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March 24, 2006

Keyshawn's selfishness: A good thing?

While talking with writers from New York, Tampa and Dallas in recent days, a couple of things became apparent about Keyshawn Johnson.

"Sure, he’s selfish and all that,’’ a Dallas writer said. "But he’s not Terrell Owens.’’

Owens single-handedly destroyed a very good Philadelphia team last season. He took constant verbal shots at quarterback Donovan McNabb. Before that, Owens questioned the personal life of former teammate and San Francisco quarterback Jeff Garcia.

The normally image-conscious Panthers have raised some eyebrows by agreeing to a deal with Johnson, who also has some controversy in his past. Maybe they’re hitting the panic button and believing Johnson is the one player they need to win a Super Bowl. Or maybe, after doing a lot of research on their own, the Panthers are convinced Johnson won’t be a problem.

"Yeah, he can be a bit of a circus,’’ a Tampa writer said. "But the bottom line is he’s a competitor and he wants to win.’’

Johnson feuded with coach Jon Gruden in Tampa, when he felt he wasn’t getting the ball enough. Johnson left Tampa looking like the bad guy and there’s no question he deserved some blame. But Tampa writers said Gruden, who isn’t known as a diplomat, made some mistakes in dealing with the situation.

So the biggest indictment of Johnson is that he’s selfish. If you think that’s a bad thing for a wide receiver, you haven’t met Jerry Rice, Steve Smith, Muhsin Muhammad, Chad Johnson or Randy Moss. Heck, the trait extends to tight ends. Remember the days when the Panthers would win, but Wesley Walls would whine because he only had one catch?

Selfish competitiveness is part of the reason all those receivers succeeded.

One of the few receivers in recent memory who has shown no outward signs of selfishness is Carolina’s Keary Colbert. He caught only 25 passes last season and will surrender his starting job to Johnson. In the end, maybe a little more selfishness is just what the Panthers wanted.

Posted by Observer Sports on March 24, 2006 at 10:49 AM | Permalink

Comments

Welcome to Charlotte, Keyshawn.

Talk is talk, reporters are reporters.
Keyshawn plays to win.
Damn good attitude for a Panther to have.
Here's to the "new" kid getting along with his teammates that are already here :)

Posted by: John | Mar 24, 2006 6:49:05 PM

I think Keyshawn will be fine, but I disagree completely with the premise of the article. Selfishness is not a virtue in a "TEAM" sport. How can you even assert that Pat?! When Wesley would complain after a win it was a sign of immaturity not a receiver's succeessful attitude. I love Wesley, but come on. Keyshawn needs to 'play nice', because if he becomes a distraction & tears this team apart everyone, including Pat, will say "the Panthers should've known this going in". My hope is that he will succeed here, but 'Buyer Beware', that's a ton of money for an aging player who is NOT known for his mentoring/teaching attitude. Colbert's attitude is RESPECTABLE, not the reason for his failure as a starting receiver. Only in Carolina sports writing can a 'Team 1st' attitude be a liability! There are many examples of successful team players, more than selfish success stories. What a reach to make 'good' from a conspicuous situation. Go Panthers

Posted by: Mike | Mar 24, 2006 9:36:25 PM

I like what Mr. Hurney and Mr. Fox are doing so far, what i would want to do next would try and work a deal to draft bush by offering delhomme and mitchell if he is still under contract and maybe throw in a dt like ettihaha or however it is spelled, along with a future #1 pick if needed. We have Weinke under contract cheap, with 2 rb's like foster and bush and 2 receivers like smith and keyshawn , who both can go up and get the ball if it is anywhere close, qb shouldnt matter who is back there if they have any timing on pass patterns at all.then a big run blocking guard or 2 in the draft and 2 linebackers and a safety and we should be set. Don't get me wrong , I wanted delhomme as a panther long before any press said anything, but with a power running back like a bush type caliber and the receiving corps in place. Super bowl winners would probably ring true barring injuries with this scenario. Thats just what I would like to see, sure you all have better scenarios too. lol

Posted by: gary lineberger | Mar 25, 2006 8:33:00 AM

ugh! are you kidding me? the panthers epitomize the word "team" and they go out and get terrell owens jr.(but without TO's talent)? johnson has been a bust his entire career. he will be nothing but a cancer to the panthers. i am very disappointed mgmt would bring such a self-serving, overrated thug to its organization. what's next? are they going to lobby to get rae carruth paroled?

Posted by: tim | Mar 25, 2006 12:43:18 PM

Keyshawn Johnson will be a great compliment to Steve Smith and a great addition to the running game. Welcome to Charlotte Keyshawn, and don't listen to stupid critics saying you won't fit in here. With Keyshawn, smitty and a healthy foster we should be set for another deep run into the playoffs. Good work Mr. Hurney.

Posted by: John | Mar 26, 2006 11:01:29 AM

Tim,
It is absolutely ridiculous to compare the signing of Keyshawn to getting Carruth paroled. What an assinine comment. Keyshawn will be a great addition to the Panthers. He will complement Steve Smith immensely, and he has done nothing for Panther fans to get on his back about. How about you get off the high horse!

Posted by: Dane | Mar 28, 2006 10:49:13 AM

First of all............WELCOME KEYSHAWN!!!! Reading peoples comments you would think that a receiver who wants the ball and is willing to say so is a liability. It's not like we are trying to bring OJ out of retirement (rae carruth parolled, let's be serious people)! What we are getting with Keyshawn is a strong possession receiver, great hands, heart and a proven winner. We are getting a receiver who wants the ball when the game is on the line and says so. Michael Jordan was a hero for having the same mindset. As for the comparisons to Moose, Mushin wishes he were the possession receiver that Keyshawn is. Moose in his best year dropped more balls than we dropped bombs on Al Quida. We have upgraded from even the 2003 season by adding Keyshawn. I get the feeling from some of these posts that what the fans want is another Keary Colbert as the second receiver. That's what we need, another receiver who's sole purpose on third down is to clear a side, I am sure all the other teams will be shocked if we throw it to Steve again! As far as Keyshawn being a cancer, I can only think of one person in the NFL who would make that comment and that would be Coach "Chucky" down in Tampa Bay. Between the two, I trust Fox more than him anyway and Coach Fox sees no issue with Keyshawn coming in. Sit back Panther fans, enjoy the ride just like our punter will because now we actually have a second threat to help us convert on third down now! Panther fans, we know we have a love for Steve Smith, then why do we turn our heads when he makes the same arguments about wanting the ball? To me that personifies a winner (not a whiner). As long as we are winning the ball will be big enough for them both, if we start losing we will at least we have two players saying that they need to touch it more instead of hearing players talk of what they need to do to get Steve open. Maybe DeShaun Foster will step up and want to be MeShaun too. That, at least, would give us four offensive players who are willing to give it everything they have and actually want to make a difference in a game! Again, welcome to Charlotte Keyshawn!

Posted by: CaliforniaPanther | Mar 28, 2006 11:01:03 PM

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