The Panthers lost another great guy, and good player, in Brad Hoover. Although he played fullback for Carolina, he grew up a running back, and running with the ball was his true love. The instincts he developed as a runner helped him as a blocker. He would anticipate where a back would go and get there first, knocking defenders around and creating space.
Hoover is a country guy, regular guy, who came in undrafted and had a nice carer. He was gracious, and honest, and a necessary stop for the media every time we hit the locker room.
On a team flight back from the Arizona game last season, lineman Jordan Gross grabbed a microphone, got on the intercom and did a long, and those in the plane say hilarious, Hoover imitation.
There's nothing hilarious about Brad's release, however. Like almost everybody else whom the Panthers have dumped, there's a younger player on the roster who plays the same position.
The purge of veterans has made Carolina leaner and younger, and it's made the Panthers lesser. It will be fascinating to see what comes next, because something has to.