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March 19, 2008

OT Sims not out of picture

    Don't forget about offensive tackle Barry Sims just yet.

    The Panthers and Sims' agent are expected to talk again after the draft, when Carolina will better know what its needs are at tackle. Right now, the expectation is that the team will probably use its first pick on an OT.

    But that doesn't rule out Sims, who despite being 33 is both durable (109 starts) and large (6-5, 300 pounds). The latter aspect fits the remaking of this offensive line, which is moving from finesse to power. Other teams have some interest in Sims as well, including San Francisco, Miami and Denver.

     "What we're going to do is wait until after the draft (April 26-27)," said Ken Vierra, Sims' agent, today. "If an opportunity appears before  then, we'll consider it, but we'll likely wait and see how the landscape looks at the end of April."

    The idea being that even some highly rated college tackles prove not quite ready to start in the NFL, and that's where Sims could enter the picture.

    "Oakland had three guys who were supposed to be the next left tackle, and Barry always ended up starting," Vierra said.

    Keep in mind that Oakland, where Sims played in the past, has had its tackle of the future in place before (Robert Gallery, anyone?) only to see Sims doing the job once more when the younger player proved unready.

          Sims could wind up as a security blanket for some team; possibly the Panthers. There, he could mentor a young player and  possibly play if inexperience or injury prevents the new guy from  stepping into the lineup right away.

-- Stan Olson

Posted by Observer Sports on March 19, 2008 at 12:15 PM | Permalink



6-5, 300 pounds is not a large lineman. Plus, does this team have any idea what they want. Last year it was zone blocking, now it is straight ahead blocking. Plus, Kalil is not a power blocker!

Posted by: Steven | Mar 19, 2008 12:38:16 PM

Not that I'm against signing another lineman..but why are we swithing blocking schems again?
Especially to power blocking, not one of the offensive linemen we have is a powerblocker.
Deangelo and Foster performed really well under the zone scheme last year and I think DeAngelo and whoever the 2nd back is will do well under that system.
You can't completely fault the O-line for the horrible season, David Carr is terrible and Testaverde was 44. Jake's a gunslinger back there and he can unload quickly, the zone scheme would work with him.

IF they try to switch to power blocking, Carolina will be dominated. We have no power blockers, nobody fits the scheme and it'll just be a mess...

Posted by: Kaos | Mar 19, 2008 1:03:38 PM

Oh, so we're moving to a power line after a year determined to have finesse linemen in a zone-blocking scheme. Is that why we're starting a center who is shorter and lighter? I agree that Sims would make some sense as a backup or stopgap option to start if he came cheap, but where did this sudden indication come from that we're changing the line philosophy again? Do we really want to endure the growing pains of a year ago AGAIN?

Posted by: Michael Procton | Mar 19, 2008 1:08:22 PM

It is possible that Stan doesn't know exactly what he is talking about. This is the first time I've heard anyone (media or team official) mention that we might be moving back towards a traditional run blocking scheme. Although, in Stan's defense, recent talk of moving Travelle Wharton to offensive-guard is reason to possibly believe that the Panthers want to utilize some sort of power-blocking scheme in the running game. It worked pretty well for Dallas last year... they brought in Leonard Davis, a former tackle for Arizona, and moved him to the guard position.

Outside of this blog post from the main-man -Stan, and aside from the possibility of moving Wharton to guard, all other signs point towards the Panthers continuing their move towards the zone-blocking scheme. They got rid of Hartwig, showing that Fox has faith in Kalil, a college All-American who has zone-blocking experience from USC. Obviously, by getting rid of Foster, they show that they want to feature DeAngelo Williams in the run game, a guy who was pretty successful in college under a zone-blocking system. Also, keep in mind that our offensive coordinator seems to prefer a variation of the west-coast offense, which is tied to the zone-blocking system.

Long story short, I expect +1500 yards from our rushing attack this year. I'm sick of hearing this is going to be a running team, and then watch them average 2.9 yards per carry every damn Sunday. RUN THE FOOTBALL.

Posted by: McSwollenvich | Mar 19, 2008 1:40:56 PM

If Sims is considered a big/strong lineman at 6'5", 300lbs, what would Evan Mathis be considered at his listed 6'5" 304? My point is that we have a third round pick who was moved to tackle last year, and is the same size as Sims; yet he is younger, and has been with the team longer (chemistry), and they won't play him. Does that mean he is yet another third round bust? If we're signing stopgaps (which I actually agree with Procton on this one...uhhh), why wouldn't the team use the younger players they have already been cultivating for going on three years to do so?

Posted by: Phillip | Mar 19, 2008 1:55:49 PM

Guys, I misspoke a bit, and paid for it. As far as we've heard, I think they will remain zone blockers, as OC Jeff Davidson worked hard to install that last year. I think they would like bigger and quicker guys; thus the shift of Wharton to guard from tackle. As for Sims, he would be a backup, and while 6-5 is plenty big enough, 300 is not large for an OT.
mea culpa,

Posted by: stan olson | Mar 19, 2008 2:08:44 PM

I'm confused, McS...the rushing attack put up +1800 yards last year, and averaged 4.0 YPC. That's not even taking into consideration that there was no threat from any of our QBs after week 3. Where was your hangup, exactly?

