« Charlotte native Hakeem Nicks will sign with the Colts | Main | Panthers sign Roman Harper »

March 15, 2014

Hakeem Nicks: Panthers offered, wasn't the right situation

Charlotte native and new Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Hakeem Nicks said the Carolina Panthers made him an offer, but the two sides agreed it wasn’t the right situation.

In a conference call with reporters Saturday morning, Nicks said the Panthers made him an offer but did not give financial details.

“Yeah they made an offer when I talked to (Panthers general manager) Dave Gettleman,” Nicks said. “But you know it just didn’t pan out the right way. I feel like this is the best fit for me.”

Nicks, a former Independence and UNC standout, spent five seasons with the Giants, and four of those were with Gettleman, who was in the Giants pro personnel department. Nicks ultimately signed a one-year deal worth $3.5 million with a reported $2 million in incentives.

Asked what led him away from Charlotte and to Indianapolis, Nicks said it was “the situation.”

“After talking to Gettleman I think he agreed that this was the best situation for me too even though they made the offer,” Nicks said. “Like I said I feel like I made the best decision and I’m ready to make the best of it.”

Nicks said he believes he’s the missing piece to the Colts’ puzzle in an attempt to reach the Super Bowl next season.

The Panthers released 13-year veteran receiver Steve Smith on Thursday and have seen No. 3 receiver Ted Ginn Jr. and No. 4 receiver Domenik Hixon sign with the Cardinals and Bears, respectively. No receiver currently on Carolina's roster had a catch last season.

--Jonathan Jones

Posted by Observer Sports on March 15, 2014 at 10:58 AM | Permalink


Starting to worry about Gettleman's ability to seal the deal and close on their "targeted" players. I still believe Gettleman has a plan, but it seems he's not a strong closer. Nicks shouldn't have made the trip to Indy in the first place, in my opinion.

Posted by: CLTfan | Mar 15, 2014 11:15:39 AM

We are officially screwed. We're going to end up with a veteran WR as our #1 that wouldn't be most teams #3. I assume we'll draft a WR with the #1 pick, but rookie WR rarely have a big impact. With no OL and horrible WRs, Cam is going to have a tough year. I hope it doesn't run him out of town.

Posted by: ktown8 | Mar 15, 2014 11:25:09 AM

What plan? His options are very limited at this point. He' gamblng on rookies from the draft. How has Edmund Kubliga worked out so far? He blew up a 12-4 team so he could put his name on it instead of Hurney, instead of just adding some missing pieces. Hurney is not looking so bad now.

Posted by: FU mike shula | Mar 15, 2014 11:30:07 AM

Cam is overhyped anyway, and Shula makes Cam worse.

Posted by: FU mike shula | Mar 15, 2014 11:32:15 AM

Were going to find out first hand why this guy didn't get a GM gig until he qualified for social security. Can you say we're screwed?

Posted by: Tv Man | Mar 15, 2014 11:34:04 AM

Did you watch the Panthers this season? Offense was horrible! Defense got us to the playoffs! Cam had maybe 4-5 good games against average defenses. I admit Mike Shula shares a lot of the blame. The run game would start gaining traction and Mike Shula would have Cam pass all three downs, then punt.

Posted by: FU mike shula | Mar 15, 2014 11:34:10 AM

Would someone at this paper please do an article that answers what in the world is going on? No more of these "I trust" blindly deals. Fans want to know. Also, why wasn't this the right place for Nicks? What does he know that we do not? Do some investigating! Give us some answers!

Posted by: dennis | Mar 15, 2014 11:38:27 AM

Its time for the GM to take a pay cut also cut Johnson's pay and godfrey and others. So we can try to get some players in. If not the panthers will go 1-15 this year and Mr.Richardson will have to fired the GM. What hell is the GM wanting for. all the good players are gone. What the fuck are we going to do.

Posted by: Joseph Holbert | Mar 15, 2014 11:45:57 AM

I agree with Dennis- the Observer needs to talk with the GM and find out what his plans are-where is he planning to get quality receivers-we could not beat San Francisco with our offense in the playoffs last year and they seem to be getting stronger on offense while we are regressing- as a PSL owner since inception I am plenty worried at this point!

