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March 28, 2008

Panthers sign versatile OL Milford Brown

Milfordbrown2 It's beginning to look like the Panthers are out to sign every guard they can find.

They added another Friday, signing unrestricted free agent Milford Brown, who is 6-foot-5 and 330 pounds. Contract terms were undisclosed.

Brown's signing comes on the heels of the team's agreement with another giant guard, Toniu Fonoti, on Tuesday, adding to the impression that Carolina wants to get bigger along the line and exploit the power running game.

Brown, 28, has played with Houston, Arizona and St. Louis over six seasons. He had 16 starts over four seasons with the Texans, then started 12 games for the Cardinals in 2006. With St. Louis in 2007, Brown started nine games at left guard, four at right tackle and two at right guard. The Panthers like linemen with that kind of versatility.

In addition to these two, Carolina has loaded up at the position with Keydrick Vincent and a likely shift of Travelle Wharton from tackle. Geoff Hangartner also returns.  Expect the O-line, which is likely to be bolstered by an offensive tackle in the draft, to have a completely different look this fall.

-- Stan Olson

Posted by Observer Sports on March 28, 2008 at 01:48 PM | Permalink

Comments

The Panthers are stacking the deck. I hope it pays off. They have not changed their foundation too much (with the exception of Foster). Jake, Smith, and Peppers are still a part of the team, but everything will be different this season. It looks good from here, I just hope it plays out that way (healthy and effective Jake)!!!

Posted by: Panthers2003 | Mar 28, 2008 1:54:22 PM

Well there's another versatile OL. Looks like they could be prepping to draft Mendenhall.

Posted by: Zuul | Mar 28, 2008 2:09:31 PM

Interesting move, given Brown DOES have the capacity to play tackle (albeit not particularly well.) He's got some decent athleticism for his size, too. At this point, you wonder if they've fallen to a backup plan of keeping the OTs the same (Gross RT/Wharton LT and hoping improved play on the interior line will be the source of improvement.

Posted by: Michael Procton | Mar 28, 2008 2:14:35 PM

I hate to be that guy, but isn't a common theme of the Texans, Cardinals, and Rams injured quarterbacks?

Just saying...

Posted by: swiznami | Mar 28, 2008 2:18:17 PM

I can dig it. They're signing a bunch of guards and will weed out the bad ones at training camp. I'm thinking that Wahle must have really stunk up the joint last year in the coaches' minds.

Posted by: Authority on Everything | Mar 28, 2008 2:21:47 PM

It's the divisional playoffs versus the Rams. Davis, who has rushed for over 1400 yards on the season, is injured. None the less, the Panthers have already tallied 200 rushing yards by the 4th quarter (70 of those coming from Foster). Minter intercepts a pass in Panther teritory. The Cats drive down the field into Rams' territory with a couple of brilliant receptions from Smith. The ball is on the 25 and Foster gets the ball, dances around and loses seven yars. Do Fox & Hurney put the ball in the air on 3rd and 14 to let the amazing Smith make the play??

Posted by: SYRPIS | Mar 28, 2008 10:42:51 AM

The answer is NO! It's yet another draw play on 3rd and long (something very common in the league, BTW). After destroying Panther momentum in the previous play and bring the Ram crowd back into the game, does Foster get shut down? The answer is NO again. Wow! How did the Foster of that year make that play, but struggled to do so since?? The answer is simple... Stussie, Mitchell, Gross, Donalley and even James do a exellent job getting off of the ball to push the defense backwards. Foster has only one tack to break 10 yards later to make the play and get the first down!

To sum up: 1)The Panthers do need to draft a monster LT in the first round (and maybe another OT later) and 2)they are on the right track to bringing the team back to its former glory. The proof is in the pudding...

Procton responded...
Jeno James was a great guard for us that year. He was a BEAST when pulling and blocking for Davis on the off-tackle sweep.

Posted by: SYRPIS | Mar 28, 2008 2:22:25 PM

I agree with you 100% Procton! I was upset when we lost him to the Dolphins for a going rate of $3M/yr. Stussie was cut b4 the roids scandal, Donnalley retired and Mitchell would not resign for a reasonable contract. The team has not been the same since. I just hope that we don't have another Seifert repeat, where the o-line gets rebuilt, only to see the coaching staff have a bad season and get cut loose just to see the next regime reap the benefits. Let's not forget teams like the Giants and Steelers whose team coaches were on the hot seat before the won the big show!

Posted by: SYRPIS | Mar 28, 2008 2:27:36 PM

Procton,

Thank you for repeating my thoughts from 4 blogs ago.

Posted by: Steven | Mar 28, 2008 2:31:33 PM

Looks to me they are wanting to move the line around and see if we can draft mendenhall. Although I would probably still prefer a tackle but lets see who else the panthers grab.

Posted by: Beasons-A-Beast | Mar 28, 2008 2:43:47 PM

"All of this has to make you wonder if the team might be thinking that Jeremy Bridges has reached the cuttable portion of his contract."
Quote is from:
http://www.carolinagrowl.com/Read.aspx?Story=546
It looks like the organization is back on track as far as off-the-field character issues too! Brilliant!!! I can finally take pride in my team once again (win or lose)!!!!!

