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May 08, 2006

Observations from minicamp (within limits)

It’s not easy to tell much when about 90 players are running around without pads and not hitting. And there are rules about what can be reported about sessions that aren’t open to the public. But, working within those rules, here are some observations from the Panthers three-day mini-camp, which ended Sunday.

  • It may only be May, but it doesn’t seem to matter to Steve Smith. The receiver, who always seems to be going at top speed, was making plays left and right.
  • Smith wasn’t the only receiver making big plays. Drew Carter and Efrem Hill were very impressive at times. Memo to Keary Colbert, who sat out as he recovers from off-season surgery: It might be a good idea to get back on the field very quickly if you want that No. 3 receiver spot. It would seem the Panthers are locked in with Smith, Keyshawn Johnson, Colbert, Carter and Karl Hankton as their top five receivers. But Hill, who also has return abilities, could factor into the mix or prompt the Panthers to keep six receivers.
  • It’s way too early to read much into this, but undrafted free agent quarterback Brett Basanez may have a shot to steal the No. 3 job from Stefan LeFors. Basanez has a stronger arm and looked good at times. But, at other times, it was obvious he’s learning a new system.
  • The outside linebacker spot opposite Thomas Davis is going to be the most interesting competition of training camp. Keith Adams worked with the first team in mini-camp, but that doesn’t mean much. Na’il Diggs, James Anderson, Adam Seward and Chris Draft are going to get long looks in training camp.
  • Rookie tight end Jeff King showed decent hands. He also bears a strong resemblance to backup quarterback Chris Weinke, although King has a lot more hair.
  • Speaking of Weinke, if the drill where offensive coordinator Dan Henning has his quarterbacks throw at barrels was the only thing that mattered, Weinke undoubtedly would be the starter. He seems to land at least one of his throws in the barrel every time and comes close on several others.
  • Jarrett Bush, an undrafted safety from Utah State, drew some major attention when he intercepted a pass on the final play of mini-camp while the offense was working on the two-minute drill.
  • Again, there were no pads and no contact, but rookie DeAngelo Williams certainly looks as if he has the potential to be the most explosive running back in franchise history.
  • Punter Jason Baker’s job probably was safe after a strong performance last season. It’s probably safer than ever because Micah Knorr shanked several punts.
  • Second-round draft pick Richard Marshall comes across as a guy with a lot of confidence. The cornerback from Fresno State also showed some signs he can back that up.

Posted by Observer Sports on May 8, 2006 at 04:18 PM | Permalink

Comments

Thanks for the input. You got me siked for the start of the season.

Posted by: Nick | May 9, 2006 4:03:14 AM

yeh cuz u be liking it u be on the mofu shi kik muza cuzzzz aiiiitght!

Posted by: snoopy69 | May 13, 2006 9:50:05 PM

What did he just say?

Posted by: huwhaT! | May 14, 2006 2:36:00 AM

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