Mid-Week Notes - 11-2-05

Mid-week notes on the Panthers after week 8.

--QB Jake Delhomme proved that the blow to his head that forced him out of the Detroit game on Oct. 16 has not affected him. What a tremendous game Delhomme had against the Vikings, throwing for 341 yards and three touchdowns while leading the Panthers to 38 points.

--QB Chris Weinke did not play on Sunday, but remains the team's No. 2 quarterback.

--QB Stefan LeFors is Carolina's third-string quarterback.

--RB Stephen Davis still has an extremely low yards per carry average, but has nine rushing touchdowns. You would think at some point the Panthers might consider using DeShaun Foster more between the 20s and Davis in short-yardage and goal-line situations. Part of the reason for Davis' low numbers is teams are stuffing an extra man in the box and making Jake Delhomme beat them.

--RB DeShaun Foster show no ill effects from his injured knee on Sunday and should be ready to go this week against Tampa Bay, barring any unexpected swelling.

--RB Nick Goings continues to be an afterthought in the offense with Stephen Davis and DeShaun Foster healthy.

--FB Brad Hoover returned to the lineup on Sunday after missing one game with a sore shoulder and did a nice job as a lead blocker.

--WR Steve Smith leads the league in receptions (50), receiving yards (797) and touchdown catches (8). However, tougher defenses are ahead for the Panthers in coming weeks.

--WR Keary Colbert finally caught his first touchdown pass of the season on Sunday.

--WR Ricky Proehl was not a big factor on Sunday, but he usually turns up in big games for Carolina and this Sunday's matchup against Tampa Bay is a big one.

--WR Rod Gardner saw his playing time decrease slightly against Minnesota.

--TE Kris Mangum caught a touchdown pass on Sunday for the Panthers.

--TE Michael Gaines continued to emerge as a threat in the passing game with two catches for 67 yards against the Vikings on Sunday.

--TE Mike Seidman was inactive on Sunday.

--PK John Kasay ended his streak of four straight missed field goals - all of them from beyond 50 yards - with a 44-yarder on Sunday.

--PR Steve Smith continues to split punt return duties for the Panthers with Chris Gamble. That seems a dangerous proposition given Smith's success this season as a receiver.

--PR Chris Gamble is splitting reps at punt returner with Steve Smith.

--KR Rod Smart was back on the field Sunday returning kickoffs for the Panthers against the Vikings and will play against Tampa Bay.

--KR Jamal Robertson was inactive on Sunday.

--DE Julius Peppers played through a broken bone in his hand on Sunday. He has not put up the sack numbers people expected of him, but his mere presence is creating opportunities for others. Carolina has 10 sacks in the past two games.

--DT Jordan Carstens has two sacks in his past two games for the Panthers. Carstens is known primarily for his run-stopping ability.

--LB Dan Morgan played through a dislocated shoulder on Sunday against Minnesota, but will face a much more physical game this week against Tampa Bay.

--LB Vinny Ciurciu will continue to spell starter Dan Morgan when his shoulder gets sore.

--CB Chris Gamble played well after returning from an ankle injury. Gamble hopes to dramatically improve his play in the second half of the season.

--CB Ricky Manning has been playing well as Carolina's nickel back this season.

--S Marlon McCree has brought an element of toughness to the Panthers.

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