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May 29, 2008

No timetable on when rookie Otah will practice

For those of you worried when - or even if - rookie offensive tackle Jeff Otah will start practicing with the Panthers, it could be sooner rather than later.

Otah, one of the team's two first-round draft picks, has an ankle injury that's been bothering him for several months. He hasn't suited up for this week's summer school practices, nor did he for minicamp earlir this month.

But - dressed in a jersey, sweatpants and cleats - Otah has been doing individual workouts this week involving speed and agility on the sidelines. His ankle doesn't appear to be hindering him - at least he's not limping. But there's no sure way to tell and Otah hasn't spoken with the media.

Coach John Fox and general manager Marty Hurney - who hope Otah will develop quickly into the team's starting right tackle - haven't put a timetable on when Otah will first practice. And it might not even until training camp.

But it looks like he's working hard to get there as quickly as possible.

- David Scott

Posted by Observer Sports on May 29, 2008 at 01:22 PM | Permalink



Posted by: Scotty | May 29, 2008 1:32:41 PM

I sure hope Otah is going to be ready to practice before training camp. I hate thinking about our two 1st round picks not even taking a snap untill they put pads on in July. Also the O-Line needs to gel and Otah over on the sideline working out isn't going to do that.

Posted by: EW | May 29, 2008 1:37:37 PM

How many times in Fox's tenure has he cut short an offseason program?

Posted by: m | May 29, 2008 1:48:50 PM

EW... I think you would love for "our two 1st round picks not even taking a snap untill they put pads on in July." That would give you the opportunity to talk more smack, wouldn't it? As far as I'm concerned, they did a brilliant job in the draft, getting 3-5 potential starters. Who else can boast the same? They also did wonders with the overhaul and the cap space they have. So, regardless of how things actually turn out this year, at least have the decency to give them that much credit, will you??

Posted by: SYRPIS | May 29, 2008 4:13:09 PM

Ok enough of Otah...HAS anyone heard about Julius Peppers? is he doing well?

Posted by: paul | May 29, 2008 4:38:40 PM

How is the LBs lined up? And who is starting as the DLs. Hey speaking of which I thought everyone was high on the potential of Walker and Scott? How is the DL doing bad?

Posted by: MBPantfan | May 29, 2008 5:45:59 PM

Diggs, back healthy, is working with the starters ahead of Landon Johnson

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 29, 2008 6:06:25 PM

Look this is me practicing up for this Sunday Night! http://www.visi.com/~spookshow/files/joe359.JPG

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 29, 2008 6:34:05 PM

Yeah I know I look gay, don't have to tell me twice. I didn't wear my lipstick in that picture though! Got you on that one!

Posted by: Cameron | May 29, 2008 7:25:02 PM

Nice one procton... but that was pointed at you...

Posted by: MBPanthfan | May 29, 2008 7:26:40 PM

Yeah I accidently wrote this other guys name in the box for some reason. I ment me, sorry Cameron.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 29, 2008 7:27:39 PM

Just shows that Proctor forgot his name and types some other guys name in. LOL and look at his picture! good one Procton! forget about coming onto my blog. you guys are a whole bunch of loosers.

Posted by: The Free Radical Show | May 29, 2008 7:45:38 PM

Just realized we have the potential to have new starters at 11 positions on opening day. 3DL, 1SS, 5OL, 1RB, 1WR. It is a recipe for disaster. Then why am I not overly concerned? Why do I have this optimism, whether it is warranted or not?After all, we were 7-9 last year.

Because we have Jake back. His presence alone can translate into 2-3 more wins. That, and the replacements are all upgrades. The talent level on this team is what gets me excited. We now have the talent and depth needed to compete, and that more than anything is what has me excited about the Panthers.

And as always, GO CATS!

Posted by: iamhubby | May 29, 2008 10:06:47 PM

Good call, iah...Darwin Walker is definitely an upgrade over Kris Jenkins (that's why he's made all those Pro Bowls like Jenks has), Godfrey is an upgrade over Cooper (that's why he's played FS in the last two years like Cooper has), Otah is an upgrade over Gross (because Gross isn't an All-Pro on the right), Kalil is an upgrade over Hartwig (that's why Hartwig started over him last year), and Fonoti is an upgrade over Bridges (that's why Fonoti was on the street last year). We'll be 16-0 easy.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 29, 2008 10:45:29 PM

Oh wait, Procton, you forgot two more. That's why they play the games and that's why they get paid the big bucks. They know what they're doing, and there are 31 other teams who can make the same claims at this point. Do I think every single move made thus far is going to succeed? That's a resounding no. But I do know that Fox went back to a blueprint that worked in 2003 and helped this team get to within two minutes of a Super Bowl Championship. I'd much rather play the "wait and see" game, unlike yourself who loves to play "jump to conclusions".

Posted by: mountaineerdynAsty | May 29, 2008 11:24:39 PM

Let's not get too excited over Prcoton.s comments. He is a 21 year old from High Point who spends all day on google. There is a reason why he is at GTI and not a Public University. Too much time on google and not enough time on your homework = bad grades and no UNC.

