Carolina Panthers Mid Term Report Card

Even with some key injuries to the offensive line and the highly publicized suspension to Steve Smith, the surprising Panthers at the half way point in the season head up the razor close NFC South division.

TEAM: Carolina Panthers

OFFENSE B-

DEFENSE B-

SPEC. TEAMS B-

COACHING B+

FRONT OFFICE C

SCOUTING C+

OVERALL

STRENGTH QB, RB, LB, CB, WR

WEAKNESS OG, OT,

OFF. MVP Jake Delhomme

DEF. MVP Chris Harris

TOP ROOKIE Jonathan Stewart

Comments: There was much speculation entering the 2008 season that quarterback Jake Delhomme would not have recovered sufficiently enough from Tommy John surgery to compete at the professional level. Not only has he done so, but has led them to the top of the division at the mid point of the season. The running combination of rookie Jonathan Stewart and DeAngelo Williams have been outstanding while Steve Smith and is a legitimate deep receiving threat. The offensive line is a more than adequate group, but injuries have hurt particularly from a timing and execution standpoint. John Kasay has been perfect on the season having hit on 16 straight field goals, but punter Jason Baker and the punt protection unit has really struggled.

Defensively the unit as a whole is sound although I believe that personnel at both safety positions and tackle Damione Lewis are marginal and need to upgraded.

General manager Marty Hurney is a former sportswriter who was first hired by Bobby Beathead. His background and expertise in the area of player personnel has been questioned on more than one occasion. Former Chief and Chargers scout Don Gregory is a very competent college scouting director and scouts Pete Russell and Jeff Morrow are highly respected veteran scouts.

Make no mistake about it, John Fox was on the hot seat prior to the start of the 2008 season, but appears to have solidified himself with the teams early play. Mike Trgovac, Sal Sunseri, Jim Skipper and Jeff Davidson are all excellent teachers and individuals.


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