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June 05, 2013

Voting for Panthers' Mount Rushmore on NBC Sports closes today

The folks at ProFootballTalk.com are having fans of all 32 NFL teams vote for the four players who would go atop their favorite team's Mount Rushmore.

Voting for the Panthers and the Saints ends today, and though it's unclear who is in what position for the Panthers, it appears long-time kicker John Kasay is in the quartet for Carolina.

Of course, there aren't many NFL franchises that would include a kicker in their top-four players of all-time. But few kickers are as beloved as Kasay is to Panthers' fans.

He holds more than 20 team records, and last month he signed a one-day contract to retire a Panther. He'll likely be the next player to go into the Panthers Ring of Honor.

The other candidates for the Panthers' Rushmore are RB Stephen Davis, QB Jake Delhomme, coach John Fox, LB Sam Mills, LB/DE Kevin Greene, S Mike Minter, WR Muhsin Muhammad, owner/founder Jerry Richardson, WR Steve Smith, DE Julius Peppers and TE Wesley Walls.

Previously, PFT explained that two years as the Panthers quarterback with only 13 wins and still no captaincy isn't good enough to put QB Cam Newton into consideration.

The Panthers are dead last in the poll numbers. To vote, click here. And after that, share your top four below in the comments.

--Jonathan Jones

Posted by Observer Sports on June 5, 2013 at 09:24 AM | Permalink


As a Panthers fan, I'll be pretty embarassed if John Kasay makes this. Sure he's a "great guy" but that's not what this is about. Also Panthers fans will say "he was here a long time"...so what. He also kicked a ball out of bounds in a Super Bowl to help lose the game. Other than that play, someone please tell me another that stands out? Just one? Game winning kick? He may have a few but no one remembers them.

The same fans that laud Kasay for "being here a long time so he deserves it" are the ones that hate Peppers because he left "too early", and won't vote for him despite the fact he's a future hall of famer.


Posted by: Steve | Jun 5, 2013 9:35:34 AM

No one remembers Kasay's kicks? We wouldn't have been in the Superbowl without his foot. he was clutch many times that season alone. Sure he kicked the ball out of bounds, but he has done plenty. There aren't many kickers that played for the same team for so long to be so instrumental in the growth of a franchise. I have no problems with him ranking up there.

Posted by: Rob | Jun 5, 2013 9:45:30 AM

I agree with Steve. It would be terrible to Kasay to make this. My list is:

1. Sam Mills
2. Steve Smith
3. Brad Hoover
4. Muhsin Muhammaad

Peppers needs to retire before he is considered. Kevin Greene, Eric Davis, and Stephen Davis did not play for the panthers long enough. Sam Mills is different because of his coaching career and his inspiration
during the 2003 season.

Delhomme and Minter are my runners up.

Posted by: Panthersguy | Jun 5, 2013 9:52:52 AM

Kasay, Smith, Mills, Richardson.

Anyone who doubts whether Kasay deserves it is not a true Panthers fan.

Steve Smith is the greatest player to ever wear a Panthers uniform for his entire career.

Sam Mills is another no-brainer for what he meant to the franchise.

For the 4th spot, Stephen Davis only had one good season. Wesley Walls was good but not great. Same for Kevin Greene during his time at Carolina. Julius Peppers was good for his first few seasons and whenever he was on national TV but other than that he was lazy. Delhomme doesn't belong.

So it came down to Mike Minter and Muhsin Muhammad. Both were great team players, but neither one had quite the stature of Smith, Kasay & Mills. So I went with Jerry Richardson, without which there would be no Carolina Panthers.

Posted by: cwjones | Jun 5, 2013 9:53:33 AM

I love when people think they can decide what a "true Panthers fan" is, and anyone whoe doesn't agree with their opinion isn't a "true Panthers fan".

That's just ridiculous.

Posted by: Steve | Jun 5, 2013 9:59:32 AM

moose, hoover, smith, and peppers

Posted by: big gulps | Jun 5, 2013 10:00:26 AM

Steve Smith
Mike Minter
Sam Mills
John Kasey -Cardiac Cats season was a large part due to his foot and field goals with seconds left. Plus I don't think this is just athletic ability but some balance of leadership as a person AND Player.

Posted by: Keith | Jun 5, 2013 10:04:27 AM

1. Steve Smith
2. Jerry Richardson
3. Julius Peppers
4. Sam Mills

Smith - No explanation needed
Richardson - He is the reason we can even have this discussion (like him or not)
Peppers - He was the first big time player that this franchise ever had and one of the few that was nationally recognizable and he consistantly made Pro Bowls (I'm not a fan that he left btw but it is what is is..no pun intended)
Mills - If you have a statue outside the stadium, doesn't that automatically get you on this?