Posted by: Michael Procton | Mar 19, 2008 2:14:55 PM

Guys come on, let's forget about sports! Let's move on to way more important things like me trying to be president. I have a secret regime planned if I take office and I will take this pathetic country down with me. All I need to ever say is "Let's have hope " that phrase right there is what I hope will get this nation through tough times what an idiot I am. Thank You for your time while I am campaigning in North Carolina. Again thank you, and bless Alah, sincerely Barack Hussein Obama.

Posted by: Barack Obama | Mar 19, 2008 2:18:00 PM

WOW you must be really bored.

Posted by: Telling It Like It Is | Mar 19, 2008 2:24:09 PM

Hey buddy...still got that level 122 account availible? I dislike both of the Dems running as much as the next guy, but keep that crap off of here.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Mar 19, 2008 2:24:41 PM

honestly i think a mix of zone and power is what were looking for, that would keep the front seven of any Def. on their toes. Hopefully were looking at anthony clement released by the jets hes solid...not only that but the steelers might not be able o sign marvel smith which is def. an improvement over both candidates right now...but in sims defense fargus did have a dam good year behind him with no QB play...and by the way does anyone have any idea whats up with Evan Mathis? Procton u should know this one...help a fellow cat fan out...what gives shoulnt he be able to play RT or be a nice pulling RG? anyhow its nice to see some actual thought in the "brain trust" this year...GO PANTHERS!!

Posted by: randy | Mar 19, 2008 2:37:25 PM


Thanks for the reply. But, what's your take on the Panthers signing Sims when they seem to already have the same guy (size wise) also being a backup with Mathis?

Posted by: Phillip | Mar 19, 2008 2:45:55 PM

atlas I finally agree with Procton. Keep that crap off of here.

Posted by: wowo | Mar 19, 2008 2:50:13 PM

exactly phil...my point exactly...hey anyone see the latest mock drafts with us taking Otah...id rather trade down with the cards still get Harvey and then have the ammunition to trade up for either Chelious from BC or Albert from VU...just a thought...or draft mendenhall forcing another team to trade with us to get what we want...its been done b4 ala Manning for Rivers

Posted by: randy | Mar 19, 2008 2:52:29 PM

check the mocks on espn.com and nfl.com

Posted by: randy | Mar 19, 2008 2:55:29 PM

What a job I have done for this country. A war with no end, four dollar gas and a recession. I thank the 20 percent of Americans who still support me!
Just kidding, the real Bush could not have communicated this without stuttering and coming across as a complete idiot.

Fool me once, shame onnnnnnnnnn ya, duh, duh,
Fooled me can’t get fooled again.

Posted by: George Bush | Mar 19, 2008 3:15:42 PM

I was going to e-mail a reply to the witty Barack Obama impersonator, but when I clicked on his name, he had an AOL address. Really, guy? AOL? How is 1998 treating you? How about we just keep all the political crap off of this page?

Posted by: Yo, republican dick | Mar 19, 2008 3:47:01 PM


The one place that politics should not enter is this forum. So lets get back to the Panther's looking at another 7-9 season. In addition, the high draft picks that Marty Hurney has missed on.

Posted by: Steven | Mar 19, 2008 3:50:26 PM

I think Mathis is a nice backup who should get a shot to compete at RG (or, god help us, LG if Wharton stays at tackle.)

Posted by: Michael Procton | Mar 19, 2008 4:14:56 PM


I don't disagree with that, but my point is that the Panthers have already switched him to tackle (a more natural fit in my opinion) and now they're talking about bringing in a similar guy in some ways. If he's already on the team, has one year under his belt in the "new system" (whatever that is), then why not let him compete for the backup spot? I think moving him between tackle and guard can't be good for his development.

Posted by: Phillip | Mar 19, 2008 4:20:08 PM

@ Phillip

There a very valid reason to why E.Mathis isn't starting.He can't pass block to save his life & i have a hard time trying to find out why he still a Panther.

Posted by: Damon | Mar 19, 2008 4:24:59 PM

You may be right, Damon, but what does that say about another wasted third round pick?

Posted by: Phillip | Mar 19, 2008 4:42:35 PM

I think the reason Mathis isn't playing is because he just isn't that good? To me at least, it looks like Hurney missed on another 3rd rounder...

Posted by: Kaos | Mar 19, 2008 7:08:59 PM

Draft picks are hit or miss but to think that every draft pick going to turn out good isn't fair to the Panthers or any NFL team.There are countless NFL teams outside the Panthers that had alot of bad picks.

Posted by: Damon | Mar 19, 2008 7:30:36 PM

Damon, I agree that teams aren't going to hit on every pick. But, since 2005 (which is when they changed scouting directors), the Panthers have had 5 third round picks; Attiyah Ellison, Evan Mathis (2005); James Anderson, Rashad Butler (2006); and Charles Johnson (2007). While the jury is still out on Johnson, you can't miss on that many 3rd rounders. Steve Smith said it himself on NFL Radio the other day that the Panthers weren't very good at replacing their olders players with young talent. I have to agree with that statement.

Posted by: | Mar 19, 2008 8:07:28 PM

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