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May 10, 2014

Panthers move Charles Godfrey from safety to corner

Charles Godfrey recently took a massive paycut, and now he's taking a new position.

Panthers general manager Dave Gettleman said Saturday the Panthers have moved Godfrey from safety to cornerback after restructuring the seventh-year defensive back last week.

"What went into was when we first got here, he was a guy that played corner in college and moved to safety," Panthers coach Ron Rivera said. "We were looking at some of the things that he has and brings to the table. When we first got here we tried to play him at nickel with the idea being putting him back at corner and see if he has that nickel ability. We’re going to start him at corner, do all the corner skills and drills, and give him an opportunity to play that position as well as the nickel position. That’s why we made the move."

Godfrey, 28, had his base salary cut from $5 million to $750,000, and he can earn $1.7 million back in per-game roster bonuses. His cap figure went from $7.1 million to $3.06 million.

Godfrey started 25 of his 28 games at Iowa at cornerback. He's played at safety since joining the Panthers. In Week 2 of the 2013 season at Buffalo, Godfrey tore his Achilles and missed the rest of the season.

Rivera said Godfrey is not 100-percent healthy and that he has not earned a starting spot.

"We’ve guaranteed nobody anything other than the opportunity to earn the right to be the starter and earn the right to be a Panther as we go into the 2014 season," Rivera said.

Godfrey will face competition at cornerback from newly signed free agent Antoine Cason and second-year back Melvin White. The Panthers also plan to work fifth-round pick Bene Benwikere in at slot corner after Captain Munnerlyn signed with Minnesota in free agency.

Godfrey is tied for seventh in franchise history in career interceptions with 11. 

--Jonathan Jones 

Posted by Observer Sports on May 10, 2014 at 05:56 PM | Permalink


Translation: Godfrey will be cut this year.

Posted by: PantherTruth | May 10, 2014 6:03:28 PM

Hardly. If Godfrey is healthy, he's my bet to start but White aint too shabby either.

Posted by: DefenseWinsGames | May 10, 2014 6:25:40 PM


talk about reinventing the wheel. If he was a second year player, sure. a 6 year vet with 74 starts at safety and NOW is a good time to move him back to corner?

these dudes are nuts. i don't know how healthy godfrey is to know whether its a good move to keep him or cut him, but the dude was a stud before the injury.

this is a whole lot of oddity in this offseason when all they had to do was keep it intact and make some tweaks from a 12-4 team.

i'm floored they didn't at least grab 1 tackle in the first 6 rounds. ealy's a great move long term but completely defeats the purpose of franchising hardy and NOT keeping other guys. he, turner, and benjamin all need to be studs just to reach the level we were at last year and could have been by just holding ground with what we had.

Posted by: charlottean | May 10, 2014 6:31:27 PM

Put a fork in him he is done

Posted by: panther | May 10, 2014 6:31:32 PM

I don't get it. What sense does it make to move the team's best safety to a different position? I get that he might not be 100% healthy yet but this sounds like the Beason situation all over again. You don't move a guy from a position where he's already well established. Yes, he played CB in college but the guy is a proven NFL safety.

Posted by: Nate | May 10, 2014 7:14:27 PM

Release the Kraken!!!

Posted by: The Kraken | May 10, 2014 7:17:30 PM

"We’ve guaranteed nobody anything other than the opportunity to earn the right to be the starter and earn the right to be a Panther as we go into the 2014 season," Rivera said.

This has to be the quote of the year for a Panther coach!!!! LOVE IT!!!!

Posted by: Mojo | May 10, 2014 9:10:43 PM

godfrey doesn't have to be a shutdown CB.. he just need to cover the WR long enough to let the d line get to the QB. Godfrey has exp. He will be fine…CB'c move to S all the time why can't the reverse work? ya'll are haters and look for any move to fail so you can say your smart…GTFOH

Posted by: mintstreetstandup | May 10, 2014 10:21:28 PM

Godfrey's best years were 2010 and 2011; maybe this will help to get him into playing like he did back then.

Posted by: B.J .Rassam | May 11, 2014 1:06:34 AM

The Ealy pick is about money! If Johnson or Hardy don't perform and earn their BIG $$$$, they'll be gone. The G-man is about value and production. This gives us a year for Ealy to learn behind Hardy and Johnson and next year... Well, ask Smitty, Godfrey or Beason.

Posted by: Julius Peppers | May 11, 2014 12:20:30 PM

^^^^ beason was pretty effing productive last year. so was james anderson. so was jordan gross. so was steve smith.

productive? try top 20 all-time productive.

this dude is just trying to make ballsy moves just to make them. you have to make tough decisions as a GM, but he's making them unnecessarily.

i fully expect charles godfrey to be starting at safety by week 7.

for another team.

Posted by: charlottean | May 11, 2014 3:06:17 PM

Great move now they can develop there young safeties of the future in tre Boston unc and Robert Lester great moves and look out for josh Newman this year he has talent has to stay healthy thigh injury last year

Posted by: Hans | May 11, 2014 5:39:48 PM

Godfrey is being given a chance to make this team after a potentially career ending injury. And to the commenter who mentioned Beason, so are you saying you would rather have him than Luke?? Beason had a productive season but Luke was Defensive Player of the Year. Bringing the oft injured Beason doesn't bolster your argument at all. But I guess you wish Dam Morgan was still starting at the mike linebacker position also.

Posted by: Hotspur | May 11, 2014 8:32:19 PM

Nobody would rather have beason than keuchly. anybody with a brain would rather have beason than blackburn.

beason was a probowl outside linebacker, too.

was he often injured? yes. but we're still paying him so what did we gain by letting him be healthy for new york? oh. right. we were able to move up from 168 to 148 in the 5th. for jon beason. giants captain.

totally worth it. benwikere has to be an absolute stud for me to stop talking about how bad this trade was. if we weren't paying beason to play for another team or if we saved a TON of money, it would have been tolerable. or if he wasn't at all himself, it would have been tolerable. it was just bad value. horrible value. dude was 28, he's 29 now. not 34. that's why the giants gave him 3 years 19 million. we were ALREADY and are STILL paying him.

that's what makes it dumb.

Posted by: charlottean | May 12, 2014 10:44:45 AM

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