Posted by: MRM | Jun 5, 2013 10:15:16 AM

Sam Mills
John Kasay
Steve Smith

ON EITHER SIDE OF THE PATH LEADING To THE PANTHERS 'RUSHMORE' VIEWING AREA, I would have busts on pillars, spaced out accordingly, of the various players that have been key in the organization's history...such as:

Wesley Walls
Brad Hoover
Mushin Muhammed
Mark Fields
Mike Minter
Dan Morgan
Julius Peppers
Jake Delhomme
Kevin Greene

Stephen David

Posted by: Easy | Jun 5, 2013 11:31:37 AM

1.) Smith (face of franchise)
2.) Kasay (Embodiment of what JR want's a Panthers player to be)
3.) Mills (Keep Pounding)
4.) a big granite statue spelling out "7-9"

Posted by: WP | Jun 5, 2013 11:45:26 AM

Steve, all that is needed to refute your disregard of Kasay's importance to this team is how badly his "replacements" have hurt this team since he was released! For most of his time here, Kasay was "Mr. Automatic" within 40 yards and pretty darn good out to 50-55 yards! His final couple of seasons here, he was handicapped by an overly conservative offense which more often than not left him at the edge of his range.

Posted by: John | Jun 5, 2013 11:56:38 AM

Surprised to see Greene on this list but no Jordan Gross. Plus, it would be hard to Peppers on it. As talented as he is, it seems odd that you would include a player that currently plays for another team because he couldn't stand playing for the one he was on any longer.

Posted by: Phillip | Jun 5, 2013 12:07:43 PM

delhomme smith kasay are the obvious automatics.

I get the love for sam mills but he would be 4th at best on the list.

kevin greene would not be on the list at all. maybe walls, maybe hoover, maybe peppers.

anybody who doesn't think delhomme is a no brainer has completely forgotten what that dude did here. look at his w/l record while here and look at other franchise QB's w/l. the guy absolutely played ball. he didn't put up 4000 yard seasons because we didn't play that style of ball. we were running the clock, controlling field position. but that dude absolutely balled for what? 6 straight seasons? That matters.

muhammed and williams should get consideration.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 5, 2013 12:45:56 PM

Peppers still remains the best player the team ever had. I know the local ABC fans may scream otherwise, but that is just because his Heels teams beat their schools so badly. The guy is a first ballot Hall of Fame lock and is the best defensive player of the last 10 years. We were lucky to have him, too bad the ownership/management of the team couldn't extract their heads from their bums long enough to see it.

Posted by: I Know | Jun 5, 2013 1:28:28 PM

4.) a big granite statue spelling out "7-9"

fantastic WP !

Posted by: big gulps | Jun 5, 2013 2:28:37 PM

Every Mount Rushmore has a founding father or two. That'd be Sam Mills, who established a standard of excellence as a player and further burnished his reputation as a coach, and John Kasay, one of the first free agents signed and the last original Panther left standing, a guy who won a ton of games with his leg and brought us justthisclose to a Super Bowl victory, not to mention being beloved by fans his entire Panthers career.

Every Mount Rushmore has a martyr. That's Mike Minter, who exercised incredible leadership and heart before both his knees gave out prematurely. (Mills's premature death puts him in this category, too.)

And Smitty already deserves a place and may yet write more chapters of greatness with Cam throwing to him. I guess he's the Teddy Roosevelt of our Mount Rushmore: overcoming a bunch of low expectations to reach the pinnacle.

The other nominees either weren't with the in a meaningful position Panthers long enough and/or lacked the leadership intangibles to qualify. One strong candidate not on the nominee list is Brad Hoover.

Finally, as grateful to Jerry Richardson as I am for bringing the NFL to Charlotte, he has done enough mean, bizarre and just plain stupid things in recent years to take himself out of contention, from stripping the cupboard bare a year ahead of the lockout to making dumb decisions about draft picks and GMs to letting John Fox dangle in the breeze for a year, to extorting tax money out of the state and city at a time when both were in financial crisis and the team was publicly known (thanks to the leak to Deadspin) to be highly profitable.

Posted by: Lex | Jun 5, 2013 3:30:07 PM

Since I have been going to all of the Panther games at Clemson, and then all of the games since. Only (1) player went to (5) straight Pro-Bowls, voted an All-Pro (5) straight years. And was exciting every time he touched the football. And the Panthers have never had another player like hime since, period.! That is ->
Michael Bates -Carolina Panthers (1996-2000) - 5× Pro Bowl selection (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000)..
5× All-Pro selection (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000)..
NFL Alumni Kick Returner of the Year (1996)..NFL 1990s All-Decade Team..

Posted by: catsnmbr1fan | Jun 5, 2013 4:34:44 PM

^^^^ helluvanaddition to the convo.

bates was a serious return man. not sure that makes him "mount rushmore worthy" but definitely in the discussion.

and yeah. no doubt peppers is the best player we've ever had. but he also chose to leave town and NOT for more money. that immediately removes him from mount rushmore and jersey retirements.

smith-delhomme-kasay only sure things. mills if you're sentimental. minter-gross-hoover-williams all maybes.

smith and peppers are probably the only hall of famers of the bunch and peppers is on the fence there. not sure he's a shoe in. smith should be.

Posted by: charlottean | Jun 6, 2013 4:54:25 PM

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