Posted by: Ed | Mar 15, 2014 11:48:40 AM

it's already too late. teams that bring in a bunch of free agents to start, are not usually successful.

byron bell hasn't been resigned yet either (restricted) and godfrey hasn't been restructured. if things don't go right with those 2, you're talking about 8 starting positions to fill counting a kr/pr and thats with thomas/norman/white starting at corner.

you can't reasonably replace that many guys with rookies and free agents and contend for a championship. we saved 3 mm (this year) on steve smith, there's no free agent receiver better than smith that can be had for that price.

even if we hit home runs on 3 draft picks, we have to get 5-7 starters in free agency. just idiotic.

yeah it's only march, but all those starters gone won't be back in august. we went from having 2 holes to fill to 10 in a blink.

Posted by: charlottean | Mar 15, 2014 11:57:53 AM

Hard to believe that Gettleman has put us in a position that has Cam Newton's primary receiver in 2014 either a rookie who has never caught an NFL pass, a veteran receiver that none of the other 31 teams wanted or LaFell who we didn't even want cause we let him go into free agency. The same is true for left tackle, either a rookie or another teams scraps. I also believe Gettleman had a plan and it got shot all to hell. Now he has bet next years season on draft picks. A scary thought!!

Posted by: Mike pencola | Mar 15, 2014 12:01:13 PM

I listen to all the comments did anyone think we win the division? I feel comfortable with Gettleman than I ever did with Hurney! I still have faith he will put a good team on the field Go Panthers!

Posted by: Rich | Mar 15, 2014 12:03:56 PM

Well so much for being hopeful. The silver lining is that some of these clubs that are set to draft before us will not be picking a WR with their first pick allowing one of the intriguing rookies to drop to us.

Moreover, we still have several options still out there:
James Jones
Sidney Rice
Miles Austin

I would be happy with a WR set of James Jones, Miles Austin and picking up one of these three wrs in the draft: Cooks, Beckham or Lee. The only WR to ever get wide open last year was Ginn but he couldn't hold on to the ball. Jones and Austin are burners and get open.

We can also pick up Devin Hester for PR/KR.

Safety: Clark and Harper
OL: 2nd and 3rd round picks
CB: Gettleman's magic

So there is still a nippance of potential out there but if Jones or Austin sign elsewhere, the it would get severely depressing.

Posted by: Rob | Mar 15, 2014 12:08:33 PM

People just need to calm down a bit...losing Smith hurts, from a "face of the franchise" point of view, but this team would be no closer to winning a SB with Smith still on the roster. And that's coming from a long time Smith fan and life long Panthers fan...Gettleman has a plan, everybody complained about his pickups last year: Mike Mitchell? Ted Ginn? Chase Blackburn? And all Gettleman did with those lower grade FA signings was turn the team from 7-9 to 12-4...our WRs were nothing to write home about last year and, yet, the Panthers still won 12 games...why? Strength of the defense, a front 7 that remains in tact. The offense was ranked 29th in the NFL in passing...you can't go much further down than that, so please, stop freaking out. It's not 2005 anymore, Smith is a serviceable veteran at this point in his career and he's still outspoken...it'd be one thing if he was outspoken but still produced 1200+ yard seasons, he's not that guy any longer and this franchise needs to build a WR corps around Cam...did anyone else realize that this draft is loaded with WR talent? They can score 2 quality WRs with their first 2 picks that will grow with Cam...there are still quality WRs out there in James Jones and Emmanuel Sanders who Gettleman can get at bargain prices just like Ginn...this team is built around a strong front 7, which again, remains in tact from last year...they may regress next season, but let's not throw this team under the bus with still months before the draft and almost half a year before Training Camp...

Posted by: Brian | Mar 15, 2014 12:09:53 PM

What does that mean, "both agreed it was not the right situation?" Does that mean that Nicks has a better opportunity to reach a Super Bowl with the Colts and Panthers are in rebuilding mode? Is that the underlying idea? Is this coming season a throw-away in order to get in better cap situation? Sure seems like that.

Posted by: Reg | Mar 15, 2014 12:24:35 PM

The reaction from fans are crazy. Just a few years ago Steve Smith asked to be traded. I'm glad we did not pay Nicks money. There are plenty of veteran WRs with good stats on the market. I hope we stay focus on getting tough on offensive line and DBs - use our talented backfield and great TE as the foundation for our team. Draft OL #1.