Posted by: SYRPIS | Mar 28, 2008 2:45:52 PM

I think that I like this signing. I am beginning to get the feeling that the zone blocking scheme that was supposed to be the answer to all our prayers is dwindling away. This guy is huge and so is fontini or whatever his name is. It seems like we are deffinately moving back to a power running attack.I hope that it works. Anything is better than the poor excuse for an offence that we've had the last 2 seasons. Still should get a solid tackle in the draft. These guys haven't proved that they can produce yet. RB in the 1st would be a waste. Not the biggest need this year. Go Panthers! Keep up the good work fox and hurney.

Posted by: jake | Mar 28, 2008 2:53:00 PM

KEEP ON SIGN CAROLINA PANTHER !!!!!

Posted by: DANNY | Mar 28, 2008 2:57:29 PM

Stan

I'd agree with sentiment in the comments and say this seems more like a sign that the Panthers are standing pat at OT with Wharton and Gross or Gross and Bridges. It seems unlikely that they would sign all these OL and then draft an OT in Round 1, unless Mathis' days are also done.

Also, would have to think this makes signing Simms very unlikely.

Posted by: John | Mar 28, 2008 2:58:55 PM

@ M.Procton

Thats what i was thinking..The Panthers are going to switch Gross & Wharton.But they are really serious about getting our run game going.A running back with the 13 pick don't sound to far out the picture now.

Posted by: Damon | Mar 28, 2008 3:09:26 PM

Guys this is an exact blueprint of the New England Patriots. They load up on lineman and create competition at the position. This will improve our running game more than anything else not giving a guarantee to anyone that they have a starting job. I LOVE IT!!! MAY THE BEST MEN WIN!!!

Posted by: wowo | Mar 28, 2008 3:10:26 PM

Guys, I agree as far as the Sims thing goes; Brown can fill in as a backup. But I'm still not convinced that a talented OT won't be first up in the draft...
As for the zone blocking, it's starting to look that way, although nobody inside the organization is saying that. Bigger bodies....

Posted by: stan olson | Mar 28, 2008 3:15:51 PM

I don't usually comment but I thought you guys might have commenting on this mock from rivals.com. They have Carolina taking Brian Brohm in the 1st round.

http://nfldraft.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=775564

Posted by: KF | Mar 28, 2008 3:32:24 PM

Richardson must have made himself clear at his lake house last fall. Power football! A good move covering their bases. They want to try and fill as many needs as possible before the draft so they don't have to reach for a specific position. I may be alone but I'd rather Wharton at LT than a rookie. Last year he was coming off a bad injury and played pretty well. He'll never be an elite tackle but who cares. He'll play solid and that's all we'll need. Works for the Patriots (granted they have Brady). Fox wants beef up the middle and so he'll need to start force feeding the smaller Kalil. And for god's sake leave Gross at RT. Every year he gets switched to the other side and usually stuggles. Leave him be! Tackle will be addressed at some point in the draft guaranteed. It's a deep position. But I for one will expect a power RB early and will enjoy the Panther's getting back to smash mouth football. Go Panthers!

Posted by: gradyhog | Mar 28, 2008 3:36:10 PM

The cats will likely still look at OT at #13. Most of these aren't quality starters, and are at most depth at worst camp fodder. I still believe that the smart pick is a good OT unless Clady and Williams are both gone, then I might look at Meandhall or trade down and look at Stewart.

Posted by: jbw | Mar 28, 2008 3:59:56 PM

Exploit the power running game, with who? i hope they are going after a big back in the draft because dave megget, i mean d. williams sure ain't the answer if you talking bout power running game.

Posted by: Samad | Mar 28, 2008 4:07:29 PM

hey Panther fans it's good to be in a place where I can congregate with my fellow Panther fans against the evil new england pathetics. Thank you, and the patties will be found out for their cheating!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: patriots cheat... thats how they win | Mar 28, 2008 4:20:50 PM

I wonder if the Panthers are looking alot higher than Mendenhall, possibly Chris Long. They have the picks, players etc Miami may want for a trade. Imagine Long and Peppers together. Fox has to be drooling at the thought of them together.

Posted by: chknwing | Mar 28, 2008 4:26:09 PM

Wowo the difference between us and the Patriots is their OL is good, wish I could say the same about the cat's line

Posted by: John | Mar 28, 2008 5:15:31 PM

I agree with Damon, this may mean that they will go for Mendenhall in the 1st rd, not that I necessarily agree with it BUT the draft is deept at OT and they could get a really solid one in 2, or trade up some extra picks and move into the 1st rd x2 and get both.

Posted by: Ben | Mar 28, 2008 5:45:49 PM

Mendenhall, Otah, or Harvey? Regardless, the debate could go on and on for all you ladies. Sorry SYRPIS if I offended your Cyber world. No way Clady falls past KC or their stupid, just like him. Williams is not better than Otah and I am not the only one saying this, please forget about that one. What's interesting is that Matt Ryan could fall not only to us, but all the way down to the bottom of round 1 to possibly GB. If Atlanta and Baltimore pass, I just hope Hurney and company don't bite on this average talent. My ultimate wish is for us to trade down for a 2 rd pick and snatch the OT from Boston College. 2 picks in the round 2 to address RB first; I like the kid out of East Carolina or Stewart if he falls that far, then feed the Defensive Line. Then 2 picks in round 3!

Posted by: JD | Mar 28, 2008 5:54:45 PM

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