A Look at How David Gettleman Assembles the Roster

A Look at How David Gettleman Assembles the Roster

Ever since becoming the General Manager of the Panthers, David Gettleman has assembled competitive rosters each year. His work reached the NFL’s pinnacle with a Super Bowl berth, and ultimate loss. This year he will try to get his team back to the promised land, and come out with a victory. The table below shows how Gettleman has assembled his roster in each of his three seasons as GM. You can see the patterns of how many players he usually keeps per position, and my input on who may fill these spots come final roster cuts.

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The Carolina Panthers Need These Players To Step Up

The Carolina Panthers Need These Players To Step Up

The 2015 NFL season is finally here! It has been a long seven months since the New England Patriots played the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX. But we can finally look past that and focus on this season (I hope). The Carolina Panthers have had a very interesting offseason filled with injuries, releases, and acquisitions. If the Panthers want to three-peat as NFC South Champions, they will need some of their players to step up. 

Who are those players that will need to have a strong season for the Panthers to have success?

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A Quarterback's Worst Nightmare

There will be a reunion this Sunday when Julius Peppers and the Green Packers meet the Carolina Panthers at Lambeau Field. Julius Peppers or “The Freak of Nature” left the Carolina Panthers in the 2010 NFL season because he was being ignored about his contract.

Why did Julius Peppers leave the Carolina Panthers?

Julius Peppers said, “How can you say you want to be somewhere when you’re not really sure if they want you there because they’re not even talking to you?” There was a lot of confusion during the 2007 NFL season because he only had 2.5 sacks that season, and the Panthers ignored his contract talk in the offseason. The next season he recorded 14.5 sacks and the Panthers wanted to talk. By then it was too late and Peppers wanted out of Carolina. The 2009 season came around and the Panthers put the franchise tag on Julius for $16.683 million. The hiring of defensive coordinator Mike Trgovac destroyed any hope of Peppers returning to the Carolina Panthers. Julius said, “In my eyes I didn't see us getting any better on that side of the ball.” In 2010 Peppers left for the Chicago Bears.

Did the Carolina Panthers draft anyone in 2010 to fill the void?

In 2010 the Carolina Panthers drafted Greg Hardy in the 6th round and it wasn't until the 2012 season that he finally came out of his shell. He recorded 11 sacks that year and turned into “The Kraken.” The following year he had 15.0 sacks and once again the Panthers put a franchise tag for $13.116 million on their star defensive end. I thought the front office learned their lesson?

Who is better Greg Hardy or Julius Peppers?

Julius Peppers is 6, “7”, 287 lbs and recorded 40.5 sacks during his first four NFL seasons. Julius Peppers came storming out of the gate and is one of the best athletes in the NFL. Brian Urlacher is one of the best linebackers to ever play the game and he agrees with me. In 2010 he said, "I'll say this about Peppers, he's the best football player I've ever seen. He's 300 pounds. He does things DBs are doing. I don't know how we got him, but I'm glad we did.” Julius is quick like a defensive back, elusive like a running back and big like an offensive lineman. If I was protecting the quarterback I would run the other way.

Greg Hardy is 6’ “4”, 275 lbs and recorded 33 sacks during his first four seasons in the NFL. Hardy is not as big as Peppers but still as elusive. He has good athletic abilities and natural strength. Hardy uses his alter ego “The Kraken” to fuel his fire and get to the quarterback.

When an NFL scout is looking for that next best defensive end in the NFL, they are comparing them to Julius Peppers. Peppers is bigger, stronger and has better hands than Hardy. Having Julius Peppers on your NFL roster is a great accomplishment. If the Panthers were able to sign Peppers in the offseason they wouldn't have to worry about Hardy’s issues.

If the Carolina Panthers don’t resign Hardy due to his recent case, would you consider this the Julius Peppers curse?

Justin Raymond

Follow me on Twitter @JayRay19

The Runts of the Cat Litter

The Carolina Panthers have more problems than Jay-Z and his 99 problems. The current state of mind for this team and the fans is the Panthers are not built for an empire. Ok, I am done with the Jay-Z references. The Panthers’ roster is full of players who are both suspended and injured. The 12-4 record from last season is an afterthought, because of all the bad things that keep on happening. The Panthers play the Chicago Bears this week and will have to go to battle with rookies and backups.

Here is the list of injured and suspended players on the Carolina Panthers as of October 1st:

·        RB Jonathan Stewart – Questionable (Knee)
·        RB DeAngelo Williams - Out
·        FB Mike Tolbert - Out
·        TE Richie Brockel - Out
·        RB Fozzy Whittaker - Questionable
·        DE Greg Hardy - Suspended
·        DE Frank Alexander - Suspended
·        DE Charles Johnson – Day to Day
·        LB Thomas Davis – Day to Day

How are the Panthers fighting through this huge list of problems? How are they trying to give us fans hope? They are giving their rookies an opportunity to show the NFL why they deserve a spot on this team. Who are these rookies?

1. Kelvin Benjamin (WR) – The Carolina Panthers first round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. We all know who Kelvin Benjamin is. He has started for the Carolina Panthers since game one. Benjamin currently leads the Panthers in receiving with 21 receptions, 329 yards and three touchdowns. He is currently on pace to be the offensive rookie of the year. He has the size of Calvin Johnson and the hands of Larry Fitzgerald. Benjamin is both a key player and impact player on this Carolina Panthers squad.

2. Darrin Reaves (RB) – Darrin Reaves is a hidden gem out of UAB. Reaves was undrafted and showed the Carolina Panthers what he had in the tank in camp. He is a small running back, with a compact build that loves contact. Reaves recorded a total of 2,337 rushing yards in college, and played on a team that had a losing record of 8-28. Reaves has earned the starter role against the Chicago Bears and should punish some linebackers on his way to the end zone.

3. Kony Ealy (DE) – The second round pick for the Carolina Panthers in the 2014 NFL Draft. Ealy is a big, athletic, pash rusher who is quick off the snap. He was First-team All-SEC in 2013 and finished the season with 43 tackles, and 9.5 sacks. He has had some ups and downs throughout the preseason and season. Cam Newton gave Ealy some tough love during camp, and Ealy used that fuel to light his fire. Kony might get the opportunity to play more because of the injury to Charles Johnson and the suspension of Greg Hardy. Ealy should be able to help pressure Jay Cutler and cause an interception or two.

If the Carolina Panthers want to get into the NFL playoffs this season, they will need help from their rookies. Do you see these rookies having an impact on the matchup against the Chicago Bears? 

Follow me on Twitter @JayRay19