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March 23, 2006

Proehl's playing future now in question

There's a poll question on charlotte.com that asks if the Panthers adding wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson is a good move.

The early results are overwhelmingly in favor of the move. That means the fans are happy and we already know the team is happy. But there could be one person in the whole affair who is not overjoyed.

That's veteran receiver Ricky Proehl, who has said several times he'd like to play another season for the Panthers. But Johnson's addition drops the chance of a Proehl return dramatically.

The Panthers have Johnson and Steve Smith as starters, and Keary Colbert as their third receiver. They also believe Drew Carter can develop into a solid player, and they have special teams ace Karl Hankton. That's five receivers and that often is the maximum the Panthers like to carry.

The Panthers could re-sign Proehl, bring him to training camp and let him compete with Carter and Hankton for the final two spots. But Proehl's situation is unique. He's a person the Panthers like and respect and they talked him out of retiring before last season. If Proehl were to come back, it would be common decency to assure him that he'd have a roster spot and wouldn't be cut in training camp. That might be a guarantee the Panthers no longer can make.

Posted by Observer Sports on March 23, 2006 at 11:22 PM | Permalink


I hope the Panthers at least let Ricky come in and compete IF he wants to. Maybe he won't want to now anyway as it appears he'll get in on fewer snaps. But,look at the numbers, he had zero drops last year! The man can catch balls, even badly thrown balls! Maybe it's time to let Colbert go. I like Carter's speed.

Posted by: Ron | Mar 24, 2006 10:28:49 AM

Being a good number 3 receiver takes more than being a bad number 2 receiver. While I think I would take Colbert or Carter over Proehl as my number 2 receiver, Proehl is definitely a better number 3 receiver (in other words, a better possession receiver who can come in on third down and get 7 yards to move the sticks. Give up on Colbert, play Carter as number 4 receiver. If either Smith or Johnson get hurt, move Carter up to number two, but keep Proehl as your third down possession guy.

Posted by: Proehl fan | Mar 24, 2006 12:20:14 PM

I agree that Keary should be the one to go. I don't see why Colbert should absolutely be kept. Carter showed more flashes of brilliance last season than Colbert has his entire career.

Proehl's a great locker-room guy too. If Keyshawn ever did cause problems, I think Ricky would be the type of guy that would nip that in the bud. He deserves to stick around for that and what he has done for the franchise in the several years that he has played here.

Posted by: Coop | Mar 24, 2006 1:17:37 PM

im a panther fan disregard the email address.maybe we should just make ricky the number 3, we know hes deserving so dont make him fight thatll scare him away but 6 receivers is still a little problem

Posted by: Andrew | Mar 26, 2006 11:38:32 AM

Proehl is the man. If he wants to come back the panthers should seriously consider giving him the chance. I don't think you can guarantee a spot to though. That goes against what Fox tells his players. Competition is good for the team. If a player practices well and shows he can play in the preseason, you have to go with him.

Posted by: Sam Mills Fan | Mar 28, 2006 12:18:25 PM

I agree. I think colbert should be let go. Proehl didn't catch many balls last year but when he did they were always very long and in tight situations that i dont think colbert could have done. And he never dropped the ball once. Make colbert leave, proehl should stay as the number 3 man!!!!

Posted by: cameron | May 16, 2006 8:28:16 PM

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