Posted by: Kelso | Mar 15, 2014 12:26:22 PM

I sure would like to hear from Cam...Gettleman seems to be trying to coddle him...maybe we could get his momma to stand on the sidelines so every time a teammate yells at him for being such a wuss he would have someone to go cry to...if we lost Smitty because Cam couldn't be a leader, what does that tell us about Cam, or Gettlemen?

Nobody wants today for Gettlemen or Cam

Posted by: Bull123 | Mar 15, 2014 12:36:04 PM

Gettleman might of had a plan and if this is it then we are in long term trouble with several years of rebuilding with .500 or sub .500 records. Panthers have always been horrible in free agency and most of their successful players have been drafted by the team. I also think this will spell the end for Cam, with no WRs on the roster with a catch last year and aging RBs and an untested OL, he is going to have a tough time next year and little incentive to sign a long term deal. Gettleman is going to take us back to mediocrity and lottery draft picks, I predict he won't be around after next season if we miss the playoffs as it would be a direct indictment of his management skills that have been on display this off season.

Posted by: Neff | Mar 15, 2014 12:40:59 PM

One more thing....I as always, blame JR for all of this...and where is coach Rivera???....

If I hear Gettlemen say one time that we are looking to the future I am going to go postal ...if Cam doesn't stink it so bad against San Fran last year we play to go to the Super Bowl...we were 12-4 last year and Gettlemen wants all new players...what an idiot....I want to win right now and we had the pieces in place to do so...we needed some tweaking but since Gettlemen is such a total jerk those pieces, along with the core of our team, are telling JR up yours!

Posted by: Bull123 | Mar 15, 2014 12:43:45 PM

Most people do not realize that Cam could not do decently well with the few receivers he has had a little chemistry with last year, how will he do with receivers that will more that likely be all new and not of the best quality? Also, they cannot afford to throw down the first 2 picks on receivers. They still need the second most important position on the offense, Jordan Gross' spot!

Posted by: mike | Mar 15, 2014 1:09:03 PM

Most people do not realize that Cam could not do decently well with the few receivers he has had a little chemistry with last year, how will he do with receivers that will more that likely be all new and not of the best quality? Also, they cannot afford to throw down the first 2 picks on receivers. They still need the second most important position on the offense, Jordan Gross' spot!

Posted by: mike | Mar 15, 2014 1:09:03 PM

Cam stink it up are you kidding me . They have 3 running backs and he leads them to the 1 yard line twice and he has to run the ball in GIVE ME A BREAK. By the way his center was pushed back on him both times and the running backs were not there. Get in touch with the real reason you don't like Cam

Posted by: malcolm felix | Mar 15, 2014 1:38:55 PM

{Asked what led him away from Charlotte and to Indianapolis, Nicks said it was “the situation.”}

I'd say the "situation" was that he didn't want to sign with a team that could treat the team's best player ever, in so disrespectful a manner. I know that if I were a free agent WR, there is no way I'd sign with Gettleman unless I got all the money I wanted guaranteed up front, because I'd expect to be dumped next season anyway.

It's not the decision that is going to screw the Panthers, it was the way it was handled. Every player in the NFL saw what went down... and I'd be surprised if any of them want anything to do with Gettleman.

Dumbest part is they still have to pay Smith $5 million of the $7 million they already owed him, so the most they saved on the cap is $2 million and it's going to probably cost more than that to replace him with a lesser player. Must be the CMS new math!

Posted by: John | Mar 15, 2014 1:40:57 PM

While it is certainly unnerving to lose what seemed like good receiver prospects in free agency give Gettleman a chance. The man has demonstrated a knack for evaluating talent. He messed up with Steve's release, no question. However, he has stated he is here to help the team become one of the perennial winners and not the win/lose fiasco it became under Hurney. He found Ginn, Hixon, and other excellent, previously washed up values who have since been snapped up by competitors. He didn't jump out of a baby carriage into the position he's in. He comes from a storied NY Giants franchise and he knows his way around the NFL.

I didn't like the Smith decision. However, I have never been a GM nor have I ever been in the Panthers locker room. He must have had good reason to do what he did.

Give the man a chance.

Posted by: Gillian Grannum | Mar 15, 2014 1:43:02 PM

Hixon is gone also LMFAO!!!!!!
I am going postal right fing now! What the fk is Really going on. 7-9 is looking laughable. Thank god for Bobcats and then Hornets next season!

Posted by: 10-4!! | Mar 15, 2014 1:53:19 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.