursday, per Joe Pearson of the Charlotte Observer, the jury agreed with the Panthers player, awarding no damages to Frye and deciding that Frye slandered Beason.

As a result, the jury awarded Beason damages in the amount of ... one dollar! Why so low? Because that's what Beason requested.

"I think I'm more mature because of it," Beason said. "Hopefully, he'll learn a lesson here too. I wish [Frye] well."

Which, frankly, strikes me as the best thing about this whole trial. Look, it's outstanding that justice got her service on, and that an NFL player wasn't dragged through the mud in an instance where he was falsely accused.

But the fact that Beason took the high ground and just demanded $1, well, for whatever reason, it just kills me.

And yeah, there's probably a lesson here about "being famous and not swinging at dudes in a strip club even if they accuse you of doing cocaine" that everyone should be learning, but I can't get the past Beason basically demanding that the guy buy him a Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger after forcing him to go to court for 10 days.

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Posted on: May 18, 2011 2:01 pm
Edited on: May 18, 2011 5:20 pm

Beason tried to hit strip club patron but missed

BeasonPosted by Josh Katzowitz

Panthers LB Jon Beason is in the middle of a civil trial brought by a man who’s suing Beason for allegedly hitting him at a strip club in 2009 after the man previously had accused Beason of snorting cocaine.

On Tuesday, Beason testified that he really, really, really wanted to hit Gregory Frye because he was so enraged – and, in fact, he even tried to hit him – but ultimately didn’t touch him.

“There’s no way I hit him,” Beason said, via the Charlotte Observer.

Closing arguments between the two sides’ lawyers are scheduled for today, and then the jury (made up of eight women and four men) will deliberate and deliver a decision. More from the article:

The jury must also weigh testimony from a detective who said a criminal assault charge was not prosecutable because of a lack of witnesses and Frye's lack of credibility. The jury was not allowed to hear the detective describe an interview with a woman who said Frye had once plotted to provoke a fight with a pro basketball player so Frye could sue. …

Beason said he was "blown away" when friends told him at the strip club about Frye's allegations of cocaine use. Then, he said, he got angry and went to confront Frye.

"Your reputation is all you have. Your name is all you have," Beason testified.

That’s when Beason said he and Frye bumped chests and then Beason went to hit Frye. But his personal chef held his arm and the punch did not connect. Beason also admitted he shouldn’t have tried to hit Frye in the first place.

UPDATE 5:20 p.m. EST: No verdict was announced Wednesday, per Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer. Court is in recess until Thursday morning.

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Category: NFL
Posted on: May 17, 2011 6:59 pm
Edited on: May 17, 2011 7:23 pm

Marcell Dareus calls out Panthers, Broncos

Posted by Andy Benoit

Between now and whenever the 2011 NFL season actually begins, you can expect at least 1 million – and more likely 2 or even 3 million – stories about rookies intimating that they have a chip on their shoulder and about how they have something to prove and yada yda yada because so many teams passed on them in the draft.
M. Dareus (US Presswire)
Normally, it’s best to treat these stories the same way you might treat a panhandler in Times Square: pretend not hear. But we’ll make an exception for Marcell Dareus, only because he was drafted so high that when he gripes about teams that passed on him, he can’t help but get specific.

That’s what the No. 3 overall pick did in a recent appearance on Michael Irvin’s radio show on WQAM in Miami. Irvin asked Dareus if he should have been the first overall pick.

Dareus replied “yes” with no hesitation. Then he elaborated. “If I ever get a chance to play Carolina I’m going to make them pay for passing up on me,” he said. “Denver I’ll get a chance to play them in the regular season (this year) and I’m going to make it hell for them every time I play against them.”

That wasn’t all.

“I worked my butt off to the point where I’m not going to give you a reason not to pick me,” he said. “You’re not going to look at me and be like, ‘Well he’s good, but…” That ‘but’ word is never going to come up when you mention my name. My sole focus was for me not to give you a reason to not pick me and you still don’t? Okay, I understand you have needs somewhere else, but if you need somebody to control your front and be a commander across the front and not let anything happen? I work my butt off to do that, and you pass me up still? Okay, I’ve got something for you.”

So, in conclusion, Marcell Dareus has confirmed that he intends to play hard against the Broncos this year and against the Panthers in 2013.

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Posted on: May 16, 2011 1:11 pm
Edited on: May 16, 2011 1:12 pm

Hot Routes 5.16.11 Rejecting Hard Knocks?

Hot Routes

Posted by Andy Benoit

The Bucs have turned down an opportunity to be on HBO’s Hard Knocks, thus robbing viewers of a chance to potentially see Aqib Talib or LeGarrette Blount in a training camp fight.

Broncos cornerback Parrish Cox appeared in court Monday and pleaded not guilty in his sexual assault case. Trial is set for October.

Expect to see plenty of Cam Newton on TV in the very near future.

Thanks to deferred payments, DeMarcus Ware is the one NFL player who has received a check from his team during the lockout.

Roger Goodell bumped into Von Miller before the draft and went out of his way to say hello and be nice.

Julio Jones recently leant a helping hand to tornado victims in Alabama.

Former Cardinals linebacker Seth Joyner is hosting a high school football clinic this week. Unfortunately, it’s scheduled for May 21, which everyone knows is the Day of Reckoning.

Jon Beason has sued the man who sued him over an alleged punch in the face (Beason claims he never hit anybody). The trial is underway and filled with plenty of drama. If you’re into that sort of thing (and let’s admit, deep down, most of us are) then click here.

Jake Locker plans to work out with his new NFL teammates soon.

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Posted on: May 15, 2011 3:53 pm
Edited on: May 15, 2011 5:32 pm

Cam Newton working with former NFL QBs

Posted by Andy Benoit

The motif of post-draft quarterback analysis this offseason has been, How will the rookie signal-callers learn their first NFL system if there are no offseason team activities?

Of all the rookie quarterbacks, Cam Newton’s mental develoK. Dorsey (US Presswire)pment will be followed the closest. The No. 1 overall pick and highest-profile NCAA player in 2010 has drawn scrutiny for his unproven football IQ (remember Newton telling Jon Gruden before the draft about Auburn’s playbook being number-coded?).

In continuing that scrutiny, we pass along the report from Joe Person of the Charlotte Observer that Newton is learning his playbook at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, FL with the help of former NFL quarterbacks Chris Weinke and Ken Dorsey.

Weinke, you recall, played for the Panthers. Dorsey may not be as snazzy a mentor as Brett Favre, but his contributions are noteworthy because he played for current Panthers offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski at the University of Miami (and briefly in Cleveland, as well). Thus, Dorsey knows most of Carolina’s new offensive system.

“It’s a lot of material that I do not know, but each day I’m going in and learning something,” Newton told the Associated Press. “So by the time . . . the lockout is lifted and I get a chance to talk to Chudzinski and (QB coach Mike) Shula and meet back up with the team, I’ll be on top of my game.”

Newton recently told reporters that he’s putting in 12-hour days at the IMG Academy.

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