Posted by: BK | May 30, 2008 7:10:45 AM

Can't wait to see Otah and Stewart get on the field but I'm already very excited about Godfrey.

Posted by: ND | May 30, 2008 7:49:45 AM

I was simply refuting the statement iah made: "the replacements are all upgrades." That's a stupid comment, beyond its inaccuracy.

And let's not get excited at all over "BK"'s comments. Beyond committing libel with his own factually inaccurate statements, he doesn't even have the balls to attribute his thoughts to his name. Real big guy, there.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 30, 2008 9:45:09 AM

So Michael why did you leave UNC for GTI, The bloggers would like to know

Posted by: JT | May 30, 2008 2:55:14 PM

I've never been anywhere named GTI, nor do I have any idea what it would be.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 30, 2008 4:09:37 PM

Procton, I bet you are awesome at Madden. You know, where everyone has a clear cut grade on a 100 point scale. You seem to know how everyone rates on the Madden scale which MUST make them better in real life.

Maybe Jenkins (as a player) is a 94 overall, and Walker is only an 82. I don't know if that is accurate, but you get the point. In Madden, Jenkins is the formula for success. In real life, Jenkins did not want to be here, he developed a bad attitude toward the team and the coach, and even though his individual stats were pretty good, the D-line as a whole performed HORRIBLY all year long and has been on the decline for a couple of years. Maybe Darwin doesn't rack up 80 tackles and 7 sacks, but if his new perpective, veteran savvy, and leadership helps elevate the play of those around him, and especially if he helps unearth the old J-Pepp, then I would rather have him any day.

The rest of your observations run along the same course. Fonoti will come into Madden with a 62 overall this year, and Wahle will be a 93, but Fonoti was on his way to being one of the most dominant guards in the league before his attitude similarly went sour in San Diego. So he shows up in great shape (like Jenkins did in NY) he took the veteran minimum, and he will replace an aging, overpaid, horribly overrated guard in Wahle, who has NEVER been the guard for us that he was in GB.

Hartwig was injured almost as much as Morgan, and was garbage when he did play. Why not drop his larger cap number and give the young buck a chance?

Otah may be replacing Gross next year if we can't afford him, and since no one knows what next year's crop of rookie tackles will look like and we don't know what our pick next year would have been, why NOT grab him?

Godfrey can't POSSIBLY be any good. That's why many consider him the steal of the draft. Deke Cooper is so unremarkable noone that is NOT a Panthers' fan even knows his name. And by the way 2 years ago Minter started every game at FS, so Cooper only started for ONE year. Furthermore, if you throw Cooper's stats from last year at me, I will ask you to remember that last year everyone in our secondary had inflated stats because our line (anchored by the almighty Kris Jenkins) was so terrible.

Gamble wasn't a true CB, and you're telling me he wasn't better as a rookie than previous starter and 4 year vet Reggie Howard?

Beason played all LB positions in college, and he wasn't better than Draft at MLB his first year?

Being a veteran does not mean you are good, Procton. It just means you were the best option the team had.

I mean, you are the most consistent poster on this blog, a "veteran" if you will, and you sure as hell haven't gotten any better at it.

Posted by: Steve | May 30, 2008 5:59:19 PM

Guilford Technical Institute ring a bell Procton

Posted by: ht | May 30, 2008 8:44:04 PM

Just for the record, Reggie Howard was better than Chris Gamble. You can say all you want about Gamble and his INTs but the man can't cover and is completely unwilling to tackle.

Posted by: Al | May 30, 2008 11:01:51 PM

No, I don't play Madden. And a guy who didn't play a snap last year is not going to be an upgrade over an All-Pro/multiple-time Pro Bowler. Further, your comments about the D-line (particularly the DTs) are dead WRONG. The Panthers allowed 3.6 YPC, a number than ranked 4th in the league. Jon Beason had 160 tackles (a Panther record) in his first season despite not even starting the first three games at MLB. How do you think that happened? The DTs (Jenkins and the also-maligned Kemoeatu) occupied blockers, stuffed lanes, and shut down the run. The pass rush has everything to do with that lazy Peppers.

I certainly hope Otah doesn't "replace" Gross at LT. He's slow, stupid, and can't pass-block to save his life. As for the offensive tackle crop, it's excellent, and deep. There are up to 8 tackles worthy of first-round consideration, including Oher (Miss.), the #1 prospect in the draft; Andre Smith (Alabama); Ciron Black (LSU); Loadholt (OU); Unger (Ore.); Boone (tOSU); Gardner (Georgia Tech); and Dallas Reynolds (BYU.)

Let's also note a big difference between Beason or Gamble and Godfrey. They were both picked among the top 25 players in the draft. Godfrey went 73rd.

And no, ht...I'm aware of no such place that exists.

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 31, 2008 12:30:50 AM

This is what I do in my spare time!

Posted by: Michael Procton | May 31, 2008 9:08:23 AM

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