Posted on: January 17, 2009 7:17 pm

Peter Piper Punted Peppers....

Julius Peppers announced today on ESPN that he is ready for greener pastures. The idea of a long-term contract is no longer an option according to Pep's agent. The Panthers can either let him slip away contentedly or slap the franchise tag on him. Those are the facts as we know them.

Of course, this opens up a Pandora's box of second-guessing, what-the-hells, and blame sharing. On the Charlotte Observer, there an equal mix of good riddance and angst. No matter how you paint it, this is a story that has a lot of opinions. This is a bit different than when Jenkins left; this is a guy we established as the face of our defense, the guy Jerry Richardson called out to lead this team from the comfort of his barbeque.

Personally, I don't want to see him go. He's been a good egg to have on the team in spite of accusations of taking plays (or games) off. He's kept a low profile, hasn't shot anyone and sold a lot of jerseys. However, the beat goes on. One man does not make a team unless your name is Peyton.

Peppers has more natural gifts that one man should have. He's a freak of nature and I would rather have him on my side than not. The problem with highly talented people is that they can either take their talent for granted or they simply get bored. I believe that Peppers falls equally into both categories.

The Panthers have a conservative system that starts from the ownership down. As much as some would want to burn Coach Fox in effigy, bringing in Bill Cowhers or any other coach isn't going to change that culture. Julius Peppers is bored blaying the 4-3. He says he's ready to play in a system that will utilize his full potential.

The Panthers have been as creative with him as any other team out there. A 3-4 system may be a better fit, but this to me is a clear case of the grass is greener. There aren't a lot of teams out there who have had the success the Panthers have had. There are a lot of teams that will throw a ton of money at him and 29 years old makes for a good payday.

I am thinking of a certain wide receiver who had a ton of talent and thought the grass was greener somewhere else. Moose took the big payday, went to a supposed contender with a better system and flamed out. He realized differently and came home soon enough. I'm not predicting the same scenario playing out for Julius, however I am saying that no matter where he goes he's sure to see some warts.

Category: NFL
Posted on: October 31, 2008 3:02 pm

Elizabeth Dole lost my vote

Classless. That's the most politically correct thing I can say about Dole right now. For those who missed it, she accused her opponent Kay Hagan of being  "godless and un-American". I believe that having faith matters (evern atheists believe in something), because knowing what you believe and why shapes your decisions and outlook toward everyday life.

Being a Christian myself, one of the things that makes my skin crawl is the guy who give credibility to negative stereotypes. I want to slap the guy with the bullhorn who stands on the corner who says you're going to hell and God hates you. I'll never hire the guy who feels it necessary to put a fish on their yellow page card as if it makes them more qualified to fix the sink. And I absolutely can't stand someone who stands on a soapbox of self-righteousness and casts stones instead of addressing more critical matters such as the economy and why the middle class gets pounded in the butt with taxes.

I'm a Conservative, but not a robot. I want leadership, not an attack ad. The election is as important as any other in history and I am disgusted with the slander, animosity and negativity of all parties. Regardless of party affiliation, religion, demographic or economic class; it's time we demanded leadership and accountability from our public servants. It's the Godly and American thing to do.

Posted on: October 7, 2008 3:05 pm

Are the Panthers in the NFL elite?

The Panthers are a team that performs better flying below the radar and so far they’ve done an impressive job of proving the preseason pundits wrong. After a couple of squeakers they lost to a Vikings team that was desperate to save their season and smacked around two rebuilding teams in Atlanta and KC. It makes our record look good, but beating a horrible Chiefs team just isn't something worth crowing about.

The next three week stretch will better reflect just what kind of team the Panthers are. Carolina is playing Tampa this weekend, which is a rivalry game they'll have no trouble getting psyched for. With the quarterback situation and the fact that Gruden seems to be afraid to throw it downfield this season, I think that this game won’t be as close as some think it will be. New Orleans the next week will prove to be a tough out, but they don't have the same mojo as a couple of years ago.

Before I sink too much hope in Carolina’s turnaround, I want to see how they do against (drum roll, please)...Arizona. I want to see how our secondary reacts to a primarily vertical passing game and whether our offense can keep up if the game turns into a shooting match. Arizona has all the makings of being a dangerous trap game after back-to-back division battles.

So far the Panthers’ schedule has been loaded with teams with a “run-first” philosophy. One thing our defensive line has not had is the chance to do is flex their muscles against a team like the Cards. Our stats show that we can stop the run, however does our secondary have the legs to cover the pass through an entire game? Arizona has big, physical receivers getting the ball from a rejuvenated Kurt Warner. Their defense is better than we think. This is no gimme.

After this game, Carolina is perched to be potentially 7-1 at the halfway point. If Carolina wins the next three games should they then be considered among the NFL’s elite or are they just beneficiaries of an easy schedule? Will the easier schedule leave them with enough gas in the tank to make a Superbowl run? What do you think